A Prayer to Jagannath’s Cart Wheel

by Hari Parshad das

The following verse is composed in the style known as citra-kavya, which literally means, “picture-poem”. In this gender of Sanskrit poetry, which goes back at least 2,000 years, the verses are designed to be read in the form of a picture. When the reader lays out the syllables or sometimes words, in the shape of the given picture, hidden meanings are found. Those who have some expertise in Sanskrit may find some surprises in the below contemporary verse, not all of which are to be found in the translation. Perhaps the most famous example of this style of poetry is Srila Rupa Goswamis Citra-kavitvani from his book Stava-mala. However there are examples of this style to be found in the literary traditions of Odisha, South India, and other places on the Indian subcontinent. The following verse is in a sub-style of citra-kavya, known as a cakra- bandha, or shape of a wheel.

bhavyarh hanta ca krsna-ydna-suyutam cedam supdrsad sadd kratvd ristayutandaddti suvaram nah ca pramode ‘ksaye viprah pdrsvam uminjayanti sudiyac cakrarh sumdnanty uta tac cakrarh bhava-cakram dsu viramed dmuktaye me ‘cyuta

Synonyms: bhavyam — full of grandeur; hanta — how wonderful!; ca — and; krsna-ydna-suyutam — situated so beautifully in Krishna’s cart; cedam — and it is; supdrsad — loyal associate; sadd —eternally ; kratvd — by its activity of moving around; rista-yutam — which is auspicious; daddti — it bestows; suvaram — benedictions; nah — for our; ca — and; pramode — joy; aksaye — unlimited; viprah — devotee Brahmins; pdrsvam — around it; u-minjayanti — sing its glories; sudi — on the occasion of the ratha-ydtrd festival in the bright fortnight of the Asddha month; yat cakram — to the cart-wheel; sumdnanty uta — or pay their respects; tat cakram — may that cart-wheel; bhava-cakram — cycle of birth and death; dsu viramed — stop quickly; dmuktaye — for the purpose of bestowing liberation; me — my; acyuta — 0 Achyuta Qagannath]!;

Sanskrit Explanation: hanteti harse. cakramidam bhavyam tathd cedam cakram ‘krsna-ydna-suyutam 1 arthaj jagannatha- devasya rathe susthu sthitam. tathd cedam cakram jaganndtha- devasya u supdrsad-sada 7 arthdn nitya-pdrsad-rupena sthitam. tathedam cakram ‘kratvd” arthdd bhramana-karmand. kratvd karmand iti rg-veda-bhdsye sdyandcdryah. bhramana-karmand cedam cakram rista-yutam mahgala-yutam su-varam susthu varam nah daddti. kena hetund daddti? asmdkam “aksaye pramode” arthdd aksaya-pramoddya eva daddti. nimittdt karma- yoge saptamlti vdrttikena. ‘sudi” arthdd dsddha-sukla-pakse ratha- ydtrd-mahotsave yaccakrasya pdrsvam samipe viprah arthdd vaisnava-brdhmandh uminjayanti stuvanti. u iti pdda-purana- nipdtah. uta athavd te viprdhyaccakram sumdnanti susthu rupena namanti taccakram me bhava-cakram dsu viramed “d”samyak muktaye he acyuta! saddra-cakre ddsdbhdsena hari-pdrsada- ddsena u haripdrsadena krtamidam cakram” iti sva-hastaksararh sannivesitam. tac ca rekhd-citre drastavyah.

Translation: How wonderful! This wheel situated so beautifully in Krishna’s cart appears full of grandeur. It is his eternal, loyal associate. By its activity of moving around, it bestows auspicious benedictions for enhancing our unlimited joy. On the occasion of the ratha-ydtrd festival in the bright fortnight of the Asadha month, Brahmins and devotees around this wheel sing its glories or pay respects to it. 0 Lord Achyuta! May that cart wheel (cakra) stop the wheel of my birth and death (bhava- cakra) and bestow liberation. — HPD

Special issue of Sri Krishna Kathamrita Bindu on Jagannath and Ratha-yatra

The latest issue (354) of Sri Krishna-kathamrita Bindu e-magazine was just
released. This issue includes:

* OBSERVING RATHA-YATRA — Excerpts from the letters of His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.

* A PRAYER TO JAGANNATH’S CART WHEEL — A special poem in a esoteric
Sanskrit style composed especially for this issue of Bindu.

* MEDITATIONS ON JAGANNATH — A prayer to Lord Jagannath written by an
unknown author. Translated into English for the first time for this issue of

* AN INVITATION TO CHANT HARINAMA — Srila Thakur Bhaktivinode opens his
heart and laments that he was unable to be present at the time of Sri
Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s manifest pastimes.

It can be downloaded here:


The Sanskrit appendix can be downloaded here:


All back issues of Bindu are available for free download. Go to:


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