Laughing Ecstasy

Srila Prabhupada smiling

Yesterday I was at the dentists office having a lose tooth removed, so naturally I was some what preoccupied with my toothless smile. But Krishna Consciousness is so nice, and Srila Prabhupada has given us so much knowledge I thought I would just do a search on the word ‘teeth’ an see if there was any reference in the books. To my surprise there was this whole section on smiling…

When the teeth are distinctly visible in a smile, that is called vihasita. One day when Kṛṣṇa was engaged in stealing butter and yogurt in the house of Jaṭilā, He assured His friends, “My dear friends, I know that this old lady is now sleeping very profoundly because she is breathing very deeply. Let us silently steal butter and yogurt without making any disturbance.” But the old lady, Jaṭilā, was not sleeping; so she could not contain her smiling, and her teeth immediately became distinctly visible. This is an instance of vihasita smiling.

Kṛṣṇa once addressed Jaratī thus: “My dear good woman, the skin of your face is now slackened, and so your face exactly resembles a monkey’s. As such, the King of the monkeys, Balīmukha, has selected you as his worthy wife.” While Kṛṣṇa was teasing Jaratī in this way, she replied that she was certainly aware of the fact that the King of the monkeys was trying to marry her, but she had already taken shelter of Kṛṣṇa, the killer of many powerful demons, and therefore she had already decided to marry Kṛṣṇa instead of the King of the monkeys. On hearing this sarcastic reply by the talkative Jaratī, all the cowherd girls present there began to laugh very loudly and clap their hands. This laughter, accompanied by the clapping of hands, is called atihasita.

…As I continued to read on, my toothless smile increased into outward laughter…

Sometimes there are indirect sarcastic remarks which also create atihasita circumstances. An example of one such remark was made by one of the cowherd girls to Kuṭilā, the daughter of Jaṭilā and sister of Abhimanyu, the so-called husband of Rādhārāṇī. Indirectly Kuṭilā was insulted by the following statement: “My dear Kuṭilā, daughter of Jaṭilā, your breasts are as long as string beans-simply dry and long. Your nose is so gorgeous that it is defying the beauty of the noses of frogs. And your eyes are more beautiful than the eyes of dogs. Your lips are defying the flaming cinders of fire, and your abdomen is as beautiful as a big drum. Therefore, my dear beautiful Kuṭilā, you are the most beautiful of all the cowherd girls of Vṛndāvana, and because of your extraordinary beauty, I think you must be beyond the attraction of the sweet blowing of Kṛṣṇa’s flute!”

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