“As the director of different kinds of clouds, Indra called for the samvartaka. This cloud is invited when there is a need to devastate the whole cosmic manifestation. The samvartaka was ordered by Indra to go over Vrindavana and inundate the whole area with an extensive flood. Demonically, Indra thought himself to be the all-powerful supreme personality.” (Krishna, The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vol 1, Ch 25)
1. Krishna’s land is as good as Him
Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu brought to light the teaching in the present age of quarrel and hypocrisy. That the name of God is not different from God Himself. Hence the emphasis on the holy name and staying attached to it. This is the verdict of all the saints following the Vedic tradition, of those who know the Absolute Truth and the means to pleasing Him.
Just as the name is non-different, so is the land. The first Govardhana Puja proves this. The one Himself, the original person, the origin of the universe, the one who never takes birth and never dies, whose appearance and activities are transcendental in nature, was in this manifest world as the darling child of Nanda and Yashoda.
Shri Krishna convinced the community to worship Govardhana Hill. This was an odd tradition to start, but the people placed their trust in the all-attractive one. He confirmed the validity of the worship by later taking the form of Govardhana and speaking to the people. That land remains sacred to this day, as even a basic rock taken from the hill can be worshiped in the home as a deity.
2. Might is not right
You may think that you are the strongest. You make think that you wield control over every person and every situation. You may think that whatever you say goes, since you have the potency to force others into submission. The threat of punishment is all it takes to get others to fall into line.
The first Govardhana Puja negates this concept. Indra is the king of heaven, svarga-loka, and he thought he could get his way. Attack the innocent villagers for worshiping a hill instead of him. Get revenge in so drastic a way that no one would ever think of ignoring the heavenly region again.
Dharma is right, and Shri Krishna is the embodiment of dharma. He is the object of worship, and so the people were on the correct side when worshiping Govardhana. Indra’s might failed in this instance. He asserted dominance, but dharma was too formidable a foe to defeat.
3. Envy from high to low in the material world
As human beings are imperfect, they exhibit undesirable qualities on occasion. One of which is envy. I shouldn’t be jealous of anyone else since we all live in something like a bubble. The body can burst at any moment; destruction is the only guaranteed end.
शोच्या शोचसि कं शोच्यं दीनं दीनाऽनुकम्पसे।
कस्य कोवाऽनुशोच्योऽस्ति देहेऽस्मिन् बुद्बुदोपमे।।
śocyā śocasi kaṃ śocyaṃ dīnaṃ dīnā’nukampase।
kasya kovā’nuśocyo’sti dehe’smin budbudopame
“Whom are you lamenting for when you yourself are pitiable? Why do you pity the poor when you yourself have now been made poor? While in this body that is like a bubble, how can anyone look at anyone else as being worthy of lamentation?” (Hanuman speaking to Tara, Valmiki Ramayana, Kishkindha Kand, 21.3)
Govardhana Puja reveals that envy is there from every corner of the universe. It is understandable for a poor person to be unhappy at the wealthy enjoying life and not having a care in the world. Yet the wealthy are just as envious, since their peers may be gaining in the competition for highest net worth.
Even if you ascend to svarga-loka in the afterlife, there is the vulnerability to envy. Even if you directly petition the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vishnu, to appear on earth and save the people from wickedness and decay of righteous principles, there is the chance you can forget everything, as was the case with Indra.
4. Bhagavan retains full potency in every situation
Indra was fooled by the visuals. He saw Krishna as a young child, under the care of the parents. He did not see Vishnu, the person the demigods are supposed to worship. Vishnu is their caretaker, after all, offering assistance when the perennial conflict with the asura class becomes too much to bear.
In the first Govardhana Puja, we see Shri Krishna lifting up a massive hill. The people were astonished, but at the same time under too much duress to stand still in appreciation. They took shelter underneath. The person who had the cloud of devastation, samvartaka, at his disposal was defeated by a young child who didn’t release any weapons.
5. Krishna can protect against even devastating rain
I worship God and one of the subtle desires is protection. Quietly, in the back of my mind, I expect to be free from pain and debilitating disease. I think that the Supreme Lord will always be in my corner, that things won’t take a negative turn.
As the first Govardhana Puja shows, even if we do happen to find trouble, Krishna can find a way out. If there is a forest fire surrounding us, He can swallow it. He can enter inside of a giant serpent and kill it from within. If there is devastating rain, He can lift up a massive hill and use it as an umbrella.
There are many such symbolic correlations based on the factual, historical pastimes of the Supreme Lord. He continues in that protective stance to this day, and so the devotees rejoice at the sound of His holy names: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.
Indra his best trying,
On samvartaka relying.
After feeling tricked,
Target on Govardhana fixed.
But effort intense defeated,
People under the hill retreated.
Krishna perfect protection gave,
His shelter sufficient to save.
Categories: the five