Govardhan Temple, Koundinyapur
Perched on a hilly track, 40 kms from Amravati and 150 kms from Nagpur, is the temple of ISKCON Koundinyapur, our very own Govardhan temple. This temple is an extension of ISKCON Amravati. The construction work of the temple is going on relentlessly. A temple hall has already been erected. The next project is construction of rooms for the devotees. It is said that it would be the second in the world in terms of spiritual importance after Vrindavan dham.
This place in itself has a vital spiritual history. Koundinyapur is the birth place of Rukmini Mata and this is the place from where Lord Krishna kidnapped Her. The ancient Ambadevi Temple marks the presence of Rukmini Mata in Koundinyapur. Vithhal Rukmini temple is also situated in this holy place. Other than this, Koundinyapur is the birth place of Lord Ram’s grandmother. Koundinyapur is situated on the picturesque and beautiful banks of river Wardha. In ancient times, river Wardha was known as river Vaisista and later renamed as Bardha and from their originated the name Wardha, as it is known today.
It is believed that Rukhmini Mata must have taken bath in the holy waters of river Wardha. Thus all devotees take bath in the holy waters of river Wardha in Kartik, Adhik mass. Nearly 1, 00,000 devotees visit the holy place in Kartik mela and Janmashtami. One must definitely visit Koundinyapur to experience newer and higher dimensions of spiritual life. Govardhan temple has a very vivid and interesting history. Earlier the Govardhan temple was to be erected behind the ancient Ambadevi temple. But later, by the grace of Lord Krishna and H.H. Lokanath Swami Maharaj, it acquired the land in front of Ambadevi temple, where it is situated today. As time went on, devotees from Amravati started recognizing the glory of Koundinyapur as the birth place of Rukmini Mata and thus preaching in the area increased vigorously.
Once a big sankirtan was organized in the holy place and H.H. Lokanath Swami Maharaj along with Maharashtra tour party visited there. After the sankirtan, when everyone was about to leave, H.H. Lokanath Swami Maharaj went missing. The situation was quite chaotic and the devotees were searching for H.H. Lokanath Swami Maharaj helter skelter but to no avail. At that time, Koundinyapur was densely covered with a jungle of babool trees, and it was full of thorns. Devotees then thought of searching Him on the hill where Govardhan temple is situated now. At last, devotees found Him sitting under a kadamba tree on top of that hill. Kadamba Tree in Sri Koundiyapur Dham. All the devotees gathered around Him while He was meditating and chanting rounds under that tree.
Then He asked all the devotees to sit under the pious tree. He asked how they felt while sitting at that place and they replied it felt quite good sitting there. Then H.H. Lokanath Swami Maharaj looked thoughtfully towards the tree and said that it’s the same tree found on the banks of river Yamuna. He added that maybe this tree signifies the importance of Koundinyapur and has erected itself or else it might be that a flower of the Kadamba garland of Lord Dwarikadhish must have fallen hear when he had come to kidnap Rukmini Mata. All the devotees were enthralled to here such words of H.H. Lokanath Swami Maharaj.
Then Maharaj directed Akrur Prabhu (President of Koundinyapur Govardhan temple), to acquire this land for the temple. In 2004, by the grace of Lord Dwarikadhish and H.H. Lokanath Swami Maharaj, ISKCON acquired 5 acres of above said land for the temple. Several devotional activities are carried out regularly in the temple. The first satsang was organized on November 19, 2003. The different activities that are organized in Koundinyapur are:
- Youth training: Spiritual camps are organized for boys and girls.
- Food for Life.
- Cow protection.
- Spiritual activities: Bhagavat Gita is distributed in jails and hospitals on Gita Jayanti. Lectures are being conducted for the enlightenment of jail inmates in the vicinity of Koundinyapur.
- Festivals: Utsava priya manvaha – it means people like festivals. “We are inherently attracted to festivals because everyday in the spiritual world is a festival, every step is dance and every word is song,” Srila Prabhupada. This signifies that festivities are a vital part of the lives of all devotees and thus several festivals are celebrated in Koundinyapur Govardhan temple. The festivals include Sri Krishna Janamashtmi (the birth of Lord Krishna), Sri Gaur Purnima, Sri Ram Navami, Sri Chandan Yatra, Sri Narasimha Chaturdasi, Sri Jhulan Yatra, Sri Balaram Jayanti, Sri Radhastami, Sri Vamana Dvadasi, Sri Kartika Damodara Vrata, Sri Govardhan Puja, Sri Gau Puja etc.
Thousands of devotees throng the temple filling it to the fullest. Other festivals celebrated are the holy appearance and disappearance days of Srila Prabhupada, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakur, Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur and other previous acharyas.
- Preaching activities such as Bhagavat Katha are being organized on a regular basis. Sunday programs are also going on in and around Koundinyapur.
For more information contact, H.G. Akrur Prabhu, Temple President – 9423127845
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org BBT H.G. Manudev Prabhu – 8007445534