Ramanujacarya’s Visit to Navadvipa


Once, Acarya Lakshmana (Ramanujacarya) came to Jagannatha Puri. He pleased Lord Jagannatha by offering many prayers to Him. Lord Jagannatha mercifully appeared in front of him and told him, “You should go to take darsana of Navadvipa-dhama. Very soon I will appear in Nadianagara in the house of Jagannatha Misra. Navadvipa is very dear to Me. The entire spiritual sky exists in one portion of this Navadvipa-dhama. You are My eternal servant and great devotee so you will definitely see Navadvipa-dhama. Your disciples are engaged in My service in the mood of servitude. Let them all stay here in Nilacala while you go to Navadvipa alone. O, Ramanuja! If a person does not take darsana of Navadvipa-dhama, his human life is useless. Sri Rangakshetra and Sri Venkatacala are plenary expansions of Sri Navadvipa-dhama. For this reason you must just go to Navadvipa and take darsana of Sri Gauranga. You have come to this earth to preach about bhakti. Let your life be worthwhile (sarthaka), or meaningful, by the mercy of Sri Gauranga. After seeing Navadvipa go to Kurmasthana. There you will meet with your disciples.” Hearing all this from Lord Jagannatha, Ramanujacarya replied with folded hands, “O, Lord ! By Your mercy only have I heard gaura-katha, but I do not know which tattva this Gauracandra is.” Lord Jagannatha mercifully explained, “Everybody knows that Sri Krishna is the Lord of Goloka. Narayana is the vilasa-murti of Sri Krishna. That Krishna is the para-tattva. His abode is Vrindavana. That Krishna in His complete form is eternally manifested as Sri Gaurahari. That Vrindavana-dhama is also Navadvipadhama. In Navadvipa I reside eternally as Gaurasundara. Navadvipa is the greatest dhama in this entire cosmic manifestation. By My mercy this dhama is present in Bhu-mandala. All scriptures mention that maya does not touch this dhama. There is no trace of maya there. If one thinks that these dhamas in this material world are inferior because they manifest in Bhumandala, one’s bhakti will reduce day by day. By My inconceivable potency the transcendental dhamas exist even in this illusory material realm.Scripture is unaware of some truths which are beyond argument. Only My devotees can understand these truths by My mercy.”

By hearing the words of Lord Jagannatha, Sri Ramanuja became very restless and eager. He said, “O, my Lord! Your pastimes are very wonderful. Veda-sastra does not know Your opulence! O, Lord Jagannatha! Why does sastra not mention the pastimes of Lord Gauranga more elaborately? Only if I search the sruti and the Puranas very deeply, I occasionally get a sphurti (revelation) of gaura-tattva in my heart. Now by Your order I am free from all doubts and gaura-lila-rasa has arisen within my heart. If You order me then I will go to Navadvipa and preach the pastimes of Gauranga in the three worlds. I will reveal the secret truths of the scriptures and inform everyone. Let me make everyone in these three worlds a devotee of Sri Gauranga.” By seeing the enthusiasm of Ramanuja, Lord Jagannatha said, “Ramanuja! Do not speak like this. Gaura-lila is very confidential. Please keep it hidden. Only when these pastimes become unmanifest, will everyone be informed about their glories. Now preach about Mydasya-rasa, but within yourself worship Gauranga constantly.” Having been instructed by the Lord, Ramanuja secretly came to Navadvipa. Feeling apprehensive that gaura-lila may be exposed to people in general prematurely, Vishvaksena took Ramanuja to paravyoma, Sri Vaikunthapura. Ramanuja was very pleased to see this place. The merciful Paravyoma-pati Narayana, served by Sri-devi and Bhudevi, gave His darsana to Ramanuja. Ramanuja felt blessed to see his ishtadeva, the worshipable Lord Narayana. But after just a moment Ramanuja saw the molten-gold-colored form of the Lord as the son of Jagannatha Misra, who was very attractive. By seeing that most gorgeous form of the Lord, Ramanuja fainted. Sri Gauranga Mahaprabhu placed His lotus feet on the head of Ramanuja, who offered prayers with his transcendental knowledge, requesting the Lord to bless him with darsana of His confidential Nadia pastimes. Saying this Ramanuja Swami cried in ecstasy, saying, “I will not go anywhere, I cannot leave Nadia.” Sri Gaurahari mercifully said, “O, Kesava-nandana! Your desire will definitely be fulfilled. When I manifest My Nadia pastimes you will take birth in Navadvipa.” Sri Gaurahari vanished and Ramanuja then departed. After some days he reached Kurma-kshetra, where he met with all his disciples. In South India Ramanuja preached dasya-rasa-bhakti while meditating on Navadvipa and Sri Gauranga within his heart. By the mercy of Sri Gauranga, Ramanuja appeared as Sri Ananta in this eternal Navadvipa-dhama. He went to Vallabha Acarya’s house, where he saw the marriage of Sri Gauranga Mahaprabhu and Lakshmipriya. This is the place of Sri Ananta. The kings of that time introduced Narayana-seva at this pitha-sthana, while many devotees of Lord Narayana were living here on the border of the River Viraja. Devotees experience immense happiness by visiting this place.