Book excerpts Acarya Kesari Sri Setubandha Ramesvara Parikrama and Urja-vrata

Sri Setubandha Ramesvara Parikrama and Urja-vrata

The following year, 1950, Srila Gurudeva, the founder of the Samiti, arranged for approximately two hundred faithful devotees to observe kartika-vrata in South India. Under his guidance, they had the good fortune to visit Setubandha Ramesvara and other holy places which had been purified by the footprints of Sri Gaura.

The devotees began their journey from Howrah station in Kolkata and made their first stop in Puri-dhama. Then the pilgrims had darsana of Simhacalam, Mangalagiri, Chennai (Madras), Cingalput, Kanjivaram, Cidambaram, Siyali, Mayabharam, Tirumedamarudu, Kummakonam, Papnasanam, Tanjor, Ramesvaram, Dhanuskodi, Sri Vaikuntham, Terucandur, Kanya-kumari, Sucindram, Tiruvantar, Trivendrum, Varkala, Sankara-narayanakail, Sri Miliputtar, Madura, Palni, Sri Rangam, Vrddhacalam, Tiruminnamalai, Tirupati, Tirumalai, Tirucanur and Kalahasi. Finally they arrived at Guntur Junction, and from there returned to Howrah station. After observing kartika-vrata with a month of sadhu-sanga, sankirtana, hari-katha and darsana of innumerable and incomparably delightful places of pilgrimage that are almost unattainable, all the devotees returned home, overwhelmed with gratitude for Sri Guru Maharaja. At the time of departure, they fell at his lotus feet, their eyes brimming with tears, and begged for his blessings: “Please bestow your mercy on us so that we can quickly obtain the association of Vaisnavas and gradually progress on the path of suddha-bhakti.”

Srila Prabhupada’s viraha-utsava in Anandapada

On the occasion of jagad-guru Srila Prabhupada’s disappearance day, 26 December 1950, Srila Guru Maharaja and some fifteen matha residents preached the message of Sriman Mahaprabhu for seven days in Saranathipalli in Anandapada, in the district of Chaubisa Paragana. The pious people living in the area were very impressed with paramaradhyatama Srila Gurudeva’s exceptional hari-katha. The following is the essence of one of his lectures.

“The majority of you have left East Bengal and have come here to India to protect your dharma. The rule of Bhagavan is to always give good fortune to the jivas. The purpose of human life is not simply to arrange for food and clothing. Someone may adopt the behaviour, dress, mannerisms, ways of thinking and ideology of the Yavanas, and then say ‘I am a Hindu’, but this does not mean that he is really a Hindu. We can only be Hindus by genuinely observing the behaviour and views of the Hindu sanatana-dharma. The real reason for the misery of Hindu society today is people’s lack of faith in and devotion to their own dharma. Modern Hindu society has forgotten its culture and is giving up its own personality because of Western education and contact with Westerners. That is the main reason for people’s misery today. We Hindus have forgotten to devote our life to dharma, so the degradation of Hinduism is inevitable. We have forgotten the instructions and teachings of Sri Rama and Sri Krsna and instead we are going in the opposite direction. Dharma is a matter of conduct; it is not to be acknowledged only by mouth, but by our actions. Troubled days are before us. If we are indifferent to our dharma, we will suffer the consequences.

“Each person’s house is an asrama. We live there to practise devotion to the Supreme Lord. If we are merely absorbed in eating, sleeping, defending and mating, then staying at home is like residing in hell. Living in such a situation and being addicted to foods such as onions, garlic, meat and fish, as well as alcohol, smoking, etc., that promote ignorance, the jiva will become more opposed to Bhagavan. Therefore, the one and only duty is to reject these things. It is necessary to construct new settlements or villages on the foundation of dharma. Without dharma the human being becomes like a four-legged animal. Only by means of dharma can human beings have both worldly and transcendental happiness.”

[CC-by-ND GVP]

Previous articleWhat is sanātana-dharma?

Must Read

Verse 3: Stages Leading to the Appearance of Prema

By the association of sādhus whose attention is not incessantly and exclusively drawn upon the Lord, and in whom śraddhā, rati and prema have not arisen, the conditioned soul cannot be turned towards the Lord, nor can śraddhā, rati or prema develop in him. By the association of sādhus who are attached only to the rituals of proper conduct that are in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Vedas, bhagavad-unmukhatā (attentiveness towards the Lord) and śraddhā, rati and prema cannot arise...

A Day of Spiritual Revolution – Aksaya Trtiya

...Therefore, from looking at the Purāṇas and Itihāsas (ancient histories), we learn that today is a day of spiritual revolution. Today is the day this world’s irreligious, atheistic, corrupt, and downright materialistic society was uprooted, and in its place, the foundation of a religious, theistic, and spiritual society was cast. An utterly materialistic society causes the destruction of the world, whereas a religious society with firm faith in Bhagavān is the cornerstone of peace in this world...


If you become liberated from everything then what is your responsibility, what is the purpose of being freed of bondage? When you get freedom from bondage then people are very happy, "Oh I have no worries, no responsibility, no tension," but that is also not eternal. The Lord arranged a process to give them His own transcendental rasa by opening the storehouse of His nectar by revealing His own transcendental pastimes in the forests of Vrindavan...

Rāgānugā-bhakti-rīti – The Path of Loving Attachment

...Guru-varga says that there is no need for such strong, hard austerity. They tell us to follow in the footsteps of the rāgātmika Vrajavāsīs to attain rāgāmayī-bhakti. By being the footstep followers of the Vrajavāsīs, you will be a rāgānugā...


Once, in the late 1970’s, with Srila Gurudeva, during Nrsimha–caturdasi in Devananda Gaudiya Matha, a huge storm came in the evening, after we had been performing kirtana and programs, and fasting the whole day. It was such a huge storm, and all around our temple, everything was destroyed. The buildings and trees were all blown over.

More Articles Like This