rasa lila
   The rasa lila, “round of passion” or “play of passion,” is the circle dance performed by Lord KRISHNA with the cowherd women (GOPIS). Krishna stood at the center of the circle and multiplied himself so that he could dance individually with each of them. Devotees of Krishna understand this dance as a metaphor for the relationship between God and the individual soul. God is complete and isolated unto himself, while also residing inti-mately at the center of everyone’s soul.
   Further reading: Graham M. Schweig, trans., Dance of Divine Love: The Rasa Lila of Krishna from the Bhagavata Purana, India’s Classic Sacred Love Story (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 2005); B. V. Tripurari, Aesthetic Vedanta: The Sacred Path of Passionate Love (Eugene, Ore.: Mandala Publishing Group, 1998).

Encyclopedia of Hinduism. . 2007.

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