Category Archives: Madhyadvipa

Pancaveni (Maha-Prayaga)

tatomaha-prayagakhyam
panca-veni-samanvita
tirthamsri-jahnavimtirtva
koladvipamjagama ha

“The Lord visited the holy place called Maha-Prayaga and the Pancavenitirtha. He then crossed SriGanga-devi and entered Koladvipa.” (Navadvipa-dhama-mahatmya,Pramana-khanda  4.42)

Pancaveni

Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura describes this holy place in his Navadvipa-bhavataranga: “Near Ucchatta is the place known as Pancaveni (five streams). It is considered a holy pilgrimage spot by the demigods, who come here on vacation. At this place the three streams of the River Ganga (Bhagirathi, Mandakini and Alakananda) along with the Yamuna and Sarasvati rivers all join together, desiring to perform service to Lord Gaura. Here Gaurahari and His associates take bath, thereby purifying the tirtha from all the sins left by the people of Kaliyuga. Vedavyasa and the assembly of rishis recognize that in all the fourteen worlds there is no place which could compare with Pancaveni. When will I bathe in the waters of the Pancaveni and thereby remember the lotus feet of Sri Gauranga? Filling the palms of my hands with the very water that has washed the feet of Gaura and drinking it, becoming madly intoxicated by topics about Lord Gaura, when will I be so blessed?” (Navadvipa-bhavataranga) After leaving Madhyadvipa one has to cross the River Ganga to enter the island of Koladvipa. Lord Nityananda explained the glories of the Ganga at this place, known as Pancaveni. At this place five rivers have joined together: Mandakini, Alakananda, Bhagirathi, Sarasvati and Yamuna. The Sarasvati flows here in her hidden form. The Bhogavati is flowing along with the Yamuna on its western side. Manasaganga is also flowing here with great speed. The rishiscall this place Maha- Prayaga and they perform millions of fire sacrifices here along with Lord Brahma. This holy spot is also known as Brahma-satra. Anyone who takes bath here will never take birth again in this material world. Who can describe the glories of this holy place? No other tirthacan be compared to the dry river bed at Maha-Prayaga.

Pancaveni

Directions: when coming from BrahmanaPushkara and Uccahatta: Continue down the Navadvipa- Krishnanagar highway until just before the Gauranga Bridge. 

Uccahatta (Hattadanga)

Uccahatta

Further south is Uccahatta, non-different from Kurukshetra of Brahmavarta, which is a place of pilgrimage for the three worlds. Here all the demigods reside, continuously performing gaura-sankirtana. Sometimes the present-day residents of this area can hear that music. A description of this holy place from Sri Navadvipa-dhama-mahatmya, Parikrama khanda: After explaining the glories of Pushkara tirtha to Sri Jiva, Lord Nityananda along with His associates entered Uccahatta in Kurukshetra. Lord Nityananda said, “All the demigods along with all the tirthas have come to this Kurukshetra. All the tirthas from Brahmavarta and Kurukshetra stay here. Everyone, including Prithudaka, resides here and they easily engage in the service of Navadvipa-dhama. Whatever benefit one derives by residing in Kurukshetra for one hundred years, can be achieved just by spending one night at this place.” Nityananda Prabhu said, “The demigods used to gather here to enjoy gaura-katha, opening the market (hatta) of the holy name here. Therefore this place is known as Hattadanga. Whoever takes darsana of this place achieves unlimited love. Dear Jiva! This is the border of Nadia. Let us now go to the other side of the Bhagirathi.” The following is a passage from the Bhakti-ratnakara: Isana Thakura, standing near the Hattadanga village, told Srinivasa, “Srinivasa! This place is called Hattadanga. Previously it was known as Uccahatta. All the demigods including Indra were staying here, absorbed in discussing the pastimes and associates of Gauranga Mahaprabhu. Some said, ‘This Kali-yuga is blessed because Sri KrishnaCaitanya Mahaprabhu will appear, along with Lord Nityananda and Advaitacarya.’ Someone else said, ‘Mahaprabhu has unlimited associates. Who can count them? All His associates are oceans of mercy. They are friends of the most fallen wretched people.’ Another of the demigods said, ‘Mahaprabhu, along with His associates, will be mad with nama-sankirtana and will make the whole world mad. The river of happiness will flow in this Nadia. Very easily all the sins of all the living entities will be removed.’ Another said, ‘There will be unlimited auspiciousness. Only the most fortunate people will see those wonderful pastimes. If all of us could take birth in Nadia then our great sadness would be removed.’ Some said, ‘Of course all of us will take birth here. We will see the pastimes of the Lord to our heart’s content. All the devotees of Navadvipa will take us with them and engage us in the service of Sri Gauracandra.’ Speaking in this way, the demigods opened a marketplace (hatta) there. At this raised (ucca) place they performed sankirtanaloudly (ucca-sankirtana). All of them with great eagerness, raising their hands, prayed, ‘O Lord! Do not delay Your descent.’ Saying this the demigods started to dance very joyfully in different postures while chanting the holy name of the Lord. Therefore this place is called Uccahatta.”

Kurukshetra

“KURUKSHETRA”: This is the site of Kurukshetra. Currently this is encroached by a local brick making factory.

Kurukshetra

Directions: when coming from ISKCON: Go down Bhaktisiddhanta Road to the end and turn right onto the main road to Calcutta. After the Krishnanagar turnoff, you will go under a railway overbridge and proceed into a small town where there is an intersection of roads. Take the road going straight ahead (Highway No. 8, Navadvipa-Krishnanagar highway). Do not take the road to the left as it goes to Calcutta. Proceed up this highway until a few kilometers before the Gauranga Bridge.

Divadasa received darsana of Pushkara-tirtha

Pushkara tirtha

Early one morning Lord Nityananda and Sri Jiva started their dhama parikrama. Lord Nityananda said, “Oh, Jiva! Just behold this beautiful village. Now people call this place Brahmanapura but according to scripture, this place is known as Brahmana Pushkara. The secret glories of this place are very confidential. During Satya-yuga there was a brahmana called Divadasa. He left his house and started traveling to take darsana of all the holy places but he was particularly interested in seeing Pushkara-tirtha in western India. 

Pushkara tirtha in Rajasthan
The Well known Pushkara tirtha in Rajasthan

Before reaching Pushkara-tirtha, his travels took him to Navadvipa-dhama. While he was in Navadvipa, he had a dream in which someone instructed him to stay in Navadvipa. He was told that by staying in Navadvipa he would gain great eternal wealth. According to that instruction Divadasa built a kutira at this place and lived here until his old age. He became so old that he was not able to walk around anymore. During this time he again developed a great desire to go and have darsana of Pushkara-tirtha, but was now unable to walk. He felt very sad and started to cry saying, ‘I will not get the chance to have darsana of Pushkara-tirtha in this life.’ By seeing his situation tirtha-raja (the king of the holy places) Pushkara became merciful upon him and appeared in the form of a brahmana to give darsana to Divadasa. Pushkara tirtha in his brahmana form told Divadasa, ‘Oh brahmana, please do not cry. Just see this beautiful pond in front of you. By taking bath once in this pond you will have darsana of Pushkaratirtha.’ Following the instruction of the brahmana, Divadasa went to take bath in that pond. As soon as he took bath he received transcendental vision and saw Pushkara-tirtha in front of him. Divadasa started weeping and told Pushkara-tirtha, ‘You have taken so much trouble to come here and give me darsana.’ Pushkara-tirtha replied, ‘Oh most fortunate brahmana! Please listen. I have not come from very far to give you darsana. Rather I have been residing here eternally in this Navadvipa-dhama. This Navadvipa is filled with the holy tirthas. All the tirthas are residing here and serving the dhama.

By my expansion I have manifested another form in western India. Whatever result one achieves by taking bath a hundred times in that tirtha, he will also attain from taking bath here once. Therefore anyone who develops a desire to go to other tirthas, leaving Navadvipa-dhama, must be a great fool and a rogue. By traveling to all the tirthas, one receives the blessing of residence in Navadvipa-dhama. Just see this high land which is non-different from Kurukshetra Brahmavarta. Two rivers and Drishadvati flow on either side of this place and increase its beauty by spreading piety.’ Pushkara-tirtha continued, ‘Dear vipra! I would like to tell you something very confidential. Soon great happiness will manifest here. In Mayapur in the house of Saci-devi, Lord Gaurasundara will appear and distribute love of Godhead to everyone abundantly. At this place the Lord will dance along with many devotees performing great sankirtana. He will perform kirtana gathering the devotees of all His previous incarnations. He will make the whole universe float in the flood of prema. Except for the fallacious logicians, everyone will receive this supreme love of God. Oh Divadasa! Whoever resides in this dhama with great sincerity will achieve the lotus feet of Gaurahari. If mischievous persons engage in sri-krishna-bhajana for millions of years they will still not develop a taste for the holy name. But the mischievous mentality of someone who worships Gauranga will soon be removed and he will quickly attain Radha and Krishna in Vraja-dhama. He will achieve his siddha-dehaunder the shelter of the sakhis and he will be engaged in yugala-sevainside the kunja. Oh vipra! Stay here and perform gauranga-bhajana. You will attain the darsana of SriGauranga along with all His associates.’ Saying this tirtha-raja Pushkara left. The brahmana heard a mystical voice saying, ‘Oh vipra, you will appear during the manifested pastime of Lord Gauranga and swim in the ocean of gaura-kirtana-prema.’” Lord Nityananda continued, “Upon hearing this voice, Divadasa felt pacified and started his bhajana on the bank of this kunda.”

Directions: Return to the main road by the Hamsa-vahana temple. Turn left and continue for less than one kilometer. On the left you will see a large lake surrounded by a beautiful forest. Walk down the path to the lakeside. This is the place.

Brahmana Pushkara

Brahmana Pushkara

tatogatvapushkarakhyam
tirthamvipra-nishevitam
brahmavartamkurukshetram
plavayamasakirtanaih

“The Lord went to Pushkara-tirtha which is worshiped by many brahmanas and flooded BrahmavartaKurukshetra with kirtana.” (Navadvipa-dhama-mahatmya, Pramana-khanda 4.41)

Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura describes this holy place in Navadvipa-bhavataranga: “South of Naimisharanya lies Brahmana Pushkara. This area is the same as the holy place named Sri Pushkaratirtha, and it was visited by the best of the brahmanas named Divadasa. Worshiping the lotus feet of Lord Gauranga at that place, vipra Divadasa was consoled upon beholding a vision of the Lord’s beautiful golden form.”