Sri Krishna-Balaram Mandir is a Gaudiya Vaishnava temple in the holy city of Vrindavan. It is one of the main ISKCON temples in the world. Spiritual seekers and devotees of Krishna from all over the world are seen here year-round, adding new color and life to this ancient holy city.
About the temple
The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) was founded by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami (Shrila Prabhupada) in the West in 1966. ISKCON belongs to Gaudiya (refers to Bengal) Vaishnavism, a devotional tradition based on the teachings of Bhagavad-gita and Srimad-Bhagavatam. The precepts and practices of ISKCON were taught and codified by the 15th century saint and religious reformer Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu (1486-1532), his brother Nityananda Prabhu and six of his principle associates, the Goswamis of Vrindavana (Sanatana, Rupa, Jiva, Gopal Bhatta, Raghunatha Dasa and Raghunatha Bhatta. The Bhagavad-gita was first put into writing about 5000 years ago. The Gita is the principal scripture of The Hare Krishna Movement™ Organization. Its origins are more than 5000-years-old. Shri Chaitanya, whom devotees recognize as a direct incarnation of Krishna, gave a powerful impetus for a massive bhakti (devotional) movement throughout India. Under his direction hundreds of volumes on the philosophy of Krishna consciousness were compiled. Many devotees followed in the preceptorial line of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu including, in the 19th century an outstanding Vaishnava theologian, Bhaktivinoda Thakura (1838-1914) who brought Krishna consciousness to a modern audience. Bhaktivinoda’s son, Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Goswami (1874- 1937), became the guru of Shrila Prabhupada (1896-1977) and instructed him to spread Krishna consciousness in the West. ISKCON’s history includes a disciplic succession (sampradaya or guru parampara). It draws its legitimacy from its place in a succession of spiritual teachers and disciples (parampara). There are four major disciple successions, and ISKCON belongs to the Brahma-Gaudiya-Madhva (referring to Madhvacharya [A.D. 1239-1319]) sampradaya, founded by Lord Krishna Himself. The other three are called the Shri (referring to the goddess Lakshmi) Sampradaya, the Rudra (referring to the god Shiva) Sampradaya and the Kumara (referring to the four Kumaras [celibate sages] Sampradaya. There are many branches to the Brahma Sampradaya. ISKCON belongs to the Brahma-Gaudiya-Madhva lineage founded by Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu in the 16th century. Sri Krishna-Balaram Mandir was built in 1975 on the orders of Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, the founder-acharya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON). Even today, it is regarded as one of the most popular temples in Vrindavan. In his book, Hinduism: A Short History, Klaus Klostermaier described it as, "a big and beautiful temple" and "one of the main sights of Vrindavan"
About the Deity
The deities of the temple are Krishna and Balarama, at the central altar. On the right altar are Radha Krishna with Gopi, Lalita and Vishakha. On the left altar is a Murti of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu with Nityananda, and of Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada and his spiritual teacher Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura. Krishna-Balaram Mandir enforces one of the highest standards of cleanliness and of deity worship in all of Vrindavan. Near the temple, at the entrance to the complex is located samadhi shrine (mausoleum) of Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, built of pure white marble.
Few festivals Celebrated here are Ram Navmi Chandan Yatra Jhulan Yatra Balaram purni ma Sri krishna Janmastami Srila Prabhupada’s Vyasa Puja Radhastami Kartik & Dipavali Nityananda Trayodasi Vasanta Panchami Gaura Purnima
Mangala-Arati 4.30 Darshan 7.15 - 11.00 Raj bhoga - Arati - 12-12.30 Evening Arati 16.00-20.30 in winter, summer - 16.30 - 20.45
ISKCON Vrindavan, Krishna Balaram Temple Bhaktivedanta Swami Marg Raman Reti, Vrindavan. Uttar Pradesh-281121 India
Devotees visit this temple to seek fulfillment of the following:-
- Freedom from diseases
- Relief from adverse effects from bad planetary aspects
- Relief from bondage
Achutham Keyshavam Rama Narayanam Krishna Damodaram Vasudevam Harim Shridharam Madhavam Gopika Vallabham Janaki Nayakam Ramachandram Bhajey
Meaning -Oh Lord who cannot be perished, who also has names like Keshava, Rama, Damodara, Narayana, Sridhara, Madhava, Krishna, Ramachandra the beloved of Janaki, let me say your name regularly.
Vasudeva Sutham Devam Kamsa Chanoora Mardhanam Devaki Paramanandham Krishnam Vande Jagathgurum
Meaning -I bow to you O Krishna, the ultimate guru, Devaki and Vasudeva's son, and the destroyer of Kamsa and Chanur.
Adharam Madhuram Vadanam Madhuram Nayanam Madhuram Hasitam Madhuram Hridayam Madhuram Gamanam Madhuram Mathuraa Dhipate Rakhilam Madhuram
Meaning -Meaning - Sweet are Your lips, sweet is Your face, sweet are Your eyes, sweet is Your smile, sweet is Your heart, sweet is Your gait, O Lord of Mathura, everything about You is sweet.
Alokya Mathur Mukha Madarena Sthanyam Pibantham Saraseeruhaksham Sachinmayam Devam Anantha Roopam Balam Mukundam Manasa Smarami
Meaning -I think of this Balamukundan as the one who looks lovingly at his mother's face while taking milk from her, who has eyes similar to the red lotus, who is the embodiment of truth and intelligence and other forms.
The day begins at 4 o'clock in the morning with a ceremony Mangala-arati. Inside the temple continually goes on a 24-hour kirtan of the Hare Krishna mantra.