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Ekachakra Dhaam Glories Summary
The village of Ekacakra was formally located at the far end of what is now known as Birchandrapur. It was centered around the Garbhasa, Jahnu Kunda and the Bakutala. After Lord Nityananda disappeared, the residents of Ekacakra left for other parts of the country and the village was deserted. But Birchandra Gosai again re-established Birchandrapur. At present, approximately 4,000 residents live in the combined Birchandrapur / Ekacakra - gram vicinity.
There are different holy sites within this area.
· Janmasthan Mandir
· Hadai Pandit Bhavan
· Sasthi Tala
· Mala Tala
This is the birthplace of Lord Nityananda. Lord Nityananda’s father’s name is Hadai Pandita, and His mother’s name is Padmavati. Another name for Lord Nityananda is Nitai.
Ekacakra extends north and south for an area of about eight miles. Other villages, namely Viracandra-pura and Virabhadra-pura, are situated within the area of the village of Ekacakra. In honor of the holy name of Virabhadra Gosvami, these places are renowned as Viracandra-pura and Virabhadra-pura.
There is a big festival here on Nityananda Prabhu’s appearance day and also on Gosthastami.
This is an interesting place and there are a lot of places to see. I considered myself fortunate to have gone there.
How To Get There Ekacakra is located about 165 km (100 miles) northwest of Mayapur and takes about five hours by car or bus. It is 11 miles north of the town of Rampur Hat in the district of Birbhum. It is 8 miles east of Mallarapura railway station. After Burdwan station is another branch line, which is called a Loop Line of the eastern railway. This is a station on this line called Mallarapura. Ekacakra is 8 miles east of this railway station.
There is a small ISKCON temple here, and the local devotee can help show you the area. There is a small guest house for pilgrims at the temple where you can stay over night.
This village is very small and there are virtually no facilities here, not even a cold drink stand. You should bring bottled water and a flashlight (torch) with you. Not many people come here.
From Mayapur, the best way to get to Ekacakra is to go by taxi. You could take a taxi in the early morning and reach there before noon. You can see most of the places in about five hours.
This is the birthplace of Lord Nityananda. In the Janmasthan Mandir there is a Deity of Nitai (Nityananda). Hadai Pandita Bhavan is the site of the original house of Nityananda’s father. The little white temple next to Nitai Kund is the exact spot where Lord Nityananda was born. There are two banyan trees by this temple that are said to have existed since the time of Nityananda.
In the center of the main altar of the temple is a Deity of Lord Nityananda. To His left, with His hands raised, is Lord Chaitanya. On Nityananda’s right is Advaita Acarya. The side altar has Deities of Radha-Radhakanta and Radha-Shrikanta, a large dancing Gauranga in the center, and ten brass sakhis at the bottom. The temple was constructed by Prasannakumara Karapharma.
In this kunda the dhotis, plates, utensils, etc. of Nityananda Prabhu were washed. The pujaris of the temple use water from this kunda for their Deity worship.
There is an old pippala tree here called Mala Tala. Just before Nityananda departed with the unknown sannyasa, Hadai Pandita came here and chanted japa under this tree. Mala means “japa beads” and tala means “tree.” When Nitai was about to depart Hadai Pandita left his japa beads here due to anxiety.
Lord Chaitanya came to Ekacakra many years after Nityananda left. It is said that at that time Lord Chaitanya left His flower garland on a branch of this tree. Mala also means “garland.” Therefore also for this reason this tree was called Mala Tala.
Hantugada, or Jahnu Kund
It is said that Nitai brought all the sacred waters from all the holy places to this kunda to save the local residents from having to journey to the Ganges to take a sacred bath. It is named Hantugada because Nityananda Prabhu used to perform the Dadhi-cida festival of distributing chipped rice with yogurt prasada here and He would take the prasada while kneeling down.
How To Get There You get here by walking east out of the village, past the birthplace. It is a small kunda surrounded by grass and a lone tree, which hangs over the water.
Padmavati Kunda (Padmavati Puskarini)
This kunda (tank) was dug by Lord Nityananda’s grandfather for his daughter (Nityananda’s mother), and he named it after her. This kunda is a nice place to bathe. This kunda is located behind Lord Nityananda’s birthplace.
This place is a five minute walk (400m) into the fields, southeast of Lord Nityananda’s birthplace. It is surrounded by a group of Keli-kadamba trees. The Pandavas lived here with their mother, Kunti, when they were exiled to the forest. At that time, Bhima killed the Bakasura demon, who was eating the local residences.
This is where the Bakasura demon lived, who terrorized the people of Ekacakra for many years. The demon used to eat one human being each day from the local villages in the area of Ekacakra. The people set up a system where one person from a different family was sent to Bakasura each day. Queen Kunti, the mother of the Pandavas requested Bhima, who had the strength of 10,000 elephants to kill this demon. Bhima then killed this demon after a furious fight.
Between the birth place and Jahnu Kund is a young Bakula tree surrounded by a cement platform. This is the site of the original Bakula tree under which Nitai and His young friends used to perform their childhood pastimes. The present tree is an offspring of the original tree. The original tree’s branches resembled the hoods of a cobra. It is suggested that by the desire of Shri Nityananda Prabhu, Anantadeva manifested Himself in that way. This tree originally had two branches, but later on, when the friends of Nityananda Prabhu felt inconvenience in jumping from one branch to another, Nityananda, by His mercy, merged the two branches into one branch.
It is said that the umbilical cord of Nitai is buried underneath this tree. This area was formerly the large estate of Hadai Pandita, the father of Nitai.
Nitai used to bath in Kundu Kunda, which is on the east side of the Yamuna.
There is an old banyan tree on the bank of the Yamuna called Nityananda Visram Tala, which is said to have existed since the time of Lord Nityananda.
The small temple of Kadam Khandi marks the spot where Lord Nityananda recovered the Bankima Raya Deity from the Yamuna River, which is also called the Maudesvara River. In the rear of the temple is a small river (the Yamuna). On the bank of this river is Kadam Khandi Ghata where Bankima Raya was found. Kardam means clay and kundi means “ghata.”
It is also known as the Maudesvara. This river begins about 10 km (6 miles) from a temple that was established by Siva Singh during Nitai’s childhood.
Bankima (Banke) Raya Temple
This temple was built under the direction of Virabhadra Gosai, the son of Lord Nityananda. On the altar of this temple is Krishna as Bankima Raya, who was originally established by Nityananda Prabhu. On His left is Shrimati Radharani, and on His right is Jahnava Devi. It is said that Lord Nityananda left the planet by entering into this Deity. After Lord Nityananda’s disappearance, The Deity of Jahnava was placed to the right of Bankima Raya. On another throne, to the right of Bankima Raya, is a Deity of Yogamaya.
In this temple there is also an altar with a Deity of Murali-dhara. It is said that this Deity was given to Padmavati Devi by the sannyasi Nitai went on pilgrimage with when He was 12. On the same altar are Deities of Radha Madhava.
To the right of the altar, outside the gate, is another little temple dedicated to Madana Mohana Krishna. On His left is His consort, Radha, and on His right is the gopi Candravali. On the right side is Radha-Vrindavana Candra. These Deities are supposed to have been worshipped for 13 generations and are over 450 years old.
The priest says that he is a descendant of Lord Nityananda.
After Lord Chaitanya went to Jagannatha Puri, He ordered Nityananda to return to Bengal and preach. At this time Nityananda returned to Ekacakra after being gone for almost 30 years. By this time His parent had already left this world. He then found the Deity of Bankima Raya in the Yamuna at Kadamba Khandi. He installed this Deity in a temple. Later, a Deity of Shrimati Radharani was discovered in Bhaddhapur, in the locality of Viracandrapura, underneath the roots of a neem tree, about ¾ km (½ mile) west. This Deity was installed to the right of Bankima Raya. For this reason, the Radharani of Bankima Raya was known as Bhaddapurera Thakurani, the mistress of Bhaddhapura.
The priests who are presently doing the worship in this temple belong to the family of Gopijana-vallabhananda, one of the branches of Nityananda Prabhu. There are three parties of priestly gosvamis who take charge of the temple management one after another.
During the time of Nityananda Prabhu there was a very large, old banyan tree here. It is said that Nityananda Prabhu in His childhood used to enjoy pastimes of Vrindavana with His boy friends here.
When Nityananda was leaving with the sannyasi, He told the sannyasi that they should wait a few minutes to see if His mother could bear the separation of His leaving. So they stopped under the banyan tree, that was here. His mother came out of the house crying. Seeing this the sannyasi gave her a black marble Deity called Muralidhara. Soon after Lord Nityananda departed His father gave up his body feeling great separation after Nitai had left
How To Get There This place is close to the Bankima Raya temple.
North of the Bankima Raya Temple is a temple dedicated to Lord Jagannath and Sakshi Gopal. In this temple there is a deity of Ekacakra Siva, also known as Bhandisvara, who Hadai Pandita, the father of Lord Nityananda, is said to have worshiped.
There is a small kunda between the road and Bankima Raya Temple called Sveta Ganga. Its water is used to worship Bankima Raya. It was dug by 1200 shaktas of the Nedadi sampradaya who approached Jahnava Mata, the wife of Lord Nityananda, to test Her potency.
Near the Bankima Raya temple is a place named Amalitala, which is so named because of a big tamarind tree there.
The local residences say that Radha Kunda, also known as Raya Pukur, and Syama Kunda (Syama Pukur) are located on the western side of the Virachandrapur village in some fields. The local residents most likely will have to point them out to you.
The local residents also say that south of the Bankima Raya Temple, outside the village in the fields lies Govardhana Hill, which is a small mound 1/5 acre in size.
East from there, across the road, just past a bridge that crosses the Yamuna River, is Kaliya Damana Ghata. It is marked by a sole tree overhanging the Yamuna, on the northern bank of the river, close to the bridge.