|NITAAI-Veda.nyf > All Scriptures By Acharyas > Vraja Mandala > Vraja Mandala Parikrama > 48. BHANDIRAVANA|
In the Bhandiravana forest, Balarama killed the demon Pralambasura. This forest has a parikrama of 6 km.There is a Radha Krishna temple here called the Radha Ananda Bihari Temple. The Deity of Krishna in this temple is applying vermilion (a red dot, kumkum) to the forehead of Srimati Radharani.The husband applies vermillion to the head of his wife when they are married. Jiva Gosvami states in Gopala-campu that Radha and Krishna were married at Bhandirvat in the Bhandiravana Forest. Lord Brahma was the officiating priest for the marriage and the other demigods also took part. The Adi Varaha Purana and the Garga Samhita describe the marriage. There is a large tree about 50 m from the temple here, which is said to mark the place where the marriage took place.There is a well here call Venu-kupa (Bhandir Kupa) which is said to have been created by Krishna pushing His flute into the ground, so He could satisfy His thirsty friends. Another story about this well says that Krishna created this well because the gopis told him he was contaminated for killing the demon Vatsasura, who was in the form of a calf. The gopis told him that for Him to be purified of this great sin that he had to visit all the holy tirthas and bathe in all the holy rivers on the eafth. Then Krishna pushed His flute into the ground and all the tirthas and holy rivers came into this well. Krishna then took bath in this well.Many barren women come here and they take some water from Venu Kup and then pray for a son. If the new moon night (Amavasya) falls on a Monday, the water in this well turns white like milk. The local residences hold a festival on that day. It is said that Balarama came to this well after killing Pralambasura. You can see the impression of Balarama's crown here.Getting Around: When you drive up to this place and park, the temple is on your left. Directly in front of you is the Venu Kupa well. To get to the tree where Radha and Krishna were married you go around the building on your right. Directly on the other side of this building is a large tree, which is said to mark the place where the marriage took place.
VamsivataThere is a temple here dedicated to Sridhama, who was one of the main cowherd boy friend of Krishna and the older brother of Radharani. When Krishna left to go to Mathura He told Sridhama that he would come back at the latest the day after tomorrow. Sridhama is still waiting here for Krishna to return. Lord Caitanya, Nityananda Prabhu and Advaita Acarya all came here. There is a very tall banyan tree here. This place is about 5 minutes walk from Bhandiravana.
How to Get Here: Bhandiravana forest is 29 km from Mathura on the other side of the Yamuna. It is about an hour and fifteen minutes car ride from Vrindavana. To get here you go over the bridge in Mathura and take the Hathras Road (the main road) straight to Raya. When you reach Raya you make a left turn over the railroad tracks onto the road to Mat. You then go about 11km until you reach a road that goes left just after Mat. The taxi driver will have to ask where the tumoff is located. You take this road for about a km.
Killing of Pralambasura"Balarama and ICrishna along with Their friends played all kinds of sports and enjoyed the soothings atmosphere of Vrindavana, full of rivers, lakes, rivulets, fine trees and excellent fruits and flowers."Once while They were engaged in Their transcendental pastimes, a demon of the name Pralambasura entered Their company, desiring of kidnap both Balarama and Krishna. Krishna began to think how to kill the demon, but externally He received him as a friend, 'O My dear friend, 'He said,'It is very good that you have come to take part in Our pastimes.' Krishna then called His friends and ordered them: 'Now we shall play in pairs. We shall challenge one another in pairs.' With this proposal all the boys assembled together. Some of them took the side of Krishna, and some of them took the side of Balarama. and they arranged to play in duel. The defeated members had to carry the victorious members on their backs. The party of Balarama, accompanied by Sridama and Vrisabha, came out victorious, and Krishna's party had to carry them on their backs through the Bhandiravana forest. The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna, being defeated, had to carry Sridama on His back, and Bhadrasena carried Vrisabha. Imitating their play, Pralambasura, who appeared there as a cowherd boy, carried Balarama on his back.
Pralambasura was the greatest of the demons, and he had calculated that Krishna was the most powerful of the cowherd boys."In order to avoid Krishna, Pralambasura carried Balarama far away. The demon was undoubtedly very strong and powerful, but he was carrying Balarama, who is compared to a mountain; therefore.he began to feel the burden, and thus he assumed his real form. When he appeared in his real feature, he was decorated with a golden helmet and earrings. Balarama observed the demon's body expanding up to the limits of the clouds, hi^ eyes dazzling like blazing fire and his mouth flashing with sharpened teeth. At first, Balarama was surprised by the demon's apprearance, and He began to wonder, 'How is it that all of a sudden this carrier has changed in every Way?' But with a clear mind He could quickly understand that he was being carried away from His friends by a demon who intended to kill Him. Immediately He struck the head of the demon with His strong fist, just as the king of the heavenly planets strikes a mountain with his thunderbolt. Being stricken by the fist of Balarama, the demon fell down dead, just like a snake with a smashed head, and blood poured from his mouth. AU the boys then rushed to the spot. Being astonished by the ghastly scene, they began to praise Lord Balarama." (Krishna Book, Chap. 18).