Sharad Rasa in Nidhuvan with Gaurav Krishna Goswami

Vrindavan, 2011.10.12 (VT): Acharya Gaurav Krishna Goswami sent hundreds of devotees into paroxysms of joy on the night of the Maha Rasa in the eternal Rasa sthali of Nidhuvan, under the watchful gaze of the full autumn moon, Shrimati Radharani’s smiling face, surrounded by the trees, her beloved sakhis.

Mridul Krishna Goswami and Gaurav Krishna inaugurated the programming of the Adhyatma TV channel with a lively celebration of the Maha Rasa in the place where Banke Bihari made his appearance in the world, where Swami Haridas did his bhajan, and where his samadhi and those of his principal disciples stand.

The crowds of devotees made their way to the site of the perfomance hours before it began due to the limitations of space. Many others sat at the entrance to Nidhivan to watch on the giant screen.

While waiting, they were put in the mood by Gaurav Krishna’s latest popular bhajan, kishori kucha aise intazām (“Radha Kishori, please arrange it that your name always remains on my tongue”), an upbeat song using modern instrumentation, especially Western style drums, and in the current Hindustani language rather than Braja Bhasha, while emphasizing Radharani’s name. I think it is safe to say that no other person has been as effective in spreading Radha’s name in the modern world as Gaurav Krishna Goswami. The infectious, joyous and hypnotic sound of Radha’s nam sankirtan really set the tone for the evening.

The father and son team came into the site at about 6.30 and sat on the two raised vyasasans that had been built and decorated for the purpose of the program. Mridul Goswami began by speaking to the devotee audience about Nidhuvan and its glorious history.

Goswami Mridul Krishna Shastri explaining the glories of Nidhivan and Swami Shri Haridas.

“This is the Nitya Rasa sthali,” he said. “When Krishna left the scene of the Rasa dance with Radha, as it is described in the Bhagavatam, the Rasa that took place at Vanshi Bat, then the Divine Couple simply came here and continued their eternal Rasa, which is never interrupted. The Nitya Vihara. This is why we do not simply call this place Nidhuvan, but nidhuvana-rāja.”

He glorified Swami Haridas, recounting his life, speaking of how his father Ashudhir, the incarnation of Govardhan, came to live in Vrindavan and how Swami Haridas himself came to Nidhuvan at the age of 25 and did his bhajan there. Many of the most famous events of his life took place here, such as the appearance of Banke Bihari, the teaching of Tansen and the visit of Akbar.

He himself said, “Whatever mercy I have personally gotten, and whatever mercy I have been able to give comes from this place. So I am begging you not to desecrate this Nidhuvan by damaging the trees or by leaving your refuse here. This garden is not different from Krishna’s personal form.

“Actually, you are not just physically present in Vrindavan, which is the only place you can truly relish the Rasa lila, but you are spiritually present there, and if you stay here and join in this glorification of the Rasa and of Swami Haridas, you will actually see Krishna tonight.

“Vāsa, dāsa, and rāsa. You are in the holy Dham, so that is Vrindavana-vāsa. Here in Nidhuvan, we take shelter of Swami Haridas, and tonight, we will enter into the eternal pastime of Radha and Krishna’s rāsa!”

lākha lākha bāra kahau hari, eka bāra śrī haridāsa
ati prasanna śrī lāḍilī, sadā vraja vipina ko vāsa

You may say Hari’s name hundreds of thousands of times, but if you say the name of Haridas just once, Radharani will become so pleased with you that you will live forever in the forest of Vrindavan.

Mridul Krishnaji also remembered an event from his own grandfather, Giridharilal Goswami’s life. “Once, a materialistic person from Agra insisted on hearing the Rasa Lila from him. After first, Giridharilal Goswami refused, saying he was not ready to hear about Radha and Krishna’s intimate pastimes. But after this man kept requesting him, he gave in. But on the day he began to speak, after only talking for ten or fifteen minutes, he was given a slap on the cheek by an invisible hand. He went into a state of samadhi for half and hour during which Radharani appeared to him and chastized him for telling the Rasa Lila to an audience of unqualified persons.

“But tonight, by taking shelter of Swami Haridas here in the Nitya-rasa-sthali, the door to this lila has become open to us, and we can all become eligible to experience it.”

He and Gaurava Krishna together sang a song from Swami Haridas’s AṣṭādaÅ›a-siddhānta:

hari kau aisauī saba khela |
mṛga tṛṣnā jaga vyāpi rahyau hai kahūṁ vijaurau na bela ||
dhana-mada jovana-mada rāja-mada jyauṁ paṁchina meṁ ḍela |
kahiṁ śrīharidāsa yahai jiya jānau tīratha kaisau mela ||

All this that you see is simply Lord Hari’s play. The world is a mirage without limit. Unless you put behind your obsession with wealth, youth and power, Sri Haridas says, you will never cross over and enter the holy land of Vrindavan.

Then father and guru turned over the program to his son, who also spoke briefly on Vrindavan and Nidhuvan, explaining the root meanings of the words. Nidhivan means the forest of treasures, or the forest which is Krishna’s own treasure, and Nidhuvan means the forest where Radha and Krishna’s loves take place in the Nitya Vihara.

But for the most part, he enchanted the audience by singing of Krishna’s flute, and its all-attractive effect on the gopis. He even played the flute, humbly saying that he was just a beginner and only practicing but since his guru had ordered him, he would play a little.

Gaurav Krishnaji mostly sang Brajbhasha songs from Swami Haridas, using traditional ragas which have been updated and somewhat simplified to make them accessible. Nevertheless, besides having a sweet voice and plenty of charm, he has clearly been trained in the classical style. Not only that, he intersperses his songs with explanations that indicate a great deal of learning, not only of Sanskrit and English, but also of the traditions of Urdu song and poetry.

Everyone was dancing and many were crying. Everyone participated in the songs also by responding.

At the end, he said, “Who are we people? Are we these bodies or are we gopis?” And everybody shouted back “gopis”. Then he said, “So gopis cover their heads, so I am going to do it too.” And he and his father also covered their heads…

The program ended at 10.

A couple of comments. It came to me that it would perhaps be a long time before this kind of performance could be experienced in any other cultural setting than India. It would seem that Radha and Krishna are not so far from the popular imagination of modern, educated Indians as some devotees fear.

To a great extent this is due to the sheer weight of the cultural heritage of Vrindavan devotionalism, which includes musical, linguistic, philosophical and mythical elements that are still so undeveloped in western Vaishnavism.

And, just as the audience has a natural inherent access to Radha and Krishna rasa, the performers or purveyors of that rasa are also gifted in their own right.

Birth does make a difference. At least on several occasion, both Mridul Krishna and Gaurav Krishna made references to the “blood” of Haridas that flowed through their veins. At one point, Pundarik Goswami came into the audience with Sanjeev Kishan Thakurji. It reminded me of his program the other day, when the same thought crossed my mind.

It does make a difference to be brought up in this environment, to have the sense of being the heir of Swami Haridas, born to the service of Banke Bihari and to be trained in the Bhagavatam and the founder’s musical legacy. When combined with such immense talent, the grace of Shrimati Radharani and a natural humility, the overall effect is very powerful.

The audience dancing in gopi bhava.

Jagat

Editor at Vrindavan Today
Jagadananda Das pines for the dust of Vrindavan.Profile

Comments

  1. Radhe Radhe!

    Nice article. The father and son really are doing great things.

    Trust me then, to bring up the mundane. Ashudhir Dev was the Guru of Haridas, as proven in Nijamatasiddhaanta, not the father. The same is hinted (Dhvani!) in the Bhaktamala. The hereditary Bankebihariji Gussains from Sharan Behari Goswami onwards, preach the contrary yet they have never been able to come up with hard evidence. SBG’s work does not even bear credibility in this regard. The reverend Amolakram Shastri, the Sadhus of Tatiya Sthan, the Beriwala family etc all are Haridasis but they offer their respect to the entire Guruparampara (i.e. Nimbarki until Swami Haridas).

    I could do with some enlightenment if anyone has more on the subject. That is, only if it ventures into credibility, beyond for example, the old-scholars-tale that the Haridasis were seeking to legitimise themselves (in the old days) by claiming allegiance with the Nimbarkis.

  2. This programme has broken the tradition of opening the Nidhivan till 7.00 p.m. as that day the shrine was closed at 11.00 p.m. They sat two feet above the samadhi of Swami Haridas. It seems they have become more powerful than Banke Bihari and Swami Haridas.

  3. The Tatia Sthan (Lalita Prakashan) edition of Kelimāl includes a section called sampradāya-vandanā-stuti, which is headed with the following verse:

    śrīmad-dhaṁsa-samarambhāṁ sanakādika-madhyamām |
    śrī-nārada-yutāṁ śuddhāṁ nimbārka-paribṛṁhitām |
    asmad-ācārya-paryantāṁ vande guru-paramparām ||

    You will recognize this as the stock-in-trade homage to disciplic successions that are used by many lines. It can be looked at as either an abbreviation to avoid having to name everyone in a long list, or a tacit recognition that no such list exists. In either case, I would hazard a guess that it is a later accretion.

    The problem is that Swami Haridas himself does not speak of guru tattva, as far as I can see. He mentions Asudhira in two sakhis, but never of any tradition. As far as I can seen none of his own disciples or successors like Pitambar, Bhagavat Rasik, Biharin, Jamuna Das, etc., mention any succession.

    On the other hand, Lalita Kisori Deva does make the connection, giving full descriptions of the Nimbarka acharyas, but he is already quite a way down the line historically. Yet, most of the vanis in the Haridasi line have nothing to say about these previous acharyas and there is little or no discussion or reverence for anyone prior to Swami Haridas.

    The situation seems analogous to the Gaudiya sampradāya’s relationship to the Madhva line.

    In these and other cases, it appears that many of the 16th century charismatic founders did not feel the need to profess allegiance to any existing lines, but their descendants felt obliged at a later date to seek legitimacy by connecting to one or the other of the existing lines. This is the “four sampradāya doctrine.” As far as I can see, though, this only became an issue in the late 17th or early 18th centuries.

    In some cases, like the Radha-vallabhis, it seems that there was resistance: We don’t need to belong to any succession because our founder received direct mercy from Radha. Interestingly enough, though, Hit Dasji (see articles) seems to have sought legitimacy for the Radha Vallabha sampradāya with some success. I think if you are around long enough, such criticisms of illegitimacy gradually fade away. Survival is the biggest key.

    That thought also occurred to me yesterday when I heard Rangili Sharan Maharaj, a disciple of Kripalu, speak. Very nicely quoting Rādhā-sudhā-nidhi verses. Much as it may cause distress to see charismatic figures flaunt socially acceptable behaviors or accepted customs and traditions, if you can build a beautiful marble temple and have a few charismatic disciples, you can leave a legacy that in a century or two has “legitimacy” and must be dealt with as such.

    And, to a great extent, there appears to be some justification for such an attitude. A century or two from now, some sincere follower of Kripalu with innocent faith and intense sadhana may become very advanced, irrespective of the evidence of dubious behaviors Kripaluji has bequeathed to future historians.

    A similar example can be seen in the Mormon church in the USA. One of the main candidates for the Republican presidential candidacy nomination is a Mormon. Now the other “Christian” candidates are being asked whether he is a Christian. Such a question surely sticks in the craw of the Christians much in the same way as it does for a Gaudiya to accept the truth of Harivams’s hagiographies, or for a Nimbarki to accept the independence of Swami Haridas. How can there be any truth when some lie is at the very root of the tradition?

    On the other hand, how can anyone resist the push to religious relativism? Whatever you believe is valid, because [the implication goes] all religious beliefs are equally fantastic. Can a person living in glass houses throw stones at others? How can anyone objectively verify any claims of truth about the divinity of their chosen revelations? As soon as we do so, we are open to accusations of blind belief and fanaticism.

    Today, everyone was praising Hit Dasji for “not having a sectarian bone in his body.” Without realizing, of course, that he is the one that is the outsider who is served by such relativism. Once outsiders become insiders, however, it is no surprise if they show great enthusiasm for excluding others.

    Just like the Gaudiyas, once they had managed to establish their credentials, dubious as they are, of adherence to the Madhva tradition, they became among the most enthusiastic proponents of the four sampradāya doctrine. The Ramanuja line, for instance, is pretty secure in their status as the oldest and perhaps most “legitimate” of the sampradāyas. They don’t need any “four sampradāya doctrine.”

    It is certainly becoming harder and harder in the modern age, with the historical and information resources at hand, to claim legitimacy on the basis of tradition. Indeed, Weber is somewhat disparaging of it as “institutional charisma” or a purely bureaucratic legitimacy. Legitimacy based on spiritual gifts such as siddhis is more and more desired, especially in India, despite the pretty poor track record of self-appointed gurus with claims of special revelations or divine status.

    I am personally in favor of honoring traditions, even when one expresses some original direction. But it seems that in general, historically, despite the strength of the guru doctrine in Hinduism, there has always been a greater tolerance for purely charismatic authority and traditions sink or swim on the basis of the legacy that such charismatic founders and their most gifted heirs leave. The real debate should not really be in the legitimacy or an individual or a tradition, but in the effectiveness and cogency of doctrines and practices. But of course, traditions mean that there is a body of doctrines and practices with a proven track record. This gives them a strength and resilience that is difficult for newcomers to equal.

  4. pyare guru ji ne sab bhakto ko radha naam me dubo diya hai. aur ham sabhi bhakt jan yahi chahte hai ki pyare guru ji ki ham par yuhi kripa bani rahe aur ham sab radha krishan ki bhakti me dube rahen.

    Radhe Radhe!

  5. @VRAJA RASIK,
    You must have not been present there, because if you saw the arrangement you would realize that the Sant Gadhi’s were not set up at Swamiji’s Samadhi but separately, quite far off at Ras Mandal.

    If you are trying to prove that even there nobody should be higher in elevation then i would like to bring to your attention that the Parikrama Marg of Nidhivan Raj which surrounds the entire vicinity, is itself about 6 ft above the ground which means it is also much higher in elevation than Shri Swamiji’s Samadhi. So then does that mean that devotees who do parikrama or who sit on the marg to do jaap (as i have done several times) would be doing apraadh as well by trying to become higher then Swamiji?? This would in fact be 4ft higher instead of 2ft like you claim.

    Another point you may not have noted is that the location where the Sant Gadhi’s were set, a chitrapat of both Bihariji and Swamiji were displayed high above their level. The amount of maryada (respect and discipline) that both of these Respected Saints have led throughout their lives is quite clear, there is no need to even embark on this discussion.

    But if we consider their discipline regarding the “traditions” of Nidhivan Raj then it was repeatedly stated by both of them to everyone present, to please maintain the sanctity of the divine Bhoomi. Over and over they asked everyone not to disrespect even the leaves of Nidhivan! The accusation that the program went on till 11 is a sheer lie, even the author of this article stated is was over by 10pm.

    The individual who made the baseless comment is definitely not aware of ANY tradition to be commenting, but i would like to clarify that there is no such tradition to close at 7pm. The most important Niyam or tradition of Nidhivan is that SWAMIJI’S AARTI MUST BE DONE BEFORE SHRI BANKE BIHARIJI’S! Please do some positive research and learn a little bit about the Niyams before criticizing!

    By 10pm both respected Goswami’s conducted the aarti of Swamiji themselves, all devotees further proceeded to Shri Banke Bihariji’s Mandir for darshan and aarti AFTER Swamiji’s aarti.

    It is clear this comment was written out of jealousy and hatred. Your need to find flaws in the actions of such honored and respected saints of our time is sad. To wrongly say “they have become more powerful than Banke Bihariji and Swamiji” shows how high you yourself hold Bihariji and Swamiji in your heart. Maybe you should work a little harder on your own bhakti then you would realize that no such power, person, thought, or belief can be above either Swamiji or Thakur Shri Banke Bihariji.

    More people today prefer to create and spread flaws about respected people. I myself was just blessed to be at the right place at the right time, not having any connection to any sampraday, my only connection is with Bihariji and HE allowed my presence at such a divine moment! To read such a ridiculous comment was not acceptable to my conscience that an unbiased clarification seemed necessary!

    Shri Radhe!

  6. @ Shri Radhe! You are correct in saying that I was not present there. But that doesn’t mean that I haven’t researched it. What I have said is doing the round spreading in the town. Those who do jaap on the elavated parikrama of Shri Van wouldn’t do aparadh as they were facilated with that arrangement and they don’t have any other option. But in this case the stage was built. I have been fortunate to take birth in Vraja and and spent more than fifty years of my life. I have seen people are pushed out (literally thrown out of the campus) after the dusk. So what do you have to say about it? It never happened in the past that Shri Nidhi van is opened after 7.00 p.m. I don’t want to take a personal dig on those Goswami’s as it will disrupt my bhajan. But it is beyond my imagination on how people are well expert in trading the name of Krishna. They even don’t bother to disturb the tranquility of a place. Banke Bihari was not enough that the other temple of Saneh Bihari was started!!!!

  7. What is it that you researched?? What was wrongly conducted in Nidhivan Raj that night? How many flaws you could possibly attack? Is this what you researched? YOU WEREN’T EVEN THERE THIS IS THE BIGGEST PROOF OF YOUR BASELESS ACCUSATIONS!

    If only you would have researched how many souls were enlightened that night! How many people actually felt the presence of SHRI SWAMIJI PRESENT WITH PRIYA AND PRITAM sitting in his lap!! If only you would have inquired how blessed everyone felt and MOST of all if only YOU WOULD HAVE BEEN BLESSED enough to be present there that night your hatred would not even exist today, in fact such comments and thoughts that have accumulated in your mind would have been put to rest.

    THERE WAS NO STAGE SET UP AT RAS MANDAL!! Everyone sat around the sant gadhis, the musicians, everyone sat on the ground…the gadhis purpose was so at least everyone could see them! And for your information the gadhis that both saints were seated on was made from the mithi of braj! From BRAJ RAJ ITSELF!! Before obnoxiously making assumptions based on hearsay…since you weren’t blessed enough to witness anything for yourself, falls pretty weak.  

    Your last comment makes it very clear that your presence in Braj is sadly of no benefit because of your problem with certain temples in Vrindavan. Never mind 50 years, even if you spend the next 100 years in Braj, it still won’t be enough for you to realize what the true meaning of Braj is.

    Unfortunately today when the whole world feels blessed by this one program, the fact that people around the world were blessed to see and experience such mercy, the Lord kept you far from this blessing and your views have made that very clear.

    Jai Shri radhe!

  8. Would like to just add that the parikrama marg that you claim to be facilitated as an arrangement was indeed also built by the admin in charge of the upkeep of NIDHIVAN (i.e. Goswamis), it definitely wasn’t created in Swamiji’s time if that is what you are implying… It was made for access of devotees and a similar arrangement was done now, for everyones visibility.

  9. @Shri Radhe! You didn’t answer my question on what do you think when the common devotees are thrown out of Shri Nidhivan after the dusk? What was the need of the formation of another temple in Saneh Bihari when Banke Bihari Temple exist already there? Just singing the nice devotional music doesn’t necessarily make some one a saint. I think the saints live in the kutias not in luxurious buildings.

    @ I was not blessed enough…I would rather prefer the silence of these places. Whether Lord kept me far from blessings or not it is none of your business. This is completely between me and their lordships of Jugal Sarkar. It is not only me, but the people of Vrindavan are talking about it.

  10. Would also like to answer your attack about it being open past 7pm. Apparently you have never had darshan at Nidhivan, during any utsav. If you have you would know on certain auspicious days IT IS KEPT OPEN ALL NIGHT!

    On Radhashtami, the doors are kept open throughout the night for devotees to have darshan of Shri Swamiji…. Just to remind you this also was an auspicious utsav of Sharad Purnima… In case you werent aware maybe you should add that to your list to research!!

  11. I think it is unfair, Vraj Rasikji, to say that someone is or is not saintly because they live in whatever kind of house. All the bhakti shastras are quite clear that bhakti is not bound on anything external. Vairagya is not the father or mother of devotion, but the child.

    And just as we posted recently in the lectures by Rajendra Dasji, citing the example of Salemabad Nimbarkacharya Parashuram Das, someone living in a palace may be more renounced than the penniless beggar.

    As to building the Saneha Bihari temple, will you reproach the thousands of other devotees who have their own temples in their homes, etc.? Vrindavan is glorious because of its many temples. The Saneha Bihari temple was built 200 years ago by a forefather of the current goswamis. Should they destroy the temple built by their forefather in order to show their devotion to Banke Bihari? The story is here.

    Besides, these Goswamis are not less devoted to Banke Bihari because they have their own temple. They still have their seva. And they still preach Banke Bihari in their speeches and in their songs. When a person makes his own temple, it is to increase his seva, not to diminish it. When disciples come to stay in the Sneha Bihari guesthouse, do you think they do not visit Banke Bihari for darshan?

    Perhaps singing nicely is not all there is to being a saint. And perhaps Mridul Krishna and Gaurav Krishna Goswamis are not saints. But they are “Goswamis” in the sense that they are followers of Swami Haridas and descendants of his family. They have taken their “job” seriously, in my opinion, and, as I said in the article, I doubt that anyone in Vrindavan or elsewhere has done as much to spread the name of Radha in the world today. For that one thing alone one should overlook practically all flaws, in my opinion.

    I saw that ordinary people are becoming bhaktas and singing and dancing Radha’s name. I cannot say that I have ever made anyone cry from the sound of Radha’s name, can you? So what is your problem? You don’t like people to chant Radha Radha Radha?

    It is true that Vrindavan used to be more like Nidhivan and Tatia Sthan. And all these big temples like ISKCON and Banke Bihari and popular individuals like Thakurji, Mridul Krishna Goswami and others, are attracting so many people to the Dham, putting incredible pressure on the infrastructure and mood of Vrindavan. These are things that we cannot avoid. Call it Kali Yuga or whatever, but it is time for the citizens of Vrindavan to engage in action that will restore Vrindavan’s mood and svarup while still permitting devotees from around the world to come and enjoy devotional activities in this holy town.

    With regards to your other points, I believe that Shri Radhe has answered them effectively with a great deal of salient information.

  12. Let us delight in the success of others. Just two verses come to mind that remind me of the Sharad Purnima at Nidhivan.

    rādhā-nāma-sudhā-rasaṁ rasayituṁ jihvāstu me vihvalā
    pādau tat-pada-kaṅkitāsu caratāṁ vṛndaṭavī-vīthiṣu
    tat-karmaiva karaḥ karotu hṛdayaṁ tasyāḥ padaṁ dhyāyatāṁ
    tad-bhāvotsavataḥ paraṁ bhavatu me tat-prāṇa-nāthe ratiḥ

    May my tongue be overwhelmed by relishing the nectar of Radha’s name; may my feet be engaged in wandering the paths of Vrindavan which are marked by her footprints; may my hands be engaged in her loving service, and may my mind be engaged in meditation on her lotus feet. By attaining the festival of ecstatic love for Radha, may I attain firm attachment for the lotus feet of the beloved lord of her life. (Sudhā-nidhi 142)

    evaṁ-vrataḥ sva-priya-nāma-kīrtyā
    jātānurāgo druta-citta uccaiḥ
    hasaty atho roditi rauti gāyaty
    unmādavan nṛtyati loka-bāhyaḥ

    Taking up this vow, when one’s love for Krishna awakens through glorifying his dearmost names, one’s mind melts and he loudly laughs, cries, shouts, sings and dances like a madman with no concern for what anyone thinks.

  13. @Jagat..I think you are the editor of Vrindavan Today and shouldn’t be taking any side. I would further respond to Shri Radhe, but it will take some time. What does your research say about who are responsible to making Vrindavan into a forest full of concrete? Please check with you conscience what does it say? These sellers of Shri Radha Nam are filling their own pockets with the money they earn. May be the author of Shrimad Bhagwatam mentioned about Shri Radha once or twice in it. Yes the temple was built to draw the attention of the devotees to this family and benefit them more than other Goswamis of Shri Banke Bihari.

  14. Yes, I am the editor, but I have my opinions also. I welcome you to express yours, and indeed please be assured that I appreciate them. But I will take a stand according to my perception of things.

    I don’t quite know what is gained by faulting anyone, really. We may want to hold everyone to the highest standard, but in fact the only persons we can hold to the highest standard are ourselves.

    As soon as there was some trouble in ISKCON, immediately there were dozens of Brijvasis willing to take up the cause against ISKCON. Mohan Lal Baba still thinks he can get rid of all the foreigners. He also thinks that we can dig up the paved parikrama marga and turn the clock back 50 years. It won’t happen.

    The concrete jungle actually began when Sanatan Goswami allowed a seth to build a big temple for Madan Mohan. There was a real forest here then, why did he allow it?

    Swami Haridas, Harivams, Govindaji’s sevaks… they all built temples. And as time went by, more and more and more temples were built. Lala Babu, Rangaji, ISKCON. And now people come from far and wide to see the temples, to see the deities, to see the bhaktas chant and speak on Bhagavatam. Is this not what the Goswamis and Swami Haridas and Hit Harivams and the rest intended?

    Perhaps they thought that the bhajananandi virakta Vaishnavas were better than the temple sevaits and Bhagavata preachers, it is possible. But they recognized that not everyone will be a baba sitting in a hut in the woods, and that the latter play an important role in developing a culture whereby it is possible to have ekanti bhajananandi Vaishnavas.

    Vrindavan will always be the Dham. Its swaroop is unchangeable.

    Jnanananda is lamenting for the lost “swaroop” of Vrindavan, but he is also building a big ashram on the Parikrama Marg and cars are lined up and parking in the empty fields all around it during his utsav. Better he should be encouraged in his current project of cleaning the town than be condemned for helping to cause some of the problems.

    What we really need is some intelligent planning in Vrindavan so that the uncontrolled development is slowed down a bit. We need to think about what Vrindavan could be like in the present circumstances. What kind of Vrindavan do we want, and how do we get it?

    Some restrictions on car and vehicle traffic must be made. Limits must be placed on construction within the municipal perimeter. A green belt with a new parikrama path for walking should be created. There are many things that can be done to make Vrindavan a model pilgrimage town. But don’t think we can turn the clock back 5000, 500, 50 or even 5 years back.

    Some of the development has not been bad in principle. Execution certainly leaves a lot to be desired. But we need to have a solid base of Vrindavan vasis who know what they want, who will try to build a consensus on where we want to go and are ready to fight against the unrestrained materialistic forces of rajas and tamas and implement it.

    So my point is that we need people to become active in an intelligent way, and to get as many of the powerful established people in Vrindavan to get on board with the plan. Simply criticizing others without having something positive to propose is a waste of time and only results in anger, frustration and enmity. Is that what we want in Vrindavan?

    If you want fighting, there are plenty of places you can go. You want seva of the Dham? Well you are in the right place. Now what?

  15. Those whoever is reading my critical views; the following is taken from Shribankebihariseva.com..official website..
    At the Nidhi Van (Nidhuban, Nidhuvan) Krishna rested with His beloved Sri Radha. The shrine inside has a bed, which is decorated with flowers by the priest every evening. No one is allowed to stay inside after dusk because according to popular belief the Lord visits the spot with Sri Radha. The samadhi (memorial) of Svami Hari Das is also within this complex. All the groves of Vrindavan are notorious for monkeys that have a special fascination for cameras and spectacles.Yamuna river flows through Vrindavan and Mathura. It is the most sacred river in India as it is so intimately connected with Krishna’s pastimes.
    IT IS CLEARLY SAID THAT NO ONE IS ALLOWED TO STAY INSIDE AFTER DUSK..

  16. Yeh sab kya hai? Jahan tak hum jaante hain to pure braj mein khushian hi khushian hain is ek program ko lekar. Pura vishwa jaise dhanya hogaya hai us din Nidhuvan ke darshan karke. Hum to aise santon ke aabhari hain jinhone aisa vatavarn banaya aur aisa mauka diya vahan samalit hone ka! Jai ho Prabhu aap ki jai ho!
    Aise faltu ilzaam lagana to bohut galat hai, kyunki hum bhi Brindavan mein hi rehte hain, brajwasi hain aur yahan aisi koi charcha nai! Aise ek do log galat baatein apna naam karne keliye kehte honge, aaj kal bas issi chakkar mein lage hain log! Jo accha kaam karte hain unko dabake nicche karna chahte… Kissi ki acchayi to nazaron se dekhi nai jaati jaise!! lekin kisi ko nicha dikhake kisi ka udhaar nai hosakta. Aur sabse bardi baat to Thakurji bhi maaf karsakte unke khilaaf koi bole lekin unke bhakton ke khilaf koi bole to aise logon ko apne aap se hamesha keliye vanchit karte hain! Bhai mein to yehi kahunga ki itna galat sochna aur itna galat bolna aise santon keliye, isse accha apne bhajan mein, bhakti mein mast raho kyunki ek baar unse vanchit hogaye to kuch nai hopaega!

  17. @Purushottam…Kaun sant hai kaun nahin hai yeh pehchanna bahut mushkil hai..aaj tak in santon ne kya kiya is Vrindavan Dham ke liye sivay apne jeb bharne ke? Main kewal Mridul ji ya Gaurav ki baat nahin kar raha hun..lekin un sabhi katha vaachakon ki kar raha hun jo duniya ko acchi baaten batate hain lekin apni zindagi mein nahi utarte. Meri bhi thakur se baaten hoti hai…shayad mujhe yeh prerna wahin se mil rahi hai ki jinhone is parampara ko tora unka virodh karo. Anand paane ke liye kya parampara ko torna koi jaruri hai? Anand to pakshiyon ke kalrab me milta hai loudspeaker me bhajan se nahin. Main Mridul Ji yaa Gaurav ke prati koi asamman nahi palta kintu prashna yeh hai ki Kya Nidhivan ke parampara ko torna jaruri tha? Kab tak ham vyaktion ki puja karte rahenge? Shayad aaj Vraj ki durdasha isi bajah se hai. Agar mai is comment ko kar raha hun to meri bhajan isi main hai ki main nidhivan ke parampara ke saath jo galat hua uska virodh karun.

  18. Unhone yehi kiya ki apni puri zindagi, apna sab kuch thakurji ka naam kardiya!! Bhaiya jeb hi agar bharne hote to yeho sirf rasta nai hai is kaam keliye! Aapko sharam aani chaiye aise kisi keliye bhi bolte hue! Unhone apne jivan mein nahi apni baaton ko utaara yeh aap jante hain?? Kaise bolsakte ho ki jo koi katha karta hai unhone apne jivan mein nahi utaara….apne jivanse kya taklif hai?? Apko kya mila is braj bhoomi mein janam leke?? Kuch bhi to nai… Agar aapki itni nishtha hoti, thakurji ke prati is pavan bhumi ke prati to is baat ki taklif nai hoti ki kon kya galat kaam karaha hai balki apki apni udhaar se hoti. Jitna koshish auron ko badnaam karne mein aap samay vyatit karahe ho, utna yadi thakurji ke dhyan mein karte to shayad aaj unko prapt bhi karlete. Aap yadi apne galat vichar apne paas rakhen to jyada accha hai, kyunki vishwa mein yadi unka yaan koi bhi sant ka itna naam hai to unpe kewal kishoriji ki kripa hai. Phir aap chaahe kitna bhi koshish karo jinpar unki kripa ho unki kabhi badnaami nai ho sakti.

  19. Well said Vraja Rasik! Sab Guru Banna Chahte hai, Chela Koi Nahin Banta. Kabhi garib logon ko shishya banya hai in dharmacharyon ne? Kebal thet gamaron ko chela banaye to jaane aur ek rupya dakshina nahi le. Tijori to apna hi bharna hai inko. Bhar me jaye Brindaban aur bhar me jaye braj aur yahan ka culture aur tradition. Patan nahi ki yeh Shri Radhe aur Jagat ji ko hindi aati hai ki nahi. Bhavnao ko samjho aap dono. Keval sangeet me hi sab kuch nahin hai

  20. Sare comments parne ke baad aisa lagta hai shayad is insan ki koi Jeb bhar raha hai aisi baaten kehne ke liye, Ye kehta hai thakurji se iski baat hoti hai isi se Ye siddh hogaya ki Ye kewal sabki attention lena chahta hai. Isliye Mai sabse prarthna Karunga ki iske comments par koi dhyan na de, shayad ye khud koi kathawachak hai jo apne jeewan Mai kuch nai karpaya to ab is tarah se naam kamana chahta hai…. Pls VRINDAVAN TODAY ka maahol kharab mat karo.

  21. Main Kai dino se is bahas ko dekh raha hun. braj raski jo keh rahen hain koi galat to nahin. aaj ke akhbar se pata laga ki ek truck gaay utha ke le gaye katne ke liye. kya koi kathavachak age aaya inko bachane ke liye. kal ek nepali vidyarthi ka banshi wale ke samne accident hua ek tractor tanker bale ne mara use kya koi bhi katha vachak ya dharmacharyon ne yehan ki traffic vyavastha ko sudharne ki baat kahi. har koi apna jeb bharne mai mast hai. aankho ki pattii hatakar to dekho in kathavachako ke piche kya hai? agar shri dham ko bachane ke liye ye log age ayen mai in logon ko apna guru bana lunga. thora braj rasik ki vedna ko bhi to samjho bhai. @braj rasik..aap kripaya thakur se hi prarthana kariye ki in logon ko sad buddhi de aur ye parampara ko nahi tore. Ab to banke bihari mandir me pitri kriya bhi ho rahi hai. jiska ghor virodh ho raha hai. kuch sal pehle pant shirt bhi pehna diya tha bihari ji ko. are thakur to dil me hai. agar naya kuch karna hai to karo na kinto paramparik jagah ki maryada ko nasht to mat karo.

  22. Shri Haridas ji. Chhoro ab in andhon ko jinhe nahi dikhti in sab logon ki kartoot. jane do gart me sabko. main chorta hun sab kuch thakur par. rahi damodar das ki agar tum chaho to thakur se bat kar sakte ho. chaho to ekbar dil se. main to karta hun lekin insani juvan se nahin. iske liye prakriti ne bahut kuch diya hai hum logon ko. radhe radhe sabhi ko.

  23. परीहासेऽप्यन्याप्रियकथनमूकोऽतिवधिरः
    परेषां दोषानुश्रुतिमनु विलोकेऽन्धनयनः ।
    शिलावन् निश्चेष्टः परवपुषि बाधालवविधौ
    कदा वत्स्याम्यस्मिन् हरिदयितवृन्दावनवने ॥२.१६॥

    I will say more later.

  24. Oh my god!!!! Aap sab ko Ye batadun ki mujhe aisi feeling ho rahi hai ki ye VRAJ RASIK, VRAJ VIHARI, RAGHAV aur ab SHRI HARIDAS naam se comments karne wala ek hi insaan hai Jo naam badal badal ke without any reason aise bakwas aur ulte sidhe comments kar raha hai!!!!!! Ab to ye pakka hogaya hai ki ye insan Jo bhi hai kewal inhi santon ke piche para hua hai. Shayad isko in saton se kuch jiyada hi irsha ho rahi hai. Tabhi to aur kisi bhi post par comments nai kar rahe kewal isi news ke piche pare hain!! Or Mai bata dun ki isko braj ya brindavan se koi pyar nai hai ye kewal brindavan aur vrij ki ninda Mai aur yahan ke mahapurushon ki ninda Mai Laga hua hai, taaki sab bhakton ke man Mai brijbhumi ki chavi ko kharab kar sake lekin hum aisa nai hone denge,, muche lagta hai is site ke owners ko ab dhyan dena chahiye aise faltu logon ke comments par, Jo iss site ko Ganda kar rahe hain aur pure VRINDAVAN ki mahima ko khandit kar rahe

  25. I support Vraja Rasik’s position. Numbers are not important if the essence is tampered with. Families and businesses in Vrindavan, traditional or recent, who may bring thousands of people to the dham but by doing so compromise the nature of the dham which is precisely renunciation of material greed, have no place there. There is the rest of the world to do businesses; please don’t use Radharani and her dham for such. Radhe Radhe.

  26. Jai Srhi Radhe! Damodar Das. Mujhe pata nahi aur koi alag alag naam se likh raha hai ki nahi. Magar mujhe koi jarurat nahi hai. Accha mai apna ek parichay de deta hun chalo..mai Vraja ki seva me laga hun aur Vraja ras ka anand le raha hun. Magar in guruon ko to pucho ke inhone aaj tak kya kya kiya hai is Vraja Bhumi ke uddhar ke liye..Main tumhara chela ho jaunga agar tumne mujhe bata diya ki aaj tak kis dharma guruon ne Vraja ke liye, Yamuna ke liye kuch bhi kiya hai. Mithi Mithi kahani to koi bhi suna sakta hai katha ke roop me. aaj kal to har koi pandit hai. agar gayak ko hi sant manna hai to pandit jasraj bahut bare sant hai…so hi baba rasika pagal.

  27. Thanks everyone who supported my views. Thanks Bhumi Devi Dasi mata ji. I think Vraja is so powerful if all these so called saints do their bit for the dust of Vraja. Yamuna is gone, Girraj is gone, the dust is gone..and now these people are singing nice song to fame themselves by tampering the tradition. These people have started to do the Pitri-kriya (Shraadh) in the Banke Bihari Temple. Imagine how selfish they can be. Shri Radhe what do you think? May the Lord give me enough power so that I can oppose those drama which are complete eye wash.

  28. Dear Friends,

    Jai Radhe, jai Krishna, jai Vrindavan!

    There is obviously a lot of strong feeling on both sides of this debate. I invite all of those who are residing in Vrindavan to contact me personally through the vrindavantoday @ gmail address. I am interested in what you are doing for Vrindavan.

    Radhe Radhe,

    Jagat

  29. Koi sikhe to Ramesh Baba se aur Vineet Narain Se seva kya hoti hai. Aaj tak in kathit acharyon ne kewal purushottam aur Damodar Das jaise bheron ko hi charaya hai. Shri Radhe ek aisa naam hai uske upar to main comment nahin kar sakta, kyon ki yeh to Vrindavaneshwari ka naam hai.

    @Vraja Rasik..bhajan me lagiye aur jo seva aap kar rahe hai usme mast rahiye. In murkhon ko lage rehne dijiye inke kathit acharyon ki mahima mandan karne ke liye. Krishnam Vande Jagat Gurum.

  30. HAHAHAHA believe me ye ek hi admi hai Jo ab bhumi Devi dasi bhi ban Gaya… Ye kewal apne andar ki gandgi bahar nikaal raha hai, because Jiske andar burai hoti hai use hi bahar dikhai deti hai, to pls aur nikalo apne andar ki burai, Mai prabhu se prarthna Karunga ki aise karke tere andar se buraiya nikal jaen, par agar nai nikalti to hari iccha, fir to najane konse nark Mai jaoge Tum. Gane se koi sant!!!! Lagta hai tumne only inka gana hi suna hai, than it’s ur fault… Aur mere pass bhi itna time nai Tum jaise insan ko ye sab samjhaun kyunki ‘MURAKH HRIDAY NA CHET JO GURU MILE VIRANCH SAM’ Lagta hai tumhara sara din isi kam mai jata hai ki sare vrindawan ki buraiyan dhund kar unko tum mahapurushon par patakte ho, tumne khud kuch kiya vrindawan ke liye aur dhyan rakhna Ki Chandrama pe koi thuke to wo kis par girta hai? Bas yehi tumhare sath ho raha hai..
    Abhi bhi time hai sambhal jao, waise ye VINEET NARAYAN kon hai aur isne aisa kya kardiya Jo uske piche lag Gaye ho, Kahin ussi se paise lekar to ye sab nai likh rahe ya Kahin tumhara real name yahi to nai? Ab samajh araha hai ye Sara natak tumne apna asli naam chamkane ke liye kiya hai.. Log kitna gir sakte hain socho yaron

  31. All you must have heard about Swami Meghshyam Sharma, a well know poet, writer, performer and raasacharya. Books written by him are not available anywhere in stores like “Rasia Shyam” of 3 volumes. Recently I have produced an audio album of his well known ‘Rasiyas’ by the name ‘Rasiya Shyam’ sung by Sh Bhagwat Kishore sharma of Vrindavan who sings in the Raas mandal of Padamshri Swami Sh Ramswaroopji Sharma (son of Swami Meghshyam sharma)

  32. arrre damodar das..kartik ka mahina hai…aur damodar ka bhi das batate ho apne aap ko. thora sharam karo. kya kiya hai in logon ne is Shri Dham ke liye??? khule aam janwar kate jaa rahe hain yahan. nasht go gayi yamuna maiya. braj ka raj pradushit ho gaya. magar kuch bhi nahi kiya in dharmacharyon ne apna jeb bharne ke siva. Vineet Narian ne to brahm kund ko chamka diya hai aur kai sau kundon ka jeernoddhar kara diya. ramesh baba gahavar van aur pahariyon ko bachane ka andolan kar rahe hai. magar in logon ne kya kiya? ho sakta hai damodar tumko apna pracharak bana rakha ho in logon ne!!! ha ha ha.
    Vraja Rasik ji aapka bhi comment chahunga main isme.

  33. Kya milraha hai aap sabko yeh sab bolte hue ek dusre ko?? Kya yehi prachar karna chahte ho ki kon kis se accha jawab desakta hai?? Sorry lekin yahan kisi ki jeet nai hogi yeh page aur website sirf Information dene keliye hai, so people can enlighten and be enlightened!! Not prove who is doing what….please take your nonsense some where else!! We’re not interested in hearing any of your problems! Auron ki ankhen kholne se pehle, apni ankhen kholo and realize kya milraha kisi ko nicha dikhake….nothing but sin!!

  34. The only thing that will get us closer to Kishoriji’s compassion is by singing the glories of Shyama Shyam. Everyone is entitiled to their own opinions…but at the same time it is not acceptable for people to bash other people on this domain. So why not help each other reach that goal instead of attempting to prove each other wrong!! Jai Shri Radhe! Please read the following, Radha Kripa Kataksh Stotra. Shri Radhe is the most compassionate, ever merciful! Her grace is the most valuable thing for all of us, why not spend our valuable time in her remembrance.
    1. munindra vrnda vandite tri loka soka harini
    prasanna vaktra pankaje nikunja bhu vilasini
    vrajendra bhanu nandini vrajendra sunu sangate
    kada karisyasiha mam krpa kataksa bhajanam
    2. asoka vrksa vallari vitana mandapa sthite
    pravala bala pallava prabharunanghri komale
    varabhaya sphurat kare prabhuta sampad alaye
    kada karisyasiha mam krpa kataksa bhajanam
    3. ananga ranga mangala prasanga bhangura bhruvam
    sa vibhramam sa sambhrama drg anta bana patanaih
    nirantaram vasi krta pratita nanda nandane
    kada karisyasiha mam krpa kataksa bhajanam
    4. tadit suvarna campaka pradipta gaura vigrahe
    mukha prabha parasta koti saradendu mandale
    vicitra citra sancarac cakora sava locane
    kada karisyasiha mam krpa kataksa bhajanam
    5. madonmadati yauvane pramoda mana mandite
    priyanuraga ranjite kala vilasa pandite
    ananya dhanya kunja rajye kama keli kovide
    kada karisyasiha mam krpa kataksa bhajanam
    6. asesa hava bhava dhira hira hara bhusite
    prabhuta satakumbha kumbha kumbhi kumbha sustani
    prasasta manda hasya curna purna saukhya sagare
    kada karisyasiha mam krpa kataksa bhajanam
    7. mrnala bala vallari taranga ranga dorlate
    latagra lasya lola nila locanavalokane
    lalal lulan milan manojna mugdha mohanasraye
    kada karisyasiha mam krpa kataksa bhajanam
    8. suvarna malikancita tri rekha kambu kanthage
    tri sutra mangali guna tri ratna dipta didhiti
    sa lola nila kuntala prasuna guccha gumphite
    kada karisyasiha mam krpa kataksa bhajanam
    9. nitamba bimba lambamana puspa mekhala gune
    prasasta ratna kinkini kalapa madhya manjule
    karindra sunda dandika varoha saubhagoruke
    kada karisyasiha mam krpa kataksa bhajanam
    10. aneka mantra nada manju nupuraravas khalat
    samaja raja hamsa vamsa nikvanati gaurave
    vilola hema vallari vidambi caru cankrame
    kada karisyasiha mam krpa kataksa bhajanam
    11. ananta koti visnu loka namra padma jarcite
    himadri ja puloma ja virinca ja vara prade
    apara siddhi vrddhi digdha sat padanguli nakhe
    kada karisyasiha mam krpa kataksa bhajanam
    12. makhesvari kriyesvari svadhesvari suresvari
    tri veda bharatisvari pramana sasanesvari
    ramesvari ksamesvari pramoda kananesvari
    vrajesvari vrajadhipe sri radhike namo stu te
    13. itidam adbhutam stavam nisamya bhanu nandini
    karotu santatam janam krpa kataksa bhajanam
    bhavet tadaiva sancita tri rupa karma nasanam
    bhavet tada vrajendra sunu mandala pravesanam

  35. दोस्तों! परम प्रिय बृजबासियों! प्रिया-प्रीतम के परम प्रेमी भक्तगण !

    वृन्दावन की सब से बड़ी सेवा है राधा नाम प्रचार. राधा नाम को छोड़ के वृन्दावन का कोई अस्तित्व नहीं रहा. आप लोग बहुत आसानी से एक एक भक्त की निन्दा करते हैं, दूसरे की प्रशंसा करते हैं, परंतु यह बड़ा भ्रम है, जिस से वृन्दावन का कोई मंगल नहीं हो सकता.

    एक वैष्णव से प्रीति करना और दूसरे की निन्दा, यह भी अपराध हो जाता है. विचार करो–पद्मपुराण का कहना है, जो कि सब सम्प्रदाय ही मानते हैं–

    सतां निन्दा नाम्नः परममपराधं वितनुते
    यतः ख्यातिं यातं कथमु सहते तद्विगर्हाम्

    जिस के माध्यम से भगवान् का नाम ख्याति प्राप्त या विस्तार लाभ करता है, उस सत् भक्त की निन्दा करना भगवान् के नाम का परम अपराध है, सब से बड़ा अपराध है. श्रीनाम स्वयं अपने भक्त की निन्दा कैसे बर्दाश्त करेगा? तो थोड़ी सी सावधानी से वाक्य सम्भालना, भाई सब.

    आप लोग बड़े अद्भुत हैं. आप राधा-भक्ति, भागवत-कथा, हरिनाम प्रचार इत्यादि वृन्दावन की सेवा से पृथक् करने चाहते हैं. वस्तुतः इनको अलग करने का कोई गुंजाइश नहीं.

    श्रीराधामाधवयोर्यथा न कदापि सम्भवो विरहः
    तद्रसवृन्दावनयोस्तथैव परमोऽविनाभावः

    राधानाम, राध रस परिवेषक, वृन्दावन सेवक — ये सब एक ही अभिन्न तत्त्व हैं. आप की पृथक् बुद्धि प्रमाणित करती हैं कि आप निम्न स्तर के वैष्णव, नतुवा अवैष्णव ही हैं, जितने भी आप अपनेको वृन्दावन के प्रेमी जाहिर करते हों.

    जो सब लोग इन गोस्वामिओं के माध्यम से राधारानी नामसुधा के द्वारा वृन्दावन धाम के प्रति अकर्षित हो गये हैं, इस अच्छी खबर से आह्लादित न होके उन की निन्दा करते हैं, उपहास करते हैं, नाजुक बच्चों के जैसे “हा हा हा” लिख रहे हैं, “मूर्ख” बताते हैं, “भेडा” कहते हैं. आप को शरम बिलकुल नहीं?

    आप ब्रजवासी भला हो सकते हैं, लेकिन आप की राधा प्रीति और वैष्णवाचार्यों के आचारित व प्रचारित प्रेम धर्म एवं सदाचार आपसे बहुत दूर रह गये. वास्तव, आप का वृन्दावन सेवा भाव बाहरी है. माफ कीजिये. व्याख्या करूं.

    देखिये, जो लोग मृदुल आदि गोस्वामीओं के द्वारा वृन्दावन धाम के प्रति अकृष्ट हुए, क्या सोचते हैं, कि वे वृन्दावन की सेवा कभी नहीं करेंगे? उनमें से कोई नहीं करेग? वे तो हैं ही आपके भावी वृन्दावन-ब्रज स्वयं-सेवक कर्मी. लेकिन आप लोग उनका स्वागत न करके वरन् उनकी और उनके गुरुवर्ग की निन्दा और उपहास करते हैं. कोई लज्जा नहीं आपकी? इस हरकत से वृन्दावन की क्या उन्नति होगी? अतीत की बात मत भाविये, भविष्य की बात थोड़ी सोचिये.

    वृन्दावन सेवा और राधा भक्ति में कोई भेद नहीं. आप पर्यावरण की सेवा की बात कहने चाहते हैं? बढिया, करिये. यमुनाजी, वन, वृक्ष, लता-पाता आदि सेवा करिये. आपके पास कौन आयेगा? जो भक्त है, जो भक्त है, जिसकी राधा प्रीति है, जो वृन्दावन के प्रति पवित्रता बोधा है, वह. लेकिन कैसे एक समझौता बन सकता है, यह चिन्ता न करके, सिर्फ भेद-भाव सृजन करने के लिये तत्पर होते हैं क्यों?

    राधा नाम कारी प्रचारक और पण्डित जसराज की तुलना करते हैं? आप का कोई बोध नहीं? वृन्दावन और ब्रज की संस्कृति भांड़ में फेंकने चाहते हैं? वृन्दावन यदि अपनी संस्कृति छोड़ता है, राधा नाम छोड़ता है, तब उसका अवशिष्ट कुछ नहीं रहा.

    वरिष्ठ पर्यावरण सेवी श्रीसेवक शरण जी कहते हैं कि वृन्दावन प्रचार का स्थान नहीं, भजन का स्थान है, लेकिन मैं उन के साथ एकमत नहीं हूं. भजनानन्दी होते हुए भी श्रीश्रीस्वामिहरिदास-सनातनगोस्वामी आदि जैसे सम्प्रदाय प्रवर्तक आचार्यों ने बड़े बड़े मन्दिर बनवाये, विग्रहसेवादि स्थापना की थी किस लिये? राधा-कृष्ण की प्रेम भक्ति धर्म विश्व-भर में फैलाने के लिये, न?

    उसी परम्परा में जो जो आज सतत वर्धिष्णु साफल्य प्राप्त होते हैं, उस से हमें उल्लसित और आनन्दित होना चाहिये, सङ्कुचित हृदय नहीं। दूसरों का साफल्य देख आनन्दित होना वैष्णव का स्वभाव है.

    हां, सन्देह नहीं कि अब इस सफलता से वृन्दावन सङ्कट में फंसा. अभी हमें गौर से विचार करना चाहिये वृन्दावन का भविष्य होगा, उसकी पवित्रता और सर्वतोभद्र स्वरूप कैसी सुरक्षित की जाएगी? लेकिन वृन्दावन का जो जड़ है, प्रेम-भक्ति धर्म और उसका विश्व-भर में प्रचार, उन पर श्रद्धा विशेष हृदय में बजाय राखते हुए.

    मैं भी विशेष चिन्तित हूं ब्रज-वृन्दावन के भविष्य के बारे में। इसी लिये मैं ने यह “वृन्दावन टुडे” वेबपेज स्थापित किया। लेकिन मेरा सोचना है कि झगड़ा-बहस छोड़ना, सम्प्रदायों के बीच सद्भावना स्थापित करना, एवं अपने अपने अधिकारे के अनुसार भूमिका ग्रहण करना ब्रज-सेवा के अनिवार्य अङ्ग हैं।

    सेवक निरन्तर सेव्य की खुशियों की चिन्ता करता है तत्सुखसुखी बनना चाहता है। इतना हिम्मती न बनिये कि आप अपनेको वृन्दावन की महारानि का एकमात्र सेवक होते हो और दूसरे नगण्य होते हैं। यह सर्वनाश का प्रशस्त रास्ता ही है।

    जयति जयति राधा प्रेमसारैरगाधा
    जयति जयति कृष्णस्तद्रसापारतृष्णः।
    जयति जयति वृन्दं सत्सखीनां द्वयैक्यं
    जयति जयति वृन्दाकाननं तत्स्वधाम॥

    अवधि प्रेम की लाडिली अवधि प्रेम की लाल
    अवधि प्रेम की ललिताजू छिन छिन करत निहाल
    अवधि प्रेम की सेज है अवधि प्रेम निजु कुञ्ज
    अवधि प्रेम वृन्दा विपिन सकल सुखनि का पुञ्ज

  36. Chalo man lete hain ap sabki bat. Mujhe bhi bahut accha nahi lag raha yeh sab dekh kar. lekin koi to yeh bataye ki kya hamko parampara torna chahiye? kya hamko banke bihari mandir me pitri-kriya ka permission dena chahiye? Kya Vraj ko aur Yamuna ko istarah se malin hone dena chahiye? Kya yeh Goswami log apne moti kamai me se kuch hissa dham seva me nahin laga sakte?

  37. Don’t worry, Raghavji, it has to happen. Awareness is slowly growing. We need visionaries like you to plan the Vrindavan of the future, but no one can do it alone. I understand the distress one feels when one’s own power is limited and those who have the power are inactive. But that is the situation and we must work with it.

  38. I have been following all the comments for some time, and I didn’t want to take any side, but now when you mentioned about Sevak Sharan Ji, I think you should re-think what you have said. Rupa, Sanatan, Hariram Vyas, Swami Haridas were the architect of modern Vrindavan but remember these saints never filled up their own pocket with the donations from Akbar. Madan Mohan himself wanted his temple to be built. Govinda Dev manifested in the gauma teela, where a cow used to milch the deity hidden in the teela. In Radha Raman’s case it manifested from the Shaligram, Shri Banke Bihari manifested in Nidhivan. There were reason when each temple were built in that time. But these days temples are being built out of fashion. Any how there is no question on the spreading of Shri Radha Naam and the people should understand the meaning of Shri Radha. Mridul ji, Gaurav Ji, Atul Ji, Vipul ji and all the Goswamis from any lineage are highly respectable for me, but those who are being critic here are also devotees. Therefore there pain should also be respected. Jai Shri Vrindavan, Jai Yamune

  39. Of course, anyone who knows me knows that I have the greatest respect for Sewak Sharanji. I have published articles by him on Vrindavan Today, both on the Hindi site and here on this one. Perhaps I should not have mentioned him just to disagree.

    But I ask you to read my editorials on Vrindavan Today if you wish to understand my general position. I am not taking sides here.

    You will see that VT wholeheartedly supports Ramesh Baba and Vineet Narain, as well as Food for Life, Akshaya Patra, Friends of Vrindavan, etc., in their work and projects. If we do not have many articles from Braj Foundation it is only because they do not share their news with us.

    So if you think I do not feel the pain of those who are frustrated with the crazy development in Vrindavan, you are wrong. I wholeheartedly sympathize with them. That is to a great extent what motivated me in starting Vrindavan Today.

    And I also agree with everyone that much of the religious activity has taken on a kind of mundane business aura. All these things are matters of concern.

    Nevertheless, try to understand that my principal point is based on strategies for making change. Why alienate the very people whose alliances can be motors for change? As one of the early posters said, Mridul Krishna Goswami was careful to speak about the environment at Nidhivan. No Bhagavata speaker can ignore the Yamuna situation any more.

    Everyone is concerned, but basically very few people have any good ideas about what to do other than do samskar of a kund here or there. And very few people are actively committed, but as Jnanananda has recently shown, that may be changing.

    How will you get Vrindavan cleaned up without a mass revolt demanding that a government organized and managed garbage collection and disposal system is put in place and that a concerted effort by the people as a whole is mobilized to change the culture from one of disregard for public places to a sense of common ownership?

    How will you change the traffic system in the town when even the temple and ashram owners benefit from having clients’ cars come to their very doorstep?

    How will the parikrama walk be restored to its traditional glory? How will Vrindavan’s sanctity be restored? Everyone must be seen to benefit from such changes and it is necessary to get as many people as possible, especially those who are influential, actively organized and participating in demanding these things.

    But at the same time what I say stands. Vrindavan is only meaningful if it is understood to be a holy place related to Radha and Krishna. So we must find a way of harmonizing our two desires: to see Vrindavan’s true form manifest as well as to make Radha and Krishna’s — and therefore Vrindavan’s — glories known to the world.

    It is a difficult job to harmonize the two for they seem to be in conflict, nevertheless that is the task at hand.

    The best place to begin, however, is to take shelter of the essence of prema dharma and have respect for the devotees and Brajavasis. How will we cooperate if we do nothing but condemn otherwise for what they have NOT done? Everyone I see who is successfully making progress are those who do not waste their time in such indulgences.

  40. “How will we cooperate if we do nothing but condemn otherwise for what they have NOT done? Everyone I see who is successfully making progress are those who do not waste their time in such indulgences.”

    First of all, who is to say any particular individual is doing “nothing”? Only Radharani herself can make that judgment. Collectively we can say not enough is being done, but not of individuals. Secondly, whats the measure of success and progress? Where Radha and Krishna bhakti and the dham are concerned, big temples and big money in pockets are questionable indicators of progress, at best. And last but not least, why are you calling this cry for a better standard of spiritual progress, a standard which is actually set out by shastra and sadhus themselves, “wasting time” and “indulgence”? This sounds like poor judgment to me; or, at best, a tendency to sentimentalism.

    Anyway, Sevak Sharanji is a great authority in Braj and his veredict is clear. Why not simply and humbly accept it: 1. “Rupa, Sanatan, Hariram Vyas, Swami Haridas were the architect of modern Vrindavan but remember these saints never filled up their own pocket with the donations from Akbar.” 2. “There were reason when each temple were built in that time. But these days temples are being built out of fashion. Any how there is no question on the spreading of Shri Radha Naam and the people should understand the meaning of Shri Radha. Mridul ji, Gaurav Ji, Atul Ji, Vipul ji and all the Goswamis from any lineage are highly respectable for me, but those who are being critic here are also devotees. Therefore there pain should also be respected.”

    That said, lets address the point raised here: However, when someone as an individual or a group of people

  41. (1) You misconstrued my words. It was purely rhetorical.
    (2) In terms of progress I was refering specifically to those who were making progress on the environmental and heritage preservation front, not money and temples.
    (3) A better standard of spiritual progress is of course desirable. And I am also debating on that level. Why is it that everyone who is successful in making disciples and temples is criticized for being greedy? The same thing happened to Nityananda as I recall. And Gadadhar had to learn from Pundarik Vidyanidhi. So why are we so quick to use expressions like “they are building because it is a fashion” “they are lining their pockets” etc. Even if it is true, it is part of the reality and all your condemnations won’t change that.

    What we can do is the following:

    Create a consensus among the people about how Vrindavan should develop. This has not even begun to happen. Not even remotely. Simple things like those I mentioned in the previous letter. (And please observe the tendency in everyone to look for the juicy points where arguments can be made instead of looking for consensus building. This is the REAL disease.) A majority of vocal and influential persons who say: traffic MUST be restricted, garbage collection MUST be regulated, a new parikrama marg and a green belt ARE AN ABSOLUTE NECESSITY, the Yamuna MUST be cleaned up, there MUST be restrictions on new building within a certain zone, the heritage buildings must be restored, etc. Let’s start imagining Vrindavan and sharing that vision.

    This means organization, publicity materials, it means preaching door to door to the goswamis and sadhus, getting them on board, it means activism not passive acceptance of the status quo, which is the spread of materialism. Then we will see who puts their own interest ahead of Vrindavan. But more importantly, any movement that becomes strong, like a flood, eventually removes obstacles by its own momentum. Before long, even those who oppose find it necessary to accept the new accepted wisdom, the will of the people.

    At present, that will is weak and unclear. What we need is people who will articulate a vision of Vrindavan and convince others to make the effort to turn it into a reality.

    And you won’t get very far with people by saying their gurus, from whom they have received a taste for Radha nam and a love for Radha Krishna and Vrindavan, that they are materialistically motivated and that they themselves are sheep and fools. Would I get very far with you if I called Narayan Maharaj and Srila Prabhupad materially motivated?

    Sewak Sharan ji is a great authority and if only his vision had been accepted 30 years ago. But that time is gone and the world has changed. The Vrindavan Project (Samagra vikas yojana) has made many changes over the past two three years with an incredible influx of traffic and visitors in Vrindavan, some religious some just gawkers. India’s economic boom has resulted in a lot more disposable wealth, much of which is being spent on religious and devotional activities. The paving of the streets, the improving of drainage and sewage, the building of STPs, etc., all these things are fundamentally good. Implementation has been shoddy, but in general I think that it is a beginning. But we have a long way to go.

  42. guruji ko chodkar mujhe koi sant nahi miley jo aapo radha,krishan ki anubhuti karwa sakey.ye parmaan hai ki sharad purnima ke paawan avsar par bankey bihari ji ne unke dwara ye sammelan karwaya aur unkey mukh se apni leela ke darshan karvayee.shat shat parnaam hai guruji ko aur unke bhagyashaali shishyo ko. radhey radhe

  43. I love Vrindavan and Swami Gaurava Krishna ji. I want to make my guru Gaurave Krishna ji forever and want to give my whole life to Bihari ji through him.

  44. I think that reverent saints like srila prabhupada and the goswamis of certain shrines and movements had strived and endeavored a lot to propagate the glories of dham, by the virtue of iskcon local inhabitants are earning quite well , we should not forget this fact , every institution has certain attributes that fits that into dham , shri radhe ,

  45. Jai Shri radhey.

    I was present there on that night and I have seen a bit of the program. I agree that there were many things that I thought were in appropriate. Let me first ckarify I am a firm believer of the Haridasi Tradition and being a saraswat brahmin I have family relations with the goswamis as well. I appreciate many things about Shri Mridul ji and Gaurav ji and have met them numerous times. I am sure we all understand and appreciate the fact that Nidhivan Raj holds a great importance which cannot be explained in words. It is a land were certain maryada in practised and must be followed at all times.
    Firstly the vyasasans were setup on the raas mandal which is believed to be the very place where sakshat Priya pritam perform raas. Then the vysaasans were setup so high above on that very raas mandal. They could have sat on the ground if not on a modest asan respecting the marayda.

    Secondly people including ladies were dancing not in a very sophisticated way right in front of swamiji’s samadhi this is against maryada.

    Thirdly I saw people standing on the small samadhis that are there outside the covered area where swamiji’s samadhi is. This needless to say is against maryada.

    Fourth they had setup huge halogen lights right beneath the creepers of nidhivan raj and there was smoke coming out from the stem. This caused huge pain to those creepers which are believed to be sakhis them selves and i saw so many leaves were broken from the same trees. Totally unacceptable.

    This is not an allegation but simply few things that will cause pain in anyone’s heart. I totally agree that Shri Mridul ji is doing so much to do prachar of bhagwat and bihariji. He has given love of bihari ji to so many people but these were mistakes that must be corrected whenever there is any similar program next time. Shri haridas.

  46. The very fact someone adds Rasik shows that the person is dying to gain an image of a Rasik . A true Rasik never proclaims himself as one and never indulges in mud slinging in public forum on sant jan who are spreading Bihariji’s name across the nation diligently.

    And most amusingly why is our V Rasik so peeved about Shradheya Sri Gauravji being a wonderful singer???

    The venerable Goswamis are doing their might in spreading the glory of the lord which in turn has stepped up the presence of Vraj Bhoomi in the cognizance of people across the country .

    There are 3000 + temples in Brindavan …why does Sneha Bihariji’s temple alone irk the so called Rasik ??? After all it is yet another place of worship for the lord. Who knows, tomorrow I may build yet another temple for the Lord in Vraj Bhoomi…who can take an exception to it ? Now dont say that you also have a problem that they have a shrine at home as well !

    As for the santh jan flourishing, well if Bihariji is happy with their dedication and wants to reward , why is it anyone’s problem??? is it that you wld have like to be in their shoes, but cant be??? why not raise a voice against the politicians instead who make wealth at the cost of people’s welfare. The santh jan are at least spreading the name of the lord. Moreover people are not mad to make offerings to anyone if they do not find solutions and blessings ! After all it is a ‘give n take’ world today!

    This entire argument has clearly brought out a personal agenda and animosity that Vraja Rasikji has on the family which due to the merit of their lineage and their own dedication have become stalwarts among the living saints of India. Why does he not question Baba Ramdevji or Morari Bapuji or even santhidooths, for their massive establishments though they too are in the field of bhakthi prachar? is it because they are not Rasikji’s direct competitors to fame ???

    Anyways, no one knew the name of this Rasikji until he took on the mighty Gurujis . So if at all… they have only done you some good in getting you recognition ! Now rest ur sword !

    These petty pointers only prove one to be an angry and hateful individual filled with intolerance about others flourishing!

    A true Rasik will mind his own sadhana and be immersed in his own world of devotion… not criticise ANYONE leave alone those who are active in Bhakti prachaar.

    And finally to this self proclaimed Vraj Bhoomi activist and spokes person of Bihariji , I was very much a part of the Sharad utsav and the sheer ananda that pervaded in the Nidhivan that night is an experience in itself!

    Take a chill pill VR!

  47. Jai Shri Radhe,

    I am amazed to read the whole conversation, have only one thing to say saying something bad about someone is just so easy. But if look deep down inside you may find that the problem is inside you not in the outer world.

    As you are the product of your inner thoughts. so somewhere if you have been blessed by Shri Radha Rani to think, right and speak, at least thank her that she has blessed you with this gift. Which you must utilize in your own awakening and reaching to Shri Radhe, rather wasting this life and time into such baseless criticism about others which you know leads nowhere.

    Neither it would give you inner satisfaction nor other would appreciate it, And forget about others, Just imagine what “Aatam Roopi” Shri Radhe inside you will be thinking .

    The life is really very short to waste into such level of criticism, you have very limited and certain number of days to live, hence focus on your own enlightenment and wish that you could get the kripa of shri radhe in this birth to make this life worth living.

    I don’t think one needs anybody to confirm what he is saying is right or wrong as his own soul is capable of answering this question to himself.

    I know my friend knows deep inside his heart that his conversation is baseless. But the point is, it is not about what he said, it is probably his ego which is still ruling above him, had he been a true Bhakta, the ego within to prove one’s point would be far away from his life.

    I believe the true Rasik or Saint is that person who can make himself selfless, here I see everyone is in a rush to prove his point, that I am right and you are wrong, a true Shri Radha Bhakta can’t be like this, he is the one who has the blessing of being selfless as then only he can be filled with Shri Radha Kripa, when you are so much filled with your own ego then how can you call yourself a Bhakta or a Rasik, it’s not the BHAKTI rasa inside you..it seems you are not rasik but may be really sick…

    I feel bad to say this. But i FELT LIKE EXPRESSING SO DID it.

    I belive, at the end we all are here to spread only love and that is the true kripa and bhakti of Shri radhe, why to hate someone, if you really try to see, you will find good into everything.

    A man with love inside will pour love only, whatever you have inside it surely comes out.

    I still remember one great message of Shri Mridul Goswami Ji, that the real bhakti lies in these 3..

    1. Love everyone
    2. Service to humanity
    3. Sacrifice for others

    If you look inside you will find all these 3 are inter linked, to Serve others you must be filled with love inside, and to Love other and serve them comes only when you can sacrifice your own Self.

    I mean be selfless, love this life that you have been blessed to be in Braj or have got a chance to meet such great bhakta’s like Shri Gaurav & Mridul Goswami ji.

    Give Love, Get Love….
    Jai Jai Shri Radhe…

  48. Radhe sada mujh par rehmat ki nazar rakhna……Radhe sada mujh par rehmat ki nazar rakhna……
    Mein daas tumhara hun…itni to khabar rakhna…
    Radhe sada mujh par rehmat ki nazar rakhna……
    Vahan duniya taras rahi hai…….
    Yahan Rehmat Baras rahi hai……