First chapters of CC

Shyam Gopal Das - December 12, 2005 6:27 pm

Feeling instigated by the NOD thread which asked for more questions on TV, I remembered one question that popped in my head while reading Caitanya Caritamrta a few weeks ago. I noticed that in the first chapters Krsnadas Kaviraj Gosvami refers to Krishna as Govinda most of the time. He uses the names Krishna, Gopala or Madan-Mohan much less. I was curious if there is a special meaning to this.

Babhru Das - December 12, 2005 6:41 pm

What a cool question! Now I have to go back and read the first few chapters yet again.

Igor - December 12, 2005 7:02 pm

Interesting question!

Srilla Krsnadasa Kaviraja also wrote Govinda - lilamrtam! Is there any special meaning with begining of CC?

If you want to download book ( it is on bengali only)

Govinda lilamrtam.zip

Bhrigu - December 14, 2005 5:42 pm

I don't know the answer to your question, but I've noticed that the by far most common name for Srimurtis of the divine couple is "Radha Govinda". Govinda seems to be a favourite name for Krishna in our sampradaya. It might have something to do with Rupa Goswamiäs Srimurti being Govinda and our sampradaya following him, but that's just a guess. Maybe it just sounds so sweet: Cowherd! :)

Syamasundara - December 15, 2005 1:40 am

Interestingly, Govinda is not even a vedic name.

Supposedly is a prakrta version of the more vedic name Gopendra, name given to Krsna by Indra after the Govardhanodhara-lila, where Indra's ego as the king of heaven had just been crushed and Indra coronated Nandanandana as the real king of the gopas (gopa-indra).

I didn't quite like that explanation, I thought it was one of those misinterpretations of the German and British sanscritists of 200 years ago, but Jagadananda confirmed that in the actual Vedic texts there is no mention of Govinda (the puranas are written in a more proletarian sanskrit).

I think SP renders it as go (cow) vindati (finds), but it doesn't seem to hold much water.

My conclusion is that I really don't care. Krsna doesn't seem to care either. The whole Govardhana lila is meant to show that (I just listened to the CD :) )

Vrndavana is above the Vedas and religiosity and in Gokula it's not like they speak the Samskrta language or anything anyway.

I've always had a special relationship with the name of Govinda. During my childhood there used to be a TV show about a native american boy named Vobinda or something. I never watched it, but had a tape with a lot of TV tunes for kids and the Vobinda song kept repeating that name and it used to always strum some cord in me, remind me of something I couldn't quite define.

Many years later I met the devotees and I finally heard the name Govinda, well... Govinda's, but then I suddenly forgot what that other name was that reminded me of it (Vobinda)!!

It took me quite a few more years before I heard Vobinda again, luckily the name of Govinda was well radicated in my heart and I didn't forget it, I rather was able to finally put the pieces of the puzzle together.

By the way Govinda is the name chosen by Brahma in his samhita.

GM quotes one of our acaryas analyzing govinda as go-vim-da, he who gives (da) something (I forgot what vim means... :P ) to the cows, possibly pleasure. To the cows or to the senses.

Now that's a nice one.

Babhru Das - December 15, 2005 2:25 am
GM quotes one of our acaryas analyzing govinda as go-vim-da, he who gives (da) something (I forgot what vim means... :) ) to the cows, possibly pleasure. To the cows or to the senses.

Now that's a nice one.


I believe that Srila Prabhupada has said the same: who gives pleasure to the cows and the senses. That's why, when we started the first devotee restaurant, in Honolulu in 1974, we called it Govinda's.

Syamasundara - December 15, 2005 2:59 am

I thought it was Agni who opened the first.

Babhru Das - December 15, 2005 4:58 am

Nope. The first Govinda's Restaurant was opened on Kapiolani Boulevard in Honolulu in September of 1974. I was the evening manager. Toshan Krishna had the idea, and Navadvipa came to help him get it started, with support from Sudama (then Maharaja) and the Honolulu temple. But politics unfortunately caused Toshan and Navadvipa to depart before it actually opened. (It was a little ugly, as I recall, having to do with control over the newly acquired temple, and I was the one who was elected to drive them and their wives to the airport. That was not a comfortable drive for me, because I liked and respected all four of them, but they were all such nice devotees that they took the edge off the occasion.)


I believe the "wrap" sandwich may have been invented by us. We wanted to offer our customers great sandwiches with cheese, sprouts, avocado, etc., but we didn't want to bake bread with yeast, so my friend Revati-ramana, who died of a heart attack 14 years ago, came up with the idea of making sandwiches with large chapatis. Our dahl ("Govinda's Vegetable Soup") and chapati special was particularly popular among the hip back then.