I worship Radha and Mādhava’s beloved Kāmyavana, where there are Kāma Sarovara or Gopikā Ramaṇa Sarovara itself.
rādhā-mādhavayoḥ preṣṭhaṁ tad vanaṁ kāmyakaṁ bhaje
tatra gatvā naro devi mama loke mahīyate
“O Devi! Kāmyavana is the fourth of the twelve forests of Vraja. Anyone who goes here will be worshiped in my abode!”
There are many, many holy places situated in Kāmyavana. There are 84 kuṇḍas and 110 Vishnu thrones there. There also used to be 300 wells, but it is said that they were destroyed by Rākṣasas.
The biggest of the kundas is Vimala Kund, on whose banks are found temples of Vimala Devi, Dauji, Gangaji, Gopalaji and Madan Gopal.
At Setubandha Kund there is a temple of Rameshwar Mahadeva. It is here that Sri Krishna performed the Setubandha lila, playing the part of Ramachandra.
On the bank of Ghosharani Kund is the parental home of Sri Yashoda.
On the bank of Mani Kund Sri Harishchandra Maharaj performed penances.
On the bank of Dwaraka Kund Sri Krishna and his queens put up their camp when they came to Vraja from Dwaraka.
On the bank of Balabhadra Kund Sri Balaram addressed the Vrajavasis when he came from Dwaraka.
On the mountain named Charan Pahari one can see Sri Krishna’s footprints.
Then there is Chaurasi Khamba or King Kamasena’s court of justice. In this building there are 84 pillars. On top of the mountain is the cave of Medhavi Muni or Vyomasura’s cave. It is here that Sri Krishna killed Vyomasura.
Near to that is Bhojan Thali, where Sri Krishna and his friends ate rice and yoghurt. At Kāmyavana one can also see Sri Govinda, Sri Gopīnātha, Madana Mohana, Gokula Candramā, Kāmeśvara Mahādeva, Vimalā Kund, Sri Vṛndājī and the bhajan kuṭīra of Siddha Jaya Krishna dāsa Bābājī Maharaj, among others.
The 84 Kunds we mentioned include Kama Sarovar or Gopika Raman Sarovar. Here Sri Krishna performed wonderful pastimes with the gopikās. In the Skanda Purāṇa, Mathura-khaṇḍa, it is written:
tatra tīrtha sahasrāṇi sarāṁsi ca pṛthak pṛthak
In Kāmyavana is Gopikāramaṇa Sarovar, which is also named Kāma Sarovar. In Kāmyavana there is a total of thousands of sacred lakes.
In Bhakti-ratnākara it is described:
ke varṇibe ethā ye vilāsa manohara.
ei kāma sarovara mahā sukhamaya;
kāma sarovare kāma sāgara kohoya
Behold Gopika Raman or Kama Sarovar! Who can describe the enchanting pastimes that took place here? This Kama Sarovar is very blissful and is also called Kama Sagar.
Because all desires are fulfilled of anyone who bathes in its kuṇḍas this place is Kāmyavana.
yathā tathā koile snāna sarva duḥka kṣaya
Because all desires are fulfilled and all miseries are destroyed of anyone who bathes in its kuṇḍas this place is Kāmyavana.
snāna-mātreṇa sarveṣāṁ sarva kāma phala pradam
O Maharaj! After this comes Kāmyavana where you have resided in your childhood. Simply by bathing in this forest all desires will be fulfilled. (Skanda Purāṇa, Mathura Khaṇḍa)
Raghunath Das Goswami says: “I worship this Kāmyavana, which is most dear to Sri Sri Radha Madhava.”
hoyechilo yathā nāma kāma sarovara
sei kāma sarovara virāje yekhāne;
bhaji yugalera priya sei kāmyavane
Commentary of Sri Radha Kund Mahant, Pandit Sri Ananta Das Babaji Maharaj is named Stavāmṛta Kaṇā Vyākhyā (“A drop of the nectar of Stavāvalī“), and was published in Gaurābda 503 (1989 A.D.) from Sri Krishna Chaitanya Shastra Mandir, Vrajananda Ghera, PO Radhakunda (district Mathura), U.P., India.
Devotional songs in Bengali that follow each commentary were composed by Dr. Haripada Sheel.
© Translated by Advaita dāsa in 1994
More of Ananta Das Pandit’s writings in English translation can be found at Tarun Govinda’s blog, Amrita Tarangini.