The Holy Places of Jaiva Dharma: Modadrumadvipa
BY: SUN STAFF
Sri Sri Sita-Rama
Bhaktivedanta Book Trust
May 27, 2014 CANADA (SUN) A serial presentation of the holy places mentioned in the Jaiva Dharma of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakur - Part 99.
Another transcendental characteristic of Modadrumadvipa that Srila Bhaktivinoda included in his 'Glossary of Places' listing is Lord Rama's divine association with the place:
"In Satya-yuga, Sri Rama along with Sita and Laksmana came here during Their exile. Sri Ramacandra built a hut here underneath a large banyan tree and they lived happily for some time. This place is therefore known as Modadrumadvipa, the place where Sri Rama lived with great delight under a banyan tree (moda means happiness or delight and druma means a tree).
Sri Rama disclosed to Sita that in Kali-yuga He would appear in Navadvipa with a splendid golden complexion as the son of Saci Mata and that she would appear as His wife, Sri Visnupriya. This place embodies the devotional practice of dasyam, becoming a servant of the Lord."
This pastime is narrated in detail by Srila Narahari Cakravarti Thakur in Sri Bhakti Ratnakara, chapter twelve, on Janhudvipa:
"From Jannagara, Ishana went to the direction of Maugachi village which was a beautiful place and this place had been formerly known as Modrumadvipa. The real history of this place was that for keeping the words of his father, the son of Kaushalya had left Ayodhya and had gone to the forest. Having left the royal dress, Prabhu gladly began to travel in the forest with Janaki and Lakshmana. The hard way became soft as Prabhu had walked on it with his soft feet.549-555
The narrative of Prabhu's sports in the forest is a beautiful one. While Prabhu had been traveling from one forest to another, the weather always remained favorable to him. The people from all the countries became mad to observe the beauty of Ramacandra. The forests and mountains which Prabhu had visited became famous as great holy places.556-558
A short distance from here to the northern direction, Ramacandra used to stay in a mountain cave. Even today peoples visit that holy place. In this way traveling many places Ramacandra came here. It was a beautiful scene that Ramacandra, the son of king Dasharatta was walking first, then Sri Janaki in the middle and Thakura Laksmana at the end. Apart from all people even the animals and birds were enchanted to see the beauty of Sri Rama, Sri Janaki and Sri Laksmana. Rama Rajivalochana who had been respected by even Vrahma and other Gods, had been walking with the gait of an elephant looking here and there. From a short distance of Navadvipa, he looked at the place with a smile on his face. Observing the smiling face of Ramacandra, Janaki asked him, "why are you smiling?" Sri Ramacandra replied, "After the Dwapara Yuga, there will occur a very funny thing in Navadvipa in the first half of the Kaliyuga. I shall perform a queer sport in Navadvipa and then I shall accept the life of an ascetic. I shall travel in this way as I am doing now." Thinking of the future I now smile.559-570
Hearing this Janaki asked him with folded hands, "what will you do my Lord in Nadia?"571
Prabhu said, "I shall be born of a brahmin family and shall reveal many activities in my childhood. My color complexion will be bright yellow which will enchant the world. I shall become a great scholar and become famous in the world. I shall marry twice after the death of my father. I shall go to Gaya for Pindadana just as I have done in my life. I shall increase the devotional spirit of my devotees in Navadvipa and preach the glory of San kirtana. I shall go for asceticism after giving consolation to my favorite associates."572-577
Listening to this, Sri Janaki told him with a smile, "As you have decided to go for asceticism then why will you marry? I think it is not fair, why are you so cruel when you are known for your kindness."578-579
Hearing this Rama was ashamed and told Sri Janaki, "it is beyond your realisation what I am going to do in Navadvipa." While saying so Sri Rama along with Sri Janaki and Lakshmana came to this place.580-581
Here there had been a great banyan tree. They came to stand under its shade. Again Sri Janaki asked, "What type of san kirtana will you start in Nadia?'582-583
Janaki Vallava Rama Rajivalochana told his loving wife, "shut your eyes."584
Then Janaki shut her eyes and observed the wonderful sport in Navadvipa. The numerous devotees of Prabhu had been engaged in San kirtana by singing and dancing with numerous musical instruments. Among the devotees stood Sri Gaura Sundara looking very young and as an ocean of beauty. Sita became overwhelmed to see the world conquering beauty of Sri Gaurahari. She opened her eyes and looked at her loving husband. Lovingly Sri Ramacandra pacified her.585-589
On the other hand, Sri Sumitranandana Lakshmana knew everything and so he became very much emotional to remember the memory of the sport. As all of them became very jovial here, the place became famous as Modadrumadvipa.590-591 He who got the view of this Madadrumdavipa, got the favour of Sri Rama, Janaki and Lakshmana.592"
Here is another narrative on Lord Rama's pastime, from Audarya Dhama: The Most Munificent Abode by H.G. Padmalochan dasa, in the section entitled Mangachi:
"This place is non-different from Ayodhya, and also Bhandiravan in Vrindaban. In a previous kalpa, when Lord Ramachandra, along with His wife, Sita, and brother, Laksman, had been banished to the forest, They came to this place and built a hut under a huge Banyan tree. At the present time this banyan tree is invisible.
One day when Lord Ramachandra was living here, he began laughing to Himself. Seeing Lord Ramachandra laughing, Sita asked Him why. He replied, "Listen Sita, this is a secret story.
In Kali-yuga I will take birth here in Navadvipa as the son of Jagannath Mishra. I will give to all those fortunate souls who see my Childhood pastimes the supreme gift of prema. For the pleasure of My dear devotees, I will perform educational pastimes and engage in Sankirtan of the holy name.
After this, I shall accept sannyasa and reside in Jagannath Puri. My mother will weep with My wife in her arms. She who is now mother Kausalya will become Mother Saci, and you, Sita, will serve Me as Vishnupriya, and in separation, you will worship My Deity and thus spread My glories. In separation from you, I shall worship a golden Deity of you. In Ayodhya this subject is a great secret, Sita; do not reveal it to the people now. Navadvipa is My very dear abode, and even Ayodhya is not equal to this place."
Lord Ramachandra's friend Guhaka took birth here in a brahmana family. His name was Sunanda Vipra Bhattacarya. He was present in the house of Jagannath Mishra when Lord Caitanya was born."
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