Mahabharat and Ramayan has flown through the blood of all Indian’s for thousands of years now. They have become such an integral part of our culture and history. They have influenced all the aspects of our life more so in Art.
India is a Hippocratic country. We have only theory lessons in the subject of love. The biggest Hippocrates are the silly old retired gentleman(?) who have no other work than protesting that the youth is spoiling the ‘old cultural values’. Plus the self declared protectors of Culture like Shivsena and Bajrang dal.
I wont comment about other religions but it hurts when I hear that being in love with someone is against the Hindu Culture. The Hindu view might be that everyday can be a Valentine’s Day but certainly Hindu culture cant be against Valentines day. It can be against sexual display in public places not against roaming in park. It is certainly against dishonoring women but not against ‘Shringar’ (eroticism wont be the proper word i guess).
Why these things came in my mind? Because I came across a article on Eklavyaa and his life after his thumb was cut. He supported Pandava’s in the war but was later killed by Shri Krishna in some battle. I am not more influenced by any other character than that of Shri Krishna. The roles he played we so different and apparently had a some intentions we learn only later.
One role that is more prominent in Indian Art was that of a Lover. He loved Radha. We had marvlous songs like ‘Madhuban mein radhika nache re’ to ‘Bajav bajav teri muraliya oh kanha’.
Radha is no where present in Mahabharata. Some ‘Saviours of Culture’ feel bad(!) today about Krishna’s love at that time and claim that no Radha ever existed but was just some local poets imagination. It is something that they see as a blot on his life.
Nepolian when attacked france told his soldiers “One Night in Paris will compensate to the all Horors of the battle your are going to face”. It may not be appropriate to quote this line here but my point is “Courage and strength goes well only with Love and woman”. No man can be complete without a feminine component in his life.
Gopiya in Mathura were in love with the strong and intelligent Kanhaa. He bravery as well as cuteness is what they loved. Besides his makhanchor image he also had an image of eve teaser. Socially the Makhanchor image had a meaning. All the milk based products in mathura were consumed by Kansa’s market so the kids were malnutrioned. Besides Krishan wanted to build an army of strong man. One way these games that he played brought in new episode in the Bhagvad Purana. Who wont fall in love with krishna the Go-palak. He took care of animals, he played with fellow Gop, his handicapped friend ‘Pednyaa’, the storief of their friendship.
He roamed freely with the Gopi’s in the Kunjavan. Tought them to love. Imagine a society based on labor. Krishna showed them a new way. If you notice the folklores you understand the intimacy and intricacy in the Radha-Krishna’s love. Teh way she gets jealous when he talks to other Gopiya (Remember the song from Lagan?) . She is proud of her fairness and teases him because he is dark (Radha kyon gori mein kyun kalaa). In their adolescent exploration of love they even cross dress. All we see there is unconditional love and poetic intimacy.
But what happened to Radha after Krishna left Mathura?? When he married 16k women hostages of Narakasura why couldn’t give a honorable place to Radha? Shri Krishna had 8 special wives (called AstaNayika in Sankrit literature) why there is no mention of Radha? Vyaas did not mention Radha in Mahabharat; was there any special reason for her exclusion?
When the Gopiya go to Dwarka to meet Krishna, Akroor (krshna’ political adviser and a warrior) convinces them back to mathura. He tells them the message krishna has for them. This message elaborate in detail about Brahma, Akshar-Satyaa etc etc. To go in detail its actually the same Gita that Krisha tells arjuna in future. But this messege is known as AkroorGita in oriental philosophy.
The place that Rukmini or Statyabhama dint get in Literature was compansated by the public. We see innumerable tmeples of Radha Krishna. THousands of folklore sing the love songs of Radha and Krishna. The Saviours of Culture might find them Vulgur but I think in that case these saviours should worship only Hanuman and no other God.
There are three stories as what happened to Radha.
She married Krishna Secretly to Krishna in Vrindavan Forest. Though she dint see Krishna later in her life again she remained aunmarried.
She married abhimanyu son of Jatila a Yadav. What forced her to marry him remains unexplained.
She married to a god fearing person called Chandrasena.
Whatever it may be but Krishn’sa romance with her gave a new aspect to whole Indian art and music and our notions of love and romance.