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Parikrama of Sri Vrindavan Dham (Gokula, Ravel)

Saturday, 2 November 2019
Vrindavan, Uttar Pradesh
Photographs courtesy of Sripad B.N. Sadhu Maharaj



pujya-sri-guru-varga-vandita-mahabhavanvitayah sada
bhakter nirmala-nirjharasya nibhrtam samraksakam sadaram
vande sri-gurudevam anata-sira acharya-varyam nijam

"I bow my head in eternal obeisance to my Gurudev, the best of acharyas, Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj. He is the ever vigilant, stalwart guardian of the current of pure devotion whose highest form flows from our most worshippable Sri Rupanuga Guru-varga in their exclusive dedication to Mahabhav, Srimati Radharani."

tirtha-phala sadhu-sanga, sadhu-sange antaranga,
sri-krsna-bhajana manohara
yatha sadhu, tatha tirtha, sthira kari’ nija-chitta,
sadhu-sanga kara nirantara

The result of visiting a place of pilgrimage is sadhu-sanga (pure devotees’ association) and being drawn to the exclusive service of Sri Krishna. A place of pilgrimage is where a sadhu (pure devotee) is. Always keep the association of pure devotees and firmly fix your mind by such association.

vaisnavera pada-dhuli tahe mora snana-keli
tarpana mora vaisnavera nama
vaisnavera uchchhista tahe mora mano-nistha
vaisnavera namete ullasa

"The feet dust of the Vaishnavs is where I sport and take bath, Vaishnavs' name is the water oblation. My mind is intently fixed upon the remnants of Vaishnavs, and I am elated at the name of Vaishnavs."

gangara-parasa ha-ile paschate pavana
darsane pavitra kara—ei tomara guna

"If the Ganges touches someone, they are purified some time later; but one becomes purified just by seeing you, O Vaishnava Thakur. Such is your power."



Coming to the buses rented for this day's parikrama.





At the Ukhal-bandhan Temple (the place where Mother Yasoda tied Damodar).



The mortar that Damodar was tied to.


In the courtyard of Sri Gokul.











At Chaurasi (84) Khamba (Pillar) Temple, the house of Nanda Maharaj.


Deities of Nanda Maharaj, Mother Yasoda, Lord Balaram and baby Krishna






At Sri Brahmanda Ghat, the place where Yasoda Mayi saw the entire universe (brahmanda) within the mouth of Lord Sri Krishna.








At Sri Ramana Reti (ramana - enchanting, reti - sand), the place of Krishna and Balaram's many childhood pastimes.




At Sri Dauji Temple of Lord Baladev.

When we go on Kartik parikrama, we always visit the Dauji temple. 'Dauji' means "an elder brother" in Hindi. There is a story about that place.

It happened at the time when India was ruled by Muslim kings. Once, the king of Agra called Samrat Akbhar asked, "Who is the strongest person in this area?" Somebody said to him, "Here, the strongest person's name is Baladev." Akbar became excited, "All right, I want to fight with Him!"

The Dauji temple is less than a hundred kilometres from Agra, perhaps sixty or seventy kilometres or so. In those days, there were not so many means of transport (no cars, no airplanes), so the soldiers travelled by horse or on foot. The emperor asked, "How many days does it take to reach Baladev's house?" He was told, "Walk straight this way, and in just three days you will be there."

So, the emperor took his soldiers, food, and other provisions and set off from Agra on foot. He was walking and walking... Three days passed, but he still did not find Baladev's house. He continued walking—seven days passed, one month passed... All their food and everything else was finished, and the emperor was perplexed, "We were told, 'Go there, it is only three days,' but more than one month has passed and we still have not got there! What is going on?"

Then somebody explained to him, "That is because Baladev is not an ordinary person. He is the Lord Himself! Do you want to fight with Him? It is impossible!" The emperor then understood who Baladev was and surrendered to Him, "I will not go to fight with You. I am coming to serve You." After that he reached Baladev's house within one day.

The emperor worshipped Baladev and granted tax exemption to the village where the Dauji temple was. He said, "This village is special because it is Baladev's village, so nobody has to pay the tax here."

To this day, in honour of Balaram that village does not pay any tax.

(Srila B.N. Acharya Maharaj, Asraya Vigraha Sri Baladev)






Sri Dauji Kunda near the temple: also known as Ksira Sagar, it is said to have been constructed by the Vraja-basis and filled with milk as an offering to Lord Balarama.


Coming to Sri Ravel, the house where Raja Vrisabhanu and Kirtida Mayi were staying when they found baby Srimati Radharani in a lotus.









After Ravel, the parikrama party returns to Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math.





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