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SRILA JIVA GOSWAMI´S TIROBHAV MAHOTSAV IN VRINDAVAN
by our WVA correspondent in Vrindavan
Despite the extremely cold days in Vrindavan, the disappearance day of Srila Jiva Goswami was celebrated with great happiness. A big amount of sadhus from all sampradayas came to participate infront of the harinam-party went twelve devotees carrying Hanuman victory flags from the Ramanuja-sampradaya, followed by a beautiful cart with the deities of Sri Sri Gaur-Nitai. These peculiar deities of Gaur-Nitai have traveled all around the world on the pada-yatra program with their faithful servant, Saunaka das. And they were also present in the previous Vishva Vaishnava Raj Sabha Nagar Sankirtan.
Srila Jiva Goswami is the original founder of the Vishva Vaishnava Raj Sabha and in his temple the famous A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada prepared the Srimad Bhagavatam, which reached within a very short time the entire world, being translated into almost all languages of the world. The Goswamis of the Radha-Damodar temple had invited everybody to participate in the Nagar-Sankirtan and also to take the feast of Srila Jiva Goswami. The temple was beautifully decorated and Srila Jiva Goswami was being pulled on a separate cart, also beautifully decorated.
Different members of the World Vaishnava Association, with their banner, joined the three kirtan groups. Following strict tradition, all the sadhus and kirtaniyas went barefooted through the entire city. The kirtan lasted for 3,5 hours and all the members were meaming(shining) in happiness. Culminating in the aratik ceremony of Radha-Damodar and a nice feast served by seniour devotees. By the grace of Srila Jiva Goswami Prabhupada, so many devotees from so many different missions were brought togethere, even though in the middle of the winter it was very noticalbe that many Vaishnavas hailing from western countries were also present in the harinam and in the celebration.
The concept of the Vishva Vaishnava Raj Sabha was clearly conceived by the founder of the Radha-Damodar temple. His position in Vrindavan was very prominent, as can be clearly understood when reading his will. In Vrindavan and the surrounding area, practically all the land belonged to Radha-Govindaji, Radha-Gopinathaji and Radha-Madan Mohanji, and Srila Jiva Goswami became trust-holder of most of these lands. Even today the majority of the shops in Vrindavan pay rent to the respective deities and their sevaite families.

Srila Jiva Goswami, besides being a great scholar, was also very practical. He was told by his spiritual mentors that for the future the many branches of the tree of Lord Chaitanya will need a common ground so that they can expand nicely with proper respect of each other. Today we can again feel that great need intensively. When offering obeisances to such a great personality, we are simultanuously offering obeisances to all the great teachers of bhakti, they are all sustained by the same divine energy. If you reject one of them, you question the validity of all of them. How can you combine people from all over the world, different nations and races, different economical groups, different languages and different priorities and customs, all to chant and dance together under one banner? How will that be possible? All this was explained by Srila Jiva Goswami, and we can only pray that the spirit of this Nagar Sankirtan will further grow into all directions, so that devotees can chant together and give the impression to the world that the one truth, the loving teachings of the Supreme Lord and His special merciful incarnation, Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, offer true solace for a world suffering the ignorance of egotism, prejudice and sectarianism.
Vishva Vaishnava Raj Sabha
The Journal of the WVA
(Kartik Issue 2005)

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