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Wish Fulfilling Trees!

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In this album we see up close some of the famous ‘desire trees’ of Sri Vrindavan Dhama. These wish-fulfilling trees grant the desires of the residents of Vrindavan in their services to the Divine Couple. We spent a beautiful morning in such a forest of trees just at the foot of Varsana, the eternal residence of Srimati Radharani. While chanting and dancing there we were able to perceive the spiritual nature of that divine abode and the effect it had on purifying our hearts. The katha we had kept everyone spellbound for hours. We hanker to return there again and again!

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Visit to Durvasa Munis’ ashram / Визит в ашрам Дурвасы Муни

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As a part of our Kartik parikrama, we took a beautiful boat ride on the Yamuna to Durvasa Munis’ ashram in Pani Gaon in Vraja. It was a wonderful ashram with a scenic surrounding where Durvasa Muni had performed austerities. Some nice sadhus live there and we absorbed ourselves in amazing kirtan and discussing Krishna Katha.

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Gokul!

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Krsna transferred from the prison in Mathura to Gokul overnight. His childhood pastimes there are the delight of every Vrajavasi. We spent a wonderful day in Gokul singing Krsna’s praises, observing the delightful cows in the pastures and tasting delicious milk-sweets offered to the Lord.

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Visit to Vrinda Kunda

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Vrinda Kunda is a favorite place of pilgrimage for all Vrajavasis. Vrinda-devi herself is one of the 5 divine personalities who grant eternal residence in Vrindavan Dhama. Understanding these transcendental realities our parikrama party of nearly 500 devotees relished a day at Vrinda Kunda; hearing, chanting and enjoying each others association.

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A Visit to the Kingdom of Bharatpur

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Kartika Parikrama in Bharatpur

Our Kartika parikrama took us to Bharatpur, a town within the sacred boundaries of Vraja Mandala, that is rich in the history of Vaisnava culture. A former king, Maharaj Suraj Mal, protected Bharatpur from foreign invaders, while at the same time inspiring his subjects in their spiritual lives. There are a number of beautiful temples of Radha and Krsna in Bharatpur. Our parikrama party of 420 devotees performed harinam throughout the city, much to the delight of the citizens.

Another angle of our amazing parikrama to Bharatpur, which was the kingdom of the famous Krsna conscious king, Suraj Mall. The palace, the temples, the deities and the people of Bharatpur were all amazing. Our harinama through the streets was especially blissful.

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The Beginning!

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Our Kartika parikrama started early yesterday morning at the Radha Vallabha temple in downtown Vrindavan. Most of our 400 devotees had never seen that most beautiful deity with His dark black eyes!

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Preparing for Kartik / Приготовление к карттике

Фотоальбом с FB – Great Expectations!

For the past fews days I have been going around Vraja-mandala with a small group of devotees scouting out places to take our larger parikrama party of 350 devotees during the month of Kartika. As always, we’ve met with so many wonderful transcendental adventures. The people and places of Sri Vrindavan Dhama are superior to any other holy places in the universe. All holy places find their origin in Vrindavan. In fact, Srila Rupa Goswami writes that anyone who leaves Vrindavan to go to other holy places achieves nothing but the trouble it takes to get there. All glories to Sri Vrindavan Dhama!

A short look into life in Vrindavan as we make final preparations for our upcoming Kartika parikrama. Yesterday in the morning we visited Radha Vallabha and Gopiswara Mahadeva temples. Then we offered prayers at the samadhi’s of Srinivasa Acaraya, Ramchandra Kaviraja and Hemlata Goswami, asking for their blessings as we traverse the land of Krsna.

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Back Home

Today I arrived back in Vrindavan after 8 long months away. I immediately went to Srila Prabhupada’s samadhi and gave him a
first-hand report of my preaching throughout the year in Australia, Russia, Poland and most recently the USA. After taking darshan of Radhe Syama myself and a small group of devotees went to the Radha Raman Temple in downtown Vrindavan. I was fortunate to be asked to lead kirtan for the Lord there! Finally we went to to the nearby samadhi of Srila Gopal Bhatta Goswami where I met my old friend, Jnana-Syama das babjaji, the caretaker of that most sacred place. Many thanks to Ananta Vrindavan dasa for so nicely capturing in photos our first day back home. Jaya Srila Prabhupada!

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Katwa, Where Lord Caintaya Took Sannyasa

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Ever since taking sannyasa in 1979, I have had a strong desire to visit the town of Katwa, where Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu took sannyasa 500 years ago.Today my wish was fulfilled when myself and 60 devotees made the 2 hour journey from Sridham Mayapura to Katwa. Naru Gopal prabhu took us to the exact spot where Mahaprabhu was shaved up by a barber and where He took His sannyasa vows from Kesava Bharati Maharaja. He expertly described the pastime in great detail. Afterwards we took darshan of the samadhi where Lord Caitanya’s hair is kept, as well as the samadhi of Kesava Bharati Maharaja. We prayed at the historic tree under which Lord Caitanya’s beautiful long hair was shaved and also bowed down to the samadhi of Das Gadadhar. Naru Gopal explained that Lord Caitanya had kirtan where we were for 3 days straight after taking sannyasa. Following in His footsteps we chanted and danced for hours in front of a beautiful deity of Lord Caitanya in a large temple on the grounds. It was a most wonderful day! All glories to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu! All glories to Srila Prabhupada!

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The Sacred Village of Srikhanda / Святые места: деревня Шрикханда

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 The village of Srikhanda, a 3-hour scenic drive from Sridham Mayapura, is mentioned many times in Caitanya Caritamrta. Yesterday we spent 5 hours exploring the village where a number of Lord Caitanya’s personal associates resided 500 years ago. We had kirtan and katha at the exact place where Locan das Thakur wrote Caitanya Mangala. We also visited numerous temples where we had darsan of historic deities connected to the lila’s of Lord Caitanya. The highlight of the day was an exuberant kirtan we held through the entire village. The local people were in bliss seeing us. Here in the holy dhama of Mayapura we are trying our best to follow in the footsteps of Srila Bhaktivinode Thakur, who wrote:

“In the company of intimate and beloved devotees, I will go to all the places that Mahaprabhu joyfully visited.”

(Suddha-Bhakata, verse 3)]

В трех часах езды по живописной дороге от Шридхамы Майпура находится деревня Шрикханда, много раз упоминаемая  “Чайтанья-Чаритамрите”. Здесь жило несколько личных спутников Господа Чайтаньи, и вчера мы исследовали ее на протяжении 5 часов. В том самом месте, где Лочана Даса Тхакур писал “Чайтанья-мангалу”, провели киртан и катху. Побывали во многих храмах, получив даршан Божеств, связанных с лилами Господа Чайтаньи. Самым важным событием стал яркий киртан через всю деревню. Местные жители были от нас в совершенном блаженстве. Так что здесь, в святой дхаме Шри Майапура, стараемся следовать по стопам Шрилы Бхактивиноды Тхакура, который писал:

“В обществе близких преданных отправлюсь в те места, где Махапрабху, наслаждаясь, побывал”.

( “Шуддха-Бхаката”, стих 3 )