All glories to Sri Guru and Sri Gauranga

Srila Govinda Maharaj visits
Sri Chaitanya Sridhar Govinda Seva Ashram
in Bamunpara

05 December 2009

The Significance of Sripat Bamunpara
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Web-pages by Malini Devi Dasi

To most people in the Western world, Sripat Bamunpara may seem to be just another rural village in a remote corner of West Bengal, India.

Yet to many souls seeking relief from the clutches of material existence, it is where their hope and fortune first manifested, in the form of Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj, in the year 1929.

On the 4th day of December this year, thousands of people worldwide celebrated the 81st Appearance Day festival of His Divine Grace, Srila Govinda Maharaj. Following tradition, the devotees in Nabadwip made a pilgrimage to Bamunpara, his holy appearance place, the following day .

Sri Chaitanya Sridhar Govinda Seva Ashram, Bamunpara
Bamunpara is a simple and quiet, rural village - the perfect place to practise "Simple Living, High Thinking!"
The magnificent Temple domes are a constant reminder of the glorious appearance of Srila Gurudev
Srila Govinda Maharaj was born into a brahmana family following prayers to Lord Shiva offered by his paternal grandmother, who prayed for her daughter-in-law to bear a healthy son. As soon as the child was born to Sripad Nitai Pada Adhikari and Sri Tarangini Devi Dasi, he was offered to Lord Shiva as his own. Thus, the boy was to become known as the son of Lord Shiva.

Nonetheless, Srila Gurudev's family worshipped Sri Sri Radha-Gopinath, Deities belonging to the family for centuries. Those same Deities are now served at the Sri Chaitanya Sridhar Govinda Seva Ashram, the Bamunpara branch of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math.

Srila Govinda Maharaj, in his humility, had not intended to build a Temple at his own birthplace. It was manifest by the efforts of his devoted and very active disciple, Sripad Bhakti Nirmal Acharyya Maharaj, who was proclaimed to become Successor Sevaite Acharyya of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math by His Divine Grace on the occasion of his Vyasa Puja Day this year (2009).

It was Sripad Acharyya Maharaj's earnest wish to glorify his Gurudev and expand the glories of the Mission. He managed to put aside some of the funds allocated towards developing Sri Govinda Kund in Nabadwip, and obtained land in Bamunpara, only a little distance from the actual house where his Gurudev was born.

His Divine Grace Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj
The holy appearace place of His Divine Grace
It was only while the first ashram was being built that Sripad Acharyya Maharaj's plans were discovered, when some Western devotees showed Srila Govinda Maharaj some pictures of it.

Sudev Prabhu tells how nine years ago, when the Bamunpara Ashram he is currently serving in was first established, the village could not be reached by a motorable road and there was no electricity or running water.

Eventually, the Temple to house the Deities manifest. Then, by the divine wish of Srila Gurudev, another building, intended as a ladies' ashram, was built. This building, Tarangini Devi Dham, completes the glorious Sri Chaitanya Sridhar Govinda Seva Ashram in Bamunpara.

Sri Sri Guru Gauranga Radha Gopinath
The beautiful Temple and nat mandir, Bamunpara
The newly-built Tarangini Devi Dham.
This lush, natural water pool is just beside Srila Gurudev's open veranda in the new building
This view is from the upper floor of the new building
The cows happily graze in the vast, mostly undeveloped grounds of the Temple compound
Sri Nityananda Sarovar lies behind the Mandir
Many vegetables and fruit trees are growing in the Sarovar's surrounding area
Now, for the first time since the ladies' ashram was completed, Srila Govinda Maharaj is visiting Bamunpara on this special festival occasion.

The following pages offer some personal testimonials of the significance of Sripat Bamunpara for the devotees, as well as a synopsis of the events of this very special day.

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