Click here to load whole tree
NITAAI-Veda.nyf > All Scriptures By Acharyas > Bhaktivinoda Thakura > Bhaktivinoda Vani Vaibhava > Bhaktivinoda Vani Vaibhava Part 1 > Cultural Heritage


Cultural Heritage


1.What is the need of history and knowledge of time?


History and knowledge of time are part of artha-sastra, literature that gives material prosperity. If the people of India discuss history and time with reason and argument, they will be greatly benefited. By this process, they can also make spiritual advancement. By mixing the waves of reasoning in the river of ancient belief, moss in the form of illusion will be destroyed and in due course of time, when the bad smell of infamy is removed, the knowledge of the residents of India will become healthy.

(Sri Krsna-sarhhita)


2.Who built the temple of Sri Jagannatha? Why Puri is called Nilacala? How old is Puri?


Raja Anahga-bhlma erected the temple about 800 years ago in place of the old temple, which was in a state of dilapidation. In old accounts, we find the former temple w,as called Niladri, the blue hill. It appears that the former temple, which was probably built by the eminent Raja Indradyumna was blue or a dark color. Otherwise, we cannot account for the name Nilacala, unless the name was taken from the Nllagiri Hills, which is a small range running through the province from one end to the other. The Utkala-khanda in the Puranas, the Niladri Mahodaodhi, and the Matla Panjee (an account regularly kept by the temple officers) declare that Jagannatha is a very ancient Deity among the Hindus. Whatever may be the value of the authorities quoted, we are inclined to believe that Purl was considered sacred even at the time when the Puranas were written, because we find in Wilson's copy of the Visnu Purdna that Kandu Rsi resorted to a place called Purusottama for the purpose of divine contemplation. In any case, Raja Indradyumna, to whom the whole affair is generally ascribed, lived a long time before Raja Vikramaditya, the contemporary of Augustus Caesar of Rome. We are sure that Purl is not as old as Benares and Gaya, which are repeatedly mentioned in all the Puranas and the Mahabharata, but it is not a place of recent origin, created after the commencement of the Christian era.

(The Temple of Jagannatha at Pun September 15, 1871)


3. According to modern scholars, how many reigns is the history of India divided into?


The modern scholars have divided the history of India into eight periods, as illustrated in the following chart:




4. When was the Veda written?


During the rule of the Prajapatis, no scriptures were written; there were only a few pleasing words. In the very beginning, pranava was manifested. Written script had not yet been introduced. There was only one syllable with anusvara added to it to produce om. When the Manus rule began, other syllables like tat sat were introduced. During the rule of the demigods, ancient mantras were composed by joining small words together. The performance of sacrifices began at this time. Gradually ancient poetic meters like Gayatri appeared. Caksusa Manu was the eighth generation after Svayambhuva Manu. It is said that Lord Matsya appeared during his reign and delivered the Veda. Perhaps during this time many poetic meters and verses of the Veda were composed, but they were only in sound vibration, not written. They were passed on by hearing. After the Veda had remained in this unwritten state for a long time and the number of verses gradually increased, it became difficult to grasp. Then the sages, headed by Katyayana and Asvalayana, composed the sutras of the Veda after careful consideration to make memorizing them easier. Still, many other mantras were composed after this.


When the one Veda became greatly expanded, then Vyasadeva, after duly considering the subjects, divided the Veda into four and wrote them in book form. This took place a few years before King Yudhisthira's reign. Vyasadeva's disciples then divided those works amongst themselves. Those rsis, who were disciples of Vyasadeva, divided the four Vedas into different branches so that people could easily study them. (Sri Krsna-samhita introduction)


5. When was the Ramayana composed?


Although the Ramayana is considered poetry, it is also history. Valmiki Rsi, who was a contemporary of Ramacandra, wrote it. We do not feel that Valmiki alone wrote the current Ramayana. By considering the conversation between Narada and Valmiki, and the recitation of the Ramayana in Ramacandra's assembly by Lava and Kusa, it is understood that Valmiki composed many of the verses glorifying the character of Ramacandra in the Ramayana, but after some time another scholar elaborated on Valmiki's work. I think that the present day Ramayana was completed after the composition of the Mahabharata, because, while chastising Jabali, Ramacandra accuses him of being polluted by the Sakya philosophy. I believe that the present day Ramayana was written around 500 B.C.

(Sri Krsna-samhita introduction)


6.What is the truth concerning the Mahabharata?


It is said that Vyasadeva composed the Mahabharata, and there is no objection to this, but it cannot be said that the author of the Mahabharata was the same Vyasa who divided the Vedas and received the title Vedavyasa at the time of Yudhisthira. The reason for this is that in the Mahabharata there are descriptions of kings such as Janamejaya, who ruled after Yudhisthira. There are specific references about the Manu scriptures in the Mahabharata. Therefore, the present-day Mahabharata must have been written some time after 1000 B.C. It appears that Vedavyasa first made a draft of the Mahabharata, and later another Vyasa elaborated on it and presented it under the name Mahabharata.

(Sri Krsna-samhita introduction)


7.When was the present Manu-samhita composed?


Manu-samhita is the first and foremost of all smrtis. There is no evidence that the Manu-samhita was written during the time of Manu. When Manu became a prominent ruler, the Prajapatis had him establish and live in a city named BarhismatI, just outside Brahmavarta, so that his sons would be a separate class. From that time, the Prajapatis called themselves brahmanas and accepted the Manus as ksatriyas. In this way, castes other than brahmanas were introduced. Manu also gave due respect to the brahmanas and arranged for the different occupational duties of the different castes with the help of rsis such as Bhrgu. The rsis approved of Manu's arrangement. At the time, however, the various occupational duties were not written down.Later, when the brahmanas and ksatriyas fought, Parasurama appointed someone from the Bhrgu dynasty who knew those arrangements, to write everything down in verse. The duties of vaisyas and sudras were also included. About 600 years after the battle of Kuruksetra, the present Manu scriptures were written, with the assistance of another Parasurama, whose position was similar to the original Parasurama.(Sri Krsna-sarhhita introduction)


8. What is the history of Buddhism and Jainism?


When the philosophy of Godless secularism was very prominent in India; when the Vedic literature, which is full of transcendental truths, was accepted only as religious literature; when the mundane brahmanas promoted secularism as the path of the Vedas; and when such brahmanas tried to attain sense gratification by performing sacrifices and searching after perpetual happiness and the association of the Apsaras in heaven after their death, at that time Sakyasimha established Buddhism. Becoming dissatisfied with material happiness, Sakyasimha, who was born in the family of a ksatriya, established the philosophy of Buddhism, whose ultimate goal is the happiness of nirvana. There is much evidence that even before Sakyasimha, others preached the philosophy of attaining the happiness of nirvana. However, since the time of Sakyasimha, this philosophy has been widely accepted, the followers of Buddha have accepted Him as the original preacher of this philosophy.


Before and at the same time as Sakyasimha, a scholar named Jin, born in a vaisya family, preached a similar philosophy to that of Buddhism. The name of this philosophy was Jainism. Jainism was confined in India. The philosophy of Buddhism however crossed the rivers, mountains, and oceans and spread to countries like China, Tatara, Shyama, Japan, Burma, and Sri Lanka. (Tattva-viveka)


9. During whose reign were various texts preached?



Name of scripture--   Time when preached

Pranava [orh] Hearing first codes of srutis--   During the reign of the Prajapatis

Hearing the complete sruti and Gayatri--    During the reign of the Manus, the demigods, and Vaivasvata

Sautra's srutis--       At the beginning of the reign of Vaivasvata

Manu's smrtis During the second half of the reign of Vaivasvata

Histories             During the second half of the reign of Vaivasvata

Philosophical scriptures        During the reign of the outcastes

Puranas and Satvata Tantras          During the reign of the brahmanas and ksatriyas created by Parasurama

Tantras             During the reign of the Mohammedans

(Sri Krsna-sarhhita introduction)


10.When did Sahkaracarya appear?


The holy places of the Aryans were converted into holy places for Buddhists. All signs of brahminical culture practically disappeared. In the seventh century, when this tragedy was no longer tolerable, the brahmanas became very angry and conspired to destroy Buddhism. At that time, by providence, the most learned and intelligent Sahkaracarya became the commander-in-chief of the brahmanas in Kasi. By discussing his activities, it appears that he was an incarnation of Parasurama.(Sri Krsna-samhita introduction)


11.How did India benefit from the appearance of Sankaracarya?


Sankaracarya has, to some extent, done a favor to India by evicting Buddhism. He helped stop the gradual deterioration of the ancient Aryan community. In particular, he changed the course of the Aryans' mentality by introducing a new method of thought in their scriptures. He even inspired in them an urge to consider new subjects with their intelligence.

(Sri Krsna-samhita introduction)


12.When did other civilizations of the world worship the Indians as the king, as the giver of punishment, and as the spiritual master?


When real culture was present at that time, the fame of India was brightly shining like the midday sun. All castes and civilizations worshiped the Indians as the king, as the giver of the punishment, and as the spiritual master. The people of Egypt, China, and other countries accepted instructions from Indians with awe and reverence.

(Caitanya-siksamrta 2/3)


13.Which is the most ancient country? Which is the oldest civilization? Which is the most ancient religion? And when was that religion at its peak?


India is the oldest civilized country. The followers of all sampradayas accept this fact. Even though proud people of the Western countries believe that theirs is a civilization older than the Aryan civilization, the fact will remain true forever. The Aryans first lived in India. This has been proven during the time of the Prajapatis, who were the sons of Brahma. Kasyapa was a Prajapati. His daughter's son was Prahlada, "the crest jewel among all the Vaisnavas." Dhruva Maharaja, the son of Manu, was also mentioned as a topmost Vaisnava. Among the first sons of Brahma, the four Kumaras and Narada Muni were also great Vaisnavas. Therefore, there is no religion older than Vaisnava dharma in the world. While increasing gradually, this Vaisnava religion reached its peak and perfection during the time of Mahaprabhu Caitanyadeva.

(Sajjana Tosani 2/9)


14.Who taught the process of preserving dead bodies? Why was this process followed?


In the Chandogya Upanisad is the story of Indra and Virocana learning spiritual truth from Prajapati. It clearly states that due to his gross mentality, like that of a mleccha, Virocana considered his material body to be himself and he taught his students how to preserve the body after death. Perhaps, according to his teachings, his Egyptian disciples taught the custom of mummifying or preserving dead bodies in their own country. Based on this custom, the system of burying dead bodies was spread to other mleccha countries. (Sajjana-tosani 111)


15.When did keen and powerful intelligence exist in South India?


From the seventh century, keen and powerful intelligence was found among the people of South India—and nowhere else. From that time, Sahkaracarya, Sathakopa, Yamunacarya, Ramanuja, Visnusvami, Madhvacarya, and many other great learned scholars appeared like shining stars in the southern sky. (Sri Krsna-samhita introduction)


16.In which philosophy did Visnusvami, Nimbaditya,and Madhvacarya write their Veddnta-sutra commentaries?


Visnusvami, Nimbarka, and Madhvacarya wrote their own commentaries on Veddnta, following in the footsteps of Sahkaracarya. In this way, they introduced slight variations of the Vaisnava principles. (Sri Krsna-samhita introduction)


17.When did the authorized Vaisnava dcdryas begin to write commentaries on the four writings such as Vedanta?


Like Sahkaracarya, they also wrote commentaries on the Bhagavad-gitd, Visnu-sahasra-nama, and Upanisads. At that time, a thought arose in the hearts of people that one must have commentaries on the four above-mentioned works to establish a sampraddya. From these four Vaisnavas [Madhva, Ramanuja, Visnusvami, Nimbarka], the four Vaisnava sampraddyas, such as the Sri-sampraddya, were introduced. (Sri Krsna-samhita introduction)


18.Which contemporary and later associates of Sriman Mahaprabhu preached His philosophy?


Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, with the help of Nityananda and Advaita, clearly explained the truth regarding one's relationship with the Lord. Through Rupa, Sanatana, Jlva, Gopala Bhatta, the two Raghunathas, Ramananda Raya, Svarupa Damodara, and Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya, He clearly explained the truth of the living entity's relationship with the Lord. He strengthened the process of acting in that relationship by establishing the supremacy of performing kirtana. Regarding the goal of life, He ascertained the simple means of relishing the mellows of Vraja. (Sri Krsna-samhita introduction)


19.What is the history of the three methods of singing:Manohara Sahi, Garanhaty, and Regeti?


Srinivasacarya Prabhu made Katwa and its adjoining places glorious. His place was under the subdivision of Manohara Sahi. Therefore, the method of singing inaugurated by him was known as Manohara Sahi. Sri Narottama dasa was a resident of the village Kheturi, which is in Gaderhata or Garanhaty in the district of Rajasahl. Therefore, the method of singing his songs is known as Garanhaty. Sri Syamananda Prabhu was from Midnapur District. The method of singing his songs is called Regeti. To encourage these great singers, Sri Jlva GosvamI awarded Srlnivasacarya the title "Prabhu," Sri Narottama the title "Thakura," and Sri Syamananda the title "Prabhu." Sri Jlva GosvamI was very magnanimous and saw only good qualities in others. Srlnivasacarya Prabhu was a brdhmana and therefore Sri Jlva GosvamI had no hesitation in awarding him the title "Prabhu."

(Sajjana-tosani 6/2)


20.What is the history of Gunaraja Khan (Maladhara Vasu)?


The poet Gunaraja Khan began to write his book SriKrsna-vijaya in 1395 Saka Era and completed it in 1402 Saka Era. Although Chandi dasa and Vidyapati Thakura composed something in Bengali before this, they did not compose any poetry. We can only see a few songs composed by them. We have not seen any poetry written in Bengali before 1400 Saka Era. As the people of Britain show great respect to Chaucer, similarly we show respect to Gunaraja Khan for his poetry. Any Bengali library is incomplete without the book Sri Krsna-vijaya. Moreover, this book is extremely respected by the devotees. Sri Gunaraja Khan, a most respected Vaisnava, compiled this book as the translation of the Tenth and the Eleventh Cantos of Srimad-Bhdgavatam, the crest jewel among all literature. Therefore, we are unable to describe the wonderful glories of this book here. This book is worshipable by all Vaisnavas. After studying this book, Sri Mahaprabhu glorified it in such a way that it will draw much respect from the Gaudlya Vaisnava society.


Not finding any qualified brahmanas in Bengal, which was polluted by Buddhism, the King of Bengal, Adisura, arranged to bring five qualified brahmanas and five qualified kayasthas from Kanyakubja. Among those five kayasthas, Dasaratha Vasu, a civilized and simple-minded person, came to Gauda-desa. Sri Gunaraja Khan appeared in that dynasty as the thirteenth descendent from Dasaratha Vasu. Gunaraja Khan's actual name was Maladhara Basu. The King of Bengal awarded the title "Gunaraja Khan" to him. He had fourteen sons; among them the second son, Laksminatha, was awarded the title "Satyaraja Khan." His son, Sri Ramananda Vasu was an associate of Sriman Mahaprabhu. Ramananda Vasu was thus the fifteenth descendent from Dasaratha Vasu. After extensive research at the village of Kullna-grama, we have collected this information from the house of the Vasu's during the winter of 1885. There we discovered that Sri Maladhara Vasu Mahasaya was a rich and famous person. By seeing his palace and temple room, it appears that his kingdom was very prosperous.

(Sri Krsna-Vijaya introduction)


21. What is the history of the ativddi-sampraddya and Visa Kisana?


Jagannatha dasa had a group of followers in Orissa. They were known as ativadis. By the order of Mahaprabhu, Jagannatha dasa became a follower of Haridasa Thakura. Later, when he gave up pure devotional service and took shelter of Mayavada philosophy, Mahaprabhu rejected him, saying he was an ativadi. The sect of ativadi was expanded like the baulas of Bengal. The ativadls have some false literature, which states that Lord Caitanya will manifest again.On this pretext, a few wicked persons began to pose themselves as Caitanya, Brahma, Baladeva, Krsna, and so on.Having obtained some mystic power, an imposter named Visa Kisana began to promote himself as Maha-Visnu. He and his followers constructed a temple in the jungle, two miles from Sardaipur. It was written on the beads of the followers of ativadi that Maha-Visnu Visa Kisana remains incognito and on 14 March, he will manifest himself and display his four arms of Maha-Visnu. As soon as this news spread, many brahmana women began to serve him, neglecting the prohibition of their husbands.


When some illicit affairs between Visa Kisana and the wives of the Choudhary's of Bhrangarapura surfaced, then the people of Bhrangarapura reported this to the Revered Walten Sahib, who was the commissioner of Bhrangarapura. He advised me to go to the jungle and investigate the matter. I went there at night and after a long conversation with that "Maha-Visnu," I concluded that he was determined to destroy the British Rule. After returning to Puri, the trial of "Maha-Visnu" began in my court. After a long trial and hearing, I awarded him the punishment of one and half years in prison. When his matted hair was cut, his worshipers and followers abandoned him as a cheater.

(Autobiography of Sri Bhaktivinoda Thakura)


22. What brief information did Sri Bhaktivinoda Thakura give regarding Sri Mayapura, the birth place of Sri Gaurasundara?


After carefully researching and going through various authentic books, such as Sri Caitanya-bhdgavata, we have discovered many places of the Lord's pastimes. We have resolved to gradually find all the places of the Lord's pastimes for the pleasure of the devotees. First, we are locating the exact place of Mahaprabhu's village. Sri Kavi-karnapura has written that the land of Navadvlpa is surrounded by the Ganges. This is also mentioned in the tantras. The actual name of the River Khadiya which flows by Goyadi and mixes with the Ganges near Svarupaganj is BagdevI or Jalangi. Long, long ago, the River BagdevI flowed by the village Harispura and after mixing with the River Mandakini, it flowed near DevapallT. Thereafter, touching the city of Bhaluka, this river mixed with the Ganges near Goyalpada. When the Mandakini portion of the Ganges dried up, the Bagdevi reached the Ganges, while flowing by the side of Mayapura. Because of the confluence of BagdevI and the Ganges, many parts of Sri Mayapura were destroyed. At that time, the homeless learned brahmanas of Mayapura took Sri Proudha Maya and Vriddha Siva across the Ganges to the village Kuliya, which is the present-day city of Navadvlpa.


In this village, there are no places of Mahaprabhu's pastimes. However, this place is the forest of Vrndavana within Navadvlpa. The map that we have provided in the book Sri Navadvlpa-dhama-mdhatmya shows that there is a cakra in the middle. The entire tract of land, which covers this cakra, is called Antardvlpa. Only two tiny portions of land have extended to the other side of the Ganges. During the time of Sri Mahaprabhu, Mayapura village was certainly the home of learned brahmanas, but because of the movement of the River BagdevI, it has almost become ruined. Only one portion of Mayapura is inhabited by human beings. This portion is situated in the southern corner of Ballaladhlgi.After intensive research and according to some confidential hint, we have been able to locate the exact stream of the Ganges. A long stream called Sivera Doba or the pond of Siva near Khadvana, which lies to the south of Mayapura, is still present. If one stands on the bank of this stream and looks towards Ganganagara, one can see that a tract of land resembling the bank of a river is by the side of Mayapura. Let us consider the exact location that we find in the description of Sri Vrndavana dasa Thakura. "In Nadia, Lord Gauranga first went through the road that led to the Ganges, while He danced. He came to His own bathing ghata and after dancing there for a long time, He went to Madhai's ghata. From there, Gaura Hari went to Barakona-ghata and then He went to Nagariya-ghata. From there, the Lord went to Simuliya through Ganganagara."


Now the point is, if one walks to the bank of the Ganges, Barakona-ghata and Nagariya-ghata are not very far. The Nagariya-ghata was situated near the main market in ancient Nadia. In addition, this market was situated on the Western side of Ballaladhlgi. There is no doubt that if the devotees search for Sri Mayapura, the birthplace of Mahaprabhu and His places of pastimes, after carefully considering all these topics, they will certainly find those places. The Vaisnavas who live in the cottages on the alluvial land of Kuliya do not endeavor to know anything in this regard. Hence, the visiting devotees face so much difficulty.(Visnupriya Palll Magazine)


23. What is the proof that the present municipal city of Navadvlpa was previously Koladvipa?


There are quite a few villages called Kuliya situated in different parts of Bengal. However, the village of Kuliya that we are discussing right now is a matchless place in the whole world; history has described this Kuliya with great respect. The name of this Kuliya is Sripata Kuliya. At this place, Srimad Gaurariga Prabhu, who incarnated to purify the age of Kali, resided for seven days, punished a great offender named Gopala Capala, and thereby forgave the offenses of a teacher who lived at Sri Navadvlpa. Here, the Lord pardoned the offenses committed against the devotees by a learned Srimad-Bhagavatam reciter, Devananda Pandita, who was a resident of Mahesvara Visarada's mound. At this place, Srlman Mahaprabhu mercifully delivered Krsnananda, who was expert in tantras, from his offenses against the Vaisnavas and cured him of his disease. What better method can there be in determining the exact location of the holy place Kuliya, than discussing the literature composed by the learned scholars who were contemporaries of Mahaprabhu?


In a small village, three miles east of Kumarahatta, the Kuliya-patera-mela was set up a few years ago. Many people from Calcutta participate in the meld every year during January. For this reason when we speak of Kuliya in front of ordinary people, they think that Kuliya is the place where the meld is held. Actually, Kuliya, the place where the Lord forgave the offenses of Devananda is mentioned in Sri Caltanya-bhdgavata, Sri Caltanya-caritamrta, Sri Caltanya-mangala, Sri Cattanya-candrodaya-ndtaka, Sri Caitanya-carita-mahdkdvya, and in the commentary on Candrodaya by Premadasa Babajl. This Kuliya must be present within the thirty-two-mile circle of Sri Navadvlpa. Sri Caitanya-hhagavata Antya-khanda Chapter Three states: "As soon as the Lord, the crest jewel among the sannydsis came to Kuliya, a tumultuous sound vibrated on all directions. Only the Ganges divides Nadia and Kuliya. On hearing of the Lord's arrival, everyone came running. The people from Vacaspati's village were soon multiplied by millions. Soon after, Vacaspati also came there." Elsewhere in the same book is the description: "Sometimes, during His stay at Navadvlpa, Nityananda Prabhu went to Khalachada, Badagachi, and Dogachiya, and sometimes the Lord went to Kuliya, which is situated on the other side of the Ganges."

Caltanya-caritamrta Madhya-lild Chapter One Text 153-154 describes:


kuliya-grame kalia devanandere prasada gopala-viprere ksamaila srivasaparadha

pasandi nindaka asi' padila carane aparadha ksami' tare dila krsna-preme


"The Lord bestowed mercy on Devananda in the village of Kuliya. He also forgave the offenses of the brdhmana Gopala, which he committed against Srivasa Pandita. When Gopala came and fell at the Lord's feet, the Lord forgave his offenses and bestowed upon him love of Krsna."


In his Caltanya-caritamrta, Sri Kaviraja Gosvami did not elaborate on Mahaprabhu's arrival at Kuliya. Therefore, to understand the exact location of Kuliya from his descriptions is difficult unless one is thoughtful. In Madhya-lild Chapter Sixteen, he wrote that the Lord went to Kumarahatta from the house of Raghava Pandita at Panihati and after giving darsana to Srivasa Pandita, He went to Kancanapalll. There He visited the houses of Sivananda Sena and Vasudeva Datta and then went to the house of Vacaspati. We will show later that Vacaspati's house is in Vidyanagara. To avoid the huge crowd, the Lord left the house of Vacaspati, went to the house of Madhava dasa in Kuliya, and stayed there for seven days. Then the Lord went to Santipura and from there to Ramakeli. In his description, Sri Kaviraja Gosvami has not given the proper order of the places; he wrote: "The Lord stayed at Santipura for ten days. This has been elaborately described by Vrndavana dasa Thakura. Therefore I am not describing this elaborately, because it would be redundant and the book would be voluminous." Thus, we can clearly understand that Kaviraja Gosvami has not described all the topics in the proper order. He fully depended on the description of Vrndavana dasa Thakura.

Sri Caltanya-mangala states:


ganga snana kari prabhu radadesa diya krame krame uttarila nagara kuliya

purvasrama dekhivena sannyasera dharma navadvipa aila prabhu el tara marma

mayera bacane punah gela navadvipa barakona ghata nija badira samipa


"After taking bath in the western side of the Ganges, the Lord gradually arrived at Kuliya. The duty of a sannyasi is to visit his birthplace after taking sannyasa. With this in mind and on the order of His mother, the Lord again went to Navadvlpa. He went through Barakona-ghata and arrived at His house."


From this description, we can clearly understand that the Kuliya village is situated within Navadvlpa-mandala and on the opposite side of the Ganges is Mayapura, where the Lord took birth. The Lord's house is situated near Barakona-ghata.Moreover, the village Satakuliya is also situated on the eastern side of the Ganges about seven or eight miles away from ancient Navadvlpa. This village is also not the place where the offenses where nullified; there is no hearsay that Satakuliya was ever a city or that influential people ever lived there. We have to accept therefore that Kuliya is a village situated on the western bank of the Ganges opposite Navadvlpa. Perhaps due to the changes of the Ganges flow, the major portion of Kuliya has been destroyed; still there is no doubt that some hearsay identify it.


We can see that the house of Vidya-vacaspati was not far from Kuliya, because as soon as Vacaspati heard that Mahaprabhu had arrived at the village of Kuliya, he reached there immediately and did not have to cross the Ganges. Therefore, we can understand that Kuliya and Vidyanagara are situated on the same side of the Ganges and are one or two miles apart. Now we should find out where Vidya-vacaspati's house is. Sri Caitanya-bhagavata says that Vidya-vacaspati was Sarvabhauma's brother. Sri Caitanya-bhagavata Madhya-khanda Chapter 21 states: "In this way, Lord Visvambhara constantly enjoyed His pastimes in the association of Nityananda Prabhu and Gadadhara. One day the Lord went out to visit the city accompanied by his devotees. Lord Visvambhara went to the mound of Mahesvara Visarada, the father of Sarvabhauma. At that place lived Devananda Pandita who was a most peaceful brahmana, desiring liberation."


From this description we can understand that Mahesvara Visarada was the father of Sarvabhauma and Vidya-vacaspati. Near the mound on which the house and school of Mahesvara Visarada stood was the house and Bhagavata school of Devananda Pandita. At that time, the Ganges flowed near Mahatpur or Matapur. From there she touched villages like Maugachi and Jannangar and went toward Gahganagara, keeping Visarada's mound on her western bank. From there she flowed southwest near Sri Mayapura and after keeping Kuliya on her western bank she flowed south.


Long before the advent of Sriman Mahaprabhu, the Ganges used to flow by the western side of Kuliya toward the south. During the time of Mahesvara Visarada, this flow of the Ganges dried up. Although that part of the river dried up, still that piece of land is filled with water, kusa grass, and thorns even today. Since it was impossible to reside there during the rainy reason, a few learned brahmanas built a raised platform of mud, which they brought from the other side of Navadvipa. Thereafter they established a village on the mound and named it Vidyanagara. To go to Visarada's mound from ancient Navadvlpa, one had to walk by the bank of the Ganges via Gahganagara, Atapapur, and Deowan Bazar ghata. After crossing the ghata, one had to walk through thorny bushes to reach the mound. There is much evidence that Vidya-vacaspati's house was situated at Vidyanagara. To go to Visarada's mound from Navadvipa people had to walk through forests, bushes, water, and thorns, but this was not the case to get to Kuliya. To go to Kuliya from ancient Navadvlpa, one had to simply cross the Ganges. Although the village of Vidyanagara was previously known as "the mound of Visarada," still we assume that it became known as Vidyanagara because of the glories of Vidya-vacaspati.


Even today, there is a place called Kuliya-grama situated on the western bank of the Ganges. Some people call this place Kolera Ganja. Many parts of the village have been destroyed. Because of the change in the flow of the Ganges, the western part of ancient Navadvipa has merged with Kuliya. As a result, a major portion of Kuliya has merged with Navadvipa and become one. We have many more things to say regarding this change, which we will discuss later. There were two villages, Kuliya and Pahadapura, situated next to each other. There is no doubt that this village of Kuliya is the present-day Navadvipa, and we do not hesitate to declare Navadvipa is the ancient place of Kuliya, the place of Devananda Pandita, and the place where the Lord pardoned his offenses. (Sajjana-tosanl 7/2)


24.When and where was the Visva-vaisnava Raja-sabha first esta blished? What is the goal of this sabha?


The Visva-vaisnava Raja-sabha was established in Calcutta in 399 Sri Caitanya Era in April. The goal of the society is to improve the Vaisnava religion in various ways. The goal and rules of this society were written in a Visva-vaisnava brochure. Under the guidance of this sabha, various pictures of the pastimes of the Lord have been painted. A Vaisnava trust has also been established. Because of a lack of funds, we have yet to establish an assembly hall, a temple of Lord Caitanya, and a printing press, but we have no doubt that soon Mahaprabhu will arrange for all these. (Sajjana-tosanl 2/1)


25.When were the Visva-vaisnava Raja-sabha and the Vaisnava-sabha merged?


A centre for the Visva-vaisnava Raja-sabha has been constructed in Sarkar Lane, Kansaripara, and Calcutta. A huge conference for this sabha was held on the last Saturday in July, and the resolutions of the sabha were published in the daily newspaper after a few days. Under the care of the General Secretary, Sri Lai Mohan Dutta, the activities of the sabha went on smoothly. It was written that the Bharatvarsiya Hari Sadhana Samaj and the Vaisnava-sabha have merged with the Visva-vaisnava Raja-sabha. But as far as we know, the Vaisnava-sabha has not merged completely. Although the Vaisnava-sabha is very eager to benefit the sabha, it will not merge fully with the Visva-vaisnava Raja-sabha unless it approves of the activities of that sabha for some time. Moreover the Vaisnava-sabha has been established for one year and it will continue to maintain its separate identity until the Visva-vaisnava Raja-sabha is established. Because the goal and activities of both sabhas are the same, the Visva-vaisnava Raja-sabha will soon merge with its parent sabha, the Vaisnava-sabha.

(Sajjana-tosanl 2/3)