Do you know why every year millions of devotees visit Vrindavan? They do so to seek Sri Krishna and to soak in the glory that pervades this holy dham. However, in order to be able to imbibe the blessed atmosphere, you need to feel at home. You need to relax and let the atmosphere seep inside you and create its own magic.
That is exactly what a Krishna Bhumi Holydays membership will help you do.
Rejuvenate yourself at Krishna Bhumi’s ayurvedic spa
Krishna Bhumi has been conceived as a magnificent township complete with all facilities and amenities of modern living. Among a host of wonderful features, it also includes a premium wellness center with ayurvedic spa. As a Holydays member, you can rejuvenate yourself at this spa through relaxing massage sessions. Studies show that massage therapies are a good way to rebalance our body chakras. It is believed that chakras are nothing but energy forces that flow through our soul or spirit. Sometimes, the chakras need to be realigned or rebalanced, which help in the overall wellbeing. In fact, it also helps you connect better with your environment and to be ‘in the moment’. A massage at the Krishna Bhumi ayurvedic spa will help you prepare yourself to imbibe the spirit of Vrindavan even better.
Take a dip in the swimming pool to feel refreshed
There will be a beautiful swimming pool right within the gates of Krishna Bhumi. As a Holydays member, when you stay in your fully-furnished luxury apartment, you can walk to the swimming pool and take a refreshing dip in its cool waters. Studies show that swimming is a wonderful exercise not only for the body but also for the mind and the soul. While swimming, all you have to do is concentrate on your strokes and movements, which is a great way to remove all static thoughts. In fact, many believe that swimming can be as beneficial for the mind as meditation. In a way, it is like doing yoga in water. And once your mind and body feel relaxed, they are all the more prepared to soak in the blissful experience called Vrindavan.
Breathe in fresh air in the open green space
Krishna Bhumi will be surrounded by acres of green space. You can walk in the beautiful greenery all around, meditate in the open spaces, and feel connected to nature at once. It is also believed that green is one of the most restful colours and produces harmonious feelings which in turn diffuse anxiety. And once your mind is calm, you can concentrate even more on feeling one with Krishna.
Be a part of kirtans and bhajans in the upcoming Vrindavan Chandrodaya Mandir
Krishna Bhumi is taking shape adjacent to the proposed Vrindavan Chandrodaya Mandir. There will be bhajans, kirtans, and spiritual discourses that you can be a part of. And what better way to experience Vrindavan than to immerse yourself in thoughts of Krishna?
A Holydays membership gives you ample opportunities to unwind your body so that your mind is ready to immerse itself in Bhakti bhava.
The relationship between Yashoda and Sri Krishna is one of the most celebrated mother-son relationships of all time. Yashoda’s unfathomable love for Krishna has inspired many works of art. She is an integral part of Krishna’s childhood lilas. Once, when sage Narada visited Nanda’s house, he was greeted with one of the most divine sights. Narada watched on as Mother Yashoda punished her mischievous little boy Krishna by tying him with a grinding stone. Seeing this, Narada said, “Enna Thavam Saidhanai, Yashoda” which translates as “What penance have You (Mother Yashoda) undertaken to be bestowed with the powers to punish the supreme (Narayana)”. Because here was the Supreme Godhead— “the beginning and the end and also the middle” who let Himself being chastised by a mere mortal!
So, why was Yashoda chosen to be Sri Krishna’s foster mother?
Sri Krishna was born to Devaki and Vasudeva. But as fate would have it, it was Yashoda and Nanda who brought Him up. So, it was not Devaki but Yashoda who could witness all the beautiful lilas of Sri Krishna as He turned into a magnificent youth who mesmerised everyone who came in contact with Him.
Legend has it that one day little Krishna was playing in the sand and put it into His mouth. Mother Yashoda was concerned and asked her son to open His mouth. However, she was not ready for what happened next. She saw the entire universe inside that little mouth. There were the seven oceans and also Narayana resting on Adishesha (the Divine Snake) with his consort Mahalakshmi.
It is believed that Yashoda and Nanda performed great penance in their previous birth. Lord Vishnu was happy with their prayers and appeared in front of them. He asked the couple what they wanted and the couple said that they wanted to treat Lord Vishnu as their son. Lord Vishnu was amused because He is the Creator of the whole universe. However, He never knew what a mother’s love is and that is why conceded to the request and granted them this boon. Hence when Lord Vishnu appeared on the earth in His Krishna avatar, it was Yashoda who brought him up despite not being the biological mother of Sri Krishna.
How did Yashoda become Sri Krishna’s mother for the second time?
Yashoda did not meet Krishna ever since He left Mathura. However, when on her deathbed, Krishna came to meet His mother. She was happy but her only regret was that she could never see any of Krishna’s marriages. Sri Krishna understood His mother’s pain and said that her wish would be fulfilled in her next birth when He would be born as Venkateshwara and Mother Yashoda as Vakula Devi.
Mother Yashoda as Vakula Devi
In the Kali Yuga, Lord Vishnu appeared as Lord Venkateswara. This time too, Yashoda was His foster mother. Her name was Vakula Devi. She played a crucial role in arranging His wedding with King Akasa Raja’s daughter Padmavati. And this time, Mother Yashoda as Vakula Devi, fulfilled her wishes to see her son’s marriage.
Roughly 300 years back, a temple dedicated to Vakula Devi was constructed on Perurubanda hillock surrounding the picturesque Perur village. The idol of Vakula Devi looks towards the Seven Hills, the abode of her son Lord Venkateswara.
The relationship between Yashoda and Sri Krishna is not just a bond between a mother and her son. In a way, Mother Yashoda is also one of the most ardent devotees of Sri Krishna. What begins as ‘Vatsalya Prem’ (love for her son) evolves into ‘Vatsalya Bhakti’ (devotion of a mother).
What better way to feel Yasoda’s love for Krishna than to be in the place where Krishna spent His time as a child and a youth. Visit Braj and soak in the divinity of the holiest 84 kos on earth. Experience Vrindavan like never before through a Krishna Bhumi Holydays membership.
The holy town of Vrindavan is famous for its beautiful festivals and unique traditions. While Vrindavan’s holi is famous all over the world, did you know that Akshay Tritiya too is celebrated in a special way in Vrindavan? Let us read more about it but before that, let’s find out more about the significance of this auspicious day.
What is Akshay Tritiya?
Akshay Tritiya is an important day for both the Hindus and the Jains. It falls during the Shukla Pakshya Tritiya in the Baisakh month. ‘Akshay’ means ‘that which does not diminish.’ It is believed that whatever good deeds one performs on Akshay Tritiya multiples manifold. Many choose to invest in gold, begin an investment, and start a new venture on Akshay Tritiya. It is also a wonderful day for marriage. Each moment of this day is considered to be ‘shubh’ and fit for any auspicious beginning.
What happened on Akshay Tritiya?
Performing an Akshay Tritiya pooja is very popular among Hindu households. However, the significance of this day dates back to centuries. This is one day when history seems to blend with mythology and sometimes form a mystifying blur.
Here are a few things that are believed to have happened on Akshay Tritiya:
Beginning of the Treta Yuga: The yuga that followed the Satya Yuga is believed to have begun on this day.
Scripting of the Mahabharata began: It is believed that Ved Vyas and Lord Ganesha started writing the great epic on this day.
The Ganges descended on the earth: The holy river Ganga descended to the earth on this day.
Goddess Annapurna was born: Goddess Annapurna, the goddess of food, was also born on this day. It was also on Akshay Tritiya that Annapurna fed Shiva disguised as a beggar.
Lord Parashuram was born: The sixth incarnation of Lord Vishnu was born on this day.
Yudhishthira received the Akshay Patram: Pleased by Yudhishthira’s prayers, Surya or Sun God blessed him with the Akshay Patram that would supply them with an inexhaustible supply of food for the next 12 years.
Sri Krishna and Akshay Tritiya
Draupadi: Legend has it that once when Sri Krishna visited the Pandavas along with His retinue, the exiled Pandav brothers received Him with all ceremony. However, Draupadi did not come out of her kitchen. Sensing that something was amiss, Sri Krishna entered the kitchen. Inside, a teary-eyed Draupadi showed Him an empty bowl and said that it was all that she had in her kitchen. Sri Krishna, on the other hand, asked His sister, if the bowl was truly empty because there was a single grain of rice stuck to it. Sri Krishna had this single grain and as soon as He did so, the hunger of the entire universe was satiated. This miraculous episode happened on Akshay Tritiya.
Sudama: Krishna and Sudama were the best of friends during their childhood days. However, with time, the two friends parted ways. Sudama pursued the Vedas and Sri Krishna became the king of Dwarka. One day, when Sudama, then a poor Brahman, saw a peacock feather in his son’s hand, he was reminded of his friend Krishna. His wife suggested that he should visit Dwarka to meet his friend and to ask for financial help. Although reluctant at first, Sudama agreed to his wife’s proposal and started his journey to meet his long-lost friend. He carried with him flattened rice or poha since Krishna loved it as a child. When Krishna met Sudama, He was overjoyed. He extended warm hospitality towards His friend and asked Sudama what he had brought for Him. The poor Brahman was embarrassed to give the king of Dwarka the little poha that he was carrying. However, Krishna liked His friend’s thoughtful gift very much. Sudama could not ask for any monetary help and left for his home. However, Sri Krishna understood and blessed Sudama with riches. When Sudama reached home, he found that his humble hut had been replaced by a palatial building overnight! This happened on Akshay Tritiya.
Celebration of Akshay Tritiya in Vrindavan
On Akshay Tritiya, the idols in Vrindavan temples are smeared with sandalwood from head to toe. This is known as Chandan Yatra. Sandalwood is applied to offer the gods some relief from the rising temperature.
Darshan of Bihariji’s feet
It is on Akshay Tritiya that devotees get a darshan of Bihariji’s feet. This is the only time during the whole year when that is possible. Devotees flock to Vrindavan on Akshay Tritiya for this auspicious sight.
Krishna Bhumi is just 10 minutes away from the Banke Bihari temple. When you become a member of Krishna Bhumi Holydays, you can stay in your home in Krishna Bhumi and immerse yourself in the glory of this holy land.
A beautiful little kid mischievously stealing butter from a pot, and later on, a stunning youth mesmerising everyone with His magnetic flute. That is how most of us would visualise Shri Krishna. Even if for a moment, we forget all about His miracles and Leelas, the one thing that set Him apart from anyone else was His blue colour.
Why is Sri Krishna blue? Let us seek the answer in various explanations and interpretations.
Drinking Putana’s milk
Krishna’s evil uncle Kamsa sends the demoness Putana to kill infant Krishna. Putana, disguised as a beautiful woman, comes to Gokul and requests Yashoda to allow her to breastfeed her little one. In those days, it was a common practice. Like the other people of Gokul, Yashoda too was mesmerised by her beauty and permitted her to breastfeed Krishna. However, Putana had smeared her breasts with a mandana or intoxicant with the intention of killing Krishna. According to the later versions of this story, Putana smeared her breasts with a poison. Other stories even say that her milk itself was poison.
Sri Krishna not only drank her poisonous milk but also sucked out her life. It is believed that the poison, however, entered His body and gave Him the blue colour.
Kaliya, a poisonous snake, came to live in the Yamuna. It is believed that the four leagues of water around him boiled with poison. One day, when Krishna was playing with His friends, their ball fell inside the Yamuna. Krishna jumped into the river to get His ball and thus encountered the venomous Kaliya. At the bottom of the river, Kaliya wrapped himself around Sri Krishna’s body but He, in turn, assumed such a huge shape that the serpent had to release Him. Later, Sri Krishna danced on Kaliya’s hoods, beating Him with his feet. Kaliya’s wives begged Sri Krishna for mercy. Kaliya too realised the greatness of the ‘little kid’ he was trying to kill and surrendered. Sri Krishna did not kill Kaliya but asked him to leave the Yamuna and go to Ramanaka Dwipa (modern Fiji).
According to one school of thought, the poison from Kaliya entered Sri Krishna’s body while fighting the serpent and turned Him blue.
Birth from Lord Vishnu’s Hair
It is believed that Lord Vishnu planted a white hair and a black hair in Devaki’s womb. From the white hair was born Balaram and from the black was born Sri Krishna. This gave Him the blue or ‘blackish’ complexion.
Sri Krishna has a blue aura
Science tells us that the entire existence is energy in one form or the other. It is also believed that every being emits an aura, a field of energy that surrounds the body, of a certain colour. It is possible that Sri Krishna was not literally blue, but He reflected the blue aura. According to the colour spectrum, blue is a calm hue and produces a relaxing effect. It is, in fact, the coolest colour. Anyone with a blue aura reflects intelligence and self-awareness, and a collected personality. Such a person does not seek attention but impresses the others simply by his/ her presence.
It is also believed that the dominant aura is also connected to one of the seven chakras, the centre of spiritual power in the human body. The blue aura is associated with the fifth or throat chakra. Anyone with a deep blue aura exhibits oratory skills, honesty, and excellent self-expression.
It comes as no surprise that Sri Krishna manifested a blue aura. The epic Mahabharata is only an episode in Sri Krishna’s life that narrates His sense of dharma and adharma, His sense of duty, and justice. The Bhagavad Gita, which records the conversation between Sri Krishna and Arjun, is nothing short of an impressive and eloquent expression through which Sri Krishna convinces Arjun about the efficacy and significance of the battle of Kurukshetra.
Sri Krishna as the Supreme Godhead
In Chapter 10 of the Bhagavad Gita, Sri Krishna tells Arjun,
sarganam adir antas ca
madhyam caivaham arjuna
vadah pravadatam aham
Of all creations I am the beginning and the end and also the middle, O Arjuna. Of all sciences I am the spiritual science of the Self, and among logicians I am the conclusive truth.
Sri Krishna is the universe. He is all creation, and more. Within Him are the vastness of the sky and the depth of the ocean. His blue aura is a reflection of this vastness that remains beyond the ken of human cognisance.
The upcoming Vrindavan Chandrodaya Mandir, the world’s tallest Krishna temple, is also conceived as blue. When you stay in your home in Krishna Bhumi or spend a few days in Vrindavan through a Krishna Bhumi Holydays membership, you will stay close to this awe-inspiring temple. Vrindavan Chandrodaya Mandir will mesmerise you with its imposing presence and make your Vrindavan experience even more beautiful.
What is the purpose of our life? What do we want to achieve? What is it that we crave for? It is happiness. We may be keen on performing certain actions and indulging in certain activities because those, we think, will make us happy. But, are we aware of the true meaning of happiness? Sri Krishna enlightens us about this elusive concept through his conversation with Arjun in Bhagavad Gita.
What is happiness?
We often associate happiness with a number of external factors. We often spend all our effort in the gratification of our senses. However, the happiness that is derived in this manner is only temporary happiness and becomes intertwined with cycles of sorrow. True happiness can only emanate from a peaceful mind that is not dependent on any external agents and remains unperturbed in every situation.
In Chapter II, Verse 70 of the Bhagavad Gita, Sri Krishna says,
samudram apah pravishanti yadvat
tadvat-kama yam pravishanti sarve
sa shantim-apnoti na kama-kaami”
“As the waters (of different rivers) enters the Great Ocean, which though full on all sides remains undisturbed, like wise a person who is not disturbed by the incessant flow of desires – can alone achieve peace, and not the man who runs after these desires & strives to satisfy such desires.”
The three types of happiness
In Chapter 18, Verse 36 Sri Krishna says to Arjun,
“sukhaṁ tv idaniṁ tri-vidhaṁ shrinu me bharatarshabha
abhyasad ramate yatra duhkhantam cha nigachchhati”
“And now hear from me, O Arjun, of the three kinds of happiness in which the embodied soul rejoices, and can even reach the end of all suffering.”
- Satvik or Pure happiness: It is the happiness that arises from the elevation of the soul. However, attaining this is not easy. One pursuing satvik or pure happiness has to practice a lot of discipline. That is why, it feels like poison in the beginning but nectar in the end.
“yat tad agre viham iva pariname mitopamam
tat sukham sattvikam proktam atma-buddhi-prasada-jam”
“That which seems like poison at first, but tastes like nectar in the end, is said to be happiness in the mode of goodness. It is generated by the pure intellect that is situated in self-knowledge.”
Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 18, Verse 37
- Rajasik or result-oriented happiness: This is the materialistic pleasure that is derived when the senses come in contact with external objects that create a feeling of gratification. However, this kind of happiness is temporary.
“vishayendriya-sanyogad yat tad agre mritopamam
pariname visham iva tat sukham rajasam smritam”
“Happiness is said to be in the mode of passion when it is derived from the contact of the senses with their objects. Such happiness is like nectar at first but poison at the end.”
Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 18, Verse 38
- Tamasic or slothful happiness: This is the lowest form of happiness and is derived from sleeping or being lazy. The soul is never nurtured through these practices yet since there is a tiny sense of pleasure associated with it, people wrongfully consider it to be a state of happiness.
“yad agre chanubandhe cha sukham mohanam atmanah
nidralasya-pramadottha tat tamasam udahritam”
“That happiness which covers the nature of the self from beginning to end, and which is derived from sleep, indolence, and negligence, is said to be in the mode of ignorance.”
Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 18, Verse 39.
One can derive true happiness only by achieving a peaceful state of mind. Why not come to Vrindavan and immerse yourself in the thoughts of Sri Krishna? There is no greater happiness than the happiness one gets from being at peace with oneself and being one with god.
Chaitra Navratri has already begun this year. It is the time when devotees offer prayer to the nine forms of Durga, one of which is Katyayani Devi or Yogamaya Devi, a form of Durga worshipped on the sixth day of Navaratri.
But who is Yogamaya Devi or, as she is also known, Katyayani Devi? What is her significance in the holy Braj and how is she related to Sri Krishna?
Who is Devi Katyayani?
It is believed that Yogamaya Devi is Lord Vishnu’s divine power that makes all creation possible. According to the Bhagavatam, it was Yogamaya who made all the guards of Kansa’s prison fall asleep when Sri Krishna was born to Devaki.
In Lord Vishnu’s scheme of things during His birth as Sri Krishna, Yogamaya played an important part. At first, she transferred the foetus of Devaki’s seventh unborn child to Rohini’s womb so that Adisesha could be born as Balaram, took birth as Yashoda and Nanda’s daughter, and made the swapping of Krishna and Yogamaya at birth possible.
Later, when Kansa tried to kill the little girl he found on Devaki’s bed, she slipped out of his hands and predicted Kansa’s death by someone growing up elsewhere. Yogamaya Devi took various forms, one of which is Katyayani.
Yogamaya as Devi Katyayani in Chir Ghat
It is believed that Sati’s hair fell on Vrindavan which makes it one of the 51 shaktipeethas. However, it was not until Swami Keshavananda came to Vrindavan about a hundred years ago that the actual temple that was built at the spot where Sati’s hair fell could be identified. According to the swami, it was the Katyayani temple at Chir Ghat near Rangji’s Bade Bagicha that stands at the holy place.
Katyayani Vrat and Sri Krishna
Legend has it that the gopis observed the Katyani Vrat and prayed to the goddess with the desire of getting Sri Krishna as their husband. A beautiful deity of the goddess stands at Chir Ghat even today.
One day, when the gopis, as part of their Vrat were taking a bath in the Yamuna, Sri Krishna mischievously stole all their clothes and took those to a nearby kadamba tree. However, it would be wrong to equate Sri Krishna’s act as a mundane affair. This holy episode of the Lord’s life signifies the importance of renouncing all materialistic attachments (symbolised by the clothes) for a devotee to completely surrender herself/ himself to the Supreme Godhead.
Sri Krishna and Yogamaya
Yogamaya was born to Yashoda on the same day Sri Krishna was born to Devaki, and then they were swapped. This makes Yogamaya Krishna’s foster sister. However, that’s not the only relationship they have.
Srila Prabhupada in the 4th chapter of the Sri Caitanya-caritamrta Adi-lila says, “…Yogamāyā is the name of the internal potency that makes the Lord forget Himself and become an object of love for His pure devotee in different transcendental mellows. This yogamāyā potency creates a spiritual sentiment in the minds of the damsels of Vraja by which they think of Lord Kṛṣṇa as their paramour.”
Vrindavan is that holy place on earth where Sri Krishna spent his youth and performed many leelas. There is magic in its air, a magic that can only be experienced by coming here and surrendering yourself to Sri Krishna. Krishna Bhumi can make it happen