Day 11/12 | Visiting Radha Kund
Following the Master | Holi Pilgrimage Vrindavan 2019
The devotees were up early and headed to the buses at around 6:15 am. Once we were all ready, we set off for Radha Kund.
As the leela goes, a demon named Arishtasura, sent by the evil Kamsa to kill Krishna and Balarama, assumed the form of a bull and attacked Krishna. But he was easily overpowered and was instead killed by the Lord. Later that evening, when Krishna went to meet Radha, She jokingly forbade Him to touch Her and said, ‘Today, You have killed a bull, which belongs to the cow family. You have therefore committed the sin of killing a cow. Please do not touch My pure body.’
Krishna smilingly replied that the bull was in fact a very dangerous demon and so by killing it He incurred no sin. But Radha refused to accept this explanation and Her sakhis also supported Her.
Krishna then asked how He could atone for the sin. In reply, Radha said that the only way to atone for the sin would be to bathe in every holy place in the world. To fulfil Her desire, Krishna created a large kund by striking the ground with His heel. He then summoned all the holy places from all over the planet. When they appeared, Krishna asked their personified forms to enter the kund in the form of water, which they promptly did. Krishna then bathed in it and approached Radha. He bragged about how His kund was the most beautiful and how great He was in creating such a kund.
Hearing Krishna boast in such a manner, Radha and her sakhis decided to create an even more exquisite kund adjacent to the one created by Krishna, by digging the place with their bracelets. When not a drop of water manifested in the kund, Krishna said that they could take water from His kund. Radha refused and She along with Her sakhis decided to fill Her kund by carrying water from Manasi-ganga in clay water pots. Krishna signalled to the holy places that they should insist that Radha and Her sakhis fill up their kund with water from His. The holy places personified prayed to Radha and Her sakhis, glorifying them in many ways. She then mercifully gave them the permission to enter Her kund, and immediately a current of water flowed from Shyama Kund to Radha Kund.
After Radha Kund was filled with the holy waters of the entire planet, Lord Krishna told Srimati Radharani that Her kund would be the most famous place in the world and that He would daily bathe in Her kund. Lord Krishna declared that Radha Kund is as dear to Him as Srimati Radharani Herself and anyone who bathes in it will get Her love. Radha Kund is therefore known as the personified love of Srimati Radharani.
As soon as we arrived, we headed straight for the holiest kund. As the devotees lined up along the banks of Radha Kund, Guruji performed prayers on behalf of the group before He started splashing everyone with the water, blessing us all. Some devotees took the opportunity to fully submerge themselves in the holy waters, which were in the cleanest condition they have been in for a very long time. (The work various devotees and social welfare organisations have been doing to improve the conditions of Radha Kund is commendable.)
After our dip, we headed straight to the samadhi of Raghunath Das Goswami, one of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s six Goswamis of Vrindavan, His topmost disciples. There we paid our respects and sought his blessings, before heading to other holy sites around the kund, such as the bhajan kutir of Krishnadas Kaviraj Goswami, the author of the famous Chaitanya Caritamrita, and Gopal Bhatta Goswami, another of the six, and the one to whom the Radha Raman deity belonged.
As we concluded our activities at Radha-kund, the group hopped back on the bus and headed to Govardhan hill. There we set up to perform abhishekam to Govardhan, Guruji’s Giridhari, and a new set of deities purchased for a new temple in Portugal as well. As Guruji poured the elements, He allowed all the pilgrims to come and rub the various offerings onto the large Govardhan shila. The devotees sang enthusiastically until the prayers were completed with arati.
We then headed off to a special place nearby, an important temple of the Vallabha Sampradaya that houses the samadhi of Surdas, the famous blind saint, poet and singer. Surdas composed famous bhajans that Guruji sings often, such as Sabse Oonchi Prema Sagai. There Guruji spoke very briefly of Surdas as the devotees bowed down to the samadhi of the saint. When all was said and done, we headed back home, arriving around 2.30pm. After a very welcome meal, the devotees moved to the tent for the last class with Swami Revatikaanta.
The class was arranged as a Q&A session, with the devotees able to ask questions about all the other classes and their time spent in Vrindavan. The questions ranged about the Giridhari leela, the differences between Self- and God-Realisation, the difference between experiencing a bhav and Realisation, and many more. As soon as class finished, Guruji and the few devotees that would be leaving with Him, rushed to pack their bags as they would be heading back to Shree Peetha Nilaya that very evening. All the devotees gathered to sing Guruji home, and Satya Narayana Das Babaji came to hug his dear friend goodbye. Guruji blessed everyone one last time and headed off to the airport, and in doing so, brought the nearly last day of the pilgrimage to a close.
Stay tuned for tomorrow’s final post of this ‘Follow the Master’ pilgrimage to the Divine!