(1) The gopas said: 'Râma, o Râma, o mighty-armed one, o Krishna, destroyer of the wicked, we're troubled by hunger, something should be done to appease it.'
(2) S'rî S'uka said: 'Thus informed by the gopas spoke the Supreme Lord, the son of Devakî, wishing to satisfy some brahmin wives devoted to Him, the following: (3) 'Please go to the sacrificial arena of the brahmins who, desiring heaven, according the vedic injunctions are now performing a sacrifice named Ângirasa. (4) Going there, dear gopas, ask for food telling them that you've been sent by the Supreme Lord My elder brother and also in My name.'
(5) With this order of the Supreme Lord going there asked they as was told, petitioning with folded hands before the brahmins fallen down like sticks to the ground: (6) 'O earthly gods, all good to you, please listen, we, sent by Râma, you must understand, have arrived here following the orders of Krishna. (7) Râma and Acyuta graze Their cows not far from here and being hungry in want ask they you to supply Them with food, o twice-born; so if you have any faith, then please donate, o finest knowers of the religion. (8) From the beginning of a sacrifice until the end of sacrificing the animal, o lovers of the truth, is it, except for when it is a [Sautrâmani] sacrifice to Indra [*], not even for an initiate an offense to enjoy [or hand out] food.'
(9) Thus hearing of the Supreme Lord His supplication took they nevertheless no heed, in trivial pursuit foolishly thinking to know it better with their ritualistic activities. (10-11) Though place and time, the items used, the hymns, the rituals, the priests and the fire, the officiating God-conscious, the performer of the sacrifice, the performance and its dharmic result all make up the directly visible of the Absolute Truth of Him, the Supreme Lord beyond the senses, considered they Him in their borrowed intelligence an ordinary person. (12) With them not even giving them a yes or a no, did the gopas thus discouraged, o chastiser of the enemies, turn back to inform Krishna and Râma about it. (13) Hearing that laughed the Supreme Lord, the Controller of the Universe, and addressed He again the cowherd boys in order to show them the ways of the world: (14) 'Communicate to the wives that I together with Sankarshana have arrived; they will give you all the food desired, for they with their intelligence residing in Me are of affection toward Me.'
(15) Going then to the house of the wives where they saw them sitting nicely ornamented, bowed the gopas with reverence before the chaste women of the twice-born and said they humbly: (16) 'Salutations to you, o wives of the learned ones, please listen to what we have to say: not far from here are we roaming with Krishna by whom we've been sent here. (17) Tending the cows with the gopas and Râma He came a long way; He with His companions being hungry should be given food.'
(18) When they heard that Krishna was nearby whom they, with their minds enchanted by His stories, were always eager to see, got they very excited. (19) Like rivers flowing towards the ocean were the four types of [chewed, sucked, licked and drunk] edibles in all tastes of food brought and taken out in vessels to their all beloved. (20-21) Even though their husbands, brothers, sons and other relatives tried to stop them, directed they themselves, for so long having heard and longed for Him, to the Supreme Lord Praised in the Scriptures. The ladies found Him wandering with the gopas and His elder brother in a grove near the Yamunâ that was beautiful with blooming as'okas. (22) With His dark complexion, golden garment, garland of forest flowers, peacock feather, colored minerals, sprigs of buds, was He, dressed like a dancer on a stage, with His hand over a friend's shoulder and with the other twirling a lotus, smiling with His lotus face, His hair over His cheeks and lilies behind His ears. (23) Over and over having heard of the glories of their dearmost, the gem to their ears in whom their minds were submerged, embraced they Him, now brought within their view, for a long time and gave they up the inner distress, o sovereign of the people, that had resulted from the fact that they identified themselves with their bodies. (24) As the overseer of the vision of all creatures understanding that they, getting there to see Him in person, in that state had broken with all worldly expectations, spoke He with a smile upon His face. (25) 'You're most welcome o finest of grace, please sit down, what can I do for you; how becoming of you to come here to see Me! (26) People of discrimination aware of what's good for them most certainly perform directly unto Me, their dearmost Self, in unrelenting devotional service that is proper without ulterior motives. (27) What else indeed would be as dear as that object of love of which the contact engendered the dear of one's life force, intelligence, mind, relatives, body, wife, children, wealth and so forth? (28) Therefore go to the sacrificial arena so that your brahmin husbands together with you as householders will be able to finish their sacrifices.'
(29) The wives answered: 'Don't be so strict with us, o Almighty One, please be true to Your [scriptural] promise that having obtained the base of Your lotusfeet we, shunning all relations, may carry upon our hair the tulsî garland kicked away by Your foot. (30) Our husbands, fathers, sons and brothers, other relatives and friends won't take us back and how would other people then respond? Therefore can there for us, whose bodies have fallen at Your feet, be no other destination o Chastiser of the Enemies; please grant us that!'
(31-32) The Supreme Lord said: 'Your husbands will not be bad of jealousy nor will your fathers, brothers, sons or other people; even the demigods will, on My word, regard you favorably. (33) Hearing, attending [to the deity or the gathering of devotees];, meditating and singing about Me, you are of love for Me, not so much with being physically close to Me; therefore return to your homes.'
(34) S'rî S'uka said: 'Having said this to the wives of the twice-born went they back to the place of sacrifice where their husbands not being spiteful together with them completed the performance. (35) One of them, held back with force by her husband, embraced, hearing from the others about the Supreme Lord, Him within her heart and gave up the body that was the basis of karmic bondage. (36) The Supreme Lord, also known as Govinda, fed with that very same food in four types the gopas after which He, the Almighty Himself, took a share. (37) And thus delighted He in His pastimes with His transcendental appearance following the cause of events of the human affair, to please the cows, the gopas and the gopîs with His beauty, words and actions. (38) Afterwards came the learned ones to their senses and felt great remorse in having been so offensive because of their conceit with the humble request of the Lords of the Universe who had appeared like human beings. (39) Seeing in their wives toward Krishna, the Supreme Lord, the excellent flight of devotion that with them was totally lacking, condemned they themselves lamenting: (40) 'To hell with all of our threefold births [biological, brahminical and ritual], our vows, our extensive spiritual knowledge, our lineage and our expertise in the rituals, when we have turned against the One Beyond the Senses. (41) Verily the Supreme Lord His mâyâ that even deludes the greatest yogis has been the cause that we the twiceborn, the spiritual teachers of society, have been bewildered concerning our own true interest. (42) Just see how of even these women there for Krishna, the spiritual teacher of the universe, is an unlimited devotion which has broken the bond of death known as family-life. (43-44) On their part there were no purification rites of rebirth, they didn't stay with the guru or even executed austerities, nor were they of philosophical inquiry into the true nature of the self or of any special cleanliness or pious actions; nevertheless are they, contrary to us - however full of all that purification we are -, firm indeed in their devotional service for Krishna, the Lord Praised in the Verses and Master of all Masters of Yoga. (45) Oh, how much has He not, through the words of the transcendental souls of those cowherd boys, reminded us of the ultimate destination which is there for us who indeed because of our infatuation with our household affairs were bewildered in our own true self interest. (46) For what other reason would He, the Master of Liberation and all other benedictions who is satisfied in every respect, with us, the ones to be controlled, be of this pretense? (47) With His request [for food] that bewilders the human beings, does, forgetting about others and putting an end to the faults [of pride and fickleness e.g.] in her own being, the goddess of fortune worship Him in a constant longing to touch His feet. (48-49) Constituting the place and time, the items used, the hymns, the rituals, the priests and the fire, the officiating God-conscious, the performer of the sacrifice, the performance and its dharmic result, [see verse 10-11] has He, the Supreme Lord of Vishnu, the Master of the Yogamasters, indeed directly visible taken birth among the Yadus, but despite of having heard of this did we foolishly fail to understand. (50) Unto Him the Supreme Lord Krishna of unbounded intelligence, of whose illusory power we with bewildered minds are wandering along the paths of fruitive action, we offer our obeisances. (51) He indeed, our Original Personality of Godhead whose influence we with our minds bewildered of mâyâ cannot fathom, should forgive us our offense.'
(52) Thus musing on their own offense against Krishna wished they after their exercise of contrition it to meet Him in Vraja but, afraid of [drawing too much the attention of] Kamsa, decided they not to go.'