Seva in Gupta Govardhan
Srila Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswami Maharaj
Srila Gurudev explains how the Nat Mandir in Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math was decorated to demonstrate the line of worship practiced in the Math.
When I wanted to make a diorama expressing Srila Saraswati Thakur’s siddhanta on the front of our Math in Nabadwip, I used the following shloka. However I changed one of the lines in the shloka with the permission of Srila Guru Maharaj. Through Srila Guru Maharaj we can understand the desire of Srila Saraswati Thakur and for preaching purposes I changed this shloka to make it more understandable to general people. I engraved these two lines on our nat-mandir:
mātala hari-jana kīrtana raṅge
pūjala rāga-pātha gaurava-bhaṅge
Later, I also posted this expression on the wall of my veranda so I could see it every day. Srila Saraswati Thakur’s phrase vishaya-range is very deep. To say that work and activity, which may appear completely material, are actually completely transcendental is not easy for the public to understand. I wanted to show in the diorama that it is through Mahaprabhu’s sankirtan that we must worship Radha-Krishna in Kali-yuga. So I used this phrase, mātala Hari-jana kīrtana raṅge. It means that devotees are intoxicated with the practice of Mahaprabhu’s sankirtan—they are hearing and chanting the Holy Name and the glories of Mahaprabhu—and through that they are serving and satisfying the Divine Couple Radha-Krishna, Whose non-different form is Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. In the formal posture (gaurava-bhaṅge) of Mahaprabhu’s sankirtan the devotees are giving their puja, their offerings, and everything, to Radha-Govinda and Their intimate servitors.
At present we do not live in the domain of Radha-Krishna and we are not trying to forcefully enter that abode. Rather we are trying to honour that abode through our life in Kali-yuga under our proper shelter in the practice of sankirtan at the lotus feet of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. So we are proceeding systematically towards the goal of our lives, the service of Radha-Govinda, under the guidance of Their intimate associates headed by Srila Rupa Goswami Prabhu.
Our Math is located in Gupta-Govardhan, Hidden Govardhan, in Sri Nabadwip Dham and Govardhan is the primary place of raga-marga worship of Radha-Krishna.
pramada-madana-līlāḥ kandare kandare te
rachayati nava-yūnor dvandvam asminn amandam
iti kila kalanārthaṁ lagnakas tad-dvayor me
nija-nikaṭa-nivāsaṁ dehi govardhana tvam
(Sri Govardhana-Vasa-Prarthana-Dashakam: 2)
Giriraj Govardhan is the highest, most worshippable place of Radha-Krishna’s Pastimes, and Radha-Krishna’s highest lila happens in the kunjas, groves, around Govardhan Hill. Radha Kunda, Syama Kunda, Govinda Kunda, Kusum Sarovar and many many kunjas surround Govardhan, and Radha-Krishna’s kunja-lilas happen at different times and different places all around Govardhan.
Radha-Krishna enjoy Their intimate Pastimes there around Govardhan as all the sakhis and manjaris busily serve Them day and night. Chiefly Lalita Devi organises all the service of Radha-Krishna and she gives the highest service to the group of Rupa Manjari. Gokula-pateḥ premāmṛtāplāvanāt, in this way the nectar of Krishna-prem overfloods everyone, everywhere, all around Govardhan Hill.
We presented our diorama on the front of our Math to show everyone that through the sankirtan of Mahaprabhu we can properly honour the most worshippable plane of raga-marga service of Radha-Krishna—Govardhan—and that we will automatically enter there when we become qualified through our sincere practice of sankirtan. Srila Guru Maharaj accepted everything, all of my ideas, and in that way we decorated our temple and adjusted Srila Saraswati Thakur’s expression.