“I want to build a Temple in Bhubaneswar just like the Jagannath Puri temple because my disciples are not allowed there. Jagannatha will come here and stay.”
- His Divine Grace Srila A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada
Sri Ksetra Dhama
A lecture given as a special home program
recorded on the 13 June 1994 in Washington DC, USA
Jagannath Puri Dhama is known as Sri Ksetra. Sri-devi is the svarupa-sakti, Krishna’s internal potency. Therefore, that dhama which is glorified by the presence of the sri-sakti is known as Sri Ksetra. ‘Sri’ means sarva-laksmimayi amsini radhika, Srimati Radhika, who is the source of all saktis. All goddesses of fortune in Vaikunthapura are expansions of Radhika, and the 16,108 wives of Krsna, Rukmini, Satyabhama, Jambavati, etc. are all expansions of Radharani. They are aisvaryamayi, full of opulence. The gopis of Vrajabhumi are also expansions of Radharani. So Radharani is amsini, the source. The laksmis are aisvarya-mayi, whereas Radharani is madhuryamayi, full of sweetness. Therefore, those who are followers or devotees of madhurya-rasa can see that Sri Ksetra is the ksetra in which Radharani’s madhurya-rasa is manifested. Only such madhurya-rasa bhaktas can see it, others cannot. That is why Jagannatha Puri is known as Sri Ksetra.
Mahaprabhu stayed at Sri Jagannatha Puri because He had assumed radha-bhava. When He would see Jagannatha, He would see Shyamasundara and think, “O beloved of My heart.” Therefore, that ksetra which is glorified and influenced by Srimati Radharani’s madhurya-rasa is known as Sri Ksetra.
In Vaisnava-tantra it is mentioned,
jah karoti ca gokule
nilacala sthitah krsna
sta eva racati prabhuh
“Whatever lilas Sri Krishna manifested in Gokula, Mathura and Dvarka; they are all found in Nilacala, Sri Ksetra.”
If you have the vision you can see all the lilas there. When Mahaprabhu stayed there, He saw Vrndavana. When He saw Cataka-parvata He said, “O Govardhan!” When He saw the sea, “Oh! It is Yamuna.” When He saw the garden called Jagannatha-vallabha, “Oh! It is Vrndavana.” Mahaprabhu saw all Krishna’s lilas there in Sri Ksetra. Therefore in Vaisnava-tantra it is said, all the lilas that Krishna manifested in Gokula, Mathura and Dvarka are found in Nilacala, Sri Ksetra.
In the Utkala-khanda of Skanda Purana, which is the largest purana, Srila Vyasadeva has described the special characteristics of Sri Ksetra, Jagannatha Puri Dhama. This Ksetra is very beautiful and wonderful. It is dasa yojana vistruta, ten yojana in diameter; that means eighty miles. One yojana is eight miles. It is situated on the shore of the ocean and it is known as Tirtharaja, the King of all places of pilgrimage. At the middle portion there is nila-parvata, a blue mountain. ‘Acala’ means mountain, therefore it is called Nilacala, blue mountain. Sri Bhagavan says, “That ksetra which is situated on the northern side of the ocean and the southern side of the river Mahanadi, in Orissa, is very famous throughout the world.” Srila Vyasadeva has mentioned that if one visits Jagannatha Puri Dhama he will get the result of visiting all the tirthas. For one who has no need to go to any more places of pilgrimage.
Puri Dhama begins from Bhubaneswar, also known as Ekamra-kanana. From Bhubaneswar it goes up to Candrabhaga (Konark), where the Sun God is worshipped in the Surya Mandira.
This dhama is very confidential. It is durlabha ksetra, difficult even on the part of Lord Brahma to attain. Because the form of this ksetra is like a conchshell, with the stomach portion sunk into the sea, it is also known as Sankha Ksetra. The head portion is towards the western side, where the gate is guarded by Nilakantha Siva. There, Siva is known as Bhubaneswar Lingaraja and ksetrapala, the protector of the dhama. Bhubaneswar is the gateway through which one can enter into this ksetra.
This ksetra is parama pavana, supremely purifying. And some call it Dasavatara Ksetra, the ksetra of the ten incarnations: Mina, Kachyapa, Nrsimha, Vamana, etc.
Krishna, who is Lila Purusottama, eternally resides there as arca-avatar, the Deity form. Therefore it is known as Purusottama Dhama. And He is Jagannatha, the master of the three worlds. Therefore His dhama is known as Jagannatha Puri Dhama.
Sri Bhubaneswar Ksetra
Lord Sivaji and the Holy Dhama of Bhubaneswar
A lecture given from the Caitanya-caritamrta Adi-lila 7.157,
recorded on the 25 April 1991 in Bhubaneswar, India
We should not disrespect the demigods. Though the demigods are not the Supreme Lord, they are the servants of Krsna. Mahaprabhu has taught like this. Especially Sivaji, vaisnavanam yatha sambhu, [SB 12.13.16] Lord Siva is a great Vaisnava. Therefore Mahaprabhu visited, paid respect to Sivaji in Bhubaneswar.
Lord Siva Guards the Ksetras
Sivaji is known as ksetrapala. In Vraja Mandala you’ll find nine ksetrapala Mahadeva murtis are there. In Vrndavan you’ll find Gopesvara Mahadeva, in Kamyavan you’ll find Kamesvara Mahadeva, in Govardhan, you’ll find Chakresvara Mahadeva, in Nadagram you’ll find Nandisvara Mahadeva and in Mathura you’ll find Bhutesvara, Gokarnesvara, Chaklesvara, Brdhyesvara and Rangesvara. Besides that, in Mathura many, many Siva temples are there.
In the Adi Varaha Purana it is mentioned that Visnu said to Siviji, Visnu has ordered Sivaji, "In Mathura you’ll become ksetrapala, one who guards the ksetra, My ksetra. If someone will pay You respect and have Your darsana, he’ll get the result of visiting My ksetra. Those who circumambulate Vrndavana or do Vrndavana parikrama and at the beginning and end visit Bhutesvara Siva in Mathura, because ‘vaisnavanam yatha sambhu,’ Siva is a great vaisnava, do you understand?
Sriman Mahaprabhu in Bhubaneswar
Bhubaneswar is also Sivaji’s dhama. Here this Bhubaneswar Ksetra is also Sivaji’s dhama. It is mentioned in the Caitanya Bhagavata, Vrndavan Dasa Thakura has given a description of Bhubaneswar. When Mahaprabhu came here, on His way to Jagannatha Puri dhama, He passed through Bhubaneswar. Mahaprabhu visited the Lingaraja temple because the Bhubaneswar Lingaraja is a very dear servant of Anantadeva and it was for that reason that Mahaprabhu came here.
In Caitanya-Bhagavata, it is mentioned, that Mahaprabhu with His devotees came here to Bhubaneswar. They chanted and danced before Siva in the Bhubaneswar Lingaraja Temple. So following in the footsteps of Mahaprabhu all vaisnavas come and visit Bhubaneswar Sivaji and chant and dance here.
Lord Siva Obtains Sri Bhubaneswar Dhama
From Lord Krishna
In Skanda Purana it is mentions this ksetra, Bhubaneswar Ksetra. “Once in Kasi, there was a king who was a great devotee of Lord Siva, but his desires were unfulfilled. That king underwent very severe penances to conquer Krsna. He was in tapasya trying to satisfy Lord Siva as he had that desire that he would conquer Krsna. One cannot understand the behavior of a vaisnava. Even the demigods can not understand, what to speak of the human beings. Sivaji became satisfied and pleased with his tapasya. At that time Sivaji told him, "Alright you go and fight against Krsna, I’m following you, I’ll support you, I’ll help you."
So that king then started for battle and Siva with all his followers followed behind the raja, king. Then Krsna, Vasudeva, Devaki-nandana, Son of Devaki, could understand these things, so He released His Sudarsana Cakra. That Sudarsana Cakra cut off the head of the king. After that Sudarsana Cakra cut off the heads of all the Siva bhaktas in Kasi. This Varnasi became a crematorium ground - all were dead. So Siva became very angry and released his Pasupatastra. But what he’ll do, Pasupatastra is no match in front of Sundarsana Cakra. It could not do anything. So at last, Siva also became very terrified, frightened and tried to run away, but where will He go?
Then Siva could understand except for Krsna nobody can save me now. So He surrendered unto the lotus feet of Krsna, Govinda. He offered many prayers. Siva says, “O Lord of my heart, I have one prayer. I am always very puffed up. I have great false ego, but now I understand I can not leave You, I can not stay anywhere else, please tell me where I shall stay.” This is described in the Skanda Purana.
So Vasudeva said, "My ksetra is there, Sri Purosottama Ksetra. So in the North of that ksetra is Ekamra Kanana. That place, Ekamra Kanana is very, very auspicious and will give bhukti and mukti, a very beautiful place. So you’ll stay there and you’ll be known as “Bhubaneswar.” “So I give you that Ekamra Kanana. You go and stay there and become the guard of that ksetra, ‘ksetra pala’."
So this is Bhubaneswar. It is also known as ‘Hemacala’ and ‘Svarnadi Ksetra.' In this ksetra crores, crores, koti lingum crores of Sivajis are here. It is also known as asta-tirtha, the famous eight tirthas reside here. Bhubaneswar is superior to Varnasi and is more dear to Siva than Varnasi.
Srila Vyasadeva Glorifies Sri Bhubaneswar Dhama
In the Svarnadi-mahadeva-grantha, we’ll find that once Vyasadeva came here to Bhubaneswar. This is known as vaisnava-ksetra, Ekamra Kanana. Srila Vyasadeva has described its glories in the Svarnadi-mahadeva-grantha.
There it is mentioned once Devi Bhagavati, the Goddess Parvati, was hearing the glories of this Ekamra Kanana from the lips of Siva, Sambhu. So Bhagavati Devi came here to see this ksetra. She saw the maha-linga. Do you understand ‘linga’? Siva is worshipped in the linga form. And that linga has the complexion of half white and half black, sitasita varna maha-linga. Devi also offered puja to that linga. Once Devi saw that from a nearby lake hundreds of cows were coming out and they were pouring milk from their udders onto that maha-linga, circumambulating that maha-linga and then going away. Devi saw this thing.
Another day she also saw the same thing. Then Devi assumed the form of a gopalini, a cowherd girl, and followed those cows. At that time there were two demon brothers named Kriti and Vasa. They were very much enchanted by the beauty of Parvati Devi, so they approached her and expressed their desire that they wanted to have her as their wife. So Bhagavati Devi disappeared from that place and went to Siva and narrated everything before her Lord. Siva then assumed the form of a gopa, a cowherd boy, and went there. Then Lord Siva could understand the history of those two demons.
Siva revealed to Devi that those two demons Kriti and Vasa were the sons of Drumilla Raksasa. Drumilla worshipped many demigods, they were very much pleased with him and gave him one boon: 'that his two sons couldn’t be killed by any weapon.' Then Sivaji said, “Now they will be killed by you, O Devi. You will kill them. They cannot be killed by any weapons so I can’t kill them.”
So getting this instruction from Sivaji, Devi, in the form of a cowherd girl, gopalini, appeared in front of those two demons and said, “Alright, I’ll fulfill your desires, but I have one condition, if one of you will carry me on your shoulder or head I will be his wife.”
Bhagavati Devi manifested her potency and placed one of her feet on the shoulder of one demon, and the other on the shoulder of the other demon and crushed them. They were killed. Bhagavati had assumed the form of Visvambari, Visvambari-rupa. Visnu means universe, she had expanded herself as Visvambari her universal form and crushed them. So from this day, Lord Sambhu, vaisnava pravara sambhu and Devi Bhagavati stayed here in this ksetra, Ekamra Kanana.
Bindhu-Sarovara & Sri Ananta Vasudeva
After killing these two demons Kriti and Vasa, Bhagavati Devi became very tired and was also very thirsty. She wanted some water. So Siva with His trident, Trishula pierced a hill top and created a great well that is known as Sankar Vampi. But Devi said, “I want water from a great tank, a sarovara, pond, which will remain here eternally.” So Sivaji ordered his bull carrier, Nandi, to install that sarovara. All the tirthas and holy rivers came there like the Kaveri, Gomati, Krishna, Yamuna, Sarasvati, Gandaki, Rishikulya, Mahanadi. All holy rivers came to this sarovara. These came from the heavenly planets. The rivers that came from Patala, are: the Mandakini and Ksirodaka. When Siva saw that all these holy rivers had come, with his trident he pierced that hilltop and asked all those holy rivers and all the tirthas to please pour water drop by drop here. [Bindu means drop]. So they did so andthen Lord Brahma installed that sarovara. That sarovara is known as Bindhu-sarovara. Have you seen it?
Mahaprabhu took bath in that Bindhu-sarovara. Bhagavan Janardan and all the demigods headed by Brahma all took bath in that sarovara. So in this way Bindhu-sarovara was installed.
Then Sambhu paid obeisances to Janardana and the Lord placed Anantadeva on the eastern side of Bindhu-sarova. You’ll find on the eastern side Sri Ananta Vasudeva is there. Siva became the ksetrapala, and Anantadeva became the controller of the ksetra. Here Anantadev stays with His Sister, Srimati Subadhra Devi. He is known as Lord Vasudeva fulfills Lord Siva’s desires. To fulfill Lord Siva’s desires Ananta Vasudeva stayed on the eastern side of Bindhu-sarovara and has been staying there till now. Have you gone to that temple? In the front wall of that temple you’ll find Laksmi Devi and Sudarsana Cakra are also there.
Ananta Vasudeva and Madan Mohan are the Lords of Lingaraj Siva. So at the time of Chandan Yatra, Sivaji along with Ananta Vasudeva and Madan Mohan ride a swing, dola and participate in Chandan Yatra. They perform Candana Yatra in Bindhu-sarovara.
When a Vaisnava is Served, Krishna is Worshipped
At that time Candana Yatra will also begin at the Puri Temple. In Puri there are three famous Lord Sivas, who also come with Madan Mohana to do Candan Yatra. The Madan Mohan here in Bhubaneswar is a four handed form. In Ananta Vasudeva mandir vaisnavi Bhagavati herself cooks bhoga for Ananta Vasudeva. First Ananta Vasudeva will be worshipped; bhoga arati will be performed, then this prasada will go to the Siva temple. Siva is always in need of that prasad from Ananta Vasudeva. Sivaji becomes very pleased. This is the vaisnava process. The vaisnava will first worship Lord Visnu, then he’ll offer that prasad to Sivaji. In this way a vaisnava worships Siva, but if one is not a vaisnava then he’ll offer that bhoga to Siva directly. In this way a vaisnava worships Siva, but if one is not a vaisnava then he’ll directly worship Siva. Therefore a vaisnava never accepts prasad offered directly to Lord Siva.
The vaisnava will first worship Vasudeva, Visnu by offering Him bhoga then that prasad will be offered to Lord Siva. This system is going on in the Sri Jagannatha Temple. In the Jaganntha Temple campus you’ll find Goddess Durga is there, Siva is there, Laksmiji is there, all are there so Jaganntha prasad is given to them. The bhoga is not given to Siva directly. That’s the vaisnava process, so we accept it.
If someone takes bath in the Bindhu-sarovara then he’ll get the result of taking bath in all tirthas, because all the tirthas are present there. If someone goes to Ananta Vasudeva Temple and gets darsan of Ananta Vasudeva then he gets the result of darsan of the Supreme Lord. So Siva by the order and mercy of Janardana has become the ksetrapala. Siva is bhakti-pradatah, a great vaisnava so he can give you bhakti if he is pleased and simultaneously he can give you the adhikar to serve the dham of the Lord. Lord Siva simutaneously can give you dhama-seva-adhikara and bhakti-pradatah. Siva can give you. Therefore the vaisnavas go to the temple of Sivaji because Mahaprabhu has also gone there and taught like this. We follow in the footsteps of Mahaprabhu. The vaisnavas, gaura-priya-janas, the dear devotees of Gauranga Mahaprabhu also visit Siva temples and pay respects to Siva and pray for the mercy of Siva to let us get Krsna-bhakti. Therefore Mahaprabhu visited the Bhubaneswar temple. Siva is a vaisnava, ‘vaisnava-sevana krsna-pujana’, if a vaisnava is served then Krsna is worshipped. That is Mahaprabhu’s instruction. So Mahaprabhu did that in order to teach us.
Srimad Bhagavatam First Spoken in
Sri Bhubaneswar Dhama
The Srimad-Bhagavatam was first spoken in Bhubaneswar, Ekamra Kanana. Sivaji was speaking to Paravti Devi. Sivaji says:
aham vedmi suko vetti
vyaso vetti na vetti va
bhaktya bhagavatam grahyam
na buddhya na ca tikaya
[CC. Mad. 24.313]
“[Lord Siva said:] ‘I may know; Sukadeva Gosvami, the son of Vyasadeva, may know; and Vyasadeva may know or may not know Srimad-Bhagavatam. On the whole, Srimad-Bhagavatam, the spotless Purana, can be learned only through devotional service, not by material intelligence, speculative methods or imaginary commentaries.’”
“I know Bhagavata Sukadeva knows, I don’t know if Vyasadeva knows or not.” Bhagavata can only be understood by bhakti.
Sivaji was speaking Srimad-Bhagavatam before Goddess Paravati here in Ekamra Kanana. At that time, a parrot was listening, suka means parrot. So at first Parvati Devi was listening and was saying “Hmm. Hmm, hmm. Then Parvati Devi fell asleep. That parrot was listening and saying “Hmm, hmm, hmm.” So Sivaji couldn’t understand at first that Parvati Devi had fallen asleep then at last He noticed. So he thought who has been saying, “Hmm, hmm, hmm.” He saw a parrot sitting there so Sivaji ran to catch the parrot but the parrot flew away. That suka then entered into the womb of Srila Vyasadeva’s wife. That parrot became Srila Sukadeva Goswami. This is how Sukadeva Goswami knows the Srimad-Bhagavatam. Bhubaneswar is such a famous place. It is known as Bhubaneswar-dhama, Bhubaneswar-ksetra. This is vaisnava-ksetra.
Read more on the story of Lord Siva and Srimati Radharani's Parrot.
“Prabhupada’s mercy - wonderful! He told me in Mayapur that very day, “You will take me to Orissa.” He took me to his room and said, “Gour Govinda you will take me to Orissa.” Prabhupada was not coming here, because the Western disciples are not allowed to come into Puri temple, so he had developed sulkiness. One person will be there who will break the sulkiness and he caught me. “Oh! You are!” I said, “Yes, Prabhupada you are so merciful now you want to go to Orissa.”
- His Divine Grace Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada speaking to His Divine Grace Srila Gour Govinda Swami Maharaja
Sri Nityananda-Rama’s Merciful Strength
Srila Gour Govinda Swami Maharaja
A lecture given on the Srimad Bhagavatam, 7.15.46
recorded on the 20th Aug 1990 in Bhubaneswar, India
Lord Nityananda has merciful strength, krpa-bala, you see. His merciful strength is required. Unless one gets the merciful strength of Nityananda Balarama one cannot get out of this extremely fearful and dangerous situation of material existence. It is like a very deep, dark well, blind dark well. No, not at all possible, not at all possible.
So Narada Muni says this thing. Everyone should be very, very careful and one should pray for such merciful strength from Lord Balarama or Lord Nityananda, Gaura-Nitai or Krsna-Balarama.
This is a Special Temple
This is a special temple. The ‘Bhubaneswar Temple’ is a Krsna Balarama temple, so this is available here, baba! You’ll never get this anywhere, do you understand? Especially at this Krsna Balarama temple, Balaram’s influence is very great here. Balarama is very, very influential here, do you understand?
In other places you’ll find Radharani is there. In Vrndavana, Prabhupada opened a Krsna Balarama temple but Radharani is there. Krsna and Radharani and the sakhis are there. Radharani is very influential there in Vrndavana. All say “Jaya Radhe!” Nobody says anything else, you see. Radharani is so much influential in Vrndavan; even Krsna is not influential there.
Though Srila Prabhupada constructed Krsna Balarama mandir in Vrndavana, Balarama is not so much influential, it is Radharani. Here, in Bhubaneswar it is a Krsna Balaram mandir but no Radharani is here. So Balarama is very influential here, do you understand?
All The Mercy is Extracted Here!
This is a very special temple. The last temple of Srila Prabhupada, do you understand? All the mercy is extracted here! Sri Balaram’s mercy, Lord Balaram’s mercy. It is Gaura-Nitai and Krsna Balarama here but no Radharani. Krsna Balarama... Balarama is very, very strong here, very, very influential. He distributes that mercy freely here. “Take!” Unless you ‘Take’... you see here, ‘This person’ –‘nacet,’ specifically ‘This person’ – ‘nacet,’ nacet means, ‘If you don’t.’ If we do not follow the instruction of Acyuta, Krsna and do not take the shelter of Balarama, how can we get out of this deep dark well? You see, nacet, cannot.
This Opportunity is Given Here!
So this opportunity is given here, here! At this Krsna Balarama mandir, here in Bhubaneswar, nowhere else in the world! Never, never, you’ll never find! This is special, this is unique. Srila Prabhupada’s unique temple, last temple. Srila Prabhupada has extracted all the mercy and has poured it here, do you understand? Yes! This gives you an opportunity to get out of this material existence. To get this merciful strength of Lord Balarama - Nityananda, and be strong! To get out of this dangerous, very dangerous, fearful situation of material existence which is compared to a very deep, dark well. No other way is there.