Click here to load whole tree
NITAAI-Veda.nyf > SG Translated and Main Scriptures > Jagannatha Puri Gambhira > Bhubaneswar Glories

Bhubaneswar Glories


We went to Bhuvanesvara, and in Shrimad Bhagavatam there is a history regarding this place. There was a demonic king named Paundraka, and He was very envious of Lord Krishna. He had heard that Krishna is Vasudeva, God Himself, and that He often manifested four-arms. This demon thus added two artificial arms to his body, became four-armed, and exclaimed, "I am the real Vasudeva, not this Krishna who lives in Dvaraka." He challenged Shri Krishna, "I am the real Vasudeva. You should come and fight with me."


Paundraka Vasudeva was friends with the king of Kasi. In India the king of Kasi is called Kasi-Naresa. Kasi-Naresa was a very dedicated devotee of Lord Siva. When Krishna was coming to meet his challenge, Paundraka Vasudeva invited his friend, "O Kasi-Naresa, please come and fight together with me against Krishna."


During the battle, Krishna sent His Sudarsana cakra which cut off the head of Paundraka Vasudeva. It also cut off the head of Kasi-Naresa, and then it burnt the whole of Kasi. [The above narration is also given, in great detail, in Shrila Bhaktivedanta Svami Prabhupada's Krishna book, chapter 66.]


Kasi is the abode of Lord Siva, the worshipable deity of Kasi-Naresa, and after burning Kasi, Sudarsana cakra began chasing after Lord Siva. Lord Siva became very perturbed and fearful. Of course, he and Krishna can never be opposed to each other. He is a great devotee of Krishna, but he performs many pastimes for the glory of Krishna in which he apparently supports the Lord's enemies.  In this way Siva now began running, leaving everything and forgetting everything. Where his trident went, he did not know. Where his deerskin went, he did not know. Where his wife Parvati was, he did not know. He was simply running to save his life. He remembered those days when his manifestation Durvasa was similarly fearful when chased by Sudarsana cakra.


Lord Siva came all the way from Kasi to this place, Bhuvanesvara, where Krishna was residing in the form of Ananta Vasudeva. Lord Siva took shelter of Ananta Vasudeva, and Ananta Vasudeva told him not to worry. After Sudarsana became calm, Lord Siva said, "I want Your shelter. I want to serve You and I want to stay with You." The Deity of Ananta Vasudeva then gave him this place and told him, "All right. Stay near to Me, here in Bhuvanesvara."


There is was another history of Bhuvanesvara, as follows. One day Lord Siva was glorifying the beauty and greatness of this place, and Parvati was hearing from him: There is a pond here called Rohini-sarovera, and a person once fell into it and apparently died. The moment he left his body, however, he assumed a four-handed form and Garuda came and took him on his shoulders to the Lord's transcendental abode of Vaikuntha. This is the strength and potency of this particular place in Bhuvanesvara, and it is presently called Kantil.


Somewhat far from here is the abode of Nila-Madhava, where a similar incident took place. A crow fell down in the lake by the Deity's temple, and that crow instantly emerged with a four-armed form, and was also carried by Garuda to Vaikuntha. This whole area of at least forty miles radius is thus very potent.


After hearing this glorification, Parvati began roaming here, desiring to see the holy places, and she happened to learn of a very large Siva-linga. We took darsana of that linga, whose name is Lingaraja. Lingaraja is not merely a Siva-linga. He is really a linga of Hari-hara sh Lord Vishnu and Lord Siva together. We see in Shri Navadvipa-dhama, where they also live together, that the Deity of Hari-hara has three divisions. On one side is Hari, who is white, on the other side is Lord Siva, who is black, and in between there are three cracks representing Ganga, Yamuna, and Sarasvati. In Navadvipa that beautiful place is called Hari-hara-ksetra. Lord Siva and Lord Vishnu, Hari are clearly separated by color and slightly by form, but at this place in Bhuvanesvara the Panda has to show  which side is Lord Siva and which is Lord Vishnu because the entire linga is dark and has a nonspecific shape.


Shrimati Parvati devi found one thousand very beautiful white cows, and they began oozing milk from their udders onto this Lingaraja. Parvati was very satisfied with them because Krishna loves cows, and the cows were doing abhiseka (bathing with their milk) of the linga sh who is also Vishnu. She started herding those cows and became like a gualini, a cowherd girl. Gradually, she and the cows entered a very beautiful garden, which later became known as Ekamrakanana. This is the place where Siva left his trident and deerskin, and where he didn't know where Parvati was, when he ran away from the Sudarsana cakra. Ananta Vasudeva Mandira and other important places were not visible at that time, as they are now. These places were simply in the form of forests, and Parvati was enjoying the beauty of those areas.


Meanwhile, two very cruel demons, called Krti and Vas, became attracted to Parvati. They approached and began disturbing her, making propositions to her. She had been absorbed in the glory of this place, but now she remembered her husband, Lord Siva. Lord Siva immediately appeared and asked, "What is the problem?"


Parvati replied, "I am fascinated by the beauty of this place, and I don't want to leave. But these two demons are disturbing me. What should I do?"


Lord Siva said, "These demons are very powerful because they have received many benedictions. They cannot be killed so easily, even by me. Yet, their time has come to be killed, and they will be killed by you. Now you must make an arrangement so that they can be killed."


Then, in the form of that cowherd girl, Parvati told the demons, "All right, I'm ready to accept your proposal, but I want to put a condition. You will have to fight each other, and whoever is victorious shall have me. He can put me on his shoulders and in this way help me to roam about this place." Hearing her words, both brothers began fighting with each other.


This is what is happening in this world. Maya is making each and every person fight. This is illusion. Maya, or in this case Parvati, was nothing but a death blow for both of them, but still they were fighting for her. When neither could defeat the other, Parvati said, "Stop fighting. It's enough. I will put my feet on both of your shoulders; so don't worry."


She then put her feet on both of their shoulders, increased her weight, and thus became Bhuvanesvari (the female master of this entire area). She is Bhuvanesvari and Lord Siva is Bhuvanesvara (the male master of this place). When she increased her weight the demons were crushed down and killed. After this she was tired, because killing the demons had taken a lot of exertion. She lay down and told Lord Siva, "I'm very thirsty. Can you please arrange some water for me?"


Lord Siva created a very beautiful pond by his trident, but there was no water in it. He then invited all the personified pilgrimage places to come, and when they came he told them, "You should each give one drop of water to this pond." In Hindi, 'drop' is called bindu, and thus this beautiful pond became known as Bindu-sarovara. Lord Siva and Parvati both bathed in that pond, and Parvati gave the benediction that whoever takes bath in it will be able to see Ananta Vasudeva. He will get the mercy of the Lord.


I don't think Vrndavana or Radha-kunda and Syama-kunda were among the pilgrimage places to have gone there. The pilgrimage places went there, but Vrndavana, Radha-kunda, and Syama-kunda are not pilgrimage places. They are the abode of Lord Shri Krishna Himself.


In this way, this place has now become Bindu-sarovara. There is a very big mountain in India, called Himalaya. If  we take the first part of the word Himalaya, 'hi', and the last part of the word bindu, 'indu', and combine them, it becomes 'Hindu'. Indians are called Hindus, which means those who live between the Himalaya mountains and Bindu-sarovara, and who are absorbed in the bhakti. This is the actual definition of 'Hindu'.


Lord Siva is the Dhamesvara, predominating deity of this place. He protects it, and Ananta Vasudeva in Bhuvanesvara is the controller and predominating Deity of Lord Siva. Wherever Krishna or one of His expansions have Their dhama, abode, Lord Siva is the protector. This is a feature of their relationship.


Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu used to see Cataka Parvata as Govardhana Hill. When He saw this very beautiful place, He thought He was at Giriraja Govardhana, Vamsivata and Yamuna. He became overwhelmed and ran towards the parvata, hill, calling, "Giriraja Govardhana! Giriraja Govardhana!"


hantayam adrir abala hari-dasa-varyo


yad rama-krishna-carana-sparasa-pramodah


manam tanoti saha-go-ganayos tayor yat




"O sakhis! This Giriraja Govardhana is the best of all the devotees of Shri Hari (Shri Harideva). How fortunate he is indeed! Have you not seen how elated he is to obtain the touch of the lotus feet of Shri Krishna, who is prana-vallabha, dearer to us than life, and those of Shri Baladeva who is nayanabhirama, the source of delight for the eyes? Who can adequately praise his fortune? Just see how graciously he receives all the cows and cowherd boyfriends of Krishna and Balarama. He supplies cool, clear and sweet water for bathing and drinking, soft green grass for the cows, caves for them to rest, and fruits and roots for them to eat. Truly, this Giriraja Govardhana is blessed." (Venu-gita, text 18)


Shriman Mahaprabhu was singing this sloka in a beautiful way, absorbed in bhava.


In the next few days we will go to many places. We will again go to Gambhira, and we will also go to the well of Paramananda Puri, to Lokanatha, again to Haridasa Thakura's bhajana-kutira, and to other places as well. We may also go to see Lord Jagannatha, Baladeva, and Subhadra, and everywhere our hari-katha will be done.


There is too much rain now. This pandal is not sufficient for so much heavy rain. We never thought that this type of rain would come in this season. This is not the rainy season, but somehow there was low pressure in the ocean and the season accidentally changed. I thought that we would sit on the sand, on the ocean beach, and that all our hari-katha would continue there. I never thought that any rain would come and disturb our programs.


I am sorry that today that you could not take mahaprasada here under the pandal. But don't be disturbed. Our purpose is served. Our purpose is to be in the land of Purusottama, in Purusottama month, and to hear hari-katha. Actually no one can be disturbed here. When there is any problem, we will call Sankara (Lord Siva) or Jagannatha-deva.


A certain monkey is also here. Hanuman is here. Jagannatha has told Hanuman, "There is no difference between myself and Ramacandra. You should always remain here. And if the ocean advances, roaring with waves and sand, be situated here and stop the sea from coming towards Jagannatha Mandir." Jagannatha ordered Hanuman to stay because sand often came and covered all of Puri. The first time the sand came and covered the temple of Jagannatha was at the time of Maharaja Indradyumna.


Hanuman stayed for some time. However, after awhile he began to thirst for the taste of something sweet, because the local people only gave him rice and dahl. One day he thought, "Let the sands come. My mother may be making some lagdus." In one leap he went to Ayodya. Later, Jagannatha called him by remembering him, and he returned. Jagannatha promised him bananas and sweets and told him that he should not leave Puri again. He then handcuffed him, chaining his hands and legs.


Hanuman is thus called Berhi-Hanuman: one who is handcuffed. Near the temple where Berhi-Hanuman resides is Bankim Mohan, the place where the three logs came to the shore and later took Their shapes as Jagannatha, Baladeva, and Subhadra.


[A few years ago a cyclone came towards the shores of Puri. Instead of destroying Puri, however, it split into two and destroyed two other places far from Puri.]


[After further talk in Hindi and Bengali, Shrila Maharaja again spoke in English:]


anyabhilasita sunyam jnana-karmady-anavrtam


anukulyena krishnanu-silanam bhakti uttama


This is actually the definition of bhakti. However, merely quoting this sloka will not do. You'll have to practice it. There are symptoms that reveal if you are actually practicing or not. If you are exercising bhakti with all of your senses and mind, and by all your moods, detachment must come. Detachment will come, and your entire 'controlling mood' will go. Even the lady devotees want to control each other. How will bhakti come in such a situation? Bhakti comes when there is submissiveness and humility.


Jnana and vairagya (knowledge and detachment) will certainly come. Krishna-tattva-jnana (knowledge of the glories of Krishna), bhakti-rasa-jnana (knowledge of the transcendental mellows of devotion), and vaishnava-seva-jnana (knowledge about serving pure devotees) are all bound to come.


However, you may be proud that, "I'm chanting Hare Krishna," and therefore worldly attachments are still present. Donít try to instruct others. Try to follow, yourself. Don't offend Vaishnavas. By practicing bhakti, automatically the qualities trnad api sunicena and so on will come.


If you are chanting and remembering under the guidance of a high class of guru, only having faith in guru but not in Vaishnavas, it will not do. One must not think, "For my guru I will cut off the heads of all the Vaishnavas. I don't care for any Vaishnavas."

  vaco vegam manasah krodha-vegam


jihva-vegam udaropastha-vegam


etan vegan yo visaheta dhirah


sarvam apimam prthivim sa sisyat


"A sober person who can tolerate the urge to speak, the mindís demands, the actions of anger and the urges of the tongue, belly and genitals is qualified to make disciples all over the world." (Shri Upadesamrta, text 1)

atyaharah prayasas ca prajalpo niyamagrahah


jana-sangas ca laulyam ca


sadbhir bhaktir vinasyati


"Oneís devotional service is spoiled when he becomes too entangled in the following six activities: (1) eating more than necessary or collecting more funds than required; (2) over endeavoring for mundane things that are very difficult to obtain; (3) talking unnecessarily about mundane subject matters; (4) Practicing the scriptural rules and regulations only for the sake of following them and not for the sake of spiritual advancement, or rejecting the rules and regulations of the scriptures and working independently or whimsically; (5) associating with worldly-minded persons who are not interested in Krishna consciousness; and (6) being greedy for mundane achievements." (Shri Upadesamrta, text 2)


utsahan niscayad dhairyat




sanga-tyagat sato vrtteh


sadbhir bhaktih prasidhyati


"There are six principles favorable to the execution of pure devotional service: (1) being enthusiastic, (2) endeavoring with confidence, (3) being patient, (4) acting according to regulative principles [such as sravanam kirtanam visnoh smaranam [SB 7.5.23]óhearing, chanting and remembering Krishna], (5) abandoning the association of non-devotees, and (6) following in the footsteps of the previous acaryas. These six principles undoubtedly assure the complete success of pure devotional service." (Shri Upadesamrta, text 3)


If, in spite of chanting your bad qualities are not going and good qualities are not coming, you have no utsaha (enthusiasm) for this hari-katha.


bhaktih paresanubhavo viraktir


anyatra caisa trika eka-kalah


prapadyamanasya yathasnatah syus


tustih pustih ksud-apayo ínu-ghasam


"Devotion, direct experience of the Supreme Lord, and detachment from other things ó these three occur simultaneously for one who has taken shelter of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, in the same way that pleasure, nourishment and relief from hunger come simultaneously and increasingly, with each bite, for a person engaged in eating." (Shrimad Bhagavatam 11.2.42)


This sloka has a very grave meaning.


You should accept this and the following verse as a barometer of bhakti. Anyabhilasita-sunyam / jnana-karmady-anavrtam / anukulyena krishnanu-silanam / bhaktir uttama. Keep this verse in mind during all your activities, to see whether your bhakti is actually karma (fruitive activity) or jnana (mental speculation), or whether it is really bhakti. You will be able to see whether it is only karma-misra (misra means mixed with), jnana-misra, yoga-misra, or whether or not it is any kind of bhakti at all. You will see whether it is sanga-siddha, aropa-siddha, or svarupa-siddha-bhakti, and whether it is really vaidhi-bhakti or not. To be very proud that, "We are raganuga-bhaktas," without actually following that path, will not do.


We have come to Purusottama-ksetra. We will have to give something up here, like being angry and chastising other Vaishnavas. Give up all bad habits. Something should be given up so that bhakti may come.


 Westerners are not allowed in many of the Indian temples, and this was also the case with Lokanatha Mahadeva. Among the 600 pilgrims accompanying Shrila Narayana Maharaja on the parikrama, over 200 were Westerners. Shrila Maharaja and the Indian devotees went into the temple while the Western devotees stood in the courtyard, performed acamana at the pond, chanted, and wished they could go inside.


After a few minutes Shrila Maharaja came out of the temple alone, without the hundreds of Indian devotees, and sat down on a stone stab platform in front of the shops. All the Western devotees immediately gathered around him, eager to hear.


One of the Lokanatha Mahadeva pujaris approached and talked to Shrila Maharaja for a few minutes, saying that he would allow the Western devotees entrance if they would give him money. Shrila Maharaja rejected his proposal and began his hari-katha:]


Sankara is a very, very exalted mahabhagavata. He always serves Krishna and all His manifestations, like Rama, Nrsimha, Kalki and Varaha. In this world he has five kinds of manifestations: earth, water, fire, air, and ether. You cannot see other than these five. You can see water, you can see earth, you can see sky and you can see fire. Our body, the world and the universe are made out of these five elements. You cannot see the soul. If you render pure devotional service, then you can also see the soul. You can see Krishna first, and by His light you can see your own soul. So here in this world these are the five prominent elements, and it is Sankara who has taken their form.


We went inside the mandira, but we simply saw a room full of water. You are lucky to be out here, where there is a very big pond of water; so no need of going inside. You can see water here, and this is also a symbol of Sankara. In Bengal and other places there is an Ambulinga (linga means symbol), a linga made of water, to which you can offer your pranama. The pond here at Lokanatha Mandira is called Ganga Parvati Pond.


Those who want to make Krishna, God, their own property, ban others saying, "You cannot come into our temple." Krishna becomes very angry with them, and Sankara is also not pleased with them. Those who think, "Krishna is our property and we can therefore use Him for our maintenance", do not have bhakti. They will ban the whole world from entering, saying, "If you pay something, then you can go in; otherwise not."


Sankara is a manifestation of Krishna, and he is always hungry for love and affection. He is qualified to manifest from all the five elements and to serve his masters, Lord Krishna and Lord Rama. He is very kind. He was first in Kailasa, and then he shifted his place to Kasi Varanasi where he helped the atheist king of Varanasi. He also helped Paundraka Vasudeva, who became four-handed and challenged Lord Krishna. Krishna cut off Paundraka Vasudeva's head and also the head of Kasi-Naresa, the king of Kasi, who considered himself one of the best servants of Sankara. Sankara could not save him when Krishna's Sudarsana cakra burnt down Kasi Varanasi. [see Krishna book ch.66.]


Sankara simply fled. Where his deerskin fell, he did not know. He also left his trident and everything else, including his wife, and very quickly ran from there. He arrived in Ekamrakanana in Bhubaneswar, and took shelter of Lord Jagannatha. Lord Jagannatha told him, "Because you have come to my shelter, I will give you the post of Lokanatha. So don't fear. If anyone comes to Jagannatha Puri and takes my darsana without taking yours, his coming here will not be complete. He must come here to your place after having my darsana. Then he will be very happy."


Sankara is the abode of love, and in that regard Shrila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura has written:


vrndavanavani-pate! jaya soma soma-maule


gopisvara! vraja-vilasi-yuganghri-padme

prema prayaccha nirupadhi namo namaste


"O Lord Sankara, even Shri Narada Muni, Sanaka, and Sanandana are always worshiping you. You can give love and affection like that of the gopis. In your purest form of Gopisvara Mahadeva, you are very powerful. You are Hari-hara-eka-atma. Hari-hara-eka-atma means that Krishna has become your atma and you have become His atma.”


Here atma means dearmost, or very beloved. Sankara can serve as Hanuman, as Bhima, as Madhvacarya, at the time of Mahaprabhu as Advaita Acarya Sadasiva, and in so many other forms.


We have come here to beg the mercy of Lokanatha. But I personally don't see Lokanatha here. I see Gopisvara Mahadeva. Gopisvara Mahadeva ki jaya! You can repeat after me:


[After Shrila Maharaja uttered each half line, the devotees repeated:]


vrndavanavani-pate! jaya soma soma-maule


gopisvara! vraja-vilasi-yuganghri-padme

prema prayaccha nirupadhi namo namaste


["O gatekeeper of Vrndavana! O Soma, all glories to you! O you whose forehead is decorated with the moon, and who is worshipable for the sages headed by Sanaka, Sanandana, Sanatana and Narada! O Gopisvara! Desiring that you bestow upon me prema for the lotus feet of Shri Shri Radha-Madhava who perform joyous pastimes in Vraja-dhama. I offer pranamas unto you time and again." (Sankalpa Kalpadruma 103, Shrila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura)]


"O Gopisvara Mahadeva! We have come to you. Here your name is changed and you have become Lokanatha. But we don't know you as Lokanatha; we only know you as Gopisvara Mahadeva. You cannot cheat us. You can cheat Ravana, Kamsa, Jarasandha, and others, but you can never cheat us. This is because we have taken shelter of Yogamaya, Paurnamasi. If you cheat us we will complain to Paurnamasi and she will punish you. Do you remember when all the gopis slapped you and your cheeks became so swollen? Kindly remember this." Sankara will then come in the form of Gopisvara Mahadeva. He will be very helpful, and happy to give mercy.


Lokanatha Mahadeva ki jaya!

Shri Shri Gopisvara Mahadeva ki jaya!

Kamesvara Mahadeva ki jaya!

Nandisvara Mahadeva ki jaya!

Chakalesvara Mahadeva ki jaya!

Parvati-pati ki jaya!

Shri Shri Sankara ki jaya!


Hara Hara Hara Hara Mahadeva ki jaya!


Shrila Gour Govinda Swami

We should not disrespect the demigods. They may not be supreme, but still they are the servants of Krishna. Mahaprabhu has taught us especially to respect Lord Shiva.


vaishnavnam yatha shambhu [Bhag. 12.13.16] -

Shiva is a great vaishnava, and therefore Mahaprabhu visited and paid respect to Sivaji, who is known as kshetra-pala, the guardian of the holy places. In vraja-mandala you will also find kshetrapala-mahadeva murtis. In Vrindavan there is Gopeswar Mahadeva, in Kamyavana, Kameswar Mahadeva, and in Govardhana there is Cakreswar Mahadeva. In Nandagaon you will find Nandeswar Mahadeva, and in Mathura you will find Bhuteswar Mahadeva, Gokarneswar, Pippaleswar and Rangeswar. Aside from these, there are many, many other Shiva temples in Mathura.

In the Adi Varaha Purana it is mentioned that Lord Vishnu once ordered Sivaji, In Mathura you shall become kshetra-pala to guard My kshetra, My place. If someone of-fers respect to you and has your darśana then he will actually get the result of circumam-bulating My kshetra.” During the circumam-bulation of vraja-mandala, one visits Bhuteswar Shiva in Mathura at the begin-ning and at the end, because vaishavanam yatha śambhu - Shiva is a great vaishnava. Chaitanya-Bhagavata

Bhubaneswar kshetra is Sivas dhama. In Chaitanya-Bhagavata, Shri Vrindavan Das Thakur has described Bhubaneswar. When Shriman Mahaprabhu was on His way to Jagannath Puri, He passed through Bhubaneswar. At that time He visited the Shiva temple known as Bhubaneswar Lingaraj, because Lingaraj is a very dear servant of Lord Balaram who resides in Bhubaneswar as Anantadev along with His younger brother Vasudev. Chaitanya- Bhagavata, adi khanda, chapter two, describes that when Shriman Mahaprabhu came to Bhubaneswar He chanted and danced before Lord Shiva in the Bhubaneswar temple. Following in the footsteps of Shriman Mahaprabhu the vaishnavas come to visit Bhubaneswar, see Lord Shiva, and chant and dance here. The Skanda Purana also mentions this Bhubaneswar kshetra.


Once, in Kasi, Varanasi, there was a king who was a great devotee of Lord Shiva. That king was doing severe austerities to satisfy Lord Shiva, with the desire to conquer Krishna. Who can understand the behavior of a vaishnava like Lord Shiva? Even the demi-gods cannot understand such behavior, so what to speak of human beings? Sivaji became pleased with the kings tapasya and told him, All right. Go and fight against Krishna. I will follow to support and help you. So that king started for battle, followed by Lord Shiva and all his followers. Krishna, who is known as Vasudev Devakinandana, understood all of this and released His sudarśana-cakra. Sudarśan first cut off the head of the king and then cut off the heads of all the śiva-bhaktas of Kasi. Varanasi turned into a crematorium ground with everyone dead. Then Lord Shiva became angry and released his weapon known as paśupata-astra. But what could the paśupata-astra do in front of Krishna’s sudarśana cakra? It could not do anything, and at last Shiva became frightened. He tried to run away, but where could he go? Then Shiva understood, “Except for Krishna, nobody can save me now.” So he surrendered to the lotus feet of Krishna, Govinda, and offered many prayers.Shiva said, “O Lord of my heart, I am always very puffed up and I have this great false ego, but now I have understood that I cannot leave You. I have only one prayer. Because the sudarśana cakra has destroyed Kasi, my home, I cannot stay anywhere now. So please tell me where Ishall stay?”

Ekamra Kanan.


Lord Vasudev told him, My place is known as Purushottama Kshetra. To its north is a place called Ekamra Kanan. Ekamra Kanan is a very auspicious place that can give one bhukti and mukti, mate-rial pleasure and liberation. It is a very beautiful place. I shall give you this Ekamra Kanan, go and stay there and become the guard of Purusottam-kshetra. You will be known as Bhubaneswar, the lord of the world.  This place, kshetra, given to Lord Shiva, Bhubaneswar, is also known as Hemachala and as Svarnadri Kshetra, both meaning golden mountain. In this kshetra, millions and millions, koti lingam, of Sivajis are there. Shrila Vyasadev once came here and described its glories in his book Svarnadri-mahodaya. He described that there are eight famous tirthas present in this kshetra [Bindu-sagara, Papanasini, Ganga- Yamuna, Koti-tirtha, Brahma-tirtha, Megha-tirtha, Alabu-tirtha, and Ashokahara]. It is superior to Varanasi and dearer to Lord Shiva.


It is described that once Goddess Parvarti heard the glories of Ekamra Kanan from the lips of Lord Shiva and thus desired to go. Arriving there, she saw the maha-linga, the form in which Shiva is worshiped. That linga is sitasita varna, it has a half white and half black complexion. Devi offered pūja to that maha-linga.


One day, Devi saw hundreds of cows coming out of a lake and pouring milk from their udders onto that maha-linga. Then they circumambulated the maha-linga and went away. Another day, when she saw the same thing again, she assumed the form of a gopalinī, cowherd girl, and fol-lowed the cows. But two demon brothers appeared, named Kriti and Vasa. They were very enchanted by the beauty of Parvati-devi, so they approached her and expressed their desire that they wanted to have her as their wife. Bhagavati-devi dis-appeared from that place and went to Lord Shiva, where she narrated everything before her Lord. Lord Shiva then assumed the form of a gopa, cowherd boy, and went there. Seeing them, Lord Shiva understood the history of those two demons. Shiva re-vealed that these two demons Kriti and Vasa were the sons of the rakshasa Drumila. Drumila had worshiped many demigods, who became pleased and gave him a boon that his two sons could not be killed by any weapon. Sivaji said, They will be killed by you, O Devi. They cannot be killed by any weapons so I cannot kill them, but you will kill them. Thus getting the instruc-tion from Sivaji, Devi in the form of a cow-herd girl came before those two demons and said, I shall fulfill your desires, but I have one condition. I will only marry who-soever can carry me on his shoulder or head. Then Bhagavati-devi manifested her potency, placing one foot on the shoul-der of one demon and the other on the shoulder of the other demon she crushed both of them. They were killed as Bhagavati expanded herself in the form of viśvambhari-rupa. Viśva means universe. From that day Lord Shambhu, Shiva, and Devi Bhagavati both stay in this kshetra known as Ekamra Kanan.


Bindu Sarovar


After killing the two demons Kriti and Vasa, Bhagavati-devi became very tired and thirsty. She wanted water, so Shiva with his trident, called a trishula, pierced the top of a hill and created a deep well that became known as Shankar Bamphi. Then Devi said, I want water from a great pond that will eternally be here. Sivaji ordered his bull carrier Nandi, to install that sarovara. All the tirthas appeared there as well as all the holy rivers like the Kaveri, Gomati, Krishna, Yamuna, Saraswati, Gandaki, Rishikulya, and Mahanadi. Then from the heavenly planets and Patalaloka came the Mandakini and Kshirodak rivers. When Lord Shiva saw that all these holy rivers and tirthas had appeared there, he pierced the top of the hill with his trident and asked them all to pour water there, drop by drop. Bindu means drop. They did that, and then Lord Brahma installed that lake, which is now known as Bindu Sarovar. Bhagavan Janardan and all of the demigods headed by Brahma took bath in Bindu Sarovar. In this way Bindu Sarovar was installed. Then Shambhu offered his obeisances to Lord Janardan and the Lord placed Anantadev on the eastern side of Bindu Sarovar. So to this day on the east-ern side of Bindu Sarovar you will find the deities of Ananta Vasudev. Shiva became the kshetra-pala and Anantadev became the controller of that kshetra, staying there with His sister Subhadra-devi. By staying on the eastern side of Bindu Sarovar, Ananta Vasudev fulfilled Lord Sivas desire. In the front wall of that temple you will find Lakshmidevi, and also the Sudarsan Chakra. Ananta Vasudev and Madan-mohan are the Lords of lingaraja Shiva. The Madan-mohan deity here in Bhubaneswar is a four-handed form. At the time of candana-yatra, Sivaji along with Ananta Vasudev and Madan-mohan ride a swing and go to the candana-yatra. [The Madan- mohan deity resides in a separate temple on the Lingaraj campus, just behind the temple of Lingaraj. He is now known as Narayan, and He no longer accompanies Lord Shiva during the candana-yatra festi-val.] The candana-yatra at Bindu Sarovar begins at the same time as the candana-yatra at the Puri temple. (In Puri there are five famous Sivas, and they also come along with Madan-mohan from the Jagannath Temple to have candana-yatra.)


In the Ananta Vasudev Mandir, Vaishnavi Bhagavati herself cooks bhoga to serve Ananta Vasudev. First Ananta Vasudev is offered bhoga-arati and then the prasada goes to the Shiva temple where Shiva be-comes very pleased. This is the vaishava process. The vaishavas first worship Lord Vishnu, and then they offer the prasada to Shiva. In this way a vaishnava worships Lord Shiva. Those who are not vaishnavas directly worship Shiva. A vaishnava never accepts prasada from such worship. The vaishnavas first worship Lord Vasudev, Vishnu, offer bhoga to Him, and then that prasada will be offered to Lord Shiva. [The process of of-fering Ananta Vasudev praśadam to Shiva at the Lingaraj temple was discontinued some years ago.] This system is still going on in the Jagannath temple. In the campus of the Jagannath temple you will find that the goddess Durga is there, and Shiva, as well as Lakshmiji. They are all offered Jagannath prasada, not Shiva prasada. This is the vaishnava process.


Mahaprabhu took bath in Bindu Sarovar. Whoever bathes there gets the result of tak-ing bath in all the tirthas, because all the tirthas are there. And if someone goes to the temple of Ananta Vasudev and has darśana of Ananta Vasudev, then he gets the result of seeing the Supreme Lord. By the order and mercy of Janardan Krishna, Lord Shiva has become k  etra-pala, and at the same time Shiva is bhakti-pradata. He is a great vaishnava, so if he is pleased he can give us bhakti. Lord Shiva also gives the adhikara, the right or qualification, to serve the dhama, the abode of the Lord. The vaishnavas go to the temple of Sivaji for this reason. Because Mahaprabhu has also gone there, the vaishnavas, the gaura-priya-janas, the dear devotees of Gauranga Mahaprabhu, also visit Shiva temples, pay respect to Shiva, and pray for Lord Sivas mercy to give krishna-bhakti.


The Shri Chaitanya-Bhagavata gives so much information about Bhubaneswar. One entire chapter is dedicated to Bhubaneswar, but still that is just a summary. Much more information is there. Bhubaneswar is such a famous place. It is a vaishnava kshetra.