Gopal (Sanskrit: गोपालGopāla, literally "cow protector") is the infant/child form of Lord Krishna, the Cowherd Boy who enchanted the Cowherd Maidens (Gopinis) with the divine sound of his flute, attracting even Kāmadeva (the Hindu god of love and passion). Historically one of the earliest forms of worship in Krishnaism or Vaishnava dharma, it is believed to be a key element of the early history of the worship of Krishna. This tradition is considered separately to other traditions that led to amalgamation at a later stage of historical development. Other traditions are Bhagavatism and the Cult of Bala Krishna, that along with the Cult of Krishna-Vasudeva form the basis of the current tradition of the monotheistic religion of Krishna.
The child form of Krishna also known as Bala Gopala (child Gopala) is worshipped across India. In Hindu mythology there are many stories of wonderful miraculous and innocent acts of Gopala, like stealing butter with friends or breaking the pots of Gopis and stealing clothes of Gopis when they were bathing in a pond or river.