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At Sri Champahati

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
Sri Nabadwip Dham Parikrama, Day Four
Ritudwip, 27 March 2021, part 2
Translated from Bengali

 

The place here we have come to is called Champahati. There was a champaka flower garden here, and Srimati Radharani would come here every day and collect flowers for Lord Govinda. We will speak here about Srimati Radharani, I will tell you about this place, and I am asking you to please listen carefully.

[His Divine Grace chants 'Radha bhajane yadi mati nahi bhela'.]

Sri Gaura Gadadhar are present here at this temple. Sri Gauranga Mahaprabhu is the combined form of Sri Radha-Krishna—He comes taking Radharani's heart and halo. However, one does not have only heart and halo—there is also the body. So, after Krishna took Radharani's heart and halo, whatever remained of Srimati Radharani incarnated as Gadadhar. These Deities here are very ancient—They were installed in Mahaprabhu's times, so They can be 530–535 years old. Prabhupad Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur recovered the service of these Deities. This entire place was covered with a thick jungle. I have told you before that all the aul, baul, kartabhaja and other misconception people destroyed so many places. Then, Srila Prabhupad came and arranged everything.

[His Divine Grace chants 'Radhe Radhe Govinda Govinda', 'Yadi Gaura na haite' and the Hare Krishna maha-mantra.]

Continuing our parikrama, we have come to this temple of Sri Sri Gaura-Gadadhar, established by Sri Dvija Vaninath Prabhu (an associate of Mahaprabhu). In Mahaprabhu's time, Mahaprabhu's Deity was installed in three places: Sri Gaura-Gadadhar Deities served by Sri Dvija Vaninath Prabhu in Champahati; Sri Gaura-Nityananda Deities served by Sri Gauri Das Pandit in Kalna; and Dhamesvar Mahaprabhu served by Sri Visnupriya Devi. These three Deities have existed in Sri Nabadwip Dham for over five hundred years now.

When Sriman Nityananda Prabhu was doing Sri Nabadwip Dham parikrama together with Srila Jiva Goswami Prabhu, He came here and described the glory of this place:

In the previous age, there was a forest called Khadiravan in this place. Like Radharani, Champakalata Sakhi gathered champa flowers in this forest and made garlands with them. Every day, she served Radha-Krishna with those champa flower garlands. When Kali-yuga came, gardeners came to this champa forest and started gathering flowers — they established a market nearby, where they sold champa flowers. That is why this place became known as Sri Champakahatta, or Champahati ('champa market').

Many years ago, when Sri Laksman Sen served as the king in Sri Nabadwip Dham (Nadia), a devotee named Jayadev Goswami lived here as one of the citizens of this area. Jayadev Goswami had a small cottage on the bank of Ballal Dirghaka (a pond in Ganganagar, Mayapur), where he lived together with his pious spouse Padmavati. Jayadev Goswami was a great poet. He composed many poems here in Sri Nabadwip Dham. Sri Gita Govinda and Dasa Avatara Stotram are particularly famous among his works.

Many come to Champahati and, remembering Sri Jayadev Goswami, chant his Gita Govinda, but we never do it. We mention the 'Dehi pada-pallavam-udaram' sloka from Gita Govinda and talk about Jayadev and Padmavati, but who will you tell about Jayadev's separation? We do have the qualification to speak about it or understand it.

Actually, Jayadev Goswami started composing Gita Govinda in another place in Nabadwip, but he could not finish it there. Later, when he came here, to Champahati, he finished it here.

One day, when Jayadev Goswami lived in Champahati and was going to write Gita Govinda, he forgot what the next line would be. Nothing came to his mind. Not being able to complete the sloka, he told Padmavati Devi, 'I am going to take bath in the Ganges. Have the prasad ready, I will take it when I come back.'

A short while later, the Supreme Lord Sri Krishna Himself came in disguise of Jayadev Goswami and said, 'Padmavati, is prasad ready?'

'Yes, you said you would take prasadam after taking bath, so come and take prasadam.'

The Lord took prasad, and what did He do next? He went into the room where Jayadev Goswami would sit composing Gita Govinda, and the Lord Himself finished that sloka from Gita Govinda that Jayadev Goswami could not finish. After that, He left the room and went away.

Soon after that, real Jayadev Goswami came home. He asked Padmavati Devi, 'Padmavati, where is my prasad?'

Padmavati Devi was surprised, 'What do you mean where is your prasad? You have just taken prasad and went to your room. I saw you going there and writing something.'

Jayadev Goswami could not understand anything, 'What? I went to bathe, I have not come back yet!' Then, he went into his room and saw that the sloka was finished — it was written there, 'Dehi pada-pallavam-udaram: I am placing Your holy lotus feet on My head.' The Lord Himself came there, wrote this and left. Krishna Himself wrote His prayer, saying that He was aspiring to attain the lotus feet of Srimati Radharani, and we know also that Srimati Radharani also prays for the lotus feet of Krishna. In this way, Krishna showed that it was not necessary for Jayadev or anyone to write about Radharani—He personally came to write what was necessary. Krishna Himself wrote what Jayadev did not have the courage to write.

Another time, when Jayadev Goswami composed his Dasa Avatara Stotram, King Sri Laksman read it and became very happy — he asked one of his men, 'Whose poetry is this? Who has written this?' The man replied that the poem had been composed by a poet named Jayadev Goswami. Excited, the king became very eager to meet with Jayadev Goswami. He then secretly found out where Jayadev Goswami was staying, and one night, dressed as a beggar Vaisnav, came to him. Jayadev Goswami understood that it was the king, but at first he did not say it to him. After a while, the king revealed his identity to Jayadev Goswami and invited him to his house. Jayadev Goswami became annoyed and declined the king's invitation, explaining, 'I do not want to go to the house of a materialist. If you think that because I am your subject, you can order me around, then I will leave your land and go to some other place. Associating with materialists can never bring anything auspicious. I had better go to Nilachal (Sri Puri Dham).'

Hearing his words, the king became quite uneasy. He said, 'Please do not leave Nabadwip! Prabhu, if you do not want to stay here, then there is a village called Champahati on the other side of the Ganges — please come to live there. I give you my word that I will never come to you unless you order me to: I will not come to see your holy feet until and unless you call me.'

Seeing the king's humility and hearing his soft speech, Jayadev Goswami replied, 'So be it. Although you are a materialist king, you are a devotee of Lord Krishna. You have no attachment to the material world. I have called you a materialist to test you, but you have no ego — hearing this, you tolerated it silently. This is how I can understand that you are a devotee of Lord Krishna. I accept your proposal — I will come to stay in Champahati, and you can secretly come to see me, leaving behind all your royal opulence. I do not have any objection.'

So, the king constructed a small cottage in Champahati, and Jayadev Goswami stayed there, engaging himself in his eternal worship of the Lord.

Every day, Padmavati Devi gathered many champaka flowers and gave them to Jayadev Goswami, who worshipped the Lord with those flowers. One day, the Supreme Lord Sri Krishna mercifully came in front of Jayadev Goswami and Padmavati Devi, revealing His effulgent form the colour of a champaka flower. Seeing the Lord's wondrous form, they began to cry and immediately fell unconscious. Lord Gauranga Mahaprabhu then took His two devotees on His lap and spoke, 'You two are My dear devotees. Very soon, I will appear here in Nabadwip from the womb of Sachi Devi. I will spread the Holy Name and rescue the entire earth, and when I turn twenty-four, I will take sannyas and leave for Nilachal. There, I will taste the exclusive mood of My devotees, and I will especially relish the nectar of your Sri Gita Govinda in the company of devotees. You are My dear devotees — after you leave your bodies, you will come to this transcendental Sri Nabadwip Dham, but for now, do Me a favour — go to Nilachal. You will serve Lord Sri Jagannathdev there and attain transcendental love for the Lord through that.' Saying this, Mahaprabhu disappeared.

Not being able to see the Lord any more, Jayadev and Padmavati began to weep. Burning with the agony of separation, they lamented, 'O Lord! What will become of us now? How will we live, not being able to see our Lord? How can we ever leave this Nabadwip and go to Nilachal? We must have certainly committed some offence! Even if we are born as a beast or a bird, it is better than leaving! We can lose our life, but we will never be able to leave Nabadwip! O Lord! Please keep us here, at Your holy lotus feet!' Both of them were crying and lamenting in this way when suddenly they heard a divine message in the sky, 'Do not be sad. Go to Nilachal and remember what I am saying to you. You wanted to go to Nilachal before, so Jagannath has fulfilled your desire. He wants to meet with you — go to Him and make Him happy. When the right time comes and you leave your bodies, you will again return to Nabadwip and stay here eternally.'

Having heard this divine message and not being able to ignore the Lord's order, Jayadev Goswami and Padmavati Devi decided not to delay and set off to Nilachal. As they started to walk, they stopped and looked back at Nabadwip from time to time, with tears flowing from their eyes. From afar, they told all residents of Nabadwip, 'Please be merciful to both of us. Please forgive our offences!' Walking further and further, they kept looking back at their beloved Nabadwip, and when they could no longer see it, they crossed the boarder of Gaudades shedding incessant tears and some days later arrived in Nilachal. Only after having got the darshan of Lord Jagannath, they got their life back.

This is the story of Srila Jayadev Goswami. This village Champahati is situated on an elevated place (a hill) — Sriman Nityananda Prabhu told Srila Jiva Goswami Prabhu that this was where Jayadev Goswami's cottage was. The pastimes of Sri Sri Radha-Krishna take place here eternally.

There is also another matter that should be mentioned here — the pastimes of Dvija Vaninath Prabhu. In Dvapar-yuga, Dvija Vaninath Prabhu took part in the pastimes of Lord Krishna — he was a gopi named Kamalekha.

Before that, in Satya-yuga, one brahman lived in this place. Every day, he would come to the champak garden, pick champak flowers and serve Radha-Govinda with them. What did the Lord, who is very affectionate to His devotees, do? Actually, you do not need to offer any expensive food to please the Lord. The Lord says, 'If one worships Me with a drop of Ganges water and a Tulasi leaf, I become very happy.' So, when that brahman served the Lord with flowers, the Lord became very pleased. One day, when the brahman was meditating and serving his Deities, Krishna decided to appear before Him, revealing His beautiful form to him. The Lord thought, 'This brahman has been serving me so much, I shall give him My darshan.' So, when the brahman was meditating on his beloved worshippable Deity, Shyamasundar, Krishna appeared before him in His golden form, the colour of a champak flower — that is, in the form of Lord Gaurasundar.

The Supreme Lord said, 'I will appear in this form that you see now in Kali-yuga.' Saying this, Mahaprabhu disappeared. Since that time, the brahman always thought with pain in his heart, 'Prabhu, how long will I live? Will I live to Kali-yuga?'

Hearing his mind's words, the Lord appeared before him in a dream on another day and said, 'Do not become disheartened, do not cry! In Kali-yuga, I will come to the house of Sachi Mata and Jagannath Misra, and at that time you too will appear here in this village Champahati.'

That brahman appeared in Kali-yuga as Dvija Vaninath, who installed the Deities of Sri Gaura-Gadadhar at this temple here in Champahati. Some time later, these Deities' service eventually stopped, and almost one hundred years ago, Jagad Guru Srila Prabhupad Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur took charge of the Deities' service and since that time, the service at this temple has been running properly.

Now, a devotee named Sriman Nityananda Prabhu is serving at this temple single-handedly. He lives here alone. Actually, he is not alone—he is staying here together with Sri Sri Gaura-Gadadhar.

[His Divine Grace requests Sri Nityananda Prabhu to speak. Prabhu speaks about the mercy of Sri Gaura-Gadadhar and humbly expresses his affection for His Divine Grace, urging devotees to remain under his guidance and remember Sri Gaura-Gadadhar's mercy and holy dham.]

 

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Devotional Take on Naughty Neighbours
'If your neighbours are not good, you can pray to Krishna, to the Lord. Also, if you have power to preach, then through your association the neighbours will become good. Otherwise pray. I am not joking..'

 

Jaya jaya gurudever
'Your eternally liberated associates sing your glories in Goloka, the realm of your Pastimes.'
জয় জয় গুরুদেবের

Gurudev has left, but he has left many things here—he has left his devotees, his Deities,
his temples; he has left the scriptures, his words. We will find him there.

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