The Eight Exalted Vara Gopis

The Exalted Gopis


Kalavati's complexion is the color of yellow sandalwood and she wears garments the color of a parrot. Her husband is Kapota, the youngest brother of Vahika, and her parents are Sindhumati-devi and Kalankura-gopa, the maternal uncle of Arkamitra.


Subhangada is the younger sister of Visakha. She is of very fair complexion and is married to Patatri, the younger brother of Pithara.


Hiranyangi is very dear to Srimati Radharani and Srimati Radharani is very dear to her. Hiranyangi is dressed in beautiful garments that appear like a great multitude of unparalleled blossoming flowers. Her complexion is the color of gold and she appears to be a temple or palace in which all beauty is conserved. She was born from the womb of Harini-devi. Here is the story of her conception:

Her father, Mahavasu-gopa, is pious and famous for being devoted to performing Vedic sacrifices. He is decorated with wonderful good qualities and he is the close friend of Arkamitra. Mahavasu-gopa desired to beget a powerful and heroic son and a beautiful daughter. To attain this end, the self-controlled Mahavasu engaged Bhaguri Muni in performing a Vedic sacrifice. Certain nectarean foodstuffs appeared from that sacrifice and the delighted Mahavasu gave them to his wife, Sucandra-devi. As Sucandra-devi was hastily eating the sacred foodstuff on her front porch, she spilled some of it. At that time the doe named Suranga, who was the mother of the doe named Rangini, was wandering in Vrajabhumi. Seeing Sucandra-devi spill some of the foodstuff, the doe Suranga quickly came forward and ate some of it. As a result of eating this sacred foodstuff, both the gopi Sucandra and the doe Suranga became pregnant. Sucandra-devi gave birth to a son whom the gopas called Stokakrsna, and the deer gave birth to the girl Hiranyangi in the village of Vraja.


Maharaj Vrsabhanu's maternal cousin Payonidhi had a son but no daughter. His wife Mitra-devi desired to have a daughter also and to achieve this end, she faithfully worshiped the sun-god, Vivasvan. By Vivasvan's mercy she gave birth to a daughter who was named Ratnalekha.

Ratnalekha's complexion is the red color of the mineral manahsila and her garments appear like a beautiful swarm of bumblebees. She is very dear to Srimati Radharani. Her mother engages both she and her friend Radharani in the devoted attentive worship of the sun-god. When Ratnalekha sees Lord Madhava, her eyes begin to roll in ferocious anger and she severly rebukes Him.


Sikhavati's complexion is the color of a karnikara flower. She is the younger sister of Kundalatika, her father is Dhanyadhanya, and her mother is Susikha-devi. She is like sweetness and charm personified. Her garments are the spotted color of an old francoline partridge. She is married to Garjara-gopa, who is also known as Garuda-gopa.

Kandarpa manjari

Kandarpa-manjari's father is Puspakara and her mother is Kuruvinda-devi. Kandarpa-manjari's father did not give her in marriage to anyone, for he considered in his heart that Lord Hari is the only suitable husband for his daughter. Kandarpa-manjari's complexion is the color of a kinkirata bird and her garments are decorated with many different colors.


Phullakalika's father is Srimalla and her mother is Kamalini. Phullakalika's complexion is dark like a blue lotus flower and her garments are like a rainbow. Her forehead is naturally marked with yellow tilaka lines. Her husband, Vidura has a loud voice and is able to call the buffaloes from a great distance.

Ananga manjari

Ananga-manjari is exquistely beautiful and therefore it is very appropriate that she is named after Ananga (cupid). Her complexion is the color of a springtime ketaki flower and her garments are the color of a blue lotus. Her proud husband Durmada is also her sister's brother-in-law. She is especially dear to Lalita and Visakha.