शिर्डी के साँई बाबा जी की समाधी और बूटी वाड़ा मंदिर में दर्शनों एंव आरतियों का समय....

"ॐ श्री साँई राम जी
समाधी मंदिर के रोज़ाना के कार्यक्रम

मंदिर के कपाट खुलने का समय प्रात: 4:00 बजे

कांकड़ आरती प्रात: 4:30 बजे

मंगल स्नान प्रात: 5:00 बजे
छोटी आरती प्रात: 5:40 बजे

दर्शन प्रारम्भ प्रात: 6:00 बजे
अभिषेक प्रात: 9:00 बजे
मध्यान आरती दोपहर: 12:00 बजे
धूप आरती साँयकाल: 7:00 बजे
शेज आरती रात्री काल: 10:30 बजे

************************************

निर्देशित आरतियों के समय से आधा घंटा पह्ले से ले कर आधा घंटा बाद तक दर्शनों की कतारे रोक ली जाती है। यदि आप दर्शनों के लिये जा रहे है तो इन समयों को ध्यान में रखें।

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Saturday, 23 April 2016

एक वक़्त आयेगा ऐसा सब धरा रह जायेगा


ॐ साईं राम



एक वक़्त आयेगा ऐसा सब धरा रह जायेगा
देखता तू क्या है इक दिन देखता रह जायेगा

रब से ग़फलत छोड़ कब से है अजब मस्ती में तू
आने वाली है क़यामत बैठ जा कश्ती में तू
साईं के बन्दों का बस इक काफला रह जायेगा
एक वक़्त आयेगा ऐसा सब धरा रह जायेगा

वो है इक गहरा समंदर तू मैं मिट्टी की लकीर
तूने गर उसको न पाया वो अमीर और तू फकीर
तेरे उसके दरमियाँ इक फासला रह जायेगा
एक वक़्त आयेगा ऐसा सब धरा रह जायेगा

उसके क़दमों से लिपट जा जिंदगी मिल जायेगी
रास्ते में है अँधेरा रौशनी मिल जायेगी
अक्ल वाला चल पड़ेगा सरफिरा रह जायेगा
एक वक़्त आयेगा ऐसा सब धरा रह जायेगा

रात दिन की इस तपस्या को भी क्या समझेगा तू
ना-समझ बन कर अगर ख़ुद को खुदा समझेगा तू
ढूँढने निकला है जिसको ढूँढता रह जायेगा
एक वक़्त आयेगा ऐसा सब धरा रह जायेगा

तू फ़क़त साईं का बन जिसका कोई मज़हब नहीं
जिसने अपने चाहने वालों को चाहा कब नहीं
आसरा रख वर्ना तू बे-आसरा रह जायेगा
एक वक़्त आयेगा ऐसा सब धरा रह जायेगा

एक वक़्त आयेगा ऐसा सब धरा रह जायेगा
देखता तू क्या है इक दिन देखता रह जायेगा

●▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ஜ۩۞۩ஜ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬●

-: आज का साईं सन्देश :-
जो साईं दर्शन करे,
पाप कर्म धुल जाय |
सदविचार मन में उठे,
बाबा भक्ति पाय ||

पुण्य किये पिछले जनम,
दर्शन उसको होय |
देख नज़र भर साईं को.
जग साईं मय होय ||

●▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ஜ۩۞۩ஜ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬●

Friday, 22 April 2016

आइये हम सभी एकजुट होकर एक नई पहल का हिस्सा बनने की शपथ ले।

आज के वक्त में क्युँ इतना गिर गया इंसान
नहीं रही उसे अब अच्छे और बुरे की पहचान
लूट खसौट का करें वो अब गौरख धंधा
करें कोई एतराज तो कर डालें उसे अंधा

मैं कल से कुछ मानसिक रूप से पीड़ित  हूँ।

जब से अखबार में पढ़ा कि उत्तम नगर, दिल्ली की एक महिला के साथ कुछ अज्ञात लूटेरों ने जबरदस्ती लूटपाट की और जब उस महिला ने विरोध किया तो पेचकस  से उस महिला की दोनों आंखें फोड़ कर बदमाश भाग गए ।

कृपया एक बार जरूर सोचिए कि उस बहन को कितनी असहनीय पीड़ा से गुज़रना पड़ रहा होगा।

आप सभी से अनुरोध हैं कि आप सभी अपने आसपास के माहौल को सुरक्षित बनाना और निश्चित करना कि आज के बाद एक भी ऐसी वारदात कम से कम अपने घर के आसपास तो नहीं होने देंगे।

ऐसा करने के संकल्प मात्र से ही हम कितनी ही बहनों की रक्षा की जिम्मेदारी संभाल कर अपने क्षेत्र को वारदात विहीन करने में सफलता हासिल कर सकते हैं।

आइए आज हम सब मिलकर यह प्रण करें कि हम इस नई पहल का हिस्सा बन कर अपनी जिम्मेदारी को बखूबी  निभायेंगे।

कैसी सोच में डूबे हो क्यों घबराए हो आप

ॐ साईं राम



कैसी सोच में डूबे हो क्यों घबराए हो आप
सुनो साईं के जाप से धुल जाते हैं पाप

सोचना तेरा काम नहीं तू काहे होत उदास
दुनिया भर की खुशियाँ देगी साईं की अरदास
श्रद्धा से जब नाम लो उसका मिले दिलों को चैन
उसकी लीला की खुशबू है सुख दुःख के दिन रैन
चलो चलें दरबार में सभी परिवार समेत
उसकी रहमत के बिना मोती भी हैं रेत
सब कुछ उसके हाथ में है इस बात को तू न भूल
उसके एक इशारे से काँटे बनते हैं फूल
देख रहा है दूर खड़ा वो कठपुतली का नाच
वो चाहे तो पलभर में बरखा को कर दे आंच
मधुर तान दरबार की बस है असली संगीत
जितनी जल्दी हो सके तू बन जा उसका मीत

●▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ஜ۩۞۩ஜ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬●

-: आज का साईं सन्देश:-
घटना यह ऐसी घटी,
समझा मन की भूल |
साईं से श्रद्धा बढ़ी,
निकले सब भ्रमशूल ||
होते ही साईं मिलन,
शंका सब मिट जाय |
भूख प्यास जाती रही,
मन हर्षित हो जाय || 
●▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ஜ۩۞۩ஜ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬●

Thursday, 21 April 2016

श्री साई सच्चरित्र अध्याय 32

ॐ सांई राम


आप सभी को शिर्डी के साईं बाबा ग्रुप की और से साईं-वार की हार्दिक शुभ कामनाएं, हम प्रत्येक साईं-वार के दिन आप के समक्ष बाबा जी की जीवनी पर आधारित श्री साईं सच्चित्र का एक अध्याय प्रस्तुत करने के लिए श्री साईं जी से अनुमति चाहते है, हमें आशा है की हमारा यह कदम घर घर तक श्री साईं सच्चित्र का सन्देश पंहुचा कर हमें सुख और शान्ति का अनुभव करवाएगा, किसी भी प्रकार की त्रुटी के लिए हम सर्वप्रथम श्री साईं चरणों में क्षमा याचना करते है...



श्री साई सच्चरित्र अध्याय 32

गुरु और ईश्वर की खोज, उपवास अमान्य
........................................
इस अध्याय में हेमाडपंत ने दो विषयों का वर्णन किया है ।
1. किस प्रकार अपने गुरु से बाबा की भेंट हुई और उनके द्घारा ईश्वरदर्शन की प्राप्ति कैसे हुई ।
2. श्रीमती गोखले को जो तीन दिन से उपवास कर रही थी, उसे पूरनपोली के भोजन कराये ।


Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Sri Dwarka Dhama Yatra

SRI DWARKA DHAMA YATRA
​ ​


THEIR LORDSHIPS SRI SRI DWARKADHISHA JI

The Main Presiding Deity of Sri Dwarka Dhama


"WELCOME TO DWAKA DHAMA" -

This 18m (61 ft) tall, 15m (50 ft) wide memorial gate is situated on the main road entering Sri Dwarka Dhama from the eastern side. It is built to commemorate the ISKCON Sankirtana Padayatra which began in 1984 from Sri Dwarka Dhama. The first Padayatra was from Sri Dwarka Dhama in Gujarat to Sri Mayapur Dhama in West Bengal which completed a 14,000km walking tour chanting Lord Krishna's Holy Name - Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare | Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare || around India, passing through 15 states.

Places to Visit:

1. Sri Dwarkadhisa Temple, Dwarka (This is the Office of Lord Sri Krishna at Sri Dwarka Dhama)

2. Bet Dwarka Temple - Bet Dwarka is submerged within the sea (This is the residence of Lord Sri Krishna at Sri Dwarka Dhama)

3. Sri Rukmini Ji Temple, Dwarka

4. Gopi Talav, Dwarka

5. Sri Nageshwar Jyotirlinga Temple, Dwarka

6. Gomati River Ghata, Dwarka

7. Panchanada Tirtha or Pandava Wells, Dwarka

8. ISKCON Sri Sri Rukmini-Dwarkadhisa Temple, Dwarka

9. Sri Sudamapuri, Porbandar - Birthplace and Residence of Sri Sudama Ji, dear-most childhood friend of Lord Sri Krishna

10. Mul Dwarka - Place where Lord Sri Krishna and Lord Balarama stayed for 6-8 months before going to Dwarka

11. Jambavan Caves, Ranavav - Place where Jambavan lived. Both Jambavan and Lord Sri Krishna fought here for 28 days for Shyamataka jewel, when Jambavan finally realized that the person he is fighting with is the Lord of his heart, Lord Krishna who is non-different from Lord Rama. Lord Krishna then out of His causeless mercy to His dear-devotee showed His form of Lord Rama.

12. Madhavpur Ghed - where Lord Sri Krishna and Sri Rukmini Ji married after Lord kidnapped Rukmini Ji from Amravati.

13. Sri Bhalka Tirtha, Vereval

14. Somnath Jyotirlinga Temple


1. LORD DWARKADHISA TEMPLE

Lord Sri Krishna's Royal Home

Also known as SRI DWARKA TRILOKYA JAGAT MANDIR

DWARKA is the sacred city where Lord Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, spent most of His time during His appearance on earth five thousand years ago. He performed wonderful pastimes there, including expanding into 16,108 forms and creating 16,108 palaces for His 16,108 queens. In Vrindavana, Lord Krishna lived as a simple cowherd boy, but in Dwarka He lived as a wealthy prince. Krishna spent one hundred years here, longer than He spent in Vrindavana and Mathura combined. Modern-day Dwarka is a small city with an area of sixteen square miles and a population of around thirty thousand. 

Dwarka means "gateway to the Supreme" or "city of gates." Traditionally, an opulent city would have many gates, indicating the king's confidence in protecting the city. The original city of Dwarka, described in the Srimad-Bhagavatam, the Mahabharata, and other Vedic scriptures, was a fort city built within the sea. Lord Krishna built Dwarka to protect His kinsmen, the Yadu dynasty, from repeated attacks by kings and armies intent on killing Him. By the will of the Lord, Dwarka disappeared into the sea at the time of the Lord's departure from this world. Archaeological excavations have brought out from the sea many artefacts suggesting that an opulent city stood there in the distant past.

Srila Prabhupada writes: "The heavenly planets are more celebrated than the earth. But the celebrity of earth has defeated that of the heavenly planets because of Dvaraka, where Lord Sri Krishna reigned as king. Three places, namely Vrindavana, Mathura, and Dvaraka, are more important than the famous planets within the universe. These places are perpetually sanctified because whenever the Lord descends on earth He displays His transcendental activities particularly in these three places. They are perpetually the holy lands of the Lord, and the inhabitants still take advantage of the holy places, even though the Lord is now out of their sight." (Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.10.27, Purport)

Krishna Married 16,108 queens! How did He interact with them…how they stayed ….. 

This questions always arises in the mind of a sincere seeker….. And their answer can instil great deal of faith for those visiting Dwarka.

"When Krishna was here He was performing different activities with each and every one of His queens intimately. None of them ever felt lonely for even a second. And when Krishna would rise early in the morning to perform His sadhana as a perfect ghrihasta, He would rise before the rooster crowed in the morning and He would perform mediation, perform pooja, giving charity and later in the day He would leave each of His 16108 palaces to go to perform his duties as Dwarkadish, the king of Dwarka assisting King Ugrasena and He would go to the Sudharma assembly house and the Srimad-Bhagavatam explains how He would leave his 16108 forms, but just before entering into the Sudharma assembly house all the forms would merge into one form and then he would rule the state of Dwarka. And when it was time to return home and meet his queens He would expand into 16108 forms and enjoy loving relationships with them. "

"One may ask how is it possible that Krishna could live in 16108 palaces simultaneously. Because Krishna is the Absolute Truth, He is the embodiment of Adhyatamik Shakti, inconceivable potencies, He can do everything. And Krishna can do anything and when Krishna comes to this earth He wants to show His Supremacy. That if He came like an ordinary person who would chant His glories. Therefore He reveals his wonderful, wonderful inconceivable super excellent activities simply to attract all our minds ."

The present city Dvaraka ("Dwarka" on the map) is on the shore of Arabian Sea. It has a resident population of approximately 30,000, and a tourist population that fluctuates with the seasons. Even though it's remote on the west coast in Gujarat state, devotees endeavour to come from far and wide to have the Darshan of Their Lordships Sri Sri Dwarkadhisa. Dwarka is one of the most important places to visit because it is one of the four prominent holy places in the cardinal directions of India: Dwarka (west), Jagannatha Puri (east), Rameswaram (south), and Badrinath (north). The atmosphere in Dwarka is peaceful. The people are pious and don't seem harassed by many problems. 


SRI SRI DWARKADHISA TEMPLE and sacred GOMATI RIVER


SRI SRI DWARKADHISA TEMPLE


THEIR LORDSHIPS SRI SRI DWARKADHISA JI

The Main Presiding Deity of Sri Dwarka Dhama


SRI SRI DWARKADHISA TEMPLE - on right side is the main entrance

The seven-story high temple is built on 72 pillars. 

From the temple dome waves an 84 foot-long multi-colored flag decorated with the symbols of the sun and moon.


SRI SRI DWARKADHISA TEMPLE at night


Lord Krishna's Arriving to Sri Dwarka

"The inhabitants of Dwarka were regularly accustomed to look upon the reservoir of all beauty, the infallible Lord, yet they were never satiated. The Lord's chest is the abode of the goddess of fortune. His moonlike face is the drinking vessel for eyes which hanker after all that is beautiful. His arms are the resting places for the administrative demigods. And His lotus feet are the refuge of pure devotees who never talk or sing of any subject except His Lordship. As the Lord passed along the public road of Dwarka, His head was protected from the sunshine by a white umbrella. White feathered fans moved in semicircles, and showers of flowers fell upon the road. His yellow garments and garlands of flowers made it appear as if a dark cloud were surrounded simultaneously by sun, moon, lightning and rainbows." [Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.11.25-27]

The gardens and parks were full of various flowers of different colors and orchards that were overloaded with a variety of fruits. Beautiful birds were chirping, and peacocks were delightfully crowing. There were tanks and ponds full of blue and red lotus flowers, and some of these sites were filled with varieties of lilies. The lakes were full of nice swans and cranes whose voices resounded everywhere. In the city there were as many as 900,000 great palaces built of first-class marble with gates and doors made of silver. The posts of the houses and palaces were bedecked with jewels such as touchstone, sapphires, and emeralds, and the floors gave off a beautiful luster. The highways, lanes and streets, crossings, and marketplaces were all beautifully decorated. The whole city was full of residential homes, assembly houses, and temples, all of different architectural beauty. All of this made Dwarka a glowing city. (Krishna book, Vol. 2, p. 242)

Mood of Dwarka

Because Lord Krishna lived in Dwarka as a prince, He is worshiped there in that mood. The Dwarkadhisa Deity is opulently dressed, and the symbols in His four hands (conch, club, disc, and lotus) are covered in silver. During the worship, brahmanas colorfully dressed with solid red or yellow dhotis and with shirts made from flags that have flown over the temple beat drums and blow conch shells.

The original Dwarkadhisa Temple was built by Vajranabha the great grandson of Lord Sri Krishna more than 2500 years back on the Hari Gruha, the erstwhile palace of Lord Sri Krishna in Dwarka. Temple was in an umbrella shape initially. Since then temple structure has undergone many changes. Currently called as Jagat Mandir also known as Nija Mandir, the 16th century old structure of the main temple is a glorious one exquisitely carved with the temple tower reaching a height of 52 meters. Built in an area of approx 600 square meters the splendid Jagat Mandir situated on the banks of river Gomati at a height of 70 feet above the sea level has two gigantic towers. One with a height of 170 feet which is seven storied called as Ladwa Shikar and the other with a height of 157 feet which is five storied called as Nija Shikar. 

The seven-story high Dwarkadhisa temple is built on seventy-two pillars. From the temple dome waves an eighty four-foot-long multi-colored flag decorated with the symbols of the sun and moon. The Deity of Lord Dwarkadhisha is enshrined in the Nija Shikar in the Sabha Mantap supported by 60 pillars. Construction of the chariot like temple is based on 72 exquisitely carved monolithic pillars built with granite and stone without any arch. The temple consists of a sanctum, vestibule and a rectangular hall with porches on three sides. 

Devotees have to climb around 56 steps, representing the 52 administrative divisions of the Yadava kingdom and remaining four represents Krishna, Balaram, Pradyuman and Anirudhha, respectively. This Jagat Mandir has two main entrances, one facing north and another facing the south. The north entrance, which is also the main entrance to the temple, is known as the 'Moksha Dwara' (Door to Salvation). This entrance also leads towards the town market near the temple. The south entrance of the temple is known as the 'Swarga Dwara' (Gate to Heaven). This entrance opens towards the Gomati River, where devotees are required to take a bath before entering the temple. The main deity in the temple is Lord Dwarkadhisa or Lord Krishna. 

Within the compound of the Dwarkadhisa temple, built in the sixteenth century, are many small shrines, including those of Laksmi, Siva, Radhika, Balarama, Pradyumna, Aniruddha, Jambavati, Satyabhama, and Purusottama Visnu. Directly facing Dwarkadhisa is the shrine of Devaki, Krishna's mother. She's looking at Krishna, and He's looking at her. In the Devaki shrine after the mangala-arati, brahmana boys sit in brightly colored clothes and chant Vedic scriptures, creating a soothing and auspicious atmosphere. Dwarka is a pleasant town on the coast, with a nice strip of beach. The sea is calm there. The climate is moderate, not too hot in summer or too cold in winter. As per the temple sources more than five million people have visited the Jagat Mandir per year. 

Dwarka Fifty Centuries Ago

The following description of Dwarka during Krishna's presence there appears in the Srimad-Bhagavatam (10.69.1-12) in connection with the sage Narada's visit: 

"The City was filled with the sounds of birds and bees flying about the parks and pleasure gardens, while its lakes, crowded with blooming indivara, ambhoja, kahlara, kumuda, and utpala lotuses, resounded with the calls of swans and cranes. Dwarka boasted 900,000 royal palaces, all constructed with crystal and silver and splendorously decorated with huge emeralds. Inside these palaces, the furnishings were bedecked with gold and jewels. Traffic moved along a well laid-out system of boulevards, roads, intersections, and marketplaces, and many assembly houses and temples of demigods graced the charming city. The roads, courtyards, commercial streets, and residential patios were all sprinkled with water and shaded from the sun's heat by banners waving from flagpoles. In the city of Dwarka was a beautiful private quarter worshiped by the planetary rulers. This district, where the demigod Visvakarma had shown all his divine skill, was the residential area of Lord Hari [Krishna], and thus it was gorgeously decorated by the sixteen thousand palaces of Lord Krishna's queens. Narada Muni entered one of these immense palaces.

Supporting the palace were coral pillars decoratively inlaid with vaidurya gems. Sapphires bedecked the walls, and the floors glowed with perpetual brilliance. In that palace Tvasta had arranged canopies with hanging strands of pearls; there were also seats and beds fashioned of ivory and precious jewels. In attendance were many well-dressed maidservants bearing lockets on their necks, and also armor-clad guards with turbans, fine uniforms, and jeweled earrings. The glow of numerous jewel-studded lamps dispelled all darkness in the palace. My dear king, on the ornate ridges of the roof danced loudly crying peacocks, who saw the fragrant aguru incense escaping through the holes of the latticed windows and mistook it for a cloud."

In His mercy, Lord Sri Krishna has left us a replica Dwarka to point us back to our eternal destination. Every year on January 26, ISKCON hold its annual Lord Jagannatha Rathayatra in Sri Dwarka Dhama which is attended by hundreds of devotees from throughout India and abroad. 

2. BET DWARKA

Bet Dvaraka is island 30 km north of Dwarka in Arabic sea near village named Okha. To get there by boat takes 20 minutes from Okha. Bet Dwarka got this name because Lord's childhood friend Sri Sudama Ji gave Him the Bet (gift) here. Bet Dwarka is the 'residence of the Lord Dwarkadhisa' and the Dwarkadhisa Temple at Dwarka town is the 'office of Lord Dwarkadhisa'. Both these are the original abode of Lord Sri Krishna. Bet Dwarka is also known as Raman Dvipa, as Lord Krishna preferred to reside here with His family. The sacred island of Bet Dwarka island is said to be the last remaining piece of land from the original town which sink into the sea after Lord Sri Krishna's departure. The main Temple on the island was built by Sri Vallabhacharya about 500 years ago and has Deity of Sri Sri Dwarkadhisa which was made by His consort, Sri Rukmini Ji. Lord Sri Krishna (Dwarkadhisa) at Bet Dwarka in a similar posture as in Dwarka town with difference of holding Shanka (Conch) in oblique position. Bet Dwarka is the place where brahmana Sudama (Krishna's friend from gurukula) came to visit the Lord. Inside the Temple there is the exact place where Lord Sri Krishna welcomed His Sri Sudama Ji and washed his feet. It is considered important to make donation towards food grains etc. at the temple. Around the main temple there are smaller shrines of Devaki, Satyabhama, Radhikaji and Jambavati. The temple also has a goshala and Maha-Prasadam bhojanalya. Every day around 1pm Sri Sri Dwarkadhisa's Maha-Prasadam is served here. 


BET DWARKA is submerged within the sea. 

Only main remnant portion of Bet Dwarka is on an island about 5 kms from the main land. This is the main temple and also the residence of Lord Sri Krishna. One has to take a ferry to reach to Bet Dwarka which takes about 20 mins to reach.


BET DWARKA TEMPLE


THEIR LORDSHIPS SRI SRI DWARKADHISA JI at Bet Dwarka

Lord Sri Krishna (Dwarkadhisa) at Bet Dwarka in a similar posture as in Dwarka town with difference of holding Shanka (Conch) in oblique position.


Hanuman Dandi Temple: Six km away from Dwarkadhisa temple is the Hanuman Dandi Temple, This is the place where Hanuman Ji and his son Makardhwaj had met. This is the only place where the Deity of Hanuman Ji and his son Makardhwaj can be seen. Local vehicles are available to visit Hanuman Dandi temple. 

3. SRI RUKMINI JI TEMPLE

History of Sri Rukmini Ji Temple 

One day sage, Durvasa Muni, who was easily angered, was invited to dinner by Lord Sri Krishna and his wife, Sri Rukmini Ji. Durvasa Muni agreed to come on condition that Krishna and Rukmini would have to pull his chariot instead of any animal. Sri Krishna & Rukmini happily agreed to do so. While pulling the chariot, Rukmini Ji became thirsty. She sought the help of Lord Sri Krishna. In order to bail her out, Lord Sri Krishna stopped the chariot and with His toe He dig the earth to draw a spring of the holy Ganges water. Rukmini took a sip without offering to Durvasa Muni. Annoyed by her impoliteness he gave following two curses: (1) he cursed Rukmini Ji that she would be separated from her beloved husband for 12 years. (2) For 16 kms around Dwarka the water will be salty and undrinkable. Due to this curse Sri Rukmini Ji had to stay here for 12 years and did penances. That is the reason why Lord Krishna's temple is in the Dwarka town and hers is positioned outside the Dwarka. And because of the second curse by Durvasa Muni, till today the water of Dwarka is salty and undrinkable. 

This is the spot where Rukmini Devi did the penance and Mother Ganges manifested as a spring through a pastime of Lord Sri Krishna. This Temple is located 2 km away from Dwarka's Jagat Mandir. It is widely believed that the pilgrimage to Dwarka is incomplete if a devotee doesn't go to offer prayers at Rukmini Temple even if he has worshiped the Lord at Dwarkadhisa temple. 

The temple is an architectural masterpiece. The temple was built by the great grandson of Lord Sri Krishna, King Vajranabha. There is a beautiful marble Deity of Sri Rukmini Devi with Chaturbhuja (four hands) holding Shanka, Chakra, Gada and Padma indicating that she is the avathara of Goddess Sri Maha Lakshmi the consort of Lord Narayana. The temple walls are decorated with beautiful paintings depicting her pastimes with Sri Krishna. 


SRI RUKMINI JI TEMPLE, 2 kms from Sri Dwarka Dhama


SRI RUKMINI JI at Sri Rukmini Temple, Sri Dwarka Dhama

4. GOPI TALAV

Padma Purana explains that in one kalpa during Lord Sri Krishna's Bhauma Vrindavana (earthly) pastimes, the Vraja-gopis went near Dwarka to dance with their beloved in a secluded forest beside the sea, 20 km north of Dwarka on the night of Sharad Purnima (full moon) and once again danced with him. Krishna secretly left His palace, abandoned His royal insignias, robes, opulent crown and other trimmings of a King, and again adorned Himself in his gopa-vesh, simple dress of a Vrindavana cowherd boy - with a red turban and peacock feather atop His head, a flowing lightning gold dhoti and diaphanous yellow chaddar, a yellow karnikara flower stuck above one ear, a gunja berry necklace swinging from His neck, and His indomitable instrument - flute (murali).

After hours of wonderful dancing and transcendental expressions, Lord Sri Krishna took the Gopis to swim in a nearby lake to relieve their fatigue. All the body powders, unguents, oils and pastes of sandalwood, musk, jasmine, saffron and various colored minerals washed off their transcendental bodies as they splashed each other and played about. Unable to part from Krishna, the Gopis offered their lives to the soil of this land and merged with their beloved. It is said that they turned into yellow clay, known as Gopi Chandan. For the last fifty centuries Krishna bhaktas have been using this clay known as Gopi Chandan (it is golden color just like Radhika's splendid limbs), to apply tilaka. The soil of the Gopi talav is extremely smooth and yellow in color.

Another pastime is related with Arjuna. After the battle at Kuruksetra, Arjuna thought himself to be the best warrior of the world. To eliminate the pride in His devotee friend, Arjuna, Lord Krishna asked him to escort his queens to Bet Dwarka. On the way, just near this pond, Arjuna was attacked by people of Kaba community, and Arjuna was defeated. The queens understanding this left their Body in this pond to go back to Goloka (Abode of Sri Krishna). So it is called Gopi Talav (pond). The famous phrase 'Kabe Arjun luntiyo,vohi dhanush vohi ban' reflects this incident.

Gopi Talav is also the site where Lord Sri Krishna killed the demon Bhaumasura here, freeing 16,000 princesses from His palace. These gopi princesses fell in love with Lord Krishna and wanted to marry Him. 

Gopi Talav is 21 km from Dwarka and 5 km from Nageshwar Jyotirlinga temple. Around the Gopi Talav, there are a number of ancient temples, which one can have Darshan. In one of the temple's one can have the darshan of Lord Rama sila from Treta-yuga, used for constructing bridge to Lanka, which floats in water. Local transportation like buses and auto rickshaws are available from Dwarka for visiting this site. 



GOPI TALAV


GOPI CHANDAN at GOPI TALAV

5. SRI NAGESHWARA JYOTIRLINGA TEMPLE

Nageshwara Jyotirlinga is one of the 12 Jyotilinga's. Nageshwara is believed to be the first Jyotilinga on earth. Srimad-Bhagavatam Canto 12, chapter 13, verse 16 describes:

nimna-ganam yatha ganga

devanam acyuto yatha

vaisnavanam yatha sambhuh

purananam idam tatha

Translation:

Just as the Ganga is the greatest of all rivers, Lord Acyuta the supreme among deities and Lord Sambhu [Siva] the greatest of Vaisnavas, so Srimad-Bhagavatam is the greatest of all Puranas.

Lord Siva is the greatest devotee of Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Sri Krishna (vaisnavanam yatha sambhuh). Lord Siva is one of the twelve mahajanas as described in Srimad-Bhagavatam Canto 6, chapter 3, verses 20-21.

svayambhur naradah sambhuh

kumarah kapilo manuh

prahlado janako bhismo

balir vaiyasakir vayam

dvadasaite vijanimo

dharmam bhagavatam bhatah

guhyam visuddham durbodham

yam jnatvamrtam asnute

Translation:

Lord Brahma, Bhagavan Narada, Lord Siva, the four Kumaras, Lord Kapila [the son of Devahuti], Svayambhuva Manu, Prahlada Maharaja, Janaka Maharaja, Grandfather Bhisma, Bali Maharaja, Sukadeva Gosvami and I myself know the real religious principle. My dear servants, this transcendental religious principle, which is known as bhagavata-dharma, or surrender unto the Supreme Lord and love for Him, is uncontaminated by the material modes of nature. It is very confidential and difficult for ordinary human beings to understand, but if by chance one fortunately understands it, he is immediately liberated, and thus he returns home, back to Godhead.

Nageshwara Temple is 16 kms from Dwarka on the route to Bet Dwarka Island on the coast of Saurashtra in Gujarat. Nageshwar Mahadev Sivalingam is facing south while the Gomugam is facing east. There is a pastime related to this. A saint by name Naamdev was singing bhajans in front of the Lord. Other devotees asked him to stand aside and not hide the Lord. To this Naamdev asked them to suggest one direction in which the Lord does not exist, so that he can stand there. The enraged devotees carried him and left him on the southside. To their astonishment, they found that the Linga was now facing South with the Gomugam facing east. 


SRI NAGESWARA JYOTIRLINGA TEMPLE


Lord Siva at Sri Nageswara Jyotirlinga Temple

6. GOMATI RIVER GHATA (Sangam Ghat)

Gomati River is one of the important holy rivers of India. Sri Dwarka Dhama is located on the bank of Gomati River. Gomati is a tidal river with its water reaching the nearby Arabian sea. The river forks just before reaching the sea, producing a small island on which sits a temple of Laksmi Narayana. The site is ancient, although the present temple is not very old. The temple of Samudra Narayana sits where the Gomati River reaches the sea in Dwarka. Samudra Narayana is Krishna's expansion as Lord Narayana lying on the Garbhodaka Ocean. This old temple is the only temple of Samudra Narayana anywhere. 

By the mercy of Sri Dwarkadhisa, the waters of Gomati River are crystal clear, unlike many rivers around the world. When river waters are full, one can see clearly the river bed and one's reflection. Since Gomati is a tidal river, its waters at times recede and other times are full. It is very auspicious to take bath at Gomati River.

Gomati Sangam Ghat is the sacred place where Gomati River flows. This ghat can be reached by climbing down 56 steps from the Swarga Dwar of the Dwarkadhisa Temple. Gomati River meets the sea at the Chakratirtha Ghat. The Chakratirtha Ghat is famous for a wheel with white porous type stones, called as Dwarkashila or Chakrankitha. There are over 12 ghats surrounding the Gomati River, which are venues of Samudra Narayana Temple, Gomatiji Temple, the Panchanada and Chakra Narayana. The point where the Gomati River meets the ocean is known as the Gomati Sangam. On the river banks of Gomati, there is a holy Gomati Kund, where sage Durvasa Muni was served by Lord Krishna. At this Gomati Kund, the Gomati River meets the Arabian Sea and it is considered sacred to take bath here. Gomati Ghat features many temples small temples shrines of Lord Krishna and his friend Sudama. These temples can be reached by hiring a boat that gives a beautiful view of the entire Dwarka town and spectacular Sri Sri Dwarkadhisa Temple. 


Sacred GOMATI RIVER at Sri Dwarka Dhama

Sacred River Gomati is a tidal river, directly connected to the Arabian sea. By the mercy of Sri Dwarkadhisa, the waters of River Gomati are so crystal clear that one can see the river bed when the river is completely flowing.


Sunset by the Sri Sri Dwarkadhisa Temple from Gomati Ghat

7. PANCHANADA Tirtha or Pandava Wells

After losing everything, their land, property, kingdom and wife, to the Kauravas, the Pandavas, come to this spot to do penance. Here they are admonished for gambling everything away. However, five sages were called to intercede on their behalf. They sit amongst the sand dunes with each of the Pandavas and prayed. Through their prayers and yogic powers, they drew the waters of 5 rivers, in the form of water wells, to where they are sitting ('kunds'). The 5 rivers are, 

(1) Jambuvanti from Gaya at Bhima Kund; 
(2) Gomti from Lucknow at Arjuna Kund; 
(3) Ushawati from Goa at Nakul Kund; 
(4) Chandrabhagas from Orissa & Maharashtra at Sahadev Kund; and, 
(5) Laxmana from Badrinath & Himachal at Yudhisthira Kund. 

The water of each well tastes totally different, one from the other, though they are surrounded by salty sea water on all sides. The taste of water from each of the wells represents the mood of each of the Pandava. 

Just besides the Pandavas five wells is the ancient temple of Lakshmi-Narayana. At the centre of temple's courtyard is a tree under which sage Durvasa Muni did his tapasya. At one corner of the temple is a gufa (cave) where Durvasa Muni did penances in repentance to the curse which he gave to Sri Rukmini Ji after she drank the water without offering to him. This cave is closed for public. Temple also a site where one can have the darshan of the foot prints of five Pandavas and their mother Kunti Devi. The pujari at the temple can lead to the 5 water wells and offer water from each one. The water is potable and is sweet, and indeed tastes different for every well! 


Pandavas Wells are across Gomati River besides this ancient Temple. 

At this Temple one can see the Foot-prints of all five Pandavas and their Kunti Devi.


Inside this ancient Temple, in the courtyard there is a tree were sage Durvasa Muni meditated.

At one corner of the Temple there is a cave where Durvasa Muni did penances for several years after 

realizing that he unnecessarily cursed Sri Rukmini Devi.


PANDAVAS WELLS

8. SRI SRI RUKMINI-DWARKADHISA, ISKCON TEMPLE


THEIR LORDSHIPS SRI SRI RUKMINI DWARKADHISA


His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Founder-Acarya of International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON)

ISKCON opened a temple in Dwarka in 1996. Their Lordships Sri Sri Rukmini Dwarkadhisa are the presiding Deities at the temple. ISKCON temple is located at the heart of Dwarka town, 5 mins walk from Sri Dwarkadhisa main temple. The uniqueness about this temple is that when temple altar is open, one can have the Darshan of the beautiful Lordships (on first floor) while standing at the main gate downstairs. Every year on 26 January (Republic Day of India) ISKCON holds Lord Jagannatha Rathayatra with devotees coming from throughout Gujarat and rest of India.

9. SRI SUDAMA PURI, Porbandar

Birthplace and Residence of Sri Sudama Ji, the Dear-most childhood Friend of Lord Sri Krishna

Sri Sudama Puri is the birthplace and residence of Sri Sudama Ji, the childhood friend of Lord Sri Krishna. Sudama Puri is in the town of Porbandar, 104 km (2 hours) from Sri Dwarka Dhama. Porbandar is a coastal harbour city situated on the western coast of Saurashtra, Gujarat, along the Arabian Sea. In the 10th century Porbandar was known as "Pauravelakul" and thereafter renamed as "Sudamapuri". 

Located at the centre of Porbandar, Sudama Ji's temple is one of the exceptional temple in India which is dedicated to the great devotee of Lord Krishna. Initially there was a smaller temple in 12th and 13th century. Current Sudama Temple was constructed between 1902 to 1907. The main temple altar has the Deities of Sri Sudama Ji at the centre, Lord Sri Krishna at the left and Sri Sushila Ji, the wife of Sudama Ji on the right. Temple gives the 'Sudama Ji's tandul (flat rice)' as the maha-prasad. This temple is visited by thousands of devotees from around the world. Every evening at 7pm there is sandhya-arati. Temple is looked after by a humble pujari. Pujari recalls, often Hare Krishna devotees from around the world visit the temple. Devotees remember and recite the pastimes of Sri Sudama Ji and Lord Krishna from the Krishna book. Every day at around 11am and 5pm maha-prasadam is served at a hall behind the temple. The temple also has beautiful garden and the ancient well from which Sudama Ji used to get water. Porbandar is also the birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi (Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi). Kirti Mandir in Porbandar is dedicated to him. Sudama Puri temple opening hours: 7am to 9pm. 

Sri Sudama Ji a brahmana was a personal friend of Lord Sri Krishna. Both Sudama Ji and Lord lived and studied at the ashram of their spiritual master, Sandipani Muni. Sri Sudama Ji was completely free of material desires. He maintained himself and his wife with whatever came of its own accord, and thus they were poverty-stricken. One day Sudama's wife, unable to find any food to prepare for her husband, went to him and asked that he visit his friend Krishna in Dwarka and beg some charity. Sudama was reluctant, but in great humility and submission when she again and again requested, he agreed to go, reflecting that an opportunity to see the Lord was extremely auspicious. His wife begged a few handfuls of flattened rice as a gift for Sri Krishna, and Sudama set off for Dwarka.

As Sudama approached the palace of Lord Krishna's principal wife, Rukmiṇi-devi, the Lord saw him from a distance. Krishna immediately rose from His seat on Rukmiṇī's bed and embraced His friend with great joy. Then He sat Sudama down on the bed, washed his feet with His own hands and sprinkled the wash water on His head. After this He presented him with various gifts and worshiped him with incense, lamps and so on. Meanwhile, Rukmini fanned the shabbily dressed brahmana with a yaktail whisk. All of this astonished the residents of the palace. Lord Sri Krishna then took the hand of His friend, and the two of them reminisced about the things they had done together long ago, while living in the school of their spiritual master. Sudama pointed out that Krishna engages in the pastime of acquiring an education only to set an example for human society.

In the course of His loving talks with His friend Sudama, Lord Krishna said, "My dear brahmana, have you brought any gift for Me from home? I regard as very significant even the smallest offering from My loving devotee." But the poor brahmana was ashamed to present Krishna with his meager gift of flat rice. However, since Lord Krishna is the Supersoul dwelling in all hearts, He knew why Sudama had come to visit Him. So He grabbed the bundle of flat rice Sudama was hiding under his arms and ate a handful of it with great pleasure. Lord ate a morsel of the flat rice brought by His friend Sudama and bestowed upon him wealth greater than that of the King of heaven. He was about to eat a second morsel when Rukmini devi stopped Him.

Feeling as if he had gone back to Godhead, Sudama spent that night comfortably in Lord Krishna's palace, and the next morning he set off for home. As he passed along the highway, he thought of how fortunate he was to have been so honored by Sri Krishna. Absorbed in this meditation, Sudama arrived at the place where his home used to be - and he was struck with great wonder. Instead of his broken-down hovel, he saw a series of opulent palaces. While he stood astonished, a group of beautiful men and women came forward to greet him with singing and music. The brahmaṇa's wife, wonderfully adorned with celestial jewellery, came out of the palace and welcomed him with great love and reverence. Sudama entered his home together with her, thinking that this extraordinary transformation must have been due to the Supreme Lord's mercy on him. From then on Sudama lived his life amidst lavish wealth, yet he maintained his mood of detachment and constantly chanted the glories of Lord Krishna In a short time he broke off all bonds of bodily attachment and attained to the kingdom of God. 


SRI SUDAMA PURI ENTRANCE


SUDAMAPURI TEMPLE - Birthplace and Residence of Sri Sudama Ji


Sri Sudami Ji (centre), Lord Sri Krishna (left), Sri Sushila Ji wife of Sudama Ji (right)


Sudama Ji's - TANDUL (chipped rice) - Maha prasad

10. MUL DWARKA - Visavada

While going from Mathura to Dwarka Lord Krishna and Balarama had stopped in Porbandar at village Visavada. In its remembrance in Visavada (Mul Dwarka) Lord Krishna's "paduka" can be seen in this temple. Approx 750 years ago a devotee called Vijant Bhagat had constructed these temples. Scripts says this temple was constructed in Vikram Samvat 1262 can be seen in Visavada's this temple. In Mul Dwarka every year on Janmashtmi day a huge fair is organized. Mul Dwarka is at the distance of about 52 km (1 hour) from Sri Dwarka Dhama on the way towards Sudama Puri at Porbandar and Somnath. 


MUL DWARKA entrance


LORD SRI KRISHNA DEITY at Mul Dwarka (Visavada)

11. JAMBAVAN CAVE, Ranavav

Jambavan cave is located at village named Ranavav, 17 km from Porbandar, off Rajkot-Porbandar highway. Inside the cave there is the spot where Lord Sri Krishna and Jambavan fought over the Syamantaka jewel for 28 days continuously day and night, non-stop. On 28th day Jambavan realized that he is fighting with Supreme Lord Sri Krishna who is non-different from his beloved Lord Ramacandra. There is the exact spot where Jambavan gave Syamantaka jewel and gifted his daughter Jambavati for marriage to Lord Krishna. Inside the cave there are 2 tunnels. One tunnel leads to Junagarh which is 2 hours away, and other leads to Dwarka Dhama. Every year a big fair takes place at this place. Cave is just behind Haiti cement factory and well connected by road. 

Jambavan also known as Jambavantha, was the King of the Bears, immortal to all but his father Vishnu. He helped Lord Rama find his wife Sita and fight her abductor, Ravana. It is he who made Hanuman realize his immense capabilities and encouraged him to leap across the ocean to search for Sita in Lanka. He was the King of the Himalayas who had incarnated as a bear in order to serve Lord Rama. He had received a boon from Lord Rama that he would have a long life, be handsome and would have the strength of ten million lions. 


JAMBAVAN CAVES - 

Place where Jambavan lived. Both Jambavan and Lord Sri Krishna fought here for 28 days for Shyamataka jewel, when Jambavan finally realized that the person he is fighting with is the Lord of his heart, Lord Krishna who is non-different from Lord Rama. Lord Krishna then out of His causeless mercy to His dear-devotee showed His form of Lord Rama.


Jambavan handing over Shyamataka jewel and his daughter to Lord Sri Krishna

12. MADHAVAPUR GHED

Where Lord Sri Krishna married Sri Rukmini Ji after kidnapping her

Madhavpur Ghed is a small village where Lord Sri Krishna married Sri Rukmini Ji after kidnapping her from Amravati in Vidarbha. This is a very beautiful village is close to Porbandar (60 km) and lies on the seashore. There is a exact spot where Lord Krishna married Rukmini Ji. When Lord Krishna was bringing Rukmini Ji to Dwarka after kidnapping, Rukmini Ji requested Krishna that she would like to have her marriage ceremony where no marriage ever had taken place previously. Upon the request of Rukmini Ji, Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Sri Krishna withdrew the sea by 7 km on each side and the land manifested with the sea been withdrawn. This pastime took place at Madhavpur Ghed and Lord Sri Krishna married Rukmini Ji here. Close by the temple where marriage ceremony took place, there is another temple where Lord Krishna and Rukmini Ji spent some time together before marrying. 

Madhavpur Ghed is also the place where Lord Sri Krishna killed Madhu demon and thus got the name Madhusudana. The spot where this demon was killed is just next to the temple where marriage ceremony took place. This spot is marked by a pond. 

There is another famous ancient temple of Sri Sri Madhavrai Ji built in memory of Lord Krishna's pastime of marriage to Rukmini Ji. Temple has most exquisite Deities of Lord Madhavrai and His brother Lord Trikamrai (Balarama) and is situated in the middle of this village. Every year starting from Rama Navami day a celebration of this pastime is held for five days at Madhavpur Ghed in a cultural fair - Sri Thakorji's Vivaha Utsav with performance of Vivah Viddhi and Rathayatra. Madhavpur Ghed is 3 hours from Dwarka Dhama on the way to Porbandar and Somnath. It is easily accessible by transport. 



Lord Sri Krishna and Sri Rukmini Ji got married at this exact spot at Madhavpur Ghed


SRI SRI RUKMINI-DWARKADHISA

This is the Temple where Lord Krishna and Rukmini Ji spent time together before marriage


LORD MADHAVRAI JI and His Brother LORD TRIKAMRAI (Balarama) at Sri Sri Madhavrai Ji Temple

13. SRI BHALKA TIRTH, Veraval

This is the place where Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Sri Krishna performed His last pastime before ascending to His eternal abode Sri Goloka Vrindavana. The temple has a very beautiful Deity of Lord Sri Krishna in reclining position under the pippal tree. Sri Bhalka Tirth is 6 km to famous place Somnath. Nearby is place called Baladeva Gufa (cave) from where Lord Balarama disappeared from this cave. 


LORD SRI KRISHNA at SRI BHALKA TIRTH

14. SOMANATH Jyotirlinga Temple

Somnath lies on the west coast of India, in the state of Gujarat. The area was formerly called Prabhasa, and it was here that Lord Krishna arranged for the members of His dynasty to leave this world, on the pretext of killing one another in a great battle. The main temple at Somnath is that of Lord Siva as Somesvara, "the lord of Soma, the moon-god". Dwarka to Somnath is 7 hours drive. Somnath temple is indeed an architectural marvel! To see Somesvara, one passes through two impressive pillared halls. Outside, from the back of the temple one can have a beautiful view of the ocean and the beach. 

Srimad-Bhagavatam mentions that Lord Balarama came here twice, once when He went on pilgrimage to avoid taking sides in the Battle of Kurukshetra, and again, on the request of sages, after He killed the disrespectful Romaharsana Suta. At Prabhasa Arjuna heard that Lord Balarama was arranging the marriage of Subhadra to Duryodhana. Disguising himself as a mendicant, Arjuna went to Dwarka and eventually won Subhadra's hand.

Origin of the Temple Deity: The story of Candra's installation of Somesvara is found in the Skanda Purana and the Mahabharata. Although Candra, the moon-god, was married to all 27 daughters of the progenitor Daksa, he was partial to Rohini, keeping her always with him and neglecting the others.

Annoyed, the other 26 wives complained to their father. After repeated warnings, Daksa cursed Candra to suffer from tuberculosis, lose his beauty and radiance, and wane into nothingness. Candra's affliction disturbed the tides and the growth of vegetation. Sages asked Daksa to withdraw his curse, but he said he didn't have the power to do so. He advised Candra to take refuge in Lord Siva. Candra came to Prabhasa with his wife Rohini, found the Jyotir-linga here, and worshiped Lord Siva in that form. Pleased, Lord Siva blessed Candra with fortnightly phases of waning and waxing. Because the moon regained his growth and light here, the place became known as Prabhasa ("to shine"). 


SOMNATH Temple


Somesvara - Somnath Jyotirlinga

15. JALARAM Temple, Virpur

Jalaram was a well renowned saint and devotee of Lord Rama. He appeared in 1799 at Virpur. From the early childhood he was deeply spiritually inclined. Virpur is between Dwarka and Junagarh. 

16. MIRA BAI Temple, Dwarka

Mira Bai was a well renowned and staunch devotee of Lord Sri Krishna. Srila Prabhupada has written in his purport to Srimad-Bhagavatam 2.3.15: 

"The celebrated Mira Bai was a staunch devotee of Lord Krishna as the great lifter of Govardhana Hill." (mere to Giridhar Gopal...). Mira Bai's devotion was exceptional and exemplary. Her devotional bhajans are famous amongst Vaishnavas. Mira Bai's temple is in main bazaar at Dwarka.

17. NARSINH MEHTA Temple, Mangrol 


Narsinh Mehta was a great and dear-most devotee of Lord Sri Krishna. In his early life he lost his parents and stayed at his elder brother's place. However, his sister-in-law did not welcome him very well She was an ill-tempered, always taunting and insulting Narsinh for his worship (Bhakti). One day, when Narsinh Mehta had enough of these taunts and insults, he left the house and went to a nearby forest in search of some peace, where he fasted and meditated for 7 days by a secluded Siva-linga until Lord Siva appeared before him in a dream. Lord Siva told him that 'his Bhakti delights him' and asked him a boon. Narsinh asked him, 'give me something which is agreeable to you that you like the most and easy to attain: have pity on me.' Lord Siva said that he likes Krishna-Bhakti the most and granted him a boon the joy of singing Lord Krishna's praise forever. 

Here's a most inspiring story of Narsinh Mehta (ref: Gopal Jiu Magazine Issue#286):

We often tell the recent story of Narsinh Mehta. He was a dear devotee of Krishna, krishna-premi-bhakta, always thinking of Krishna. He never thought of anything else. Narsinh Mehta was a very poor Brahmin. He had a family, wife and children - so many daughters. Having no wealth, he was going out and begging alms. He led a poor life, just barely maintaining himself and his family.

A Krishna-premi-bhakta like Narsinh Mehta always thinks of Krishna. He reads Bhagavad-Gita and Srimad-Bhagavatam. He does sravanam-kirtanam; he hears krishna-katha; he speaks and preaches. He is very, very attached to Krishna. He has no other business. He never thinks about how to maintain his family because he only thinks of Krishna. This is ananyas cintayanto mam — "always concentrating on me". He has full faith in Krishna's words: yoga-ksemam vahamy aham - "I protect and preserve such devotees." His daughter attained marriageable age, but he wasn't thinking about how to get her married. This is the responsibility of the father, but Narsinh Mehta was only thinking of Krishna.

His wife heard the neighbours criticizing, saying, "His daughter has already attained marriageable age, but he is not getting her married. He is keeping a grown-up daughter." People were speaking in this way. But Narsinh Mehta never heard it because he was always thinking of Krishna. He was only hearing Krishna-katha, so none of those things entered his ears. If your mind is always engaged in hearing krishna-katha and thinking of Krishna then none of these material sounds will come to you. But his wife heard them, and then his wife said to him, "Hey! What are you doing? Aren't you thinking about getting your daughter married? This is your responsibility!" Narsinh Mehta said: "Why are you creating a disturbance and bothering me in my bhajan? Krishna has said in Bhagavad-Gita 9.22:

ananyas cintayanto mam ye janah paryupasate

tesam nityabhiyuktanam yoga-ksemam vahamy aham

"Those who always worship me with exclusive devotion, meditating on my transcendental form, to them I carry what they lack and preserve what they have."

Have you no faith in Krishna's words? Krishna says, 'I take up the responsibility to maintain my devotee's family and to provide him whatever he lacks.' We now have this need, how the marriage will be done. Marriage means that a huge amount of money is required. Krishna has said that he will carry the burden. It is Krishna's family. I am completely surrendered. I've given everything to Krishna. So why are you disturbing me?" 

But his wife had no faith. "Oh? Krishna will bring money to your home and make an arrangement for your daughter's marriage? No! You have to go out and search for a proper bridegroom. Krishna may help you, but if you don't do anything, if you just sit here in the house reading the Gita and Bhagavatam, doing bhajan, what will Krishna do?" In this way his wife created disturbances in his bhajan such that he felt so much pain. "Oh, this silly woman is creating so many disturbances. I cannot do my bhajan. I can't sit here. I cannot do bhajan."

Then he began to cry before Krishna, "O Gopinath! There is a problem now in your family. Our daughter has already attained marriageable age. She should be married. Why are you not making some arrangement?" Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has sung: 

bhala-manda nahi jani seva matra kari | tomara samsare ami visaya-prahari

"I don't know whether I am doing good or bad. I am just serving you, O Krishna. It is your family." [Sarangati 2.5.5]

niscinta ha-iya ämi seviba tomay | grhe bhalo-manda ho'le nahi mora day

"I'm only thinking of your service. I have no other thought. O Krishna, this is your home, your family. If anything is wrong with it, then You will be criticized. Why shall I be criticized?" [Sarangati 3.2.7]

A devotee never says "my family". It is Krishna's family. Then it is Krishna's responsibility to maintain it. So Narsinh Mehta cried and offered prayers. When the bhakta cries, Krishna responds. You have to cry. Those who have cried, they have gotten Krishna. Dhruva cried, he got. Bilvamangala cried, he got. Unless you cry, Krishna will never hear you. If you cry, immediate response is there. Narsinh Mehta cried, and the Lord immediately responded. 

The next day, some gentlemen came who were searching for a bride. They came to Narsinh Mehta's house and saw the daughter. "Yes, we appreciate this girl. We would like to take her for marriage to our son." After some negotiation, the marriage was fixed. Krishna can do and undo things in a moment. "When will the marriage take place?" They checked the calendar to find a viväha-tithi, a day for the marriage to take place. They saw that in this year there was only one proper time, and it would come after just four days. Otherwise it will have to wait for another year. So that day was fixed. "Yes, after four days the marriage will take place." Narsinh Mehta was very happy. He said to his wife, "You see how Krishna took care?" Then his wife said, "Alright, the marriage will take place after four days. So how will it be done? A huge amount of money is required, lakhs of rupees. You have no money. You are a poor man, without a single coin. How can you perform the marriage?"

"Krishna will take care."; "Oh, Krishna will take care?"; "Yes, Krishna has said in the Gita, yoga-ksemam vahamy aham - 'I will provide for my devotee." He had unflinching faith in Krishna, but his wife had little or no faith, soft faith, komala-sraddha. So she again created disturbances in his bhajan. He could not sit and peacefully worship the Lord. She said, "You should go out and borrow some money. Otherwise how can you perform this ceremony in four days from now? Lakhs of rupees are needed! You will have to give saris and ornaments to your daughter. You will have to arrange a big feast; feed all your friends, relatives and neighbours. The bridegroom will come with a big procession, and you have to pay for it. He'll demand some dowry. You have to give it." This is social prestige, social custom. "Krishna will carry. I am a poor man. Who will give me money? If I go and approach a wealthy man, 'Please give me some money. I want to take a loan,' he'll never give money because I have no wealth to pay it back. What shall I do?" The wife said, "Here! Take some of my ornaments." In villages in India the women's bangles, earrings, silver and gold ornaments are their bank. At the time of need they will sell them or put them somewhere as collateral, get money, and perform these ceremonies. So she gave them. "Alright, take these. Put them somewhere with some wealthy man and get some money." So he took them and went out.

Narsinh Mehta was a premi-bhakta, very fond of Srimad-Bhagavatam and Krishna-katha. When he went out in search of someone to lend him money, he entered a village where he saw that a Bhagavata recitation was going on for seven continuous days. Being very attached to hearing the Bhagavatam, he sat there for 7 days. He forgot that he had come to get money to perform his daughter's marriage, which would take place after four days. When the 7 days finished, he asked someone, "Oh bhai, what day is today? Alas! Everything must have finished, 7 days have gone by. The marriage of my daughter was after four days. I came to get some money. My wife gave me these ornaments. What has happened to the marriage ceremony? Everything must have been spoiled! There will be so much criticism! How can I go back? How can I show my face there? If I go there my wife will beat me with a broomstick! Oh Krishna, why did you keep me here, making me completely forget? What is your lila, I cannot understand! This is your family. You will be criticized."

He thought, "What shall I do? I'll tell a lie to my wife. 'I went to a very far off place. I went to many villages and met many wealthy persons. No one was prepared to take these ornaments and give me money. I went to such a far off place, so returning took time." He was thinking like that. As he was coming he was chanting and thinking of Krishna. "Alright Krishna, such a wonderful lila you are doing. Why you made me forget, I don't know. You know everything." As he came nearer to his village he heard people talking about the marriage. "Such a marriage! Narsinh Mehta's daughter's marriage was like a king's. We have never seen such a marriage! We have heard that great kings do like that, but for the first time we saw such pomp and ceremony. Such a grand feast we had never eaten before, such palatable dishes, and such a grand procession like a royal procession. And he gave so much dowry, so many ornaments. Where did he get the money? This was like a king's royal marriage."

Hearing these talks, Narsinh Mehta asked, "Whose marriage?"; "Your daughter's marriage."; "My daughter's marriage is already done?" "Oh yes. With such pomp and ceremony, like a king's royal marriage. We have never seen!"; "Oh Krishna! You are so merciful! Yogaksemam vahamy aham - You have said, 'I will provide for my devotee." Then he came to his house and saw that his wife was very happy. He asked, "The marriage was done nicely?"; "Yes, very nicely!"; "How was it performed? Who brought money? You were in anxiety, always creating disturbance in my bhajan. You had no faith in Krishna's words, yoga-ksemam vahamy aham. Who brought money? How was it done?"; "A ten or eleven-year-old black boy came. He was carrying a heavy load. He brought so much ghee, oil, subji, rice, dal, flour, sugar, and molasses. He brought so many saris, clothes, ornaments, and money. We had no place to put everything in our small mud hut. I asked him, 'Hey, where are you bringing these from?'; "He said, 'Oh, gosai is sending.' You are sending, he said. You are sending. He was carrying such a heavy load."; "Krishna has said, 'I will carry - yoga-ksemam vahamy aham.' You have no faith in the words of Krishna?"

This is a true story. A pure devotee of Krishna is completely, exclusively, dependent on the mercy of Krishna. Every moment he only thinks of Krishna, with no other thought. He is completely surrendered, and has dedicated everything to the Lord. His attitude is that it is Krishna's family. The only means for a householder devotee is complete surrender. Enter Krishna's family – Krishna-samsara. Don't stay in maya-samsara. Krishna is the only the object of love. Develop love and attachment to Krishna. Give up material, temporary bodily attachments. They are all troublesome like thorns and pointed pebbles. Krishna is the only object of loving attachment. Dedicate your family and everything to Krishna. It is Krishna's family. Only think of Krishna and Krishna will make all arrangements. If you develop your love for Krishna then everything will be very good. If the husband and wife relationship is based on loving relationship with Krishna, then it is a real relationship. Don't develop bodily, material relationships. They are only temporary, troublesome, and based on misery. Develop your eternal loving relationship with Krishna, wherein the husband is Krishna-dasa and the wife is Krishna-dasi. (-- His Holiness Gour Govinda Swami lecture on 13 March 1995 at Gadei-giri, Orissa; Sri Krishna Kathamrita Bindu issue#286 )

18. TULSISHYAM Mandir, Tulsishyam

Tulsishyam Mandir is dedicated to Lord Krishna and is several hundred years old. Tulsishyam is a very famous and so beautiful religious place. There are two temples on this place. One is Lord Sri Krishna's temple in the foot of a mountain and another one is Sri Rukmini Ji's temple on the top of the mountain. It is located in the heart of Gir National Park, in Junagadh District of Gujarat. It is also famous for medicinal Hot spring of water across the globe. The temple has more than 200 cows in the Goshala.


PLACES AROUND GUJARAT

(1) Dakor Ji 

DAKOR or RANCHOR JI is famous throughout, for a Deity of Lord Sri Krishna named Ranchor Raya. Here Lord Sri Krishna is worshiped for an act that would taint the reputation of others but serves only to increase His fame and His devotees' love for Him. Ranchor (rana-cora) means "one who flees from battle" or, more simply, "deserter," and raya (from raja) designates a king or a respected person. Krishna gained fame as Ranchor Raya when He fled a battle, apparently out of fear. Actually, He wanted to prevent needless killing and attend to His pastime of kidnapping Rukmini, His first wife. Krishna's fleeing the battle is especially glorified by devotees in Gujarat because it marked Krishna's taking up residence in Dwarka, in Gujarat. Ranchor Raya was installed in Dakor during the auspicious month of Kartik (in October/November). Ranchor Raya receives seven offerings of food daily, and the cooking goes on nonstop. The evening offering is called Chapan-bhog, which means "fifty-six items offered for the Lord's pleasure." 

Dakor Pastimes

In the times of the Mahabharata, the Dakor area was a pleasant jungle rich with streams and lakes. Danka rsi was one of several sages residing in ashrams there, and after pleasing Lord Siva he requested him to remain in his hermitage. Lord Siva agreed and appeared there in his linga form, known as Dankanath Mahadev. Thus in ancient times Dakor was known as Dankapura. When Lord Krishna and Bhima went to the hermitage of Danka rsi, Krishna asked the sage to request a benediction from Him. Danka rsi requested that Krishna, like Lord Siva, stay in his hermitage permanently. Krishna promised that after staying in Dwarka for some time, in Kali-yuga He would come to live in Dankapura.

Danka rsi's desire was eventually fulfilled by Bodana, a great devotee of Krishna, in the 1200s. The present Dakor owes its reason not to Dank Rishi but to Bodana, a great devotee of Lord Krishna. In his previous birth, he is supposed to have lived in Gokul and been a cowherd called Vijayanand. On one Holi day, all the cowherds except Vijyanand worshipped Lord Krishna. His wife too worshipped Lord Krishna. But Vijayanand was proud and stayed at home. Lord Krishna came to his house in disguise of his friend and sent him to perform 'Holi' puja. Coming back, he realised that his friend was none else but Lord Krishna. Next day they fought a battle of colour. Lord Krishna lost and fell into the river. Vijyanand went after Him where Lord Krishna revealed his true self. Vijyanand begged forgiveness. Lord Krishna took pity on him and solaced him with a boon that he would be born again in Kali yuga after 4200 years as Vijayanand Bodana in the house of a Krishatriya and his present wife Sudha would again be his wife, called Gangabai, when Lord will give them a darshan and liberate him. 

Vijayanand Bodana, a rajput of Dakor, was a staunch devotee of Lord Krishna. He grew tulasi and travelled to Dwarka every six months to worship Krishna with tulasi leaves. He did this continuously, unfailingly and untiringly till he was 72 years and found it increasingly difficult to continue. Seeing his plight, Lord Krishna appeared in his dream and told him that on his next visit to Dwarka, he should bring a bullock-cart with him and then He (as the deity) would accompany him to Dakor as He was exceedingly pleased with his devotion. Accordingly, Bodana went with bullock-cart to Dwarka. The priests of Dwarka asked him as to why he had brought a cart with him. Bodana replied that he had done so to take Lord Krishna away. Looking to the ramshackle cart, they did not believe him but nevertheless locked and sealed the sanctum sanctorum of Dwarka Temple for the night. At mid night, Lord Krishna broke open the doors, awoke Bodana and told him to take him to Dakor. Shortly afterwards, Lord Krishna called upon Bodana to rest in the bullock-cart and drove the cart himself till reached the vicinity of Dakor. Here (near Bileshwar Mahadev on Dakor-Nadiad road) they rested for some time, touching and holding a branch of neem tree. He woke up Bodana and asked him to take over. Since that day, this neem tree is found to have one sweet branch though the rest of the branches are bitter. 

In Dwarka, the brahmanas finding the Deity missing, chased Bodana and rushed to Dakor in pursuit. Bodana was frightened but Lord Krishna told Bodana to Him in the Gomti tank and meet the priests. Accordingly, Bodana hid the Deity and went to meet the priests with a pot of curd to pacify them. They became angry and one of them threw a spear at him. Bodana fell down dead. Bodana achieved liberation. While hurting Bodana with a spear it also hurt the Deity hidden in Gomti tank and the water turned red with Lord Krishna's (Ranchhodraiji's) blood. Even today the earth of Gomti tank where the Deity lay is red while rest of the tank is of brown mud. In the midst of Gomti tank, over the place where Lord Krishna was hidden, a small temple having the Lord's foot-prints is constructed and this temple is linked with the bank of Gomti Tank by a bridge. 

Even with the death of Bodana, the priests were not appeased. Requesting Lord Krishna to return to Dwarka, they sat on the bank of Gomti tank and went on a hunger strike. At last, Lord Ranchhodraiji (Krishna) directed Gangabai, wife of Bodana, to give gold equivalent of his weight and ask the priests to return to Dwarka. The poor lady, the widow of Bodana could not afford to do so. But by a miracle, the Deity became as light as her gold nose-ring (five grams), which was all the gold she had. The brahmanas were disappointed, but the Lord mercifully told them that after six months they would find an exact replica of His deity in a well in Dwarka, which they found after six months. 

Getting to Dakor

Dakor is a short bus ride from Baroda or Ahmedabad, cities well linked by plane, train, and bus with other major Indian cities. One can go to Baroda, Ahmedabad, Anand, or Vallabh Vidyanagar in all these places there are ISKCON centers and get buses to Dakor. By bus it takes one and a half hours to go to Dakor from Ahmedabad or Baroda, and less from Anand or Vallabh Vidyanagar.

(2) Govinda Dhama, ISKCON Ahmedabad

(3) Sri Sri Radha-Shyamsundar Temple, ISKCON Baroda (Vadodara)

(4) Sri Sri Radha-NeelMadhava Dhama, ISKCON Rajkot

(5) Sri Sri Radha-Giridhariji Temple, ISKCON Vallabh Vidyanagar, Anand

Practicalities:

How to reach Sri Dwarka Dhama:

Sri Dwarka Dhama is well connected to Mumbai and Ahmedabad by road and rail. There are direct trains from Mumbai. From Ahmedabad one can catch overnight bus to Dwarka. Patel Travels (http://pateltoursandtravels.com/ ) is a good bus service to Dwarka. Nearest airport to Dwarka is Porbandar, two hours to Dwarka. Jamnagar airport is 3 hours to Dwarka. There is daily flight from Mumbai to Porbandar.

Visiting places around Sri Dwarka Dhama:

It is easy to move in and around Dwarka Dhama to visit different transcendental places of Lord Sri Krishna. 

Dwarka town: Following places in Dwarka town are close by and at walking distance - Sri Sri Dwarkadhisa Temple, Gomati River, ISKCON Temple, Pandava wells (by boat) and Mira Bai Temple. Local transport like auto-rickshaw is available to move around. 

Sri Rukmini Ji Temple, Gopi Talav, Bet Dwarka and Nageshwara Jyotirlinga: Local tourist bus trips operate to visit these places. Tourist buses cover these places in half a day and usually there are a varied number of people in a group. Tickets can booked be booked easily. Since tourist buses have a group of people and cover the places quickly, there is limited time to take darshan or spend more time on each of the spots. Private taxi can also be hired to visit these places. 

Mul Dwarka; Sudama-Puri, Porbandar; Jambavan Caves, Ranavav; Madhavpur Ghed, Bhalka Tirth and Somnath: These places come one after another in the same route on the way to Somnath - Mul Dwarka (52km); Sudama-Puri, Porbandar (104km); Jambavan Caves, Ranavav (17 km from Porbandar on Rajkot highway); Madhavpur Ghed (1 hr from Porbandar), Bhalka Tirth and Somnath. Tourist buses cover only Sudama-Puri, Bhalka Tirth and Somnath. Private taxi can be hired to visit these places. Jalaram temple and TulsiShyam temple are on different routes. TulsiShyam is closer to Somnath. Regular trains and buses are available from Somnath to reach Ahmedabad. 

Devotees wishing to visit Sri Dwarka Dhama may contact Krishna Swarup Das, devotee from ISKCON Ahmedabad, phone: +91 9099757026 / Email: Krishnaswrup_gkg@yahoo.in for further guidance about visiting the Dhama. 

Where to Eat and Stay: Dwarkadhisa Temple prasadam is available for lunch and evening. Timings are 11:30am to 2pm and 5:30pm to 7pm daily. The dining place is about 100 meters ahead where the ISKCON Temple is towards the Gomati river. There are a number of comfortable hotels in Dwarka. 


KRISHNA FEST by ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness) at Sri Dwarka Dhama


SRI SRI DWARKADHISA JI KI!!

SRI DWARKA DHAMA KI JAI!!!

NITAI GAURA PREMA-ANANDI!!!

HARE KRISHNA HARE KRISHNA KRISHNA KRISHNA HARE HARE |

HARE RAMA HARE RAMA RAMA RAMA HARE HARE ||

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