Radha (Sanskrit: राधा, IAST: Rādhā), also called Radhika, is a Hindu goddess and a chief consort of the god Krishna

She is worshiped as the goddess of love, tenderness, compassion and devotion

She is the avatar of Lakshmi and is also described as the chief of gopis (milkmaids)

During Krishna’s youth, she appears as his lover and companion, though he is not married to her

In contrast, some traditions and scriptures accord Radha the status of the eternal consort and wife of Krishna

Radha, as a supreme goddess, is considered as the female counterpart and the internal potency (hladini shakti) of Krishna, who resides in Goloka, the celestial abode of Radha Krishna

Radha is said to accompany Krishna in all his incarnations

In Radha Vallabh Sampradaya, which is a Radha centric tradition, only Radha is worshiped as the supreme deity

Elsewhere, Radha is venerated particularly in the Krishnaite Nimbarka Sampradaya, Pushtimarg, Swaminarayan Sampradaya, Vaishnava-Sahajiya, Mahanam Sampraday and Gaudiya Vaishnavism movements linked to Chaitanya Mahaprabhu

Radha is also described as the feminine form of Krishna himself

Radha’s birthday is celebrated annually as Radhashtami

Radha is also considered as a metaphor for the human spirit (atma), her love and longing for Krishna is theologically viewed as symbolic of the human quest for spiritual growth and union with the divine (brahman)

She has inspired numerous literary works, and her Rasa lila dance with Krishna has inspired many types of performance arts