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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > Other Scriptures by Acharyas > Navadvipa Krishna Chaitanya Holy Land > Rudradwip > Introduction

Shri Rudradwip


Sri Rudradwip, the ninth island of Sri Navadwip Dham, embodies the devotional mellow of sakhya bhakti, devotion to the Lord in friendship. It extends to Ratupur, Sankarpur, Rudrapara, Nirdaya Ghat and Tota, etc. Srila Saraswati Thakur established Sri Rudradwip Gaudiya Math in Rudrapara.Knowing that Lord Sri Krishna would manifest Himself as Sri Gaurahari in Sri Navadwip Dham, Sri Rudradeva, even before the appearance of Mahaprabhu, brought his associates here and started performing the kirtan of the Holy Names of Lord Caitanya. They would ecstatically chant, "Nimai! Vishvambhara! Gaurasundar! Gauracandra! Gauranga! Gaurahari! Caitanyadeva! Mahaprbhu! Sri Krishna Caitanya!" Lord Rudra danced tumultuously and the demigods who watched were pleasd to learn of Lord Gaurahari's eminent appearance. Happily, they showered flowers on Rudradeva. Being pleased with Rudra's enthusiastic kirtan, Lord Gauranga gave him darshan of His effulgent golden form and informed him of some details of His future appearance.


Scholars say that the 11 Rudras, Aja, Ekapada, Ahivradhana, Pinakin, Rita, Pitrirupa, Maheshwara, Vrishakapi, Sambhu, Havana, and Iswara, all devoutedly worshiped Lord Gaurasundara at this place and thus this island was named Sri Rudradwip. Lord Shiva's abode at Mount Kailash is a reflection of Rudradwip in Sri Navadwip Dham.

Sankaracarya came here while preaching his mayavadi theory throughout India. But Lord Rudradeva instructed him to not subject the residents of the holy dham to the doctrine. He then forbade him to preach the mayavadi philosophy in Sri Navadwip Dham. Sankaracarya and Rudradeva are both expansions of Mahadeva Shiva, who was ordered by Lord Vishnu to spread the mayavadi philosophy, which is covered Buddhism. Although Sankaracarya played the role of a mayavadi, he actually was always a Vaisnava. He instructed his intimate disciples and followers before he left his body: Bhaja govinda! Bhaja govinda! Bhaja govinda! "Just worship Govinda, worship Govinda, worship Govinda!" Sankaracarya understood the truth about Sri Navadwip Dham and he offered his obeisances to Rudradeva and departed to preach his mayavadi philosophy else­where.The acarya of suddha-advaita-vada philosophy, Sri Visnuswami, at this place attained the mercy of Rudradeva and established the Rudra Vaisnava Sampradaya. He also wrote a commentary on the Vedanta-sutra which is known as Sarvajna Bhasya. Lord Caitanya appeared to him here in a dream and blessed him. He instructed Visnuswami to travel throughout India and preach his philosophy. The Lord benedicted Visnuswami that during the Lord's manifest pastimes as Gauranga, Visnuswami would take birth as Vallabhacarya.Sri Sridhar Swami also received the mercy of Mahaprabhu at this place. He wrote the Srimad-Bhagavatam commentary called Bhav-artha Dipika, whose conclusions were  greatly appreciated by Caitanya Mahaprabhu.


When Lord Caitanya appeared in 1486, Rudradwip was on the western side of the Ganges. During the 1520s, when Sri Jiva Goswami was guided around Sri Navadwip Dham by Sri Nityananda Prabhu, Rudradwip was then partly situated on the western side and partly situated on the eastern side of the Ganges. In the late 1550s, when Srinivas Acarya performed parikrama of Sri Navadwip Dham guided by Ishana Thakur, Rudradwip was totally situated on the eastern side of the Ganges. Today, due to the flowing of Ganga devi, Sri Rudra­dwip again exists on both eastern and western sides of the river. Haribol!