Shiv Jee | Stories-16
|16-Shiv as Gopeshwar|
16-Shiv as Gopeshwar
Once while in deep meditation on Mount Kailaash, Shiv heard the sweet vibrations of Krishn's His divine flute. Mesmerized, he entered into Samaadhi. He followed that transcendental sound until he came to Vrindaa Van, where Gopeenaath was getting ready to start His Mahaa Raas with His Gopee. Desiring intensely to join the Mahaa Raas, when Shiv came to the entrance of the Raas-sthalee, he was stopped by Yog Maayaa, who told him, "No males except Krishn are allowed entry. First you must have a Gopee Roop, the form of a Brij milkmaid, only then can you enter."
Bholenaath asked - "How can I get a Gopee Roop?" Yog Maayaa replied, "Seek the shelter of Vrindaa Devee. She will grant you the form of a Gopee." So Shiv went to Vrindaa Devee and presented his request to her. Vrindaa Devee asked Shiv to take a dip in the waters of Maan Sarovar. After bathing there, when Lord Shiv emerged from the lake he had gotten the form of a beautiful Gopee. Vrindaa Devee then took Shiv in her Gopee form to one corner of the Raas Sthalee. Shiv stood there and prayed to Shree Raadhaa Krishn for getting His Prem Bhakti. Then the Raas started. Krishn was dancing with all the Gopee. He also danced very elegantly with Shiv who was disguised as a Gopee.
Then after some time, when they rested, Krishn thought that "I am not getting the usual pleasure from our Raas. Something is not right. I think there is another man in our midst." Then He asked Lalitaa Devee to check all the Gopee and make sure no man was lurking amongst them dressed as one of them. Lalitaa Devee went around and lifted the veils of all the hundreds of Gopee but couldn't find any man disguised as a woman. She came and reported to Krishn, "I have not found any man, but there is one Gopee with three eyes." she said puzzled.
Krishna asked her to bring her to Him. When Krishn saw the Shiv Gopee, He laughed heartily and addressed him, "O Gopeshwar, I am very pleased to see you in the form of a Gopee. But you know that this Raas is not for Grihasth people (householders) . Therefore, since you have already participated and fulfilled your desire, now I offer you the post of Raas Dwaarpaal (gatekeeper of the Raas Sthalee). I also give you the blessing that henceforth, all the Gopee will offer respect to you and seek your blessing to get Gopee Bhaav."
From that time, Gopeshwar Mahaadev has been worshipped in Vrindaa Van in the form of a Shiv Ling in the mornings. In the evenings, the Shiv Ling is decorated beautifully as a Gopee. Srila Sanatana Gosvami, who resided in Vrindaa Van near the old Shree Madan Mohan Temple, would go daily to see Shree Gopeshwar Mahaadev at his temple. Once, in his older years, Sanatana Gosvami had a dream wherein Gopeshwar Mahaadev appeared and instructed him: "Now that you are old, please do not go through so much trouble to see me." Sanatana Gosvami replied, "I will continue to come. I cannot change this habit."
At this Lord Gopeshwar said - "Then I will come and stay very near to your residence, manifesting in Bankhandee. The very next day, Gopeshwar Mahaadev appeared in Bankhandee, halfway between his original Temple and Srila Sanatana Gosvami's residence. Seeing this, Sanatana Gosvami became overwhelmed with transcendental ecstasy, and from that day on he visited Bankhandee Mahaadev every day. Prior to this, Shiv had asked Krishn for the boon to witness His childhood pastimes. Krishn ordered him to situate himself in Nand Gaanv in the form of a hill. Shiv followed this order and became Nandeeshwar Hill, and he thus became known as Nandeeshwar.
Srimad gopeeshwaram vande shankaram karunaa-mayam
Created and Maintained by Sushma Gupta
Created on March 15, 2003 and Updated on February 12, 2013