|Canto 11: General History||Chapter 12: Beyond Renunciation and Knowledge|
Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 11.12.8
kevalena hi bhāvena
gopyo gāvo nagā mṛgāḥ
ye 'nye mūḍha-dhiyo nāgāḥ
siddhā mām īyur añjasā
kevalena — by unalloyed; hi — indeed; bhāvena — by love; gopyaḥ — the gopīs; gāvaḥ — the Vṛndāvana cows; nagāḥ — the unmoving creatures of Vṛndāvana such as the twin arjuna trees; mṛgāḥ — other animals; ye — those; anye — others; mūḍha-dhiyaḥ — with stunted intelligence; nāgāḥ — Vṛndāvana snakes such as Kāliya; siddhāḥ — achieving the perfection of life; mām — to Me; īyuḥ — they went; añjasā — quite easily.
The inhabitants of Vṛndāvana, including the gopīs, cows, unmoving creatures such as the twin arjuna trees, animals, living entities with stunted consciousness such as bushes and thickets, and snakes such as Kāliya, all achieved the perfection of life by unalloyed love for Me and thus very easily achieved Me.
Although innumerable living entities achieved liberation by association with the Lord and His devotees, many such personalities also executed other processes such as austerity, charity, philosophical speculation, and so on. As we have already explained, such procedures are secondary. But the inhabitants of Vṛndāvana such as the gopīs did not know anything except Lord Kṛṣṇa, and their whole purpose in life was simply to love Lord Kṛṣṇa, as indicated here by the words kevalena hi bhāvena. Even the trees, bushes and hills such as Govardhana loved Lord Kṛṣṇa. As the Lord explains to His brother, Śrī Baladeva, in the Tenth Canto of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (10.15.5):
aho amī deva-varāmarārcitaḿ
pādāmbujaḿ te sumanaḥ-phalārhaṇam
namanty upādāya śikhābhir ātmanas
tamo-'pahatyai taru-janma yat-kṛtam
"My dear brother Baladeva, just see how these trees are bowing down with their branches and offering obeisances to Your lotus feet, which are worshipable even by the demigods. Indeed, My dear brother, You are the Supreme God, and thus these trees have produced fruits and flowers as an offering to You. Although a living entity takes birth as a tree due to the mode of ignorance, certainly by such a birth in Vṛndāvana these trees are destroying all darkness in their lives by serving Your lotus feet."
Although many living entities achieved the mercy of Lord Kṛṣṇa by associating with the Lord and His devotees in various ways, those who take Lord Kṛṣṇa as everything are situated in the highest process of spiritual realization. Therefore the Lord has not bothered to mention in this verse those who achieved perfection through mixed processes, but rather glorifies the unalloyed devotees of Vṛndāvana, headed by the gopīs, who knew nothing but Lord Kṛṣṇa. The residents of Vṛndāvana were so satisfied in their relationships with Lord Kṛṣṇa that they did not pollute their loving service with mental speculation or fruitive desires. The gopīs served Lord Kṛṣṇa in the conjugal rasa, or relationship, whereas according to Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura the cows loved Lord Kṛṣṇa in vātsalya-rasa, or the love of parents for a child, because the cows were always supplying milk to child Kṛṣṇa. Unmoving objects like Govardhana Hill and other hills and mountains loved Lord Kṛṣṇa as a friend, and the ordinary animals, trees and bushes of Vṛndāvana loved Lord Kṛṣṇa in dāsya-rasa, or with love of a servant for his master. Snakes like Kāliya also developed this love in servitude, and after relishing their loving service to Lord Kṛṣṇa, all of them went back home, back to Godhead. According to Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura, all those inhabitants of Vṛndāvana should be considered eternally liberated souls, as expressed by the word siddhāḥ, which means "having achieved the perfection of life."
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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, Founder Ācārya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness
His Holiness Hrdayananda dasa Goswami
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