Kṛṣṇa who is known as Govinda is the Supreme Godhead. He has an eternal blissful spiritual body. He is the origin of all. He has no other origin and He is the prime cause of all causes.
[The spiritual place of transcendental pastimes of Kṛṣṇa is portrayed in the second verse.] The superexcellent station of Kṛṣṇa, which is known as Gokula, has thousands of petals and a corolla like that of a lotus sprouted from a part of His infinitary aspect, the whorl of the leaves being the actual abode of Kṛṣṇa.
The whorl of that transcendental lotus is the realm wherein dwells Kṛṣṇa. It is a hexagonal figure, the abode of the indwelling predominated and predominating aspect of the Absolute. Like a diamond the central supporting figure of self-luminous Kṛṣṇa stands as the transcendental source of all potencies. The holy name consisting of eighteen transcendental letters is manifested in a hexagonal figure with sixfold divisions.
The whorl of that eternal realm Gokula is the hexagonal abode of Kṛṣṇa. Its petals are the abodes of gopīs who are part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa to whom they are most lovingly devoted and are similar in essence. The petals shine beautifully like so many walls. The extended leaves of that lotus are the gardenlike dhāma, i.e. spiritual abode of Śrī Rādhikā, the most beloved of Kṛṣṇa.
[The surrounding external plane of Gokula is described in this verse.] There is a mysterious quadrangular place named Śvetadvīpa surrounding the outskirts of Gokula. Śvetadvīpa is divided into four parts on all sides. The abode of Vāsudeva, Saṅkarṣaṇa, Pradyumna and Aniruddha are separately located in each of these four parts. These four divided abodes are enveloped by the fourfold human requirements such as piety, wealth, passion and liberation, as also by the four Vedas, viz., Ṛg, Sāma, Yajur and Atharva, which deal with the mantra and which are the bases of achievements of the fourfold mundane requirements. Ten tridents are fixed in the ten directions, including the zenith and nadir. The eight directions are decorated with the eight jewels of Mahāpadma, Padma, Śaṅkha, Makara, Kacchapa, Mukunda, Kunda, and Nīla. There are ten protectors [dik-pālas] of the ten directions in the form of mantra. The associates of the hues of blue, yellow, red and white and the extraordinary potencies bearing the names of Vimala, etc., shine on all sides.
The Lord of Gokula is the transcendental Supreme Godhead, the own Self of eternal ecstasies. He is the superior of all superiors and is busily engaged in the enjoyments of the transcendental realm and has no association with His mundane potency.
Kṛṣṇa never consorts with His illusory energy. Still her connection is not entirely cut off from the Absolute Truth. When He intends to create the material world the amorous pastime, in which He engages by consorting with His own spiritual [cit] potency Ramā by casting His glance at the deluding energy in the shape of sending His time energy, is an auxiliary activity.
[The secondary process of association with Māyā is described.] Ramādevī, the spiritual [cit] potency, beloved consort of the Supreme Lord, is the regulatrix of all entities. The divine plenary portion of Kṛṣṇa creates the mundane world. At creation there appears a divine halo of the nature of His own subjective portion [svāṁśa]. This halo is divine Śambhu, the masculine symbol or manifested emblem of the Supreme Lord. This halo is the dim twilight reflection of the supreme eternal effulgence. This masculine symbol is the subjective portion of divinity who functions as progenitor of the mundane world, subject to the supreme regulatrix [niyati]. The conceiving potency in regard to mundane creation makes her appearance out of the supreme regulatrix. She is Māyā, the limited, nonabsolute [aparā] potency, the symbol of mundane feminine productivity. The intercourse of these two brings forth the faculty of perverted cognition, the reflection of the seed of the procreative desire of the Supreme Lord.
All offspring of the consort of the great lord [Maheśvara] of this mundane world are of the nature of the embodiment of the mundane masculine and feminine generative organs.
The person embodying the material causal principle, viz., the great lord of this mundane world [Maheśvara] Śambhu, in the form of the male generating organ, is joined to his female consort the limited energy [Māyā] as the efficient causal principle. The Lord of the world Mahā-Viṣṇu is manifest in him by His subjective portion in the form of His glance.
The Lord of the mundane world, Mahā-Viṣṇu, possesses thousands of thousands of heads, eyes, hands. He is the source of thousands of thousands of avatāras in His thousands of thousands of subjective portions. He is the creator of thousands of thousands of individual souls.
The same Mahā-Viṣṇu is spoken of by the name of "Nārāyaṇa" in this mundane world. From that eternal person has sprung the vast expanse of water of the spiritual Causal Ocean. The subjective portion of Saṅkarṣaṇa who abides in paravyoma, the above supreme puruṣa with thousands of subjective portions, reposes in the state of divine sleep [yoga-nidrā] in the waters of the spiritual Causal Ocean.
The spiritual seeds of Saṅkarṣaṇa existing in the pores of skin of Mahā-Viṣṇu, are born as so many golden sperms. These sperms are covered with five great elements.
The same Mahā-Viṣṇu entered into each universe as His own separate subjective portions. The divine portions, that entered into each universe are possessed of His majestic extension, i.e., they are the eternal universal soul Mahā-Viṣṇu, possessing thousands of thousands of heads.
The same Mahā-Viṣṇu created Viṣṇu from His left limb, Brahmā, the first progenitor of beings, from His right limb and, from the space between His two eyebrows, Śambhu, the divine masculine manifested halo.
The function of Śambhu in relation to jīvas is that this universe enshrining the mundane egotistic principle has originated from Śambhu.
Thereupon the same great personal Godhead, assuming the threefold forms of Viṣṇu, Prajāpati and Śambhu, entering into the mundane universe, plays the pastimes of preservation, creation and destruction of this world. This pastime is contained in the mundane world. Hence, it being perverted, the Supreme Lord, identical with Mahā-Viṣṇu, prefers to consort with the goddess Yoganidrā, the constituent of His own spiritual [cit] potency full of the ecstatic trance of eternal bliss appertaining to His own divine personality.
When Viṣṇu lying in the ocean of milk wills to create this universe, a golden lotus springs from His navel-pit. The golden lotus with its stem is the abode of Brahmā representing Brahmaloka or Satyaloka.
Before their conglomeration the primary elements in their nascent state remained originally separate entities. Nonapplication of the conglomerating process is the cause of their separate existence. Divine Mahā-Viṣṇu, primal Godhead, through association with His own spiritual [cit] potency, moved Māyā and by the application of the conglomerating principle created those different entities in their state of cooperation. And after that He Himself consorted with Yoganidrā by way of His eternal dalliance with His spiritual [cit] potency.
By conglomerating all those separate entities He manifested the innumerable mundane universes and Himself entered into the inmost recess of every extended conglomerate [viraḍ-vigraha]. At that time those jīvas who had lain dormant during the cataclysm were awakened.
The same jīva is eternal and is for eternity and without a beginning joined to the Supreme Lord by the tie of an eternal kinship. He is transcendental spiritual potency.
The divine lotus which springs from the navel-pit of Viṣṇu is in every way related by the spiritual tie with all souls and is the origin of four-faced Brahmā versed in the four Vedas.
On coming out of the lotus, Brahmā, being guided by the divine potency tuned his mind to the act of creation under the impulse of previous impressions. But he could see nothing but darkness in every direction.
Then the goddess of learning Sarasvatī, the divine consort of the Supreme Lord, said thus to Brahmā who saw nothing but gloom in all directions, "O Brahmā, this mantra, viz., klīṁ kṛṣṇāya govindāya gopī-jana-vallabhāya svāhā, will assuredly fulfill your heart's desire."
"O Brahmā, do thou practice spiritual association by means of this mantra; then all your desires will be fulfilled."
Brahmā, being desirous of satisfying Govinda, practiced the cultural acts for Kṛṣṇa in Goloka, Lord of Śvetadvīpa, for a long time. His meditation ran thus, "There exists a divine lotus of a thousand petals, augmented by millions of filaments, in the transcendental land of Goloka. On its whorl, there exists a great divine throne on which is seated Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the form of eternal effulgence of transcendental bliss, playing on His divine flute resonant with the divine sound, with His lotus mouth. He is worshiped by His amorous milkmaids with their respective subjective portions and extensions and also by His external energy [who stays outside] embodying all mundane qualities."
Then Gāyatrī, mother of the Vedas, being made manifest, i.e. imparted, by the divine sound of the flute of Śrī Kṛṣṇa, entered into the lotus mouth of Brahmā, born from himself, through his eight ear-holes. The lotus-born Brahmā having received the Gāyatrī, sprung from the flute-song of Śrī Kṛṣṇa, attained the status of the twice-born, having been initiated by the supreme primal preceptor, Godhead Himself.
Enlightened by the recollection of that Gāyatrī, embodying the three Vedas, Brahmā became acquainted with the expanse of the ocean of truth. Then he worshiped Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the essence of all Vedas, with this hymn.
I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, the first progenitor who is tending the cows, yielding all desire, in abodes built with spiritual gems, surrounded by millions of purpose trees, always served with great reverence and affection by hundreds of thousands of lakṣmīs or gopīs.
I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, who is adept in playing on His flute, with blooming eyes like lotus petals with head decked with peacock's feather, with the figure of beauty tinged with the hue of blue clouds, and His unique loveliness charming millions of Cupids.
I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, round whose neck is swinging a garland of flowers beautified with the moon-locket, whose two hands are adorned with the flute and jeweled ornaments, who always revels in pastimes of love, whose graceful threefold-bending form of Śyāmasundara is eternally manifest.
I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, whose transcendental form is full of bliss, truth, substantiality and is thus full of the most dazzling splendor. Each of the limbs of that transcendental figure possesses in Himself, the full-fledged functions of all the organs, and eternally sees, maintains and manifests the infinite universes, both spiritual and mundane.
I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, who is inaccessible to the Vedas, but obtainable by pure unalloyed devotion of the soul, who is without a second, who is not subject to decay, is without a beginning, whose form is endless, who is the beginning, and the eternal puruṣa; yet He is a person possessing the beauty of blooming youth.
I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, only the tip of the toe of whose lotus feet is approached by the yogīs who aspire after the transcendental and betake themselves to prāṇāyāma by drilling the respiration; or by the jñānīs who try to find out the nondifferentiated Brahman by the process of elimination of the mundane, extending over thousands of millions of years.
He is an undifferentiated entity as there is no distinction between potency and the possessor thereof. In His work of creation of millions of worlds, His potency remains inseparable. All the universes exist in Him and He is present in His fullness in every one of the atoms that are scattered throughout the universe, at one and the same time. Such is the primeval Lord whom I adore.
I adore the same Govinda, the primeval Lord, in whose praise men, who are imbued with devotion, sing the mantra-sūktas told by the Vedas, by gaining their appropriate beauty, greatness, thrones, conveyances and ornaments.
I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, residing in His own realm, Goloka, with Rādhā, resembling His own spiritual figure, the embodiment of the ecstatic potency possessed of the sixty-four artistic activities, in the company of Her confidantes [sakhīs], embodiments of the extensions of Her bodily form, permeated and vitalized by His ever-blissful spiritual rasa.
I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, who is Śyāmasundara, Kṛṣṇa Himself with inconceivable innumerable attributes, whom the pure devotees see in their heart of hearts with the eye of devotion tinged with the salve of love.
I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, who manifested Himself personally as Kṛṣṇa and the different avatāras in the world in the forms of Rāma, Nṛsiṁha, Vāmana, etc., as His subjective portions.
I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, whose effulgence is the source of the nondifferentiated Brahman mentioned in the Upaniṣads, being differentiated from the infinity of glories of the mundane universe appears as the indivisible, infinite, limitless, truth.
I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, who is the absolute substantive principle being the ultimate entity in the form of the support of all existence whose external potency embodies the threefold mundane qualities, viz., sattva, rajas, and tamas and diffuses the Vedic knowledge regarding the mundane world.
I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, whose glory ever triumphantly dominates the mundane world by the activity of His own pastimes, being reflected in the mind of recollecting souls as the transcendental entity of ever-blissful cognitive rasa.
Lowest of all is located Devī-dhāma [mundane world], next above it is Maheśa-dhāma [abode of Maheśa]; above Maheśa-dhāma is placed Hari-dhāma [abode of Hari] and above them all is located Kṛṣṇa's own realm named Goloka. I adore the primeval Lord Govinda, who has allotted their respective authorities to the rulers of those graded realms.
The external potency Māyā who is of the nature of the shadow of the cit potency, is worshiped by all people as Durgā, the creating, preserving and destroying agency of this mundane world. I adore the primeval Lord Govinda in accordance with whose will Durgā conducts herself.
Just as milk is transformed into curd by the action of acids, but yet the effect curd is neither same as, nor different from, its cause, viz., milk, so I adore the primeval Lord Govinda of whom the state of Śambhu is a transformation for the performance of the work of destruction.
The light of one candle being communicated to other candles, although it burns separately in them, is the same in its quality. I adore the primeval Lord Govinda who exhibits Himself equally in the same mobile manner in His various manifestations.
I adore the primeval Lord Govinda who assuming His own great subjective form, who bears the name of Śeṣa, replete with the all-accommodating potency, and reposing in the Causal Ocean with the infinity of the world in the pores of His hair, enjoys creative sleep [yoga-nidrā].
Brahmā and other lords of the mundane worlds, appearing from the pores of hair of Mahā-Viṣṇu, remain alive as long as the duration of one exhalation of the latter [Mahā-Viṣṇu]. I adore the primeval Lord Govinda of whose subjective personality Mahā-Viṣṇu is the portion of portion.
I adore the primeval Lord Govinda from whom the separated subjective portion Brahmā receives his power for the regulation of the mundane world, just as the sun manifests some portion of his own light in all the effulgent gems that bear the names of sūryakānta, etc.
I adore the primeval Lord Govinda, whose lotus feet are always held by Gaṇeśa upon the pair of tumuli protruding from his elephant head in order to obtain power for his function of destroying all the obstacles on the path of progress of the three worlds.
The three worlds are composed of the nine elements, viz., fire, earth, ether, water, air, direction, time, soul and mind. I adore the primeval Lord Govinda from whom they originate, in whom they exist and into whom they enter at the time of the universal cataclysm.
The sun who is the king of all the planets, full of infinite effulgence, the image of the good soul, is as the eye of this world. I adore the primeval Lord Govinda in pursuance of whose order the sun performs his journey mounting the wheel of time.
I adore the primeval Lord Govinda, by whose conferred power are maintained the manifested potencies, that are found to exist, of all virtues, all vices, the Vedas, the penances and all jīvas, from Brahmā to the meanest insect.
I adore the primeval Lord Govinda, who burns up to their roots all fruitive activities of those who are imbued with devotion and impartially ordains for each the due enjoyment of the fruits of one's activities, of all those who walk in the path of work, in accordance with the chain of their previously performed works, no less in the case of the tiny insect that bears the name of indragopa than in that of Indra, king of the devas.
I adore the primeval Lord Govinda, the meditators of whom, by meditating upon Him under the sway of wrath, amorous passion, natural friendly love, fear, parental affection, delusion, reverence and willing service, attain to bodily forms befitting the nature of their contemplation.
I worship that transcendental seat, known as Śvetadvīpa where as loving consorts the Lakṣmīs in their unalloyed spiritual essence practice the amorous service of the Supreme Lord Kṛṣṇa as their only lover; where every tree is a transcendental purpose tree; where the soil is the purpose gem, all water is nectar, every word is a song, every gait is a dance, the flute is the favorite attendant, effulgence is full of transcendental bliss and the supreme spiritual entities are all enjoyable and tasty, where numberless milk cows always emit transcendental oceans of milk; where there is eternal existence of transcendental time, who is ever present and without past or future and hence is not subject to the quality of passing away even for the space of half a moment. That realm is known as Goloka only to a very few self-realized souls in this world.
On hearing these hymns containing the essence of the truth, the Supreme Lord Kṛṣṇa said to Brahmā, "Brahmā, if you experience the inclination to create offspring by being endowed with the real knowledge of the glory of Godhead, listen, My beloved, from Me to this science set forth in the following five ślokas.
When the pure spiritual experience is excited by means of cognition and service [bhakti], superexcellent unalloyed devotion characterized by love for Godhead is awakened towards Kṛṣṇa, the beloved of all souls.
The highest devotion is attained by slow degrees by the method of constant endeavor for self-realization with the help of scriptural evidence, theistic conduct and perseverance in practice.
These preliminary practices of devotion [sādhana-bhakti] are conducive to the realization of loving devotion. [Loving devotion]—than whom there is no superior well-being, who goes hand in hand with the attainment of the exclusive state of supreme bliss and who can lead to Myself.
Abandoning all meritorious performances serve Me with faith. The realization will correspond to the nature of one's faith. The people of the world act ceaselessly in pursuance of some ideal. By meditating on Me by means of those deeds one will obtain devotion characterized by love in the shape of the supreme service.
"Listen, O Vidhi, I am the seed, i.e., the fundamental principle, of this world of animate and inanimate objects. I am pradhāna [the substance of matter], I am prakṛti [material cause] and I am puruṣa [efficient cause]. This fiery energy that belongs specially to the Brahman, that inheres in you, has also been conferred by Me. It is by bearing this fiery energy that you regulate this phenomenal world of animate and inanimate objects."