Krishna’s pastimes are the trailer and the trail

The Bhagavad-gita (04.09) asserts that those who understand Krishna’s pastimes in truth attain liberation. How can liberation, elusive even for renunciates performing prolonged austerities, be attained just by understanding Krishna’s pastimes?

Because on the spiritual path, these pastimes serve an extraordinary double role – they are the trailer and the trail.

Trailer: Love is our deepest aspiration; we all desire to love and be loved. However, due to the temporary nature of things in this world, our longing for love is frustrated – inevitably and repeatedly.

Krishna’s pastimes are enactments of the love that is never frustrated – pure spiritual love between the all-attractive Supreme and his devotees that goes on eternally in the spiritual world. When Krishna descends to this world, he performs some of those pastimes here, giving us tantalizing glimpses of an arena where our longing for love can be eternally and perfectly fulfilled.

Thus, his pastimes serve as trailers meant to attract us to the spiritual world.

Trail: Those with superficial understanding of Krishna’s pastimes think of them as stories meant for entertainment, similar to movies. But those who understand these pastimes in truth know that they are not meant to entertain; they are meant to be entered into – they occur in that eternal spiritual reality to which we as souls, parts of Krishna, belong.

To enter that reality, we need to redirect our heart from the world to Krishna. For this redirection, Krishna’s pastimes provide charming and purifying subject matter that we can contemplate, churn, recollect and relish. The more we thus think about Krishna, the more our heart becomes attracted to him and the more we progress on the path towards him.

By providing us substance for turning our heart to him, Krishna’s pastimes comprise the trail that leads to him.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 04 Text 09

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  1. Very nice explanation of the verse. Thank you Prabhuji for sharing.
    I once read in SP conversations that Prabhupada tells Brahmananda Pr that 4.9 is as good as the essence of the Gita.
    Please explain how this is so?

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  2. Hare Krsna!
    Just thinking about the wonderful pastimes of rasraj Sri Krsna and Srimati Radharani can make any person cry with joy! Such is the grace of our Sri Sri Radha Parthasarathi. Also, even a soul who didnt perform any austerities during its entire lifetime, but seeks Krsna’ s grace with pure heart in last moments, can attain so( just by remembering the amazing, beautiful pastimes!!)

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