By Antony Brennan
Srimati Radharani is the eternal consort of Lord Krishna. Five thousand years ago, when Lord Krishna came to this planet to perform His pastimes, Srimati Radharani also appeared.
Many devotees and well-wishers came to Sri Sri Radha Gopinatha Mandir in Sydney Australia to celebrate the appearance day of Srimati Radharani. You can see in the picture above everyone joins in the celebrating, offering their hearts in glorification of the mother of the universe, the spiritual mother of all souls.
Many people bring gifts to offer to Radharani on this special day. Our temple President takes the time to tell us about many of the gifts, opening some of them before the assembled devotees so we can all share in the pleasure. Many people offer flowers and money and others bring more personal items like clothing and jewellry.
We all joined in singing and dancing during the arati and prasadam is offered to everyone by distributing the items offered in worship. Here the flaming arati lamp is passed around so everyone can participate more intimately in this special occasion.
Carmella Baynie rocked the whole temple. Everyone really enjoys her soulful and enthusiastic command of the kirtan. We always look foward to hearing her singing the holy names. Radhe Radhe!
What an incredible spectacle confronted us when the curtains opened and we saw right into the whorl of the lotus of Goloka Vrinadavan. Devotees at Sri Sri Radha Gopinatha Mandir did a fantastic job of dressing the deities and decorating the altar. All glories to Adi devi dasi Radha Shalini Devi Dasi and Prema Shakti Devi Dasi and all those who offered their service to make this incredible sight a reality. They say that to see something like this is the perfection of the eyes.
And here they are…. Sri Sri Radha Gopinatha. The complete conception of God includes God and His energies, which exist simultaneously with Him and are in a sense identical to Him. The sum of Krishna’s energies is Radha, His eternal consort. Like the sun and sunshine, Krishna and Radha are one.
Radha embodies the totality of love for Krishna. Thus She is known as the personification of Bhakti, or loving devotion to God.
Loving God is our natural state, which is now dormant. By Her pure example, Radha is the beacon calling everyone to re-awaken full love for Krishna. She also dispenses mercy to help us achieve that goal.
In Goloka Vrindavan every word is a song and every step is a dance. To further enliven our mood we presented with a traditional dance.
The crowd continued to grow until non-one else could fit into the temple room. Srimati Radharani is the presiding Deity of devotional service. Because She is very merciful, all these devotees have come especially take advantage of Her merciful nature to attain the service of Krishna.
As Carmella’s voice perfected our ears with the sound vibration of the glorious holy names all hearts were thrilled to see the abhisheka beginning and many delicious substances and flowers were offered to the deities of Radha and Krishna.
Here you can see the kids, and others, coming forward to collect the fruits and flowers and garlands offered to the deities during the abhisheka.
At the end the pujaris clean off the deities and wrap them in new, dry clothes and we all get to have a last, long, look before the curtains close. Then we all share in the prasdam together. Many devotees offered their service to serve out the mercy of Sri Sri Radha Gopinatha to everyone else.
Later in the evening around there was a very special occaison where in taking darsan we all got to see the lotus feet of Srimati Radharani. Everyone crowded the altar and it was very difficult to get a photo to show you. However I was able to get these ones for you. Feast your eyes.
You will notice how the hardworking devotees have helped Sri Sri Radha Gopinatha into new clothing to dazzle our eyes. The kirtan thundered on into the night, smiles were on the faces of all as we set of bound for our homes.
See you all at the next festival. Radhe Radhe.