Govardhan Puja

In honour of Govardhan Puja, we are presenting a prayer unto Giriraj Govardhan by Srila Das Goswami Prabhu from the Temple of Love and Affection, an explanation of this prayer by Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj, and a brief collection of other verses in praise of Giriraj Govardhan.

Temple of Love and Affection Verse Twenty One

pramada-madana-līlāḥ kandare kandare te
rachayati nava-yūnor dvandvam asminn amandam
iti kila kalanārthaṁ lagnakas tad-dvayor me
nija-nikaṭa-nivāsaṁ dehi govardhana tvam
(Śrī Govardhana-Vāsa-Prārthanā-Daśakam: 2)

“O Govardhan, the Divine Couple liberally enact Their Pastimes of maddened love within your caves. Please grant me a dwelling beside you so I can see Their Pastimes.”

Excerpt from the upcoming release Revealed Truth
by Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj

When I wanted to make a diorama expressing Srila Saraswati Thakur’s siddhanta on the front of our Math in Nabadwip, I used the following shloka. However I changed one of the lines in the shloka with the permission of Srila Guru Maharaj. Through Srila Guru Maharaj we can understand the desire of Srila Saraswati Thakur and for preaching purposes I changed this shloka to make it more understandable to general people. I engraved these two lines on our nat-mandir:

mātala hari-jana kīrtana raṅge
pūjala rāga-pātha gaurava-bhaṅge

Later, I also posted this expression on the wall of my veranda so I could see it every day. Srila Saraswati Thakur’s phrase vishaya-range is very deep. To say that work and activity, which may appear completely material, are actually completely transcendental is not easy for the public to understand. I wanted to show in the diorama that it is through Mahaprabhu’s sankirtan that we must worship Radha-Krishna in kali-yuga. So I used this phrase, matala Hari-jana kirtana range. It means that devotees are intoxicated with the practice of Mahaprabhu’s sankirtan—they are hearing and chanting the Holy Name and the glories of Mahaprabhu—and through that they are serving and satisfying the Divine Couple Radha-Krishna, Whose non-different form is Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. In the formal posture (gaurava-bhange) of Mahaprabhu’s sankirtan the devotees are giving their puja, their offerings, and everything, to Radha-Govinda and Their intimate servitors.

At present we do not live in the domain of Radha-Krishna and we are not trying to forcefully enter that abode. Rather we are trying to honour that abode through our life in kali-yuga under our proper shelter in the practice of sankirtan at the lotus feet of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. So we are proceeding systematically towards the goal of our lives, the service of Radha-Govinda, under the guidance of Their intimate associates headed by Srila Rupa Goswami Prabhu.

Our Math is located in Gupta-Govardhan, Hidden Govardhan, in Sri Nabadwip Dham and Govardhan is the primary place of raga-marga worship of Radha-Krishna.

pramada-madana-līlāḥ kandare kandare te
rachayati nava-yūnor dvandvam asminn amandam
iti kila kalanārthaṁ lagnakas tad-dvayor me
nija-nikaṭa-nivāsaṁ dehi govardhana tvam
(Śrī Govardhana-Vāsa-Prārthanā-Daśakam: 2)

Giriraj Govardhan is the highest, most worshippable place of Radha-Krishna’s Pastimes, and Radha-Krishna’s highest lila happens in the kunjas, groves, around Govardhan Hill. Radha Kunda, Syama Kunda, Govinda Kunda, Kusum Sarovar and many many kunjas surround Govardhan, and Radha-Krishna’s kunja-lilas happen at different times and different places all around Govardhan.

Radha-Krishna enjoy Their intimate Pastimes there around Govardhan as all the sakhis and manjaris busily serve Them day and night. Chiefly Lalita Devi organises all the service of Radha-Krishna and she gives the highest service to the group of Rupa Manjari. Gokula-pateh premamritaplavanat, in this way the nectar of Krishna-prem overfloods everyone, everywhere, all around Govardhan Hill.

We presented our diorama on the front of our Math to show everyone that through the sankirtan of Mahaprabhu we can properly honour the most worshippable plane of raga-marga service of Radha-Krishna—Govardhan—and that we will automatically enter there when we become qualified through our sincere practice of sankirtan. Srila Guru Maharaj accepted everything, all of my ideas, and in that way we decorated our temple and adjusted Srila Saraswati Thakur’s expression.

Verses Cited by Sri Gaurasundar when He visited Giriraj Govardhan in Vrindavan:

hantāyam adrir abalā hari-dāsa-varyo
yad rāma-kṛṣṇa-charaṇa-sparaśa-pramodaḥ
mānaṁ tanoti saha-go-gaṇayos tayor yat
pānīya-sūyavasa-kandara-kanda-mūlaiḥ
(Srimad-Bhagavatam: 10.21.18)

[Sri Radhika proclaims:] “O friends! This mountain is the best of all the servants of Hari. Delighted by the touch of Balaram and Krishna’s feet, he worships Them along with Their cows and friends with drinking water, edible grass, caves, bulbs and roots.”

vāmas tāmarasākṣasya bhuja-daṇḍaḥ sa pātu vaḥ
krīḍākandukatāṁ yena nīto govardhano giriḥ
(Sri Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu)

“May the left hand of the lotus-eyed Lord, which lifted up Giriraj Govardhan like a toy ball, protect you.”

Prayers unto Giriraj Govardhan by the Himalayas
(These verses are used in the daily worship of Giriraj Govardhan in Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math)

tvaṁ sākṣāt kṛṣṇachandrasya paripūrṇatamasya cha
goloke go-gaṇair yukte gopī-gopāla-saṁyute
tvaṁ hi govardhano nāma vṛndāraṇye virājase
tvaṁ no girīṇāṁ sarveṣāṁ giri-rājo ’si sāmpratam
(Sri Garga-samhita: 2.2.13–4)

“You are known as Govardhan and you reside in Goloka Vrindavan, replete with the cows, cowherd men and cowherd women of the Supreme Personality of Godhead Sri Krishnachandra. You are now the king of all of us mountains.”

namo vṛndāvanāṅkāya tubhyaṁ goloka-mauline
pūrṇa-brahmātapatrāya namo govardhanāya cha
(Sri Garga-samhita: 2.2.15, 3.1.20)

“O Govardhan! You are the lap of Vrindavan, the crown of Goloka, and the umbrella of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. We perpetually offer our obeisance unto you.”

Śrī Govinda Kuṇḍa Māhātmya

Compiled and translated by
Śrīla Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswāmī Mahārāj

atha govardhane ramye surabhir gauḥ samudra-jā
snāpayām āsa gopeśaṁ dugdha-dhārābhir ātmanaḥ
(Śrī Garga-saṁhitā: 3.4.8)

surabher dugdha-dhārābhir govinda-snānato nṛpa
jāto govinda-kuṇḍo ‘drau mahā-pāpa-haraḥ paraḥ
(Śrī Garga-saṁhitā: 3.4.16)

kadāchit tasmin dugdhasya svādutvaṁ pratipadyate
tatra snātvā naraḥ sākṣād govinda-padam āpnuyāt
(Śrī Garga-saṁhitā: 3.4.17)

govinda-kuṇḍe viśade yaḥ snāti kṛṣṇa-mānasaḥ
prāpnoti kṛṣṇa-sārūpyaṁ maithilendra na saṁśayaḥ
(Śrī Garga-saṁhitā: 3.10.38)

samudra-sambhavā gābhī surabhī āpana
dugdhe abhiṣeka kaila vrajendra-nandana [1]

The cow Surabhi, who appeared from the ocean of milk, bathed Vrajendra Nandan with her milk.

sei dugdhe pūrṇa kuṇḍa ‘śrī govinda’ nāma
ramya giri govardhane śobhe abhirāma [2]

This milk formed a pond known as ‘Sri Govinda’, which delightfully beautifies wonderful Giriraj Govardhan.

kuṇḍabāri mahāpāpa-hārī se chinmaya
snāne pāne bhava-bhaya tritāpa nāśaya [3]

The spiritual water in this pond can absolve even the greatest sins. Bathing in or drinking this water dispels the threefold miseries and all fear of material existence.

bahu-bhāgye keha sei dugdhāsvāda pāya
chidānanda-deha labhi kṛṣṇa-loke yāya [4]

Those who are greatly fortunate taste Surabhi’s milk (within this water), attain a divine form, and go Krishna’s abode.

śrī kṛṣṇa-mānase yebā kare hethā snāna
gupta-govardhane rādhā-kṛṣṇa-sevā pāna [5]

One who bathes here, desiring Krishna, attains the service of Radha-Krishna in Gupta Govardhan.

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