» Dana Ghati

Dana Ghati

Dana Ghati

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At the time of Krsna’s pastimes, Krsna became a toll collector and performed dana-lila, or a toll pastime, with the gopas through loving quarrels and sarcasm.

Once, on the bank of Govinda-kunda, Bhaguri Rishi was performing a sacrifice for the pleasure of the Supreme Lord. The cowherd boys and girls were bringing ingredients for the sacrifice from distant places. From the other side of Dana-ghati, Srimati Radhika and Her sakhis were also bringing yoghurt, milk, butter and various kinds of milk-sweets, such as rabaòi. Sri Krsna, along with Subala, Madhumangala and other sakhas, obstructed their path and forcibly demanded toll-tax, and the sakhas and gopis began to jokingly and lovingly taunt each other.

Standing in His enchanting threefold-bending form, Krsna mischievously asked the gopis, “What are you carrying?”

“Milk, yoghurt and butter for Bhaguri Rishi’s sacrifice,” they replied.

Madhumangala’s mouth started to water upon the mere mention of butter. “Quickly pay the toll-tax and move on,” he said.

“What toll-tax?” Lalita angrily asked. “We have never paid any toll-tax before.”

“You can pass only after paying toll-tax,” Krsna insisted.

“Since when have You become the toll collector here?” Srimatiji asked. “Did You inherit this place from Your father?”

“Don’t be so insolent,” He replied. “I am Vrndavanesvara, the ruler of the kingdom of Vrndavana.”

“How is that?”

“Vrnda is My wedded wife,” Krsna asserted. “The property of the wife is also the property of the husband. Vrndavana is the kingdom of Vrnda-devi, and therefore it is My kingdom.”

“Really?” Lalita answered haughtily. “We have never heard anything about this. Let us ask Vrnda right now.” She turned to Vrnda. “Vrnda, is this ‘black one’ your husband?”

“Never!” Vrnda flared in feigned disgust. “I have no relation with this lying debauchee. Previously this was my kingdom, but I have given it to Vrndavanesvari Srimati Radhika.”

All the sakhis burst into laughter, which slightly embarrassed Krsna. Nonetheless, He was determined to collect the toll-tax.