माखन चोर : The Butter-bandit

When God gradually started walking on his knee, then Braj’s gopis invited him to their homes. Entire Gokul was blissful of God’s mischief. Krishna had special happiness in generating problems.

Opening knots to the calves, burning firecrackers under the tails of the calves, and when the gopis fell, he made fun of them. Although the house of God himself had a lot of butter, he was not satisfied with it. He went to Braj’s house to steal Makhan. His butter-thieves had their own crew. The Gopikas started  complaining to Yashoda Maiya but the clever Lord forbade Maiyya.

krishna butter stealing

Yashoda was not ready to believe that Krishna had stolen butter, his house was filled with ghee-butter. The gopikas decided to capture Krishna with their hands.

भगवान जब धीरे-धीरे  घुटनों के बल चलने लगे तब ब्रज की गोपिकाओं ने उन्हें अपने घरों में आमंत्रित किया। भगवान की शरारतों से सारा गोकुल आनंदित था। भगवान को परेशानियाँ उत्पन्न करने में विशेष आनंद आता। बछड़ों के knot खोल देते, बछड़ों के पूंछों के नीचे पटाखे छोड़ देते और जब गोपिकाएँ गिर जातीं तो उनका मजाक उड़ाते। यद्यपि भगवान के घर स्वयं भरपूर माखन था पर वो इससे संतुष्ट न थे। वो ब्रज के घरों में जाकर माखन चोरी करते। उनका माखन-चोरों का अपना एक दल था। गोपिकाएँ यशोदा मैया के घर शिकायत लेकर पहुँचने लगीं पर चतुर भगवान मैया को मना लेते। यशोदा यह मानने को तैयार न थी कि कृष्ण ने माखन चोरी किया है, उनका घर स्वयं घी-माखन से भरा-पूरा था।

गोपिकाओं ने कृष्ण को रंगे हाथों पकड़ने की ठानी। तब तक भगवान कि कभी न पकड़े जा सकने वाले चतुर चोर के रूप में प्रसिद्धि हो चुकी थी। पर एक दिन एक होशियार गोपिका ने चालाकी से जाल बिछाया और भगवान को माखन चोरी कर खाते हुए रंगे हाथों पकड़ लिया।

By that time, Krishna had got  fame as a devious thief who could never be caught. But one day a clever Gopika trapped a clever  net  and caught the Krishna red-handed.

Krishna caught red-handed

कस्त्वम् बाल बलानुजः किम् इह ते मन्मन्दिराशङ्कया
युक्तम् तत् नवनीतपात्रविवरे हस्तम् किम् अर्थम् न्यसेः।
मातः कङ्चन वत्सकम् मृगयितुम् मा गा विषादम् क्षणाद्
इति एवम् वरवल्लवी प्रतिवचः कृष्णस्य पुष्णातु नः॥

kaHtvam bAla bala-anujaH kim iha te mat mandira Asha~NkayA

yuktam tat navanIta pAtra vivare hastam kim artham nyaseH

mAtaH ka~Ncana vatsakam mR^igayitum mA gA viShAdam kShaNAd

iti evam vara vallavI prati-vacaH kR^iShNasya puShNAtu naH

Gopika asked, “कस्त्वम् बालः”?  (ओ कृष्ण! तुम कौन हो?) (O Krishna! Who are You?)

बलानुजः”। (I am Baldev’s younger brother.) The fame of Balram ji was in the form of a religious child, whereas Lord was naughty  by nature itself.

(मैं बलदेव का छोटा भाई हूँ।) बलराम जी की प्रसिद्धि एक धार्मिक बालक के रूप में थी जबकि भगवान स्वभाव से ही नटखट थे।

Gopika asked again, “किम् इह ते ”? (Why did u come to this house?) (इस घर में क्यों आये?)

Krishna replied, “मन्मन्दिराशङ्कया”। (O Gopi! All houses of Gokul are look-alike. I get so tired after feeding calves throughout the day that your house seemed like my home.)

(हे गोपी! गोकुल के सारे घर एक जैसे ही हैं। मैं दिन भर बछड़ों को चराने के बाद इतना थक जाता हूँ कि तुम्हारा घर मुझे अपने घर जैसा ही लगा।)

“युक्तम् तत् नवनीतपात्रविवरे हस्तम् किम् अर्थम् न्यसेः”? (Then why did you put hand in the pot of Makhan?)

(तो फिर तुमने माखन की हांडी में हाथ क्यों डाला?)

कङ्चन वत्सकम् मृगयितुम् (O gopi! I did not find a lovely baby calf for a few days. I thought if she was in this handi)

ओ गोपी! मेरी एक प्यारी बछिया कुछ दिनों से नहीं मिल रही थी। मैंने सोचा कि कहीं इस हांडी में तो नहीं”?

Gopika asked with a serious face, “बछिया मिली”? (Did u find the calf?)

Krishna with even more serious face repiled, “NO

कृष्ण ने उससे भी अधिक गंभीर मुद्रा में जबाब दिया, “नहीं”

Why then did you stay in this house“?

तो फिर इस घर में क्यों रुके थे”?

I was staying to tell you all about it and run away after getting the opportunity“.

मैं तो इस कारण रुका था कि तुम्हें यह सब बताऊँ और मौका पाकर भाग जाऊं”

Again, Krishna escaped secretly. Gopis also failed to catch God  even this time. After many attempts, the gopikas caught Krishna red-handed and grabbed him and took him to complain to Yashoda. Yashoda was a mistress of Braj, but her son did not take care of her honorably as well. But Kanhaiya made such excuses that Maaya was convinced that Kanha did not eat butter.

बस भगवान चुपके से भाग निकले। गोपियाँ इस बार भी भगवान को रंगे हाथों पकड़ने में नाकाम रहे। अनेक प्रयत्नों के बाद आखिर गोपिकाओं ने कृष्ण को रंगे-हाथों पकड़ लिया और उन्हें पकड़कर यशोदा के पास शिकायत करने ले गयी। यशोदा ब्रज की रानी (mistress) थीं पर उनके पुत्र ने उनके मान-सम्मान का थोड़ा भी ख्याल नहीं रखा। पर कन्हैया ने ऐसे-ऐसे बहाने बनाए कि मैया को विश्वास हो गया कि कान्हा ने माखन नहीं खाया। (मैया मोरी, मैं नहीं माखन खायो)।

गोपियों ने माखन के मटकी की ऊँचाई बढ़ा दी, पर कन्हैया अपने दल-बल के साथ माखन चोरी के नए-नए तरकीब निकालते रहे। भगवान अपने मित्रों के संग मिल-बाँटकर माखन खाते और खिलाते। कोई भी घोटाला सामने तभी आता है जब हिस्सेदारी सही न हो। भगवान का सबकुछ perfect होता है।

Krishna ate butter and broke the pot. Butter signifies us (jevatmas) and pot represents our body. Krishna takes us by his own efforts and leave our body here. Krishna is fond of butter and he is fond of jeevatmas, which are indeed his own property.

भगवान माखन चोरी कर मटकी फोड़ देते और ग्वाल-बालों के संग माखन खाते। भगवान भी शरणागत जीवात्मा का स्वयं उद्धार करते हैं। क्या वो शरीर भी साथ ले जाते हैं? नहीं, शरीर को मटकी की भांति इसी संसार में छोड़कर, भगवान जीवात्मा को अपना लेते हैं। शरीर को जलाया जाता है। अंत्येष्टि संस्कार में  मटकी फोड़े जाने का रिवाज है। भगवान द्वारा मटकी का फोड़ा जाना उसी का संकेत है। भगवान के लिये हर जीवात्मा माखन है। कृष्ण माखन से अत्यंत प्रेम करते थे, भगवान भी जीवात्मा से अत्यधिक प्रेम करते हैं। हमें स्वयं को माखन के समान समझना चाहिए|

His theft of butter, etc., and His getting punished for the same, highlight the glorious attribute of Souseelyam (easily available), while His stealing our bodies and souls is indicative of His insatiable hunger for Chetana lAbham (profit of getting jeevatmas).

What does the theft means? Jeevatma, the property of bhagwan is entangled in samsara and longing of temporary inferior sukham. He established Vedas, preached Bhagwat Gita, sent many nitya aatmas as acharyas but the Jeevatmas are least desirous of getting knowledge. How to deal with this? He had to steal his own property. For the purpose of stealing, he is staying inside the aatma as it’s antaryaami aatma. Taking an unintentional good work as good karma, he gives them sattvika bodies in sattvika family in next birth. Thus, out of his nirhetuka kripa, the jeevatma becomes desirous for moksha (mumukshu).

Example given is of a king, whom the mantris won’t respect. He made an effigy of of a pandit, made it bow toward him and placed it in his court. He immediately declared that the pandit is prostrating me. In the similar fashion, Bhagwan makes us sharanagatas, declare that the Jeevatma has surrendered and delievers him moksha. It’s not to our credit that one becomes a bhakta or sharanagata, it’s his efforts through countless years that wore fruits.

Like butter don’t take any efforts to reach Krishna, similarly jeevatma should not perform any karma-yoga or bhakti-yoga to reach him. Krishna himself steals the butters and consumes it. Even sharanagati is not an act to be performed. It is a state of knowledge, state of acknowledging that only Bhagwaan is the means (upaaya) to reach him. Jeevatma shouldn’t make any efforts on his own to reach God or Jeevatma shouldn’t make any efforts on his own to earn the grace of God. All we need to do is performing kainkarya (service) to him, for his pleasure (mukhollasa), and remaining away from virodhi-swarupa which hinders the grace of God to reach us.

Nammazhwar (Sathakopa Suri) is the Chief among Azhwars and is described as the very personification of ‘thirst for Krishna’ “krishNa thrishNaa tattvam iva uditam”. He calls Krishna ‘Kalva’ or thief. Tirumangai Azhwar too calls him ‘Kalla Kuzhavi, KaLvA” etc. Sanskrit poets too called him ‘Navaneeta chora’.

Theft of milk and butter is hardly a matter for serious concern. Sri Satakopa Muni accuses Him of a much graver offence-that of stealing his soul- and
warns others to beware of this Divine Thief.

thiruvAimozhi – 10.7

senjoRkavigAL! uyirkAtthAtcheymmin thirumAlirunjOlai
vanjak kaLvan mAmAyan mAyak kaviyAy vandhu en
nenjum uyirum uL kalandhu ninRAr aRiyA vaNNam en
nenjum uyirum avai uNdu thAnEyAgi niRaindhAnE

emperumAn, being in thirumalai, who steals without the knowledge of those from whom he steals, who has very amazing form, qualities etc, who remains with mischievous acts to make me sing poems, is arriving in my heart and mixing in my heart and self even without the knowledge of lakshmi et al who remain with him; he consumed my heart and self, became the exclusive enjoyer and became avAptha samastha kAma. Oh all of you who can sing poems with honest words! Protect yourselves and your belongings from being stolen and try to serve him with your speech. Implies that for those who immerse in bhagavAn as ananyaprayOjana (without any expectation other than kainkaryam), it is unavoidable to have the self and belongings to be stolen by him.

thiruvAimozhi – 10.7.1 – senjoRkavigAL

Again,

 

The gopis of Sri Gokulam are united in their complaint to Sri Yasodha that ever since Sri Krishna was born, their milk and butter were not their own, and kept disappearing mysteriously. To add insult to the injury, he broke the pots even.

Vishnuchitta Azhwar says (2.9.6):

thiruvudaip piLLaithaan theeyavaaRu thEkkamonRumilan thEsudaiyan
uruga vaiththa kudaththOdu veNNai uRinji udaiththittup pOnthu ninRaan

Means: The pot containing the ghee, clarified butter, kept in the uRi,
krishna drank that by sucking and making that `ur ur’ sound, whirring sound while eating and also broke the pot.

1.9.7

poththavuralaik kavizhththu adhan mElEri thiththiththa paalum
thadaavinil
veNNaiyum meththa thiru vayiru aara vizhungiya aththan –

Meaning: The mortar, which has a hole in the centre, is turned upside
down, and used as a stool to reach the rope hanger. Then milk, butter
are swallowed nicely contained in these pots. Being quite aware of the contents of a pot, They pick holes in it. While the elderly gopis go about their
household affairs, Krsna and Balarama sometimes go into a dark room,
brightening the place with the valuable jewels and ornaments on Their
bodies and taking advantage of this light by stealing.

[ramanuja] command begging

 

 

Author: ramanujramprapnna

studying Ramanuj school of Vishishtadvait vedant

6 thoughts on “माखन चोर : The Butter-bandit”

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