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Gokul: The land of The embodiment of love
By Religious Destinations of Vaishanavs
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Added on: 20 April 2005
Author: Religious Destinations of Vaishanavs
Posted by: Jigna
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Revered as the most endearing of the Hindu gods, Shri Krishna is fondly remembered for his charm, his mischievous pranks and his extraordinary exploits. As the charioteer and preceptor to Arjun in the famous battle of Kurukshetra, he revealed to the world the supreme truths of life. Shri Krishna, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, was born in the Dwapara Yuga as the eighth son of the Yadava prince Vasudev and his wife Devaki. To save him from his maternal uncle Kansa wrath, the infant Krishna was spirited away soon after birth to Gokul, the village of the gopas (cowherds) in Braj. It was here that he grew to manhood, in the tender care of his foster parents Nand and Yashoda in the happy company of the cowherds.

Gokul is a small but pleasant getaway from Agra. It was a place where Lord Krishna was secretly raised. It is near Mathura. There are many religious places in Gokul.

The most attractive and notable structure here is Chaurasi Khamba (84) pillars, also known as Nand Maharaja's house. All the religious places here are related to some legends.

The Mud Temple- It is a place on the side of the hill mark where Lord Krishna is supposed to have killed the demons.

Utkhal- It is a place where Yashodaji believed to have tied Lord Krishna to a grinding mortar as a punishment for breaking a pitcher and stealing butter.

Brahmand Ghat- A place where she is supposed to have witnessed the entire universe in Krishna's mouth while chastising him for having eaten mud.

Most celebrated of Shri Krishna's abodes, Gokul lies to the west of Sadabad, 1.6 km from Mahavan and 15 km south-east of Mathura, on the Mathura -etah metalled road. It was here that Lord Krishna was brought up in secrecy by Yashoda, in the pastoral beauty of this village on the banks of the Yamuna.

Gokul attained importance during the time of vallabhacharya (1479-1531) when it became a major cente of the Bhakti cult. The three oldest temples in the place are those dedicated to Gokulnath, Madan Mohan and Vithalnath, said to have been built around 1511.

The other temples include those of Dwarika Nath and Balkrishna and the shrines which were built in the honour of Lord Mahadeo in 1602 by Raja Vijai Singh of Jodhpur.

The celebration of Janmashtami in August is unparalleled for its gaiety and melas are a constant attraction here. Other such festivities celebrated with traditional fervour include the Janmotsav in Bhadaon, the Annakut Festival and the Trinavat Mela held on the fourth day of the half of Kartik.

Important sites worth visiting in Gokul include the Gokulnath Temple, Raja Thakur Temple, Gopal Lalji Temple and the Morwala Temple.


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