Vrindavan, 2016.08.13 (VT) : Sri Pitambar Das, Mahant of the Haribol Kutir in Madan Mohan Ghera (just in front of the new Madan Mohan temple) announced that for the first time ever, Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s wooden shoes, which are kept in the Dhameshwar Mahaprabhu temple in Nabadwip, will be visiting Vrindavan to bless the devotees with their darshan.
This is happening in the context of celebrations surrounding Mahaprabhu’s visit to Vrindavan 500 years ago.
Chaitanya Dev renounced his family-life and adopted the mendicant order at the age of twenty-four. At that time he left his “Paduka” (wooden chappal) that he used at home. These were served by his wife Vishnupriya Devi.
The Paduka are expected to arrive at the Kutir on August 19th at about 4 p.m., and will be taken n panchakosi parikrama and various other places in Vraj like Govardhan before returning to Nabadwip.
Mahaprabhu’s wife Srimati Vishnupriya Devi began to pine away in separation from her beloved, so he himself gave her a vigraha of his own self to comfort her . This archa vigraha was made of robust neem wood — said to be the same tree under which he was born — with the palms facing forward in a gesture of embrace or welcome.
Vishnupriya began worshiping this Thakurji in her home. One morning towards the end of her life she is said to have merged into this very murti after her daily puja. When the deity’s gates were opened people found her pearl nose bead hanging from Gauranga Mahaprabhu’s nose!
Today the Thakurji is carefully preserved by descendants from the family of Vishnupriya Devi. The little pearl nose ring still hangs from his nose. And he is considered the Lord of Navadvip Dham … hence he is popularly known as Dhameshwar Gauranga. The paduka stay on the altar in front of Mahaprabhu on the right side corner of his silver throne.
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