All glories to Sri Guru and Sri Gauranga

Festival at Sripat Hapaniya

Festival at the Appearance Place of Srila Bhakti Raksak Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj: Grand Appearance of the Holy Deities of Sripat Hapaniya, Sri Sri Guru Gauranga Radha Gopinathjiu at Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Ashram.

Wednesday 30th March 2005
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The domes of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Ashram, Sri Hapaniya Dham

Extensive excerpts from A Day at Hapaniya by His Divine Grace Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj:

I offer my obeisances to my respected Godbrothers, Godsisters, and the villagers of Sri Hapaniya. Today we have very happily come to Sripat Hapaniya Dham. Our destination is Goloka, even if we may not know where Goloka is. However, we must know that the abode of Goloka has personally become manifest in this world as the abode of the Divine Master, the residence of the devotees and the Temple where the Deities are worshipped. Today, whether we can perceive it or not, we have arrived in this holy place which is non-different from Goloka Dham.

Many years ago we brought our Divine Master back here to Hapaniya, the place of his advent. We had a purpose, as also did the residents of this village; and all wanted to have Guru Maharaj's company once again, since so many long years had passed since Guru Maharaj left his family to accept the renounced order of life, sannyas, and went out to preach throughout the whole of India, after which Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur departed from this mortal world, and Guru Maharaj remained in Vrindavan, Gokula, and Sri Nabadwip Dham. His family members, especially his brothers
Sriyukta Mani Babu and Sriyukta Amar Babu, tried their level best to bring Guru Maharaj back to his 'home town' Hapaniya, but he had no desire to come here and never agreed to their proposal.

Afterwards, on the request of Guru Maharaj's Godbrothers, Parama-pujyadpada Srila Jajavar Maharaj, Paramahamsa Maharaj, Madhusudan Maharaj, etc. -- all the Vaisnavas who had much regard and affection for him -- Guru Maharaj finally agreed to come here for a day or two.

My underlying intention through all this was to locate the exact spot where Guru Maharaj took his birth. I thought that could be indicated only by him personally. No one else could do that because all were younger than him. He was the eldest remaining of all his family members of the village, and furthermore, his memory was the sharpest of all. Therefore I considered that only he could accurately point out the place of his birth.

Kirttan in Lord Shiva's Mandir opposite Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Ashram.
When Jajavar Maharaj and other Godbrothers of Guru Maharaj, and myself, petitioned Guru Maharaj to come back here once, Krishnadas Babaji Maharaj also supported our proposal with great enthusiasm. He personally became most eager that Guru Maharaj should come. Our most revered Sriyukta Mani Babu and Sriyukta Amar Babu were most enthusiastic. Also Sriyukta Satyen Babu, Sriyukta Bon Babu, and many other distinguished brahmanas and pious souls of the village and their families -- all showed great eagerness. Young and old -- everyone, even one elderly Muslim gentleman who lived nearby also expressed his heartfelt wish that Guru Maharaj might be brought back here once again. In this way, everyone propitiated Guru Maharaj, and at last he agreed.

When Guru Maharaj reached here, I requested him to indicate the place of his birth. Guru Maharaj happily agreed to do so, and the very spot directly before us where Sri Sri Guru-Gauranga-Radha-Gopinathjiu now graciously preside, was indicated by him to be the exact place of his birth.

Sankirttan outside the home Sriyukta Amar Babu.
On that day we collected 6,000 rupees for making a small place of worship here, to mark the spot. All the venerable Godbrothers of Srila Guru Maharaj who were present also graciously gave me contributions. Then at the request of Krishnadas Babaji Maharaj, Jajavar Maharaj and others, Mani Babu registered a deed and gave it to me for this place. Although it was a very small beginning, I was encouraged very much by the blessings and association of Guru Maharaj's brothers and my Godbrothers. Sriyukta Amar Babu took full charge of the project, and in a very humble way we tried to make a small temple only for the worship of Guru Maharaj's photograph. Originally there was no temple for the Deity, or any nat-mandir. Gradually, the devotees became more and more enthused to give contributions, and so after about eight years I thought that with our Guru Maharaj's permission it would now be possible to build a temple here and install Deities.
Heading towards the home of Srila Guru Maharaj's relatives.

New extensive excerpt from A Day at Hapaniya by His Divine Grace Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj:

As at Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math, all the spiritual functions are carried out every day, and devotees and villagers from far and wide come to see Gopinathjiu. Hundreds of villagers come for the festivals like Radhastami and Krishna-Janmastami. On Janmastami they come for the worship of Gopinathjiu, and they observe fasting the whole day. The next day, for the great festival known as Nandotsava, five to six thousand people attend this Math and happily take Prasadam. They all cooperate with us very nicely. In this way, the service of Gopinathjiu has become very glorious. We are also very happy because Guru Maharaj's orders to make these service programmes have become fulfilled. Today, you have also seen the new land we have acquired, and the pond which we have named 'Santi Sarovara.' There, we are now cultivating our own crops. Devotees of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math now visit here regularly, especially for the festivals of Gaura-Purnima, Guru-Puja, and Janmastami, and they are very happy to see the service of Gopinathjiu and take His Prasadam, and they feel transcendental ecstasy. Thus our service is always progressing with the kind assistance of the devotees.

An offering of water, flowers, incense and sugar sweets is made to Srila Sridhar Maharaj at each place stopped. The sweet prasad is then distributed amongst the devotees.

Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math, Nabadwip
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