Think of divine love and the very first image most of us conjure up is of Lord Krishna with his beloved Radha by his side. We have grown up seeing them together as idols adorning the Hindu temples, hearing stories about a bond so sublime that it transcended the boundaries of space and time, and in some cases, even dressing up as the two eternal lovers on the occasion of Janmashtami in our childhood days. But do we really understand the mystical Radha Krishna relationship? Are there layers to it that our hemmed in perceptions of love cannot fathom? Let’s find out.
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12 Facts That Reflect the Beauty of Radha Krishan Relationship
Anyone familiar with Hindu mythology has some insight into the Radha Krishna relationship. It’s a commonly known fact that Radha and Krishna are considered incomplete without each other. They are worshipped together, even though they were not life partners (or each other’s better-halves), at least not by the dynamics of present-day romantic relationships.
This often leads to questions like these – what is the relationship between Krishna and Radha? Did Radha and Krishna make love? Why did Radha Krishna not marry? These 15 facts about the deep connection shared by arguably the most loved mythical figures will give you some insight into how beautiful their relationship was:
1. Radha and Krishna are one
A common question that is often asked about Radha and Krishan is – are they the same person? Many scholars believe that to be the case. Lord Krishna is known to have different energies. So, his avatar as Krishna is a manifestation of his external energies whereas his internal strength is Radha – an incarnation of Shakti on earth.
She is his inner energy.
2. Their reunion on earth magical
It is said that Krishna met Radha on earth when he was around five years old. Known for his mischievous ways, Krishna created a thunderstorm once while out to graze cattle with his father. The father perplexed by a sudden change in weather conditions, and not knowing how to take care of his cattle and child at the same time, left him in the care of a beautiful young girl, who was in the vicinity.
Once alone with the girl, Krishna appeared in his avatar as a grown young man and asked the girl if she remembered the time spent with him in heaven. The girl was his eternal beloved, Radha, and the two reunited on earth on a beautiful meadow amid rain.
3. Krishna’s flute drew Radha to him
The story of Radha Krishna and love cannot be complete without the mention of his flute. The stories of the two engaging in Raas Leela, along with other gopis, in Vrindavan are well-known. But a lesser-known facet of Radha Krishna relationship is the latter’s flute had a hypnotic effect on his beloved.
Soulful melodies flowing out of Krishna’s flute would captivate Radha and draw her out of her home to be by her beloved’s side.
4. Radha and Krishna never married
If they were so madly in love and inseparable from one another, why did Radha Krishna not marry? This is a question that has confused devotees and scholars alike for years. While everyone agrees that Radha and Krishna never married, the explanations for this vary.
Some believe that a marriage between the two was not possible because Radha was a manifestation of Krishna’s inner self and one cannot marry one’s soul. Another school of thought places the social divide between the two as the hurdle that prevented them from enjoying marital bliss.
Whereas some scholars believe that marriage was out of the question because Radha Krishan relationship transcends the boundaries of wedded love, and is unbounded and primal.
5. They did marry playfully, as children
There is evidence in ancient texts dedicated to Radha’s connection to Krishna that the two did marry each other in play as children. But it was not a real wedding and the relationship was never consummated.
6. A divine union
Even though Radha and Krishna never married in their human forms during their time on earth, theirs was a divine union. To understand it, one has to understand the finer nuances of rasa and prema – that defined their indulgences during Krishna’s time in Vrindavan.
These accounts often lead people to ask – did Radha and Krishna make love? Well, they made love of a different kind. A pursuit of spiritual love that culminated in an ecstatic experience.
7. A profound love
Radha Krishna relationship falls beyond the purview of a typical romantic bond between a man and woman that is often marked by a sense of duty, binding and obligation for one another. Radha’s connection to Krishna is of profound love that flows spontaneously, breaking everything that comes in its path.
8. Radha lived in Krishna’s palace to be close to him
One of the many versions of Radha and Krishna’s relationship suggest that Radha went to live is Krishna’s palace just to be close to her eternal love, as she felt that distance between them was affecting the deep spiritual connection they shared.
9. Krishna, Rukmini and Radha
The mention of Radha Krishna is often trailed by one other name – Rukmini. Why is Rukmini’s name not taken with Lord Krishna? Did Krishna love Radha more than Rukmini? Was there a strain of jealousy between Rukmini and Radha?
Well, not just Rukmini, none of Krishna’s eight wives came close to sharing with him a love deep enough to match, or outdo, the one he shared with Radha.
However, whether this inspired jealousy among Rukmini or other wives continues to be debated.
One account states that Krishna once brought his wives to meet Radha, and they all gasped at how breathtakingly beautiful she was and were in awe of the purity of her heart. However, other narratives point to feelings of envy. One such anecdote is of the wives serving boiling food to Radha and insisting that she eat it right away. Radha eats the food without a hitch, and the wives, later discover Krishna’s feet covered in blisters. The action suggests an underlying current of envy and jealousy toward Radha.
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10. Krishna played his flute only for Radha
While flute-playing is widely associated with Krishna’s flamboyant personality as a charmer of ladies, he, in fact, played it only and only for Radha. Radha abandons her human body while listening to Krishna’s flute.
Grief-stricken, he breaks the flute afterwards symbolising the end of their love story in the human form and never plays it again.
11. Radha was forced to marry another man
After Krishna left Vrindavan, Radha’s turn took a drastic turn. Her mother forced her to marry another man. The couple even had a child together.
12. The curse of separation
Radha and Krishna’s relationship on earth is marked by a long separation that is often attributed to a curse that befell on Radha before her incarnation. As the fable goes, Krishna and Radha are eternal lovers who were together long before they descended on earth.
According to BrahmaVaivarta Purana, during their time in Goloka, Radha got into a heated argument with Krishna’s persona attendant Shridama. In a fit of rage, she cursed him to be reborn as a demon. In turn, Shridama cursed Radha to endure 100 years of separation from her eternal lover in her human form. It is believed that this curse was responsible for Radha spending much of her time on earth gripped by the pain of being separated from Krishna.
Despite its ups and down and many turns and twists, Radha Krishna’s relationship not only survived its brief spell among us mere mortals but has lived on for centuries and continues to inspire millions even today. That in itself is a testament to the beauty and depth of their bond.