Kartik 2003 in Vrindavan
Posted September 17, 2003
Now that Janmastami and Radhastami Festivals have been joyfully celebrated, thoughts naturally start turning to the Kartik Festival, as the rivers run to the sea. Everyone is still talking about the wonderful festival that we had last year in Vrindavan. There was ecstatic churning of the Nectar of Srila Prabhupada's pastimes for three days, with so many of Prabhupada's disciples giving us a glimpse of that Pure Devotee who walked amongst us. Glimpses that are becoming more precious as time moves on. People were astounded at how nicely the prasadam was served by the devotees of ISKCON Chowpatty. Wonderful Parikramas, ecstatic kirtans...
So now that time is coming again for us to gather in Srila Prabhupada's Home and again churn and relish the nectar of his association. And this year, it's earlier than ever, starting on Oct. 10th! And now it's already mid-September and still it is raining just like in July. Everything is so clean, green, and fresh. Vrindavan is so beautiful this year, it almost looks like the glimpses that Srila Prabhupada has given us in His Krishna Book.
Talking about clean and fresh, the restoration of Krishna Balaram temple is going on full swing. We had to suspend the work duing the festival season, but it is now again started. If for no other reason, you should come to Vrindavan just to see Krishna Balaram Temple the way Srila Prabhupada inaugurated it. Just yesterday, we saw some incredible designs revealed from underneath the paint.
The Devotees from ISKCON Chowpatty will again come to organize and serve Prasadam. Last year, we did it in Fogla Ashram, but this year we are fixing up our own Krishna Balaram Land and making a pandal big enough for all the Vaisnavas to take Prasadam on our own property.
The main Srila Prabhupada Disappearance Festival will run from the 25th to 28th. There is no festival fee and the feast days Prasadam will be served free to all the Vaisnavas. We will request you. however, to register and get your prasad coupons in advance so that we may serve you better.
Of course, throughout Kartik, Deena Bandhu Prabhu will be taking out Parikramas to the holy places in Braja. Plus now we have inaugurated our own Braja Darshan Bus Service with a comfortable bus that holds 25 passengers and goes one day to Nandagram, Vrinda Kunda, Varsana, Govardhana, and Radha Kunda. The next day, it goes to Raval, Dauji, Brahmanda Ghat, and Gokula.
When you arrive, you can get information on accommodation, Parikramas, festivities, taxis, rail travel, etc. from our Information Center on the West side of the temple entrance. We are here to serve you so that your Kartik festival will be a pleasant one.
Highlights of Kartika Festival
10th October, Sharad Purnima.
This is the night of the famous Sharadiya Rasayatra of Lord Krishna. All the temples in Vrindavan put sweet rice on the roof of the temple to be mixed with the nectarean moon rays and enjoyed by Radha Shyamsundar and the gopis. Last year someone donated for nearly 150 kgs of sweet rice and this mahaprasada was blissfully distributed after Mangal Artik with plenty for all.
Lokanatha Swami's Braja Mandal Parikrama will also start off this morning, walking through all the forests of Braja. You may join for a day, a week or two, or the whole month. Shuttle service will also be available. For more information contact HH Radharaman Swami at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Vrindavan Food for Life will open it's brand new Sandipani Muni School on this day also. Festivities will start from 6th Oct. with dramas by the students and Rasa Leela performances. It will culminate on 10th with the inauguration of a school for 300 children eventually expanding to 500. The inauguration will begin at 9 am. For more information see Food for Life website http://ffl.vrindavan.com.
18th October, Bahulastami, the Holy Midnight Appearance of Radha Kunda.
25th October, Diwali
Since we will be having a nice program in the temple the next day for Govardhana Puja, we will do Govardhana Parikrama on this day. In his last days, Srila Prabhupada was requesting to go on Govardhana Parikrama, so in commemoration, we will be taking him on Parikrama with hundreds of Vaisnavas from all over the World.
In the evening the temple will be decorated with dipas.
26th October, Govardhana Puja
In the morning there will be Go-puja and breakfast in the Goshala. The we will return to the temple for Giriraja Abhishek, circumambulation of the Maha Prasad Giriraja, and feast.
In the evening we will start churning the ocean or Prabhupada Nectar with senior devotees relating their experiences with His Divine Grace.
In the morning, we will continue relishing Srila Prabhupada's pastimes. In the evening, we will take the murti of His Divine Grace on Maha Sankirtan Parikrama to the Seven Goswami Temples in the very same palanquin that was used 26 years ago.
28th October, Srila Prabhupada's Disappearance Day.
All morning the Disciples of Srila Prabhupada will be glorifying His Divine Grace with their wonderful Sraddhanjalis. This will be followed by Maha-Abhishek and a wonderful feast for an expected 5,000 devotees.
Annual Rathayatra in the capital city of Delhi, with transportation from Vrindavan and return.
5th November, Mahadvadasi
All night kirtan at Vrinda Kunda. Free transportation and ekadasi prasadam.
Annual Vrinda Devi Festival at Vrinda Kunda with free transportation and Feast.
8th November, Kartik Purnima
Kartik Vrata and Braja Mandala Parikrama end.
You may wish to do service for the Vaisnavas in the auspicious Month of Kartika in Vrindavan. Many opportunities are available such as the Govardhan Puja Feast, Govardhan Puja Prasad Hill, Srila Prabhupada's Feast, Flower decoration for the Deities and Srila Prabhupada, ect. Please contact: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
In Service of Sri Sri Krishna Balaram,
Deena Bandhu dasa