Madhurya bhava towards goddesses such as Radha, Parvati, etc.,


The purpose of devotional practices is to feel closer to one's deity or God. Closeness towards God will only increase if one thinks of God as a personal relative rather than the all powerful all knowing God. Hence, devotee saints suggest to practice devotion in the sentiments of a friend, parent, lover, etc. As the devotion towards God increases, the bhava or sentiments automatically appear or one can practice them as per his eligibility and liking:

Although devotional service is one, it becomes manifested in eleven forms of attachment: attachment to the Lord's glorious qualities, to His beauty, to worshipping Him, to remembering Him, to serving Him, to reciprocating with Him as a friend, to caring for Him as a parent, to dealing with Him as a lover, to surrendering one's whole self to Him, to being absorbed in thought of Him, and to experiencing separation from Him. This last is the supreme attachment. [NBS - 82]

Just like a person when falls in love always thinks about his/her beloved. So also a devotee who falls in love with God always remembers his deity. Hence, madhurya bhava or kanta bhava (the sentiment of a lover) is said to be the best among all types of devotion. Because, in it, a person feels more closer and attached to God. And the scripture says, irrespective of lust, love, anger or whatever, if one directs his feelings towards God then he attains Him:

Persons who constantly direct their lust, anger, fear, protective affection, feeling of oneness and friendship toward Lord Hari are sure to become absorbed in Him. [SB - 10.29.15]

However, unlike love between two persons where taints of personal desire may persist, in devotional practices love for God is clear and crystal like the rays of the Sun. There remains no personal desire but only the desire for the Lord's happiness. Madhurya bhava is the top most devotional sentiment which only a few, out of the many, practice properly. And for those few, God is truly their everything; starting with mother, father, friend, knowledge and wealth, to all other gods (twameva mata cha pita twameva....mama deva deva).

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