Sri Srimad Gour Govinda Swami Maharaja

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Location: Bhubaneswar, Orissa, India

Hare Krishna! Welcome to the Gopal Jiu Publications blog. This will give you some information about Sri Srimad Gour Govinda Swami, show you some of the ancient tirthas and places we have been researching and visiting here in India, and give you some news and updates on our festivals, seminars and publishing works. You may also be interested in these other links:

Main blog site for Gopal Jiu Publications:

Official site for Gopal Jiu Publications:

Now static blog sites with some old news:

Monday, February 13, 2006

2006 Festival Schedule

18 FEB Sri Srimad Gour Govinda Maharaja's Disappearance Day

Events at Maharaja's Puspa Samadhi:

* 5:30 PM Bhajans by Gadeigiri Orissa kirtaniyas

* 6:15 PM Srila Gour Govinda Maharaja Video lecture

* 6:45 PM Remembrances and talks

* 8:45 PM Program finishes

19 FEB

* 2:00 PM Mahaprasadam Distribution at ISKCON campus.

EVENING Events at Maharaja's Puspa Samadhi:

* 5:30 PM Bhajans by Gadeigiri kirtaniyas

* 6:15 PM Srila Gour Govinda Maharaja Video lecture

* 6:45 PM Remembrances and talks

* 8:45 PM Program finishes

20 FEB

* Evening: Orissan style bhajanas Gadeigiri kirtaniyas. Place and time to be announced.

Fundraiser Update for 2006 Disappearance Festival

Click here:

The Departure of Srila Gour Govinda Swami

Excerpted from the book

Gopaljiu the Beloved Deity of Srila Gour Govinda Swami

In late January 1996, Gour Govinda Swami mentioned, “Srila Bhaktisiddhanta said that this material world is not a fit place for any gentleman. Therefore, because he was disgusted, he left this world prematurely. I may also leave. I don’t know. Let me ask Gopal. I will do whatever He wants.” The next day he went to Gadeigiri to see Gopal. After returning, for the next four days he lectured before thousands of people at the Prabhupada Centennial festival in Bhubaneswar. Then he left for the annual ISKCON management meetings in Sridham Mayapur.

Ghanashyam recalls his discussion with Gour Govinda Swami during this last visit to Gadeigiri:

"We were talking about Gopal’s new temple and installing large deities of Radha Gopal to go with the existing small ones. Suddenly Gurudeva told me, 'I won’t see this deity installation. You will see it, but I won’t.' I said, “How is that? You are ten years younger than I am. If you won’t see it how will I?

"Gurudeva said, 'No, no. You will see the inauguration of the temple and the deity because you have served Gopal so nicely. Uncle [Gopinath Giri] died thirty years ago and you went through so much difficulty to take care of Gopal. You continued all of the festivals, sarat-rasa, vasanta-rasa, etc. That is why Gopal is kind to you. So you will see Gopal’s new temple.' That was the last discussion I had with Gurudeva. After that he went to Bhubaneswar for a few days and then to Mayapur where he stayed forever."

In Mayapur on 9 February 1996, the holy appearance day of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur, two senior ISKCON devotees requested an appointment in the early evening to see Gour Govinda Maharaja. They inquired, “Why did Chaitanya Mahaprabhu stay in Jagannath Puri?” He enthusiastically began to explain the confidential significance of Mahaprabhu’s pastimes in Puri. He described the pains of separation felt by Radha and Krishna when Krishna was away from Vrindavan. He gradually unfolded the pastime to the point where Radha and Krishna were finally united after Their long separation. He described how Krishna became so ecstatic upon seeing Radharani that He manifested a form with big round eyes and shrunken limbs, Lord Jagannath. At that time the devotees noticed that tears had come to his eyes and his voice had become choked up. Barely audibly, he said, “Then the eyes of Krishna fell upon the eyes of Radharani. Eye-to-eye union.” Unable to continue, he apologized with folded hands, “Please excuse me. I cannot speak.” He then gave his final instruction: “Kirtan! Kirtan!” The devotees present began to chant as he calmly lay back on his bed, breathing slowly and deeply. Upon his request a servant placed a picture of Gopal Jiu in his hand. Then, gazing lovingly at that picture of his worshipable deity, Gour Govinda Swami said, “Gopal!” Then his eyes closed and he lost external consciousness. One devotee quickly ran to bring a doctor. Kaviraj Dr. D. K. Brahma M.D. recalls:

"Just before sandhya arati a devotee came to my residence and told me that Gour Govinda Swami was having some problem breathing and could I come to see him. When I arrived, Maharaja was lying down. Some doctors had come before me and had said that Maharaja had already passed away. Others were saying that we should take him to Krishnanagar and give him treatment in the Government hospital. I took his pulse and found that he was still alive.

"I told them, 'Just wait. Give me another twelve minutes time, then I may tell you to take him.' If they would have taken him to the Government hospital it means they would have been pumping his chest, thinking it was a heart attack. However, according to his pulse there was nothing wrong with him. His pulse only showed that he was taking rest. The Ayurvedic science teaches how to diagnose a patient by taking his pulse. If something is wrong we can feel it. But I never found anything wrong with Maharaja. According to his pulse everything was normal.

"By the second or third time I read Maharaja’s pulse it had become clear that he had left. Some say that he had a heart attack, but if someone dies from a heart attack generally we find that they suffer a lot. They also generally have some previous history of a weak heart. In Maharaja’s case, none of these things were there. Maharaja had the symptoms of asta-sattvika-vikara, ecstatic transformations, on his body. One kind of vikara is that one doesn’t want to stay here any longer, they want to go back to the spiritual abode, back to Krishna. Nothing in Maharaja’s body failed, he just left. I am 100% sure of that. I’ve never seen this kind of death before."
Srila Gour Govinda Maharaja's birthplace in the small village of Jagannathpur in the Jagatsingpur district of Orissa.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Festival Fundraising Update

Although we are more than halfway to our goal, we are still short about US $900.00 for the festival. If you would like to help, contact us at See below for exact details about the festival expenses.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Fundraising for the Disappearance Festival in Mayapur

Dear friends,

Please accept our humble obeisances. Jaya Sri Sri Guru Gauranga!

This text is in response to requests from some devotees who have written and asked us for more information about the upcoming festival in Mayapur.

As you may have heard, the festival in Mayapur for Sri Srimad Gour Govinda Swami’s disappearance has become very popular. Usually 200 to 500 devotees attend including anywhere from 15 to 50 sannyasis and senior devotees. We feel that Srila Gour Govinda Maharaja would be pleased with the program as everyone gets a lot of exposure to his tapes and books and we make a lot of friends and good contacts for this service.

The last two years Gopal Jiu Publications has sponsored Damodar Giri Prabhu's visit to Mayapur (see the below blog on last years festival). Everyone loves his kirtan. It’s a very powerful cultural addition to the festival. Many devotees commented they felt they were the highlight of the program. Last year in addition to Damodar Prabhu we also brought eight other devotees from their Gadeigiri kirtan group to help accompany him. This year we would like to bring ten devotees in total. The exact number we bring will be dependent on how much funds we are able to collect.

We need to collect US $2,482.00 of which we have already received pledges for $1,500. As soon as we collect our goal we will post a notice here informing everyone that we don't need any more money for the festival. If we collect over the amount we will inform the particular donars and they can either get their money back or use it for extras at the festival (more flowers and prasadam) or if they like it can be used for our book publishing efforts.

You will find below a breakdown of approximate costs for the festival. Naturally the festival is subject to however much we are able to collect. If we don’t collect enough we will cut back on some items of the program.

We hope that all is well for your bhajan. If you have any further questions or comments you can write them here or contact me at:

Sri Guru Vaishnava kripa prarthi, Madhavananda Das

Festival Costs

Below is a breakdown of what we are trying to collect for. We have calculated everything in US dollars based on the current rate in India (about RS 45 to one US dollar).

$193 for pandal and sound system

$60 for flowers

$25 for pheni prasadam (a traditional Oriya sweet liked by Lord Jagannath and Guru Maharaja, sometimes called Jagannath tongues by Western devotees)

$ 1,500 for feast for everyone and guests at the Mayapur Candrodaya Mandir


Below is an approximation of the cost to bring and host ten of them:

Travel expenses per person = RS 900 each
Total for group travel RS 9,000 (US $200)

Prasadam approx 75 RS per day for each person for ten days (including travelling and being in Mayapur) = US $167.00

Gifts to honor the party: One new set of clothing for each of them (this is a traditional honor in Orissan society) RS 500 RS a set per person total = US $111.00. We did this last year. In addition to that, this year we would like to present each member a large framed photo of Sri Sri Radha Gopaljiu the deities in Gadeigiri. Cost for each photo and framing: RS 230, total in US for ten persons: $51.00. We would also like to give a donation to Damodar Giri of RS 2,000 (US $45.00 to help with his household affairs, medical etc.) Total for gifts: US $207.00

Housing: We can book two large rooms in the Nityananda Kutirs for them. Each room costs RS 180 per day (about US $4.00 per day for the entire group) Total for 7 days: $30.00

Sub total in US to bring and accommodate
Damodar Giri Prabhu and company = $604

Total Amount including festival costs and accomodating
Damodar Giri Prabhu and company = $2,482

Contact us at for more information.

Thank you.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Mayapur Disappearance Festival 2006

We are raising donations for Sri Srimad Gour Govinda Swami's annual disappearance festival in Mayapur. We hope to again have a large pandal this year with a video lecture of Maharaja, a stage, lights, flowers, and prasadam. We would also like to again bring Damodar Giri Prabhu (the cousin brother of Srila Gour Govinda Swami) and his bhajan group to Mayapur for the festival. (See the next blog below with a few highlights of last years festival.) If you would like to inquire further or contribute something, please contact us at:

Mayapur Disappearance Festival 2005

Here are some photos and excerpts from talks given at last years disappearance festival in Mayapur:

Damodar Giri Prabhu (on the far left playing harmonium) and his bhajan group from Gadeigiri Orissa. Damodar is the cousin brother of Srila Gour Govinda Swami. Last year we brought them to Mayapur to do bhajans for Gour Govinda Maharaja's disappearance festival. If Krishna is willing we hope to bring them again this year 2006. This photo was taken inside of Nalini Mataji's house in Mayapur which she has constructed in dedication to Srila Gour Govinda Swami.

This is Tuku, the son of Damodar Giri Prabhu, playing mrdanga at the pandal program for Gour Govinda Swami's disappearance

The Gadeigiri kirtaniyas are famous for their expertise in the traditional ranihati (also known as raniti) style of kirtana started by Srila Shyamananda Prabhu, the sixteenth-century Gaudiya Vaishnava acarya who spread Vaishnavism all over Orissa.

Damodar Giri singing at the pandal program. Sri Srimad Kavicandra Swami is behind him to the right and further to the right is Sri Srimad Bhaktisvarup Damodar Swami

Here is an excerpt from Kavichandra Swami's talk:

"Maharaja is still present with us in his books and teachings. I once attended a lecture in San Diego given by Srila Gour Govinda Swami. Maharaja was speaking about grhastha life and garbadhana samskara. He quoted many, many verses describing the exact mantras, dates and procedures involved. Later I asked a devotee for a copy of the tape and was disappointed to hear that the recording didn't come out right. Then last year I was delighted to find the same lecture in printed form in Sri Krishna Kathamrita Bindu."

An excerpt from Sri Srimad Jayapataka Maharaja's talk:

"His Divine Grace Gour Govinda Swami's teachings are very important for everyone in ISKCON. Everyone should read his books."

Sri Srimad Jayadvaita Swami has been coming to the program for the last nine years

From the talk of Sri Srimad Gopal Krishna Goswami:

"Gour Govinda Maharaja created a wonderful temple for Srila Prabhupada in Bhubaneswar and inspired many devotees to distribute Srila Prabhupada's books. He was a fantastic speaker and gave many powerful lectures. We are fortunate now to be able to read them in the form of the books and magazines coming out."

His Grace Bhanabhatta Prabhu and Sri Srimad Bhaktisvarup Damodar Swami

In his talk Bhanabhatta Prabhu recalled: "I was fortunate to be present in Bhubaneswar in 1977 when Srila Prabhupada came there to visit. Many senior devotees were present and everyone was wondering why Srila Prabhupada was spending so much time in Bhubaneswar. There was nothing there at that time, only a jungle and a couple of mud huts. However, Prabhupada stayed there for a long time, an unheard of thing in 1977 for such a small place. I could see that Srila Prabhupada had great affection for Srila Gour Govinda Maharaja. Prabhupada would take him with him wherever he went. Gour Govinda Maharaja was different than the rest of us. He was very quiet and mature and had come from a vaishnava background. However, not all of the devotees were able to appreciate him. I remember one senior sannyasi in particular who spoke harshly of Maharaja. That person later fell down from sannyas and is now a householder. I think it was due to his offenses to Srila Gour Govinda Maharaja. Although I didn't get much opportunity to associate with Maharaja, at this late date, I hope to somehow make up for that a little by reading Maharaja's books and magazines."

Sri Srimad Radhanath Swami singing ye anilo prema dhana, Sri Srimad Jayapataka Swami on the right.

In his talk Radhanath Swami mentioned:

"Srila Gour Govinda Swami taught us how to love Srila Prabhupada. I have never seen anyone with such depth of love. I recently read a small booklet of Maharaja's lectures entitled, "After the Disappearance of Sri Guru". Therein Maharaja powerfully shows that real love means to never leave your guru or your guru's service."

Sri Srimad Shivaram Swami comes every year and charms everyone with his heartfelt and sastric comments about Srila Gour Govinda Swami

In his talk Sri Srimad Niranjana Swami mentioned the following:

"When Srila Prabhupada left this world, it was one of the most tramatic experiences of my life. Later when I heard from Srila Gour Govinda Swami I had the strong realization that Srila Prabhupada was personally speaking to me through him."

Sri Srimad Bhakti Vrajendranandan Swami attends nearly every year

Puspa-samadhi of Sri Srimad Gour Govinda Swami in Mayapur