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Lord Shiva - Protector of Dhama
Lord Shiva is the eternal guardian of the Braja Mandal area. Because he is the guardian, devotees of Lord Krishna ask his permission to be able to successfully circumambulate Braja Mandala. He is, after all, the greatest Vaishnava. There are four important Shiva temples that surround Mathura. There are four shiva-lingas that protect the four sides of Mathura. which are called the dik-pala (protectors) of Mathura. They are Gokarneshvara Mahadeva in the north. Pippaleshvara Mahadeva in the east, Rangeshvara Mahadeva in the south, and Bhuteshvara Mahadeva in the west. Nandishvara Temple. On the side altar of the Nandagram temple (a beautiful temple of Krishna Balarama in Vrindavan), there is a shivalinga called Nandishvara (Nandeshwara), who is said to have been installed by Vajranabha, the great-grandson of Krishna. This linga of Lord Shiva resides eternally in Nandagrain performing bhajan (worship) to Sri Krishna. The story behind this temple is as follows:
Once Lord Shiva in the form of a mendicant came to the house of Nanda Maharaj to have darshan of baby Krishna. But when mother Yashoda saw a sadhu with snakes around his neck and ashes all over his body, she feared that her tiny baby would become frightened on seeing such a person. So she did not give the mendicant permission to see Krishna. Lord Shiva pleaded with her but to no avail. Disappointed Lord Shiva left and went to the forest to meditate on Krishna. In the house, child Krishna started to cry and no one could stop Him. Mother Yasoda realized that maybe because she did not receive a guest properly there was some reaction. She then sent everyone to go find the tantric yogi who had come to her house earlier. After a short while they returned with Lord Shiva. When Lord Shiva came before Krishna, baby Krishna immediately stopped crying and smiled brilliantly. Mother Yashoda then said to Lord Shiva "By your coming, my son has stopped crying. What can I do for you?" Lord Shiva replied that he just wanted to be able to see child Krishna and to be able to eat the remnants of His food. Even today the priests of the Nandagram temple offer the remnants of what was offered to Lord Krishna to the Nandishvara-linga in this temple.