Kartik Purnima Celebrated in Vrindavan

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By editor - 6.11 2017

Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's aarti performed by Shri Padmanabh Goswami (P.C. Anuragg Goswami)

Kartik Purnima was celebrated on Saturday in Vrindavan. The coming of the full moon marks the last day of the holy month of Kartik. It is also known as Dev Deepawali.

Dev Deepawali lamps in Mathura (P.C. Amar Ujala)

Dev Deepawali

The gods are said to be sleeping throughout the four months of chaturmasyai, which includes Deepawali, and awaken only on Devotthan ekadashi. Thus they celebrate the festival of lights on Kartik Purnima instead. In Mathura, the Dev Deepawali festival committee and the Tirth Purohit Mahasangh celebrated in the evening by lighting thousands of lamps on the Yamuna shore from Swami Ghat to Bangali Ghat. Lakshminarayan Chaudhary inaugurated the program with a lamplighting ceremony.

Yamuna Bath and Parikrama

On Kartik Purnima, thousands of devotees bathed in the Shri Yamuna river at Vrindavan and Mathura. They also performed pooja of Shri Yamunaji with flowers and lights. The number of devotees who undertook Vrindavan parikrama on this day is huge. It was like a human chain was formed along the parikrama marg from day to night. The whole city rang with with the melody of “Radhe Radhe!” “Hare Krishna!” as parikrama-goers sang and danced along the way.

Nimbark Jayanti

Kartik Purnima marks the appearance day of Shri Nimbarkacharya, the father of the Nimbark Sampradaya. On this day a special seminar was held, where sants expressed their love for Radharani and spoke about Radha Tattva. Scholars from all corners of the country praised Vrindavan as the land of rasa and emphasized Radha’s importance. “Without Radha, Krishna of Vrindavan cannot be attained,” was the gist of the day’s discussions. As part of the Nimbark Jayanti celebration 5,100 lamps were offered to the Divine Couple.

Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu on procession. (P.C. Anuragg Goswami)

Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s Agamanotsav

Kartik Purnima marks the day that Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, the father of the Gaudiya Sampradaya, came to Vrindavan. In honor of that holy event the yearly shobhayatra (procession) was taken out on parikrama from the Amiya Nimai temple in Gopinath Bazar. Mahaprabhu in the form of his chitrapat (portrait) was taken from Gopinath Bazar to the Yamuna River, Gopeshwar Mahadev, Mathura Road, Nagar Palika, Seva Kunj and Nidhivan before returning back to his temple. The procession was accompanied by heart-stirring songs of Mahaprabhu’s lila.

Special Raas Lila Darshans

In the sapta devalay, Shri Radha and Krishna were dressed beautifully for their Raas Lila. Special decorations, lighting and dioramas in each temple enchanced the beauty of the night. Darshans at Banke Bihari and Radhavallabhji were also unique and devotees relished visiting all of them. Several temples remained open till late at night, allowing more time for the Divine Couple to reveal their Raas Lila Darshan to the devotees.

 

Other Events in Karttika

After killing the demon ravana, Lord ramacandra entered Ayodhya on dipavali. To celebrate this event the residents of Ayodhya used lamps to illuminate the city, which in the Lord’s fourteen-year absence had come to resemble a city haunted by ghosts.
Damodarashtakam – Back To Godhead
Ayodhya is like our heart, and Sita-rama are the life-force within that heart. Ayodhya was once a wealthy city, but when Sita and rama left it, the residents felt they had lost their hearts and behaved like moving corpses. It is impossible to describe the mental agony these people suffered in separation from their beloved Lord. They performed their daily duties only as a formality and maintained their lives only in the hope that one day they would again see Lord rama. caitanya mahaprabhu expressed His own feelings of separation in His Siksastaka (7): sunyayitam jagat sarvam govinda-virahena me. “In Your absence, I feel that the entire universe is a dreary void.”

When Lord rama returned to Ayodhya, the city’s residents regained their life and their distressed hearts lit up with joy. This light became manifest in the form of lighted lamps.

Govardhana Puja also falls in the month of Karttika. When Krishna convinced nanda maharaja to stop the family’s traditional Indra Puja, an infuriated Indra sent a heavy downpour of rain over vrindavan. but because Krishna protected vrindavan, Indra could not destroy even a particle of dust of this holy land. With the little finger of His left hand, Krishna effortlessly lifted Govardhana Hill and crushed Indra’s pride, thus protecting the devotees of vrindavan.

This pastime, too, proves Krishna’s unlimited love for His devotees. In the Bhagavad-gita (18.66) Krishna assures us that if we abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender to Him, He will protect us in all situations. by lifting Govardhana Hill, Krishna showed how He will go to any extent to protect His loving devotees. by meditating on this pastime, devotees feel extremely grateful and are ready to give up everything and surrender to Krishna.

Finally, for devotees of ISKCON the month of Karttika holds another importance: ISKCON’s founder-acarya, His divine Grace A. c. bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, left this world during this month and rejoined Lord Krishna in His eternal pastimes in the spiritual world. everyone, especially devotees in ISKCON, will remain eternally indebted to Srila Prabhupada, without whose guidance we would have never understood the significance of damodara-lila, dipavali, Govardhana Puja, or Karttika, nor would we have appreciated the inconceivable love between the Lord and His devotee.