Sri Ekachakra Festival: Appearance of Lord Nityananda Prabhu

Thursday, 25 February 2021
Nabadwip, Nadia, West Bengal
Photographs courtesy of Sripad B.N. Sadhu Maharaj

 

 

pujya-sri-guru-varga-vandita-mahabhavanvitayah sada
paurvaparya-parampara-prachalita-prajya-pramurtakrteh
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."


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."


ara kabe nitaichand karuna karibe
samsara-vasana mora kabe tuchha ha'be

"When will Nitaichand give mercy to me? When will all my material desires become insignificant?"

parama karuna pahu dui jana
nitai gaurachandra
saba avatara-sara siromani
kevala ananda-kanda

Nitai and Gaurachandra are the two most merciful Lords. They are the best, the crest-jewels, of all Avatars and the only source of joy.

 

 


 


Their Lordships Sri Sri Guru Gaura Nityananda Prabhu's darshan early in the morning.

"Wake up in the morning, take darshan of the Lordships' mangal-arati, do parikrama of the temple, practise dancing, chanting, and other devotional processes together with devotees—if you start your day in this way, then the whole day will go well. Ye dina grhe bhajana dekhi grhete goloka bhaya. On the days when I see devotional service taking place in my home, I feel that Goloka has manifested there. (Saranagati) If you start your day from first taking darśan of the Lordships at dawn, then doing parikrama of the temple with devotees and kirtan, with affection, love, extracting love from your entire being, then the whole day will be favourable—it means the day will be spent amidst service to the Lord, striving to make the Lord happy, performing activities that are pleasing to the Lord. Mangal-arati of the Lord is the first pastime the Lord performs during a day. Prabhate harilam tava mukha, dina yabe bhala. If I see Your face at dawn, the whole day will go well. If you start the journey of your day from the darśan of the holy Deities, it will bring you benefit. There are such people that if you see them, your whole day becomes spoilt. If you join mangal-arati, kirtan, parikrama of the Lordships, then you will be careless, happy, rich and appreciated—such mentality is not good; it brings inauspiciousness because even thought the day is spent in the service of the Lord, in practice of Krsna consciousness, in hearing, chanting, but if you observe this practice early in the morning without heart and soul, you will not get a good result. Those who can do it seriously, earnestly, extracting love from their hearts, get benefit very soon."

 


 


 


 


 


 


 


The cooks start their service in the wee hours of the morning to be able to finish in time.

 


 


His Divine Grace comes closer to the Lordships to pay his obeisance before starting the morning class.

 


 


 


The bookroom is quite busy throughout the day, and Krishna Sundari Didi happily attends to the service.

 


 


 


Shortly after the morning class, His Divine Grace gathers everyone to start the holy circumambulation of Sri Ekachakra Dham that is done every year on this auspicious day.

 


 


 


 


 


The first brief stop is Janu Kunda: Nitai's childhood playground. There is a temple deep in the pond, with only the top of the dome currently visible. This is also a place where all holy rivers are combined, so His Divine Grace offers worship and mantras in glorification of the holy rivers, sprinkles some water on his head and then proceeds to the next stop.

 


 


 


At the Naripota tree under which the umbilical cord of Nityananda Prabhu is buried.

 


Proceeding to Sri Pancha Pandav Tala. The five Pandavas stayed here during their exile.

 


 


 


At Sri Pancha Pandav Tala, just beside Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math temple.

 


Coming back towards the temple and on to the central part of Ekachakra.

 


 


The gates adorning the holy birthplace of Sriman Nityananda Prabhu.

 


A pond and the (white) temple marking Sriman Nityananda Prabhu's divine appearance place.

 


Because the crowd is so overwhelming, His Divine Grace stops only for a short moment to take the darshan of the holy place and then proceeds to the other places of pilgrimage.

 


 


 


At Sri Kadam Khandi, the place where Vasudha Devi and Jahnavi Devi found Deities of Krishna and Balaram. There is the Yamuna river behind the temple.

 


 


Devotees take the waters of the Yamuna River behind Sri Kadam Khandi Temple on their heads.

 


Coming towards the central gate of Sri Virachandrapur (contemporary name of Sri Ekachakra Dham).

 

 


 


Turning from the central street to take darshan of Sri Ekachakreswar Lord Siva.

 


The temple of Sri Ekachakreswar Lord Siva who was worshipped by Sri Hadai Pandit, the father of Sriman Nityananda Prabhu.

 


The next place is Sri Jagannath Mandir. Hadai Pandit was very eager to travel to Puri to receive darshan of Lord Jagannath, Lord Baladev and Lady Subhadra, but instead, the Lord has personally come to Sri Ekachakra manifesting Himself in the form of Jagannath.

 


 


Lord Jagannath, Lord Baladev, and Lady Subhadra at the altar of the Temple.

 


The final stop is at the temple of Sri Sri Bankimdev (Bankaray). The Deity here is the Deity discovered by Jahnavi and Vasuddha in the Yamuna (Kadam Khandi).

 


 


On the way back to Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math.

 


Arriving at the courtyard of Sri Sri Guru Gaura Nityananda Prabhu.

 

 


 


His Divine Grace then mercifully speaks to the hundreds and thousands of assembled devotees about the glories of Sri Sri Guru Gaura Nityananda Prabhu.

 


At the end of the class, everybody joyfully chants the Bhoga Arati and the offers Arati worship to the Deities.

 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 

 


 


 


 


 


The famous massive prasadam distribution commences after the arati.

 


 


 


 


 


 

 


 


 


 


 


 


At the evening arati of the Lordships.

 


 


 


 


 


Whoever comes to the temple this day is freely served prasadam till very late in the evening.

 


Devotees sit riveted during the evening class of His Divine Grace relishing the pure current of Sri Hari-katha.

 

 


 


Honouring sri maha-prasadam in the evening before retiring for rest with a full heart and soul, nourished by the grand festival of Sriman Nityananda Prabhu and the enormous amount of mercy showered on the devotees on this very special and exclusive day.

 


 

 

 

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We are always busy with our own enjoyment, but we must understand: who do we love
more, our Guru or ourselves? If we love our Guru more, then we must serve
more—we must give more time for our Guru.

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