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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > All Scriptures By Acharyas > Gaura Govinda Swami > Gopil Jiu > Chapter Four > Braja-bandhu Manik

Braja-bandhu Manik


Bauri Girl's daughter Pata Devi was very devoted to Gopal. From her early childhood she would come to see Gopal every day. Every morning she would sweep Gopal's temple, make garlands, and cook for Him. Pata Devi married Ishwara Manik from the nearby village of Jagannathpur. Like the Giri family, Ishwara Manik was also in the business of selling bell metal. Ishwara and Pata had two sons, named Braja-bandhu and Kripa-sindhu, and one daughter named Svadhuri Devi. Their eldest son, Braja-bandhu, born on 2 September 1929, was later to be known as Srila Gour Govinda Swami Maharaja. Being married did not detract from Pata Devi's devotion to Gopal. Although living 14 kilometers away in Jagannathpur, she always managed to come during festival times to serve Gopal. Pata Devi was always quiet and absorbed in serving her husband and children  every Saturday she would fast as an of¬fering for their well-being. Each morning she would worship Lord Jagannath and recite from the Puranas and Bhagavad-gUa. Every evening she chanted Hare Krishna and performed tulasi-parikramd with her husband and her son Braja-bandhu. After parikrama she would recite Snmad-Bhagavatam. Any beggar or sadhu that came to her house never went away empty-handed.Once a famous blind astrologer named Nityananda Khadiratna traveled from Dhenkanal and stayed two days in Gadeigiri. At that time Braja-bandhu was a small child and he and his mother were staying at his uncle's house in Gadeigiri. Pata Devi took her son to the astrologer, desiring to know something about his future. The astrologer said, "This boy is very intelligent and is full of devotion. He will be married and

get government service. In his middle age he will give up family life and become a sadhu. He will acquire high knowledge and an important place on the map of sadhus. He will build temples. He will make Gopal's place bright. Lastly the astrologer said that God Himself has sent this child from His abode to the material world for preaching His message and for the deliverance of the conditioned souls.