Book excerpts Acarya Kesari Babaji-vesa Conferred upon Sripada Trigunatita Brahmacari Prabhu

Babaji-vesa Conferred upon Sripada Trigunatita Brahmacari Prabhu

Sripada Trigunatita Brahmacari Prabhu, the manager of Sri Devananda Gaudiya Matha, went to the town of Sidhavadi in the Barddhaman district, to arrange for the construction of brahmacari quarters, etc. in the Siddhavati Gaudiya Matha. After Sri Gaura-janmotsava 1951, Srila Guru Maharaja went there himself, and on 11 May, the auspicious opening day of the newly built matha, Srila Guru Maharaja gave babaji-vesa to Sripada Brahmacariji.

Sripada Trigunatita Brahmacari was a learned and respected member of the famous Mukharaji family (Sir Asutosa Mukharaji) from the village of Jirata-Balagadha in the district of Hoogly. His previous name was Sri Trigunanatha Mukhopadhyaya and after accepting babaji-vesa he became known as Srimad Trigunatita dasa Babaji Maharaja. A brahmacari since boyhood, he was one of the foremost of jagad-guru Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati ’s initiated, single-pointed servants. All the service that he faithfully performed to Srila Prabhupada and his Sri Gaudiya Matha Mission was outstanding. It is most worthwhile to sincerely emulate his renunciation, detachment and service attitude. When the ekanistha guru-sevaka Sripada Ananga-mohana Brahmacari was sick, Sri Trigunatita affectionately nursed him in a way that is exemplary for all Vaisnavas, and that is also extremely rare in the world of the Vaisnavas. It has already been mentioned how he donated Sri Gauranga Press, including all its equipment, to the Samiti.

Preaching suddha-bhakti

While Sri Guru Maharaja was staying at Sri Siddhavati Gaudiya Matha, he vigorously preached bhakti for three days in Panjaniya-grama on the special request of Sriyuta Bhagavat dasa Adhikari, a resident of the village. After that, Srila Gurudeva preached sri sanatana vaisnava-dharma extensively in Kakadvipa, Kalaracaka, Sarbediya, Ekatara, Daimond Harbour, Candana-nagara, Mathurapur, Kamsinagara and other places in the district of Chaubisa Paragana.

That same year, during the month of Kartika, Srila Gurudeva performed the eighty-four kosa Vraja-mandala parikrama and urja-vrata for the second time with two hundred sannyasis, brahmacaris and grhastha-bhaktas. The pilgrims left from Howrah station, and after having darsana of Gaya, Kasi, Prayaga and other holy places, they arrived in Mathura-dhama. In Gaya they had darsana of Sri Gadadhara-pada-padma (the lotus feet of Sri Gadadhara), Phalgu-tirtha, Bodhagaya and the Sri Gaudiya Matha. In Kasi they went to Sri Sanatana siksa-sthali, Sri Visvanatha Mandira, Veni-madhava, Annapurna, Dasasvamedha-ghata and Manikarnika-ghata. Then in Prayaga they visited Sri Rupa Gaudiya Matha, Triveni-sangama, Sri Bindu-madhava, Sri Rupa siksa-sthali, Dasasvamedha-ghata and other places.
In Mathura, the parikrama party stayed at the large Helanaganjavali Dharmasala for a few days. During that time they had darsana of the famous Visrama-ghata, Dvarikadhisa, Gatasrama-tila, Dhruva-tila, Pippalesvara Mahadeva, Rangesvara Mahadeva, Bhutesvara Mahadeva, Gokarnesvara Mahadeva, Sveta-varaha, Krsna-varaha, Sapta-rsi-tila, Dirgha-visnu, Sri Padmanabha, Krsna-janmabhumi (Krsna’s birthplace), Kamsa-karagara (Kamsa’s prison house) and other places.

After that, following in the footsteps of Srila Prabhupada, they started Vraja-mandala parikrama, visiting the twelve forests and the places in these forests where Krsna performed His pastimes. They had darsana of the forests on the western bank of the Yamuna, namely, (1) Vrndavana, (2) Madhuvana, (3) Talavana, (4) Kumudavana, (5) Bahulavana, (6) Kamyavana and (7) Khadiravana; and the forests on the eastern bank: (8) Bhadravana, (9) Bhandiravana, (10) Belvana, (11) Lohavana and (12) Mahavana.

At Sri Govardhana, a huge annakuta ceremony was performed, and the pilgrims separately circumambulated Sri Giriraja, Sri Radha-kunda, Sri Syama-kunda, Vrndavana, Nandagrama and Varsana. The Samiti arranged prasada and accommodation for all the pilgrims so that their minds would be free to concentrate on hearing classes on the glories of the dhama and on bhakti. At the end of the parikrama and vrata, the pilgrims returned to their respective homes with tears in their eyes.

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Then the sakhās came and asked Kṛṣṇa, “Sakhā, tell us, where did this Gaṅgā come from? We can’t believe this is the real Gaṅgā. You are very clever. Instead of sleeping last night, You made a dam and stocked water from all the drains and nearby ponds, and in the morning, opened the dam and are now telling us this is the Gaṅgā. You are cheating everyone. Gaṅgā is the water from the feet of Bhagavān. Show us the flow from Bhagavān’s feet, and then we will believe You are speaking the truth. You can cheat the old men of Vraja, but not us.” “Fine,” Kṛṣṇa said. “You want to see, come with me.” Kṛṣṇa went with the Vrajavāsīs to the top of the hill and showed them Harideva, present with four hands. From His feet, Gaṅgā was flowing down into Brahma-kuṇḍa and from there to Mānasi-gaṅgā. At that time, Girirāja Govardhana was twenty-one kilometers long and seven kilometers high. Taking the opportunity, Girirāja Govardhana also took bath, sinking down at that place into the water of Mānasi-gaṅgā. Seeing Gaṅgā-devī, a doubt came in Śrīmatī Rādhikā’s mind. “From where did Kṛṣṇa bring her?” She thought. The sakhīs angrily came to Kṛṣṇa and said, “You are a big cheater!” “How did I cheat? What did I do wrong? Did I not satisfy everyone by arranging for Gaṅgā to come?” “Where has she come from? She has many names and forms, so what is her name here?” “Her name is Mānasi-gaṅgā,” replied Kṛṣṇa. “Oh, now we understand,” the gopīs said. “Your mind is very restless. You have room for Gaṅgā in Your mind, but not for us.” A girl is jealous seeing her lover being attracted to another girl. Similarly, Śrīmatī Rādhikā and the gopīs now felt great jealousy, for which there seemed to be no solution. The gopīs said, “Your mind has place for another and not for us. You have cheated us all.” “No, I like you,” Kṛṣṇa replied. “You are all My beloveds.” “These are just words. Your mind had room for Gaṅgā and therefore she manifested from Your mind. Thus You have called her Mānasi-gaṅgā.” Kṛṣṇa is always defeated by the Vraja-devīs. He thought, “Finding a solution for the sakhās was not a problem, but how to solve this? If on one hand I say, ‘In my mind I have no place for Gaṅgā,’ then I will be a liar, and if I say, ‘She resides in my mind,’ then the gopīs will be angry and say ‘From where has this step wife come.’ ” Kṛṣṇa then said, “Gaṅgā-devī came from the dreadlocks of Siva Ṭhākura.’ ” “Śiva Ṭhākura is in Kailāsa, so how did Gaṅgā get here?” the gopīs asked. “Śiva Ṭhākura is present nearby.” Kṛṣṇa then took the gopīs for darśana of Śiva Ṭhākura, who He had invoked and requested to stay on the bank of Manasi-gaṅgā as Cakleśvara Mahādeva. Seeing Śiva Ṭhākura, the gopīs became slightly pacified. Kṛṣṇa then called Gaṅgā-devī before the gopīs, who came and said, “I am only the water that washes His feet. I am a servant and not His beloved. But you are His dearest, most beloved gopīs.” On Kṛṣṇa’s indication, Gaṅgā-devī went to Śrīmatī Rādhikā and, bowing down, she said, “I am also Your maidservant.” Hearing Gaṅgā’s supplication, Śrīmatī Rādhikā accepted Gaṅgā as Her sakhī, and all the gopīs became happy and their jealousy was finished. Why was Kṛṣṇa merciful to Gaṅgā? Why did He summon her to Vraja? Kṛṣṇa used to play in the Yamunā with His sakhās and sakhīs. Beholding this great privilege of her younger sister Yamunā, Gaṅgā-devī became overpowered by a strong desire to also serve Śrī Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa by her waters. She expressed her desire to Yamunā and begged for her help, who then requested Kṛṣṇa to bestow His mercy on her elder sister, Gaṅgā-devī. Thus, on Makara Saṅkrānti, Śrī Kṛṣṇa summoned Gaṅgā-devī to Vraja and blessed her by bathing in her waters with all the Vrajavāsīs.

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