TEXTS 7–11
kecid veṇūn vādayanto
dhmāntaḥ śṛṅgāṇi kecana
kecid bhṛṅgaiḥ pragāyantaḥ
kūjantaḥ kokilaiḥ pare
vicchāyābhiḥ pradhāvanto
gacchantaḥ sādhu-haṁsakaiḥ
bakair upaviśantaś ca
nṛtyantaś ca kalāpibhiḥ
vikarṣantaḥ kīśa-bālān
ārohantaś ca tair drumān
vikurvantaś ca taiḥ sākaṁ
plavantaś ca palāśiṣu
sākaṁ bhekair vilaṅghantaḥ
saritaḥ srava-samplutāḥ
vihasantaḥ praticchāyāḥ
śapantaś ca pratisvanān
itthaṁ satāṁ brahma-sukhānubhūtyā
dāsyaṁ gatānāṁ para-daivatena
māyāśritānāṁ nara-dārakeṇa
sākaṁ vijahruḥ kṛta-puṇya-puñjāḥ
kecit—some of them; veṇūn—flutes; vādayantaḥ—blowing; dhmāntaḥ—bugling; śṛṅgāṇi—the horn bugles; kecana—someone else; kecit—someone; bhṛṅgaiḥ—with the bumblebees; pragāyantaḥ—singing along with; kūjantaḥ—imitating the sound of; kokilaiḥ—with the cuckoos; pare—others; vicchāyābhiḥ—with running shadows; pradhāvantaḥ—someone running on the ground after the birds; gacchantaḥ—going along; sādhu—beautiful; haṁsakaiḥ—with the swans; bakaiḥ—with the ducks sitting in one place; upaviśantaḥ ca—sitting silently like them; nṛtyantaḥ ca—and dancing with; kalāpibhiḥ—with the peacocks; vikarṣantaḥ—attracting; kīśa-bālān—the young monkeys; ārohantaḥ ca—gliding over; taiḥ—with the monkeys; drumān—the trees; vikurvantaḥ ca—exactly imitating them; taiḥ—with the monkeys; sākam—along with; plavantaḥ ca—gliding over; palāśiṣu—on the trees; sākam—along with; bhekaiḥ—with the frogs; vilaṅghantaḥ—jumping like them; saritaḥ—the water; srava-samplutāḥ—became wet in the water of the river; vihasantaḥ—laughing; praticchāyāḥ—at the shadows; śapantaḥ ca—condemned; pratisvanān—the sound of their echoes; ittham—in this way; satām—of the transcendentalists; brahma-sukha-anubhūtyā—with Kṛṣṇa, the source of brahma-sukha (Kṛṣṇa is Parabrahman, and from Him originates His personal effulgence); dāsyam—servitorship; gatānām—of the devotees who have accepted; para-daivatena—with the Supreme Personality of Godhead; māyā-āśritānām—for those in the clutches of material energy; nara-dārakeṇa—with Him who is like an ordinary child; sākam—along with; vijahruḥ—enjoyed; kṛta-puṇya-puñjāḥ—all these boys, who had accumulated the results of life after life of pious activities.
All the boys would be differently engaged. Some boys blew their flutes, and others blew bugles made of horn. Some imitated the buzzing of the bumblebees, and others imitated the voice of the cuckoo. Some boys imitated flying birds by running after the birds’ shadows on the ground, some imitated the beautiful movements and attractive postures of the swans, some sat down with the ducks, sitting silently, and others imitated the dancing of the peacocks. Some boys attracted young monkeys in the trees, some jumped into the trees, imitating the monkeys, some made faces as the monkeys were accustomed to do, and others jumped from one branch to another. Some boys went to the waterfalls and crossed over the river, jumping with the frogs, and when they saw their own reflections on the water they would laugh. They would also condemn the sounds of their own echoes. In this way, all the cowherd boys used to play with Kṛṣṇa, who is the source of the Brahman effulgence for jñānīs desiring to merge into that effulgence, who is the Supreme Personality of Godhead for devotees who have accepted eternal servitorship, and who for ordinary persons is but another ordinary child. The cowherd boys, having accumulated the results of pious activities for many lives, were able to associate in this way with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. How can one explain their great fortune?
As recommended by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī, tasmāt kenāpy upāyena manaḥ kṛṣṇe niveśayet (Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu 1.2.4). Somehow or other, whether one thinks of Kṛṣṇa as an ordinary human child, as the source of the Brahman effulgence, as the origin of Paramātmā, or as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, one should concentrate one’s full attention upon the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa. That is also the instruction of Bhagavad-gītā (18.66): sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja. Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam is the easiest way of directly approaching Kṛṣṇa. Īśvaraḥ sadyo hṛdy avarudhyate ’tra kṛtibhiḥ śuśrūṣubhis tat-kṣaṇāt (Bhāg. 1.1.2). Diverting even a little of one’s attention toward Kṛṣṇa and activities in Kṛṣṇa consciousness immediately enables one to achieve the highest perfection of life. This is the purpose of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. Lokasyājānato vidvāṁś cakre sātvata-saṁhitām (Bhāg. 1.7.6). The secret of success is unknown to people in general, and therefore Śrīla Vyāsadeva, being compassionate toward the poor souls in this material world, especially in this age of Kali, has given us the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Śrīmad-bhāgavataṁ purāṇam amalaṁ yad vaiṣṇavānāṁ priyam (Bhāg. 12.13.18). For Vaiṣṇavas who are somewhat advanced, or who are fully aware of the glories and potencies of the Lord, Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam is a beloved Vedic literature. After all, we have to change this body (tathā dehāntara-prāptiḥ). If we do not care about Bhagavad-gītā and Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, we do not know what the next body will be. But if one adheres to these two books—Bhagavad-gītā and Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam—one is sure to obtain the association of Kṛṣṇa in the next life (tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti so ’rjuna [Bg. 4.9]). Therefore, distribution of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam all over the world is a great welfare activity for theologians, philosophers, transcendentalists and yogīs (yoginām api sarveṣām [Bg. 6.47]), as well as for people in general. Janma-lābhaḥ paraḥ puṁsām ante nārāyaṇa-smṛtiḥ (Bhāg. 2.1.6): if we can somehow or other remember Kṛṣṇa, Nārāyaṇa, at the end of life, our life will be successful.

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