Radha-Krishna Annakuta Festival
By Mahanidhi Swami
On the day after Dipavali, Nanda Baba arranges for Jatipura brahmanas to do a pancha-amrta abhisheka of Giriraja Govardhana. Cooks prepare many kinds of sweets, rice, rotis and sabjis. Then then they arrange everything on leaf places to offer to Govardhana Hill. In one form Krishna sits next to Nanda Baba. And in another, huge form, Krishna sits atop Giriraja gobbling up all the offered foodstuffs at once with one very long arm! Observing this, small Gopala says, “Baba! Just see how Giriraja is eating everything!” Nanda and the cowherders happily gaze upon Giriraja in great amazement as Giriraja Baba concludes His bhoga and munches on some paan.
Then the Vrajavasis offer Giriraja Dharan lots of flower garlands and sandalwood paste. Local brahmanas offer Giriraja a huge ghee lamp held on a long pole. At the end, the gopas offer dandavats to Giriraja and ask Him, “O Giriraja Dharani! What is the best way to please You?”
Giriraja resoundingly replies, “I am most pleased by anyone who performs My parikrama!” So that’s exactly what Nanda Baba and all the gopas do. Leading the parikrama are the cows, then the brahmanas, the older gopas and gopis, the young gopis, Sri Krishna, His chums and lastly Nanda Maharaja and Yashoda Maiya. After Govardhana parikrama, Nanda Baba feed all the Vrajavasis brahmanas and give lavish charity of cows, gold, silver and cloth.
Nanda and his family then take prasadam and rest afterwards. The Playful Pair, Priya-Priyatama, slipped away for some confidential exchanges in a secluded Giriraja nikunja. Later, the Divine Couple return to the camp and meet again at midday at Radha Kunda for Their usual fun loving pastimes. (Gaur Govinda Gutika, adapted)
Radha-Govinda’s Giriraja Annakuta Utsava ki jai!
Giriraja Dharan ki jai!
Jai Jai Sri Radhe!
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