Sing salutations to The only ornation of Vraj, Who destroys every sin (among us), Who is continuous bliss for His devotees, and Who is the dear one of Nanda. I bow to naughty Krishna, Who has beautiful bunch of peacock feathers on head, Who has a sweet sounding flute in hands, and Who is inseparable from God and is full of colorful actions.||1||
I bow to The lotus-eyed One, Whose beauty slays the pride of Kamdev (Manoj), Who has fulsome lips and beautiful big eyes, Who removed the thoughts of obstacles from cow-rearers (gopa). I bow to head-elephant-like-carefree Krishna, Who lifted a mountain in His lotus like hands, Whose smile and gaze is enticing, and Who slayed the pride of Indra¹.||2||
I bow to Krishna, Who is hard to get, Who has beautiful earrings made of flowers of kadamba-tree, Who has two beautiful cheeks, Who is the only dear One of land of Vraj. I bow to Krishna as cow-rearing-leader, Who is supreme bliss when viewed with Yashoda, Cow-rearers, and Nand.||3||
I bow to the son of Nanda, Whose lotus-feet is always immersed in the maan-sarovar like lake of my mind, Who has beautiful curls falling upon his face. I bow to the delight of Nand, Who is absolver of all defects (in us), Who looks after everyone in this world, and Who is the heart of every Gopa or cow-rearer.||4||
I bow to the heart-stealer, Who relieved earth of heavy weight² (of humans), Who is the support for us to cross the ocean of life and death, and Who is the young son of Yashoda. I bow to the son of Nand, Who has beautiful glancing eyes, Who is always accompanied by bumble-bees³, and Who appears new to His devotee, everytime, and leaves them mesmerized.||5||
I bow to the dear one of Gopas, Who is the abode of qualities, mercy, and happiness, and does not needs any mercy from anyone, and Who relieved the problems of demi-gods. I bow to cloud-colored beautiful one, Who is a new cowherd rearer and playful, Who is always thinking of new ways to mesmerize the mortals, and Who is wearing yellow lightening like robes.||6||
I bow to Krishna, Who roamed amidst the gardens of Vraj, Who is dear to every cow-rearer in Vraj, Who is the only happiness for heart, and Who has a sun like resplendent face. I bow to Krishna, Who is the leader of everyone in gardens of Vraj, Who is desireless but fulfils desire of everyone, Whose glances are like beautiful enticing arrows, and Who sings mesmerizing tunes over flute.||7||
I bow to The consort of Lakshmi, Who slept in the bed-like-dreams of young gopikas in Vraj, Who swallowed the forest and garden fire inside Vraj to save His fellows, Who is surrounded by the divine glow, Who is decorated in every way, and Who gave moksha to Gajendra, the elephant king×.||8||
O Lord! Whenever or wherever I am born, may I be immersed in Your beautiful ornate stories. Whomsoever sings the two Krishnashtaka (this one and one more by Shankaracharya), and meditates on it shall be born with Krishna bhakti in every life.||9||
¹Indra sent clouds to flood and damage whole of Vraj and Krishna saved Vraj by lifting the mountain Govardhan. In yet another incident, Indra with army fought with Krishna when Krishna and Satyabhama wanted to take it away from heaven. Seeing the first pada, I presume, the last sentence refers to Govardhan incident.
² Earth gets crowded with time and Lord appears to slay off and provide salvation to numerous humans. This is called as relieving weight of earth.
³ Krishna appears with divine ornation during His incarnation. Of them, ‘‘Lakshmi-mark’’ on chest, ‘‘Kaustubh-jewel’’ in neck, ‘‘Tulsi-garland’’ in neck, blue cloud likebody, etc., are cited many times. Due to non-decaying ‘‘Tulsi-garland’’ in neck, bumble-bees always flock around it to sip on the divine nectar.
× Gajendra, an elephant, was cursed by Sage Agastya in his human body for neglecting the kingdom for seeking moksha. He was trapped by a crocodile in a river and then Vishnu (Krishna) freed him from the crocodile trap.
Poet: Adi Shankaracharya.
Source: Stotra Ratnavali— Gitapress.
© Stutimandal 2006, Mar 24.