Vrindavan, 2018.01.24 (VT): The 398th festival of Sri Sri Radhika Nayananda was celebrated on Monday. Devotees from Surma Kunj in Pattharpura sang Harinam kirtan during a shobhyatra (parade) which filled the streets of Vrindavan with joyous singing of the holy name.
The festivities began at Surma Kunj in the morning with an abhishek using the five nectars (panchamrita: honey, liquid jaggery, milk, yogurt and ghee). After the abhishek, a maha-aarati was held in which 108 substances were shown to Thakurji, including camphor, incense, fragrant flowers etc.
P.C. Padmanabh Goswami
After the aarati, Mahant Premdas Shastri led the shobhyatra kirtan party around the streets of Vrindavan. At the front of the parade were images of Sri Sri Radhika Nayananda, Lord Chaitanya and Nityananda prabhuji together with great Gaudiya Vaishnavas including: Krishna Das Kaviraj Goswami, Mukunda Das Goswami and Roop Kavishwar Goswami.
Many great devotees and Goswamis accompanied the parade, including: Mahant Fuldol Biharidas, Mahant Sacchidanand Das, Mahant Dinadayal Das, Mahant Brajbandhu Das, Radhakamal Das, Murli Das, Ramsevak Das, Pran Krishna Das, Jay Sharma, Jagadish Neelam, Govind Gautam, Vinod Shankar, Ravi Sharma, Shatrugan Sharma, Vishnukant Sharma, Buddhiprakash, etc
About the temple: Sri Surma Kunj has a dignified place among the most of the ancient temples and kunjas of Shri Dham Vrindavan. In ancient times, this place was a cluster of shrubs with leaves and creepers. Gaudiya Vaishnava acharyas, namely Sripad Raghunath Bhatt Goswami and Krishna Das Kaviraj Goswami performed bhajan in this place which was once secluded.
Around four hundred years ago, Sripad Krishna Das Kaviraj Goswami composed Sri Chaitanya Charitamrita, the unique gem of devotional literature. Later on his disciple Sripad Mukunda Das Goswami constructed a temple here and established the deity worship.
The samadhis of Sripad Mukunda Das Goswami and Sripad Roop Kavishwar Goswami are also in Surma Kunj . The temple grounds include the bhajan kutir of Shri Krishna Das Kaviraj Goswami. The temple is not so well known but is an important place for Gaudiya Vaishnavas.
The deity of Sri Nayanananda ji is said to have manifested from Radha Rani’s heart in the year 1620, and was presented to Sri Mukunda Das Goswami by Radha Rani herself. Similarly, the deity of Srimati Radha Rani manifested from Sri Krishna heart, and the Lord himself gave it to Mukunda Goswami.
The Miraculous story of the appearance of the deities
According to the history of this temple, Sri Radha Govind ji invited Shri Mukund Das Goswami to Vrindavan , after giving darshan in the dream. He was born in a royal family of Multan in 1640. Getting his order in the dream; he came to Vrindavan relinquishing his family life. After reaching here he took initiation from Sri Krishna Das Goswami and remained absorbed in intensive bhajan.
Sri Mukunda Das ji took a vow to have darshan of Sri Radha Govinda ji. He stopped taking food and water and only took the dust of Braj, engaging himself in severe sadhana. He lost his power of vision. Seeing his probability of death the most merciful Srimati Radha Rani’s heart melted and she told Shyam Sundar, “O beloved, would you not bestow your mercy on Mukund? Did you call him from Multan just to kill him like this?
Then Govindaji, with His sweet smile said, “O Kishori ji, how can I shower my mercy on him, without your order?” “Now let us go and give him darshan. On hearing these sweet words from Sri Radha Govind, he received transcendental power. He got up and sat down. But he could not see anything as he had lost his vision. Then out of mercy, Radha Raniji applied black kohl (Surma) on his eyes and provided him with transcendental vision. Then the deities of the Divine Couple were given to Mukunda Das by the divine couple. (read more)
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