Chakra Announcements

Summer festivals in Mayapura

by Padmalochan das and Vrindavan Lila dasi

Posted June 30, 2004

For an entire month (April 13 to May 13), the devotees of Mayapura, India, celebrated Tulasi Jaladana, a festival in which Srimati Tulasi devi enjoys a continuing shower of Ganges water through the heat of the day. A brass pot is mounted over Tulasi devi; the bottom of the pot has a hole to allow a wick to pass through, which drips water continuously on Tulasi's soil.

The spectacular candan festival of Sri Sri Radha-Madhava is celebrated in a unique way in Mayapura; all the community devotees participate in hand-grinding sandalwood into a cooling paste, which is generously applied to the bodies of the Deities. Each evening, for the first seven days of Candan Yatra, small Radha-Madhava Deities are taken by palanquin to Srila Prabhupada's pukar (lake) to enjoy a boat ride. The devotees brought all kinds of food and flower offerings for Radha-Madhava. After They had enjoyed Their boat ride, They would sit on the bank of the kunda (lake) while Their prasada was distributed.

Nrsimha Caturdasi was celebrated with a fire sacrifice and an elaborate abhiseka ceremony. After an ecstatic oil bath and flower petal bath, lasting over seven hours, Sri Nrsimha deva was standing amid a small mountain of flowers, casting His loving glance over all the devotees. The devotees, with purified hearts, would beam back at Him.

From May 5 through June 3, Sri Sri Radha-Madhava enjoyed a month of water pastimes. Each evening They came down from Their altar to enter a flower bungalow, where They would enjoy a scented water fountain and sweet-smelling seasonal flowers. As the devotees queued up, Jananivasa das prabhu would give a flower and speak one of the names of the Lord to each devotee, who would chant that name while offering his or her flower to Radha-Madhava. In that way, the chanting of the 108 names of Radha-Madhava, the 1000 names of Srimati Radharani and 1000 names of Krishna was completed.

Now the summer festivals are over, and the rains have begun.

[1. Photo collage by Padmalochan das]

[2. Ingenious mechanism to water Tulasi devi]

[3. Sri Sri Radha-Madhava at Candan Yatra]

[4. Soothing sandalwood paste adorns Deities]

[5. Radha-Madhava Deities enjoy nightly boat ride]

[6. Flower abhiseka for Sri Nrsimha deva]

[7. Scented water fountain and flowers for Radha-Madhava]

Devotees may see more photos of these blissful events at www.dipika.org. We have also prepared a one-megabyte Acrobat PDF newsletter which devotees with broadband access may download on request from Padmalochan das.


All photographs Copyright © 2004 by Vrindavan Lila dasi -- All rights reserved. Photographs may not be reprinted without permission.