Diwali, Govardhana Puja, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and the Temple of the Vedic Planetarium
By Nrsimhananada dasa (GKG) For the Temple of the Vedic Planetarium (TOVP)
The festivals of Govardhana Puja and Diwali are approaching quickly. In one
pastime, Krsna protects His devotees from Lord Indra’s wrath; in the other,
Lord Rama protects His devotees from Ravana and is welcomed back to Ayodhya.
Through his Sadbhuja form, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu revealed Himself as both
Lord Krsna and Lord Rama. As with Lord Rama, devotees around the world have
been celebrating Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s appearance ever since Srila
Prabhupada introduced the Krsna Consciousness movement. Since Mayapur is the
epicenter of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s appearance, Srila Prabhupada wanted
to bring the world to Mayapur:
“I have named this Temple Sri Mayapur Candrodaya Mandir, the Rising Moon of
Mayapur. Now make it rise, bigger and bigger until it becomes the full moon.
And this moonshine will be spread all over the world. All over India they
will come to see. From all over the world they will come”
Srila Prabhupada, letter to Brahmananda Maharaja 25-10-1974
By the desire of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu the Temple of the Vedic Planetarium
is coming up. If the funding remains strong, by 2014 the Deities of Sri
Pancatattva and Sri Sri Radha Madhava will have Their new home.
What will you experience when you come and see this wonderous temple?
As you climb the steps to the main entrance to the Temple of the Vedic
Planetarium, you first sense the power of the sheer devotion that has
envisioned and built such a grand structure. Your sense of proportion
expands; the ten-foot tall chakra atop the main dome appears tiny where it
is, more than three hundred feet above where you stand.
Passing the ornate main doors, you enter the largest room you have ever
seen—a completely open, circular space more than an acre in size, effulgent
with splendid devotional art along its walls. Looking up, you see hanging
from the central dome a scale model of the universe as described in the
Vedas, twenty stories long and a hundred feet wide, its stars and planets
rotating majestically above everything.
Set just back from the center of the room stands a white marble and gold
altar that itself is a large building, 135 feet wide and 50 feet tall.
Before the closed altar doors, a talented bhajana party perform devotional
music, filling the massive dome with sweet, pleasantly muted sound. As the
intriguing fragrance of frankincense drifts from the altar, a conchshell
sounds and the massive carved doors open.
Here is the purpose of your visit: the opportunity to approach the Supreme
Personality of Godhead. Starting from the left altar, you offer your
respects to the guru-parampara , murtis of the five great acaryas whose
vision inspired the world wide sankirtan movement and the Temple of the
Seeing these brilliant gurus opens your heart to the Panca Tattva Deities on
the central altar. As you proceed to your right, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and
His principal associates stand before you. Larger than life and radiant as
molten gold, They strike graceful poses, inviting you to join in blissful
dancing and chanting.
As the avatara of Krsna for the Age of Kali, Caitanya Mahaprabhu introduces
us to the sublime darsana of Sri Sri Radha-Madhava. Standing before Their
third and final altar, you see Sri Radha serving Her Lord with the help of
eight principal gopies, all of whom embody the perfection of loving devotion
to Lord Krsna.
Gazing at the incomparably beautiful Lord until His doors close, you offer
respects and look around. Wonderfully decorated windows circling the main
temple floor beckon you for darsana of the Ganga and the vistas of Sridhama
Mayapur. To your right is the towering white and black marble altar in the
adjoining domed temple dedicated to Lord Narsimhadeva. To your left is the
dome housing the Vedic Science Center and Planetarium. Spiraling above you
are three terraced display floors, depicting the Brihad-bhagavatamrita’s
description of the universe.
There is so much to explore…
This Diwali, light a lamp to welcome Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu to your part of
the world and to welcome the world to Mayapur. Help build the wonderous
temple in Mayapur envisioned by Lord Nityananda, Bhaktivinode Thakur and
In the coming year, please give whatever you can manage for this Temple. As
in their own way each member of Lord Rama’s army helped build a bridge to
Lanka, donations of all sizes will build this once-in-many-lifetimes Temple.
Make a gift for a brick, a dome, a museum floor or even the huge Vedic
Cosmology Model. All are welcome.
Help bring the acharya’s visions to fruition. As Krsna lifted Govardhan Hill to shelter all the residents of Vrindavana, He will raise this incredible temple to shelter the world in Sridham Mayapur.
Nrsimhananda dasa (GKG)
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