“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 Krishna. So Mahaprabhu has taught this thing, and especially Sivaji, vaisnavanam yatha sambhu, Lord Siva is a great Vaisnava. Therefore Mahaprabhu visited, paid respect. Sivaji is known as ksetrapala.
Lord Siva Guards the Ksetras
In Vraja Mandala you’ll find nine Ksetrapala Mahadev Murtis are there. In Vrndavan you’ll find Gopesvara Mahadev, in Kamyavan you’ll find Kamesvara Mahadev, in Govardhan, you’ll find Chakresvara Mahadev, in Nadagram you’ll find Nandisvara Mahadev and in Mathura you’ll find Bhutesvara, Gokarnesvara, Chaklesvara, Brdhyesvara and Rangesvara. Besides that, in Mathura many, many Siva temples are there.
In Adi Varaha Purana it is mentioned that Vishnu said to Siviji, Vishnu has ordered Sivaji, in Mathura you’ll become ksetrapala, who guards the ksetra, My ksetra. If someone will pay You respect, have Your darsan, he’ll get the result of visiting My ksetra. Those who do circumambulation or parikrama, Vrndavan parikrama they in the beginning and at the 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 dham. It is mentioned there, in Caitanya Bhagavat, Vrndavan Dasa Thakura has mentioned about Bhubaneswar. When Mahaprabhu came here, while he was going to Jagannatha Puri Dhama, He passed through this Bhubaneswar. So Mahaprabhu came here, visited that temple and that Bhubaneswar Lingaraj is a very dear servitor, servant of Sri Anantadev, therefore Mahaprabhu came here.
In Caitanya-Bhagavata, it is mentioned, Mahaprabhu with His devotees came here, chanted and danced before Siva in the Bhubaneswar Temple. So following in the footsteps of Mahaprabhu all Vaisnavas came here and visited Bhubaneswar Sivaji and chanted and danced there.
Lord Siva Obtains Sri Bhubaneswar Dhama
From Lord Krishna
In Skanda Purana, there it is mentioned about 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 Krishna. He was in tapasya trying to satisfy Lord Siva, and he had that desire he would conquer Krishna. But one cannot understand the behavior of a Vaisnava. Even the demigods can’t understand, what to speak of the human beings. So Sivaji became satisfied, pleased with his tapasya. At that time Sivaji told him, alright you go and fight against Krishna, 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 him, that raja, king. Then Krishna, Vasudev, Devaki-nandana, Son of Devaki, could understand all these things, so He released His Sudarsan Cakra. That Sudarsan Cakra cut off the head of the king first. After that also that Sudarsan Cakra cut off the heads of all the Siva bhaktas in Kasi. This Varnasi became a crematorium ground - all dead. So Siva became very angry and released his Pasupatastra. But what he’ll do, Pasupatastra in front of Sundarsan Cakra? Couldn’t 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 Krishna nobody can save me now. So He surrendered unto the lotus feet of Krishna, Govinda. He offered many prayers. Siva offered prayers to Krishna, Govinda. 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 according to Skanda Purana.
So Vasudeva said, My ksetra is there, Sri Purosottama Ksetra, so in the North of that ksetra there is Ekamraka Kanana. That place, Ekamraka Kanana is very, very auspicious, which can give bhukti and mukti, a very beautiful place. So you’ll stay there and you’ll be noted as “Bhubaneswar.” “So I give you that Ekamraka Kanana, you go and stay there and you become guard of that ksetra, ‘ksetra pala’.
So this is Bhubaneswar. It is known as ‘Hemacala’ and ‘Svarnadi Ksetra’ also. In this ksetra crores, crores, koti lingum, crores of Sivajis are here. Asta tirtha, the famous eight tirthas are also here. It is superior to Varnasi, this Bhubaneswar, and this is more dear to Siva than Varnasi, this Bhubaneswar.
Srila Vyasadeva Glorifies Sri Bhubaneswar Dhama
In Svarnadi Mahadev Grantha, we’ll find once Vyasadev came here. This is Vaisnava Ksetra, Ekamraka Kanana, and Srila Vyasadev has described its glories, it is mentioned in Svarnadi Mahadev Grantha.
There it is mentioned once Devi Bhagavati, this means Goddess Parvati, was hearing the glories of this Ekamraka Kanana from the lips of Siva, Sambhu. So Bhagavati Devi came here to see this ksetra. She saw maha-linga, do you understand ‘linga’? Siva is worshipped in linga form. And that linga has the complexion of half white, half blank, sitasita varna, maha-linga and Devi also offered puja to that Linga. Once Devi saw that from a 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 also she saw the same thing. Then Devi assumed the form of a gopalini, a cowherd girl, and followed those cows. At the 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 Bhagabati 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 that those two demons Kriti and Vasa were the sons of Drumilla Raksasa. So that Drumilla worshipped many demigods, they were very much pleased and gave him one boon that the two sons couldn’t be killed by any weapon. Then Sivaji said, “Now they will be killed by you, O Devi. You kill them. They won’t be killed by any weapons, so I can’t kill them.”
So getting the instruction from Sivaji, Devi who was in the form of a cowherd girl, gopalini, came in front of those two demons and said, “Alright, I’ll fulfill your desires, but I have one condition, if one of you carry me on your shoulder or head I’ll 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. At that time Bhagavati assumed the form of Visvambari, Visvambari-rupa. Vishnu means universe, she expanded as Visvambari and crushed them. So from this day, this Lord Sambhu, vaisnava pravara sambhu, and Devi Bhagavati stayed here in this ksetra of Ekamraka Kanana.
Bindhu-Sarovara & Sri Ananta Vasudeva
After killing these two demons Kriti and Vasa, Bhagabati Devi became very tired and was also very thirsty. She wanted water, so Siva with His trident, Trishula pierced a hill top and a great well was created that is known as Sankar Vampi. But Devi said, “I want water from a great tank, sarovara, pond, which will be eternally there.” So Sivaji ordered his bull carrier, Nandi, to install that sarovara. All tirthas came there, and all the holy rivers, like Kaveri, Gomati, Krishna, Yamuna, Sarasvati, Gandaki, Rishikulya, Mahanadi, all holy rivers came here. Again from the heavenly planets and from Patala came the Mandakini and Ksirodaka, all came here. When Siva saw all those 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. (Drop means bindu). So they did it and Brahma installed that sarovara. And that sarovara is known as Bindhu-sarovara. Have you seen it?
Mahaprabhu took bath there 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 Anatadev on the eastern side of Bindhu-sarova. You’ll find on the eastern side Sri Ananta Vasudev is there. Siva became ksetrapala, and Anantadev became the controller of the ksetra. Here Anantadev stays with His Sister, Srimati Subhudra Devi. He is known as Sri Vasudev, Lord Vasudev, who has been fulfilling Lord Siva’s desires. To fulfill Lord Siva’s desires Ananta Vasudev stayed on the eastern side of Bindhu-sarovara and has been staying there till now. Have you gone to that temple? So in the front wall of that temple you’ll find there is Laksmi Devi and Sudarsan Cakra is also there.
Ananta Vasudev and Madan Mohan, They are the Lords of Lingaraj Siva. So at the time of Chandan Yatra, Sivaji along with Ananta Vasudev and Madan Mohan ride a swing, dola and go to Chandan Yatra. They make Candana Yatra in Bindhu-sarovara.
When a Vaisnava is Served, Krishna is Worshipped
At that time also Candana Yatra will begin from Puri Temple. In Puri there are three famous Lord Sivas, They also come with Madan Mohan to do Candan Yatra. The Madan Mohan here in Bhubaneswar is a four handed form. In Ananta Vasudev mandir Vaisnavi Bhagavati herself cooks bhoga to serve for Ananta Vasudev. First Ananta Vasudev will be worshipped, bhoga arati will be there, then that bhoga will go to the Siva temple and Siva always is in need of that prasad of Ananta Vasudev, he 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 prasad to Siva. 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 such prasad.
The Vaisnava will worship first Vasudev, Visnu, another thing, offer bhoga then that prasad will be offered to Lord Siva. This system is going on in the Sri Jagannatha Temple. In Jaganntha Temple in the campus you’ll find Goddess Durga is there, Siva is there, all are there so Laksmiji is there. So Jaganntha prasad goes there, no Siva prasad. That’s the Vaisnava process, so we accept it.
If someone takes bath in Bindhu-sarovara then he’ll get the result of taking bath in all tirthas, because all tirthas are there. If someone goes to Ananta Vasudev Temple and gets darsan of Ananta Vasudev then he gets result of darsan of the Supreme Lord. So Siva by the order of Janardana, by the mercy of Janardana has become ksetrapala. Siva simultaneously is bhakti pradatah he is a great Vaisnava so he can give you bhakti if he is pleased and also give you the adhikar to serve the dham of the Lord. Dham seva adhikar and bhakti pradatah. Siva can give you. Therefore the vaisnavas go to the temple of Sivaji, because Mahaprabhu has also gone there, and we follow in the footsteps of Mahaprabhu. The Vaisnavas, gaura priya, dear devotees of Gauranga Mahaprabhu also visit Siva temples and pay respects to Siva and pray for the mercy of Siva that let us get Krsna-bhakti. Therefore Mahaprabhu visited. Siva is a Vaisnava, ‘vaisnava-sevana krsna-pujana’, if a Vaisnavais served then Krishna 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, Ekamara 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, Sukadev knows, I don’t know if Vyasadev knows or not.” Bhagavat can only be understood by bhakti.
Sivaji was speaking Srimad-Bhagavatam before Goddess Paravati here in Ekamraka 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 suka, parrot, was listening and the parrot was saying “Hmm, hmm, hmm.” So Sivaji couldn’t understand at first that Parvati Devi had fallen asleep, then at last He noticed she had fallen asleep. So he thought who was saying, “Hmm, hmm, hmm.” He saw a parrot is there so Sivaji ran to catch the parrot but the parrot flew away. That suka then entered into the womb of Srila Vyasadev’s wife. That became Srila Sukadev Goswami. This is how Sukadev Goswami knows the Srimad-Bhagavatam. This is such a famous place this Bhubaneswar Dham, 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.