Vrindavan Glimpses

Anisha Sharma
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Vrindavan vibrates with tales of Krishna.

1. Vrindavan celebrates the season of love

Ghee diya lamps at Sri Banke Bihari temple, Vrindavan, IndiaVrindavan's festival calendar keeps things buzzing in the pastoral township where God came to love and be loved as Sri Radha-Krishna. It's a happening destination round the year. Krishna, so tied by bonds of love remains in spirit in Braj-bhoomi's Vrindavan. Keep Reading

2. Vrindavan location: Map

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3. Distance to Vrindavan

144 km: Delhi - Faridabad - Palwal - Kosi – Vrindavan (on NH2 that further connects with Agra)

4. Basant Panchmi in Vrindavan

Braj vibrates with tales of Krishna. Krishna married Rukmini on Basant Panchmi. The king of all seasons, Rituraj Basant is welcomed with gay abandon in Mathura at Janmabhoomi temple, Bhagwat Bhawan, Dwarikadheesh temple, Vishram ghat and other places. Rasiya songs mellow the air and Tesu and Kumkum add colour to the gaiety. Keep Reading

5. Saavan and Jhoolan in Vrindavan

dancing peacockIt is only the festival of Holi that can compare with this jocund monsoon celebration in Braj. This weekend at Bihari ji's temple was  decorated with flowers and fairy lights. The phool-bangla made of fresh flowers scented the air. Roses, gerberas, marigold, jasmine, and even fruit – apples and sweet lime, along with leaves, golden kalash and other accessories came together under the expert hands of local florists in the evening. Keep Reading

6. Vrindavan on Sharad Purnima

Swami Haridas, Tansen and Akbar in Vrindavan, IndiaThis Sharad Purnima, I saw a green Vrindavan. I visited Tatiya shtan where Swami Haridas ji's followers take care of Sri Mohini Vihari ji, the deity here. The lord was dressed in white and silver; the prasad of chandan and tulsi water was supplemented by hot halwa cooked in desi ghee, and a bowl full of pakoras per person. Hand held fans made of palm leaves and covered by a light cotton fabric in yellow or magenta added a gentle breeze to the crisp October morning dotted by sunshine streaming from gnarled but tall trees overhead. Keep Reading

7. Banke Bihari's stories

Sri Banke Bihari temple is the only temple where temple bells are not used to wake Krishna in the morning. The Brajwasis say that it is not proper to wake a child with a start. He is woken gently. There are no bells even for Aarti, as it might disturb Him. Keep Reading 

8. Lucknow wala mandir

The palace-temple is designed to suit Sri Radha Krishna's varying dispositions. A labour of love by Kundan Lal And Phundan Lal Shah, this temple is unlike any other in Vrindavan or anywhere else in the world. You need a Lakhnawi heart and passion to create such matchless and thoughtful splendour for the object de love. Keep Reading

9. Mira Bai temple in Vrindavan

Mira Bai left Mewar to stay in Vrindavan and later Dwarka. A small temple close to the Lucknow temple near Nidhivan, marks the place where she stayed at Vrindvan and composed all those great verses and songs for Krishna. Keep Reading

10. Sri Krishna Balarama Iskcon temple, Vrindavan Photo journal

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11. Sri Gokul Photo journal

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Vrindavan inspires literature and music

1. MS Subbulakshmi singing Mira bhajan: Mere to giridhar gopal doosro na koi

Noted Classical Indian singer MS Subbulakshmi singing Mira Bai's song… Click to Listen 

2. MS Subbulakshmi singing Surdas bhajan: Akhiya Hari darsan ki pyaasi

Surdas's verses are a valuable store of Braj sahitya, the literature of Vrindavan. He was awarded by Vallabhacharya the title of Asht-chhaap Sakha, one of the eight poet-musicians at the Haweli of Srinathji at Govardhan. The deity was later shifted to Nathdwara, but the tradition of Haweli sangit and Raag sewa started by the eight poet-musicians (Asht-chhaap), Surdas among them, still continues... Click to Listen

3. MS Subbulakshmi singing Vallabhacharya's Madhurashtak

Madhurashtak an eight-versed composition by 16th century Bhakti saint Vallabhacharya, in MS Subbulakshmi's soulful voice. Click to Listen

4. Pandit Jasraj singing Kishnashtak: Bhaje Vrajek Mandanam

Noted Classical Indian singer Pandit Jasraj singing Adi Guru Shsankaracharya's verses: Krishnashtak Click to Listen 

5. Pandit Jasraj singing: Tum chale jao charavan

Pandit Jasraj captures Krishna leela in this song. Click to Listen 

6. Girija Devi sings: Ik din murali Shyam bajai

Noted Classical Indian singer and guru from Purvang tradition (Banaras gherana) Girija Devi singing a song on Braj leela. Click to Listen

7. Yamunashtak by Vallabhacharya

Yamunashtak is a a 9 versed Sanskrit poem by Mahaprabhu Vallabhacharya. His collective work in poetry is known as Shodash Granth. His followers are known as Pushtimargi Vaishnavas. Reading the Yamunashtak and praying to Yamuna Maharani helps in winning over personal weaknesses, suggests, the 16th century Bhakti saint, Mahaprabhu Vallabhacharya... Click to Listen

8. Jhoolan song: Jhamak hindolna me baithi gae dou

Sri Radha Shyamsunder, Iskcon, Vrindavan, IndiaA song describing saavan and monsoon pastimes of Sri Radha Krishna in Braj. Click to Listen

9.  Song from Vraj: Mohe saanwara salona pasand aa gaya

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10. Banke Bihari temple, Goodnight song: Laagi rat Radha Sri Radha, Sri Radha naam...

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11. Sawan jhoolan song: Ghir aayi kaari badariya, barase aadhi raat

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12. Sri Banke Bihari ji ke sawaiya / dohe

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13. Hori song: Aaj Biraj me Hori re rasiya by Mridul Krishna Shastri

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14. Sawan jhoolan song: Jhoole re jhoole radhe kadamb ki daar

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