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Glories of Vrindavana Dhama
CC Madhya lila 16.280-281

Sri Radha Kunda

Sri Radharamanji Appearance place

TEXT 280
tumi yahan-yahan raha, tahan 'vrndavana'
tahan yamuna, ganga, sarva-tirtha-gana

tumi--You; yahan-yahan--wherever; raha--stay; tahan vrndavana--that place is Vrndavana; tahan--there; yamuna--the River Yamuna; ganga--the River Ganga; sarva-tirtha-gana--all other holy places of pilgrimage.

Gadadhara Pandita said, "Wherever You stay is Vrndavana, as well as the River Yamuna, the River Ganges and all other places of pilgrimage.

TEXT 281
tabu vrndavana yaha' loka sikhaite
seita karibe, tomara yei laya citte

tabu--still; vrndavana yaha'--You go to Vrndavana; loka sikhaite--to teach the people in general; seita--that; karibe--You will do; tomara--of You; yei--what; laya--takes; citte--in the mind.

"Although wherever You stay is Vrndavana, You still go to Vrndavana just to instruct people. Otherwise, You do whatever You think best."


It was not essential for Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu to go to Vrndavana, for wherever He stayed was immediately converted to Vrndavana. Indeed, there was also the River Ganges, the River Yamuna and all other places of pilgrimage. This was also expressed by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu Himself when He danced in the Ratha-yatra. At that time He said that His very mind was Vrndavana (mora-mana--vrndavana). Because His mind was Vrndavana, all the pastimes of Radha and Krsna were taking place within Himself. Nonetheless, just to teach people, He visited bhauma-vrndavana, Vrndavana-dhama in this material world. In this way the Lord instructed everyone to visit Vrndavana-dhama, which is a very holy place. Materialists consider Vrndavana-dhama an unclean city because there are many monkeys and dogs there, and along the bank of the Yamuna there is refuse. Some time ago, a materialistic man asked me, "Why are you living in Vrndavana? Why have you selected such a dirty place to live after retiring?" Such a person cannot understand that Vrndavana-dhama is always a representation of the original Vrndavana-dhama. Consequently Vrndavana-dhama is as worshipable as Lord Krsna. Aradhyo bhagavan vrajesa-tanayas tad-dhama vrndavanam: according to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu's philosophy, Lord Sri Krsna and His abode, Vrndavana, are equally worshipable. Sometimes materialistic people who have no spiritual understanding go to Vrndavana as tourists. One who goes to Vrndavana with such materialistic vision cannot derive any spiritual benefit. Such a person is not convinced that Krsna and Vrndavana are identical. Since they are identical, Vrndavana is as worshipable as Lord Krsna. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu's vision (mora-mana-vrndavana) is different from the vision of an ordinary materialistic person. At the Ratha-yatra festival, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, absorbed in the ecstasy of Srimati Radharani, dragged Lord Krsna back to Vrndavana-dhama. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu spoke of this in the verses beginning ahus ca te (Madhya 13.136).

In Srimad-Bhagavatam (10.84.13) it is stated:

yasyatma-buddhih kunape tridhatuke
svadhih kalatradisu bhauma ijya-dhih
yat-tirtha-buddhih salile na karhicij
janesv abhijnesu sa eva gokharah

  "A human being who identifies this body made of three elements with his self, who considers the by-products of the body to be his kinsmen, who considers the land of birth as worshipable, and who goes to the place of pilgrimage simply to take a bath rather than meet men of transcendental knowledge there, is to be considered like an ass or a cow."

Srila Prabhupada's Room
At Radha Damodara

Sri Radharaman Temple,

Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu personally renovated Vrndavana-dhama and advised His chief disciples, Rupa and Sanatana, to develop it and open it to attract the spiritual vision of the general populace. At present there are about five thousand temples in Vrndavana, and still our society, the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, is constructing a huge, magnificent temple for the worship of Lord Balarama, Radha-Krsna and Guru-Gauranga. Since there is no prominent Krsna-Balarama temple in Vrndavana, we are attempting to construct one so that people will be attracted to Krsna-Balarama, or Nitai-Gauracandra. Vrajendra-nandana yei, saci suta haila sei. Narottama dasa Thakura says that Balarama and the son of Maharaja Nanda have advented Themselves as Gaura-Nitai. To propagate this fundamental principle, we are establishing a Krsna-Balarama temple to broadcast to the world that worship of Gaura-Nitai is the same as worship of Krsna-Balarama.

Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's sitting place at Radha Kunda

Srila Prabhupada's first room in Vrindavana

Although it is very difficult to enter into the Radha-Krsna pastimes, most of the devotees of Vrndavana are attracted to the Radha-Krsna lila. However, since Nitai-Gauracandra are direct incarnations of Balarama and Krsna, we can be directly in touch with Lord Balarama and Lord Krsna through Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Nityananda Prabhu. Those who are highly elevated in Krsna consciousness can enter into the pastimes of Radha-Krsna through the mercy of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. It is said: sri-krsna-caitanya radha-krsna nahe anya. Sri Krsna Caitanya Mahaprabhu is a combination of Radha and Krsna.

   Sometimes materialists, forgetting the pastimes of Radha-Krsna and Krsna-Balarama, go to Vrndavana, accept the land's spiritual facilities and engage in material activity. This is against the teachings of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. The prakrta-sahajiyas proclaim themselves vraja-vasi or dhama-vasi, but they are mainly engaged in sense gratification. Thus they become more and more implicated in the materialistic way of life. Those who are pure devotees in Krsna consciousness condemn their activities. The eternal vraja-vasis like Svarupa Damodara did not even come to Vrndavana-dhama. Sri Pundarika Vidyanidhi, Sri Haridasa Thakura, Srivasa Pandita, Sivananda Sena, Sri Ramananda Raya, Sri Sikhi Mahiti, Sri Madhavidevi and Sri Gadadhara Pandita Gosvami never visited Vrndavana-dhama. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura points out that we have no authorized documents stating that these exalted personalities visited Vrndavana. Nonetheless, we find many nondevotees, Mayavadi sannyasis, prakrta-sahajiyas, fruitive workers, mental speculators and many others with material motives going to Vrndavana to live. Many of these people go there to solve their economic problems by becoming beggars. Although anyone living in Vrndavana somehow or other is benefited, the real Vrndavana is appreciated only by a pure devotee. As stated in the Brahma-samhita: premanjana-cchurita-bhakti-vilocanena. When one has purified eyes, he can see that Sri Vrndavana and the original Goloka Vrndavana planet in the spiritual sky are identical.

Srila Narottama dasa Thakura, Srinivasa Acarya, Sri Jagannatha dasa Babaji Maharaja, Sri Bhagavan dasa Babaji Maharaja, Srila Gaurakisora dasa Babaji Maharaja and later Sri Bhaktivinoda Thakura of Calcutta always engaged in nama-bhajana and certainly did not live anywhere but Vrndavana. Presently, the members of the Hare Krsna movement throughout the world live in materially opulent cities, such as London, New York, Los Angeles, Paris, Moscow, Zurich and Stockholm. However, we are satisfied with following in the footsteps of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura and other acaryas. Because we live in the temples of Radha-Krsna and continuously hold hari-nama-sankirtana--the chanting of Hare Krsna--we consequently live in Vrndavana and nowhere else. We are also following in the footsteps of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu by attempting to construct a temple in Vrndavana for our disciples throughout the world to visit.

Manasi Ganga at Govardhana Hill

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