<<  Mathura & Vrindavan, 16-Feb-2015  >>

Where Krishna was born

Two Krishna towns, big on India, low on tourists and extra big on Hare Krishnas

Iím getting close to completing visits to all major holy towns of India. Rishikesh, Madurai, Rameshwaram, Kanyakumari, Allahabad, Varanasi, Sarnath, Bodhgaya, Nasik and now Mathura and Vrindavan. Thereís still quite a few remaining to visit (and hundreds of them if I would count the minor ones), but I have definitely seen a bunch of them. Mathura is where Krishna was born and Vrindavan is where he grew up. And Krishna rules, you know! So these two are quite big in importance.

Mathura was sweet. One of those mini-Varanasis of India. Itís not at the banks of Ganga, itís at the banks of Yamuna, Indiaís second holiest river. Ghats are there, pilgrims are there, pujas are there, boats and boatmen are there, temples are there, monkeys are threre, but tourists are NOT there. We were the only foreigners we have seen it. Itís small, itís homely,itís slowly decaying, itís cute. Big like for tranquil Mathura.

Vrindavan was more spread out, bit less cute, although more temple-loaded. And best of all, Vrindavan is the world headquarters of International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), better known as Hare Krishnas. This is where Abhay Charanaravinda Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada located his HQ, this is where he started to spread the Word of Bhagavatgita to the West. This is where he is worshipped on the same level as Krishna himself. Of course we did visit the ashram and listened to that signature chant Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare. Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. Glory to you, the greatest Cowherd, Govinda, Gopala, Krishna.

If you havenít read Bhagavatgita yet, go and fix that! Itís definitely a book worth of reading.
A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada did not get me to cut my hair and wear orange and have a non-stop sedated smile on my face, but Iím glad he did such a big job when it comes to promoting the Gita. Get your share of the Most Secret Knowledge straight from the Supreme Godhead Krishna as he disclosed it to Arjuna when the world was young.

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     MARCEL STRBAK | www.strbak.com | www.facebook.com/marcel.strbak