trāhi trastān bhṛtya-vitrāsa-hāsi
rūpaṁ cedaṁ pauruṣaṁ dhyāna-dhiṣṇyaṁ
mā pratyakṣaṁ māṁsa-dṛśāṁ kṛṣīṣṭhāḥ
The word dhyāna-dhiṣṇyam is significant in this verse because the form of Lord Viṣṇu is meditated upon by yogīs (dhyānāvasthita-tad-gatena manasā paśyanti yaṁ yoginaḥ). Devakī requested the Lord, who had appeared as Viṣṇu, to conceal that form, for she wanted to see the Lord as an ordinary child, like a child appreciated by persons who have material eyes. Devakī wanted to see whether the Supreme Personality of Godhead had factually appeared or she was dreaming the Viṣṇu form. If Kaṁsa were to come, she thought, upon seeing the Viṣṇu form he would immediately kill the child, but if he saw a human child, he might reconsider. Devakī was afraid of Ugrasena-ātmaja; that is, she was afraid not of Ugrasena and his men, but of the son of Ugrasena. Thus she requested the Lord to dissipate that fear, since He is always ready to give protection (abhayam) to His devotees. “My Lord,” she prayed, “I request You to save me from the cruel hands of the son of Ugrasena, Kaṁsa. I am praying to Your Lordship to please rescue me from this fearful condition because You are always ready to give protection to Your servitors.” The Lord has confirmed this statement in the Bhagavad-gītā by assuring Arjuna, “You may declare to the world, My devotee shall never be vanquished.”
While thus praying to the Lord for rescue, mother Devakī expressed her motherly affection: “I understand that this transcendental form is generally perceived in meditation by the great sages, but I am still afraid because as soon as Kaṁsa understands that You have appeared, he might harm You. So I request that for the time being You become invisible to our material eyes.” In other words, she requested the Lord to assume the form of an ordinary child. “My only cause of fear from my brother Kaṁsa is due to Your appearance. My Lord Madhusūdana, Kaṁsa may know that You are already born. Therefore I request You to conceal this four-armed form of Your Lordship, which holds the four symbols of Viṣṇu — namely the conchshell, the disc, the club and the lotus flower. My dear Lord, at the end of the annihilation of the cosmic manifestation, You put the whole universe within Your abdomen; still, by Your unalloyed mercy, You have appeared in my womb. I am surprised that You imitate the activities of ordinary human beings just to please Your devotee.”
Devakī was so afraid of Kaṁsa that she could not believe that Kaṁsa would be unable to kill Lord Viṣṇu, who was personally present. Out of motherly affection, therefore, she requested the Supreme Personality of Godhead to disappear. Although because of the Lord’s disappearance Kaṁsa would harass her more and more, thinking that the child born of her was hidden somewhere, she did not want the transcendental child to be harassed and killed. Therefore she requested Lord Viṣṇu to disappear. Later, when harassed, she would think of Him within her mind.