Yadunātha dāsa: We hear from Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam that when Kaṁsa tried to kill the female baby who was Kṛṣṇa’s younger sister (Yoga-māyā), that baby flew up into the sky (in the form of Durgā). So I am wondering: Subhadrā is the sister of Kṛṣṇa. How did she become Kṛṣṇa’s sister?
Śrīla Nārāyaṇa Gosvāmī Mahārāja: Mādhava Mahārāja will reply.
Śrīpāda Mādhava Mahārāja: After Kaṁsa died, Vasudeva and Devakī were set free. Then, after some time, they begot Subhadrā.
Yadunātha dāsa: So she is not the same as Yoga-māyā?
Śrīpāda Mādhava Mahārāja: No, she came later.
Devotee: Please could you explain to me what is the position of Subhadrā-devī (the sister of Kṛṣṇa who is next to Lord Jagannātha in Puri). Is she an expansion of Yoga-māyā or is she different?
Śrīla Bhakti Vijñāna Bhāratī Mahārāja: Subhadrā-devī is yoga-māyā. Bhakti-devī.
So first of all, when the doors of Jagannātha’s temple are opened, you see Balabhadrā (the guru), then Subhadrā (bhakti) and then you see Lord Jagannātha.
So, by the grace of the guru you are eligible for bhakti and, by the grace of bhakti you can reach to the lotus feet of Jagannātha.
If you go to Jagannātha’s temple you can see this.
Devotee: Why is Subhadrā-devī often called Yoga-māyā?
Śrīla Bhakti Vijñāna Bhāratī Mahārāja: Śrī Kṛṣṇa possesses a śakti known as yoga-māyā, which means ‘the energy that unites the devotees with the Lord.’ This potency of the Lord, in its external form, separates one from the Lord and is called māhā-māyā. In his Kalyāṇā-kalpataru, Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura has composed a kīrtana in which he has written:
kuladevī yoga-māyā more kṛpā kôri’
āvaraṇa samvaribe kabe viśvodarī
O Kuladevī Yoga-māyā! When will you, being merciful to me, lift the curtain with which you cover the universe in your external form of mahā-māyā?
This yoga-māyā arranges the Lord’s endless varieties of pastimes; this is her sevā. Although she serves strictly according to the desire of the Lord, her arrangements are such that both the devotees and the Lord remain unaware of her influence and consider themselves, as well as each other, to be ordinary human beings. Without the presence of yoga-māyā, the wonderful pastimes of the Lord cannot manifest. Therefore, in order to manifest the confidential pastimes of the Lord in Dvārakā, this yoga-māyā-śakti manifests as Śrī Subhadrā-devī. Śrī Subhadrā-devī is also known as bhakti-devī.
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