The people of Dwaraka were indeed proud that their devotion to Lord Krishna was supreme. Realizing this, Lord Krishna decided to teach them all the essence of genuine devotion.
One day the Lord collapsed on the bed crying that he had unbearable headache. At once the queens and Sage Narada who had come to have darshan of the Lord immediately summoned Dhanvantri (Lord of medicine). Dhanvantri came and gave medicine but the Lord’s headache was not cured. Since Dhanvantri himself could not cure the Lord, Narada asked the Lord to himself suggest the cure for his pain.
Lord Krishna told Narada that the medicine to remove his headache would be the dust of the feet of a genuine devotee, which when applied to his forehead would cure him completely. Everyone was shocked on hearing this. Narada approached the wives of the Lord if they could provide the dust of their feet. They refused saying that they would go to hell if the dust of their feet was applied on the Lord’s forehead. None of the people in Dwaraka obliged fearing the sin that would incur to them if they provide the dust of their feet.
Finally Narada approached the Lord for a solution. Krishna asked Narada to go to Vrindavan and approach the gopis. Narada immediately went to Vrindavan. Seeing Sage Narada, all the gopis came running and offered their pranams. Narada narrated the whole incident where the Lord was suffering and he had come to collect the dust of the feet of a devotee.
One of the gopi immediately went and brought a piece of cloth, laid it on the ground and all the gopis stamped their feet on the cloth. They folded the cloth with the dust of their feet carefully, and asked Narada to take it and apply it to the Lord’s forehead. Narada was surprised and questioned the Gopis whether they were not worried of the sin they would incur because of which they would suffer in hell. The Gopis at once replied that to relieve the Lord of his pain they were ready to go to hell and suffer any amount of pain.
Narada came back to the Lord with the cloth filled with the dust of the Gopis’ feet, and narrated what happened at Vrindavan to all. The headache had vanished and the Lord got up and smilingly looked at all those assembled there. The wives of the Lord and the people of Dwaraka realized the superiority of the devotion of the simple, humble milkmaids of Vrindavan — the Gopis.
[PS: I request all to please forward and share these value based stories rich in our culture and tradition to elders, youth and children]