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Srila Bhakti Dayita Madhava Goswami Maharaj

"All service to your Gurudeva is hundred percent yours. You are to be grateful to whosoever is helping you in that," this was Srila Prabhupad Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur's instruction to one of his most favourite disciples, His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad Ashtottrashat Sri Srimat Bhakti Dayita Madhav Goswami Maharaj (Srila Gurudeva), who appeared in this world on November 18, 1904 A.D. (on Utthan-Ekadashi tithi) at Kanchanpara dham (District Faridpur, now in Bangladesh).

As the pastime of the Awakening of the All-Merciful, All-Good, All-Blissful Supreme Lord, Sri Hari, on Utthan Ekadasi Tithi (Utthan awakening) is for the eternal good of all the living beings of the world, the pastime of the Advent-Awakening of His Personal Associate, His Absolute Counterpart Gurudev (Madhav Goswami Maharaj), on Utthan Ekadasi Tithi is also for the eternal benefit of all. Param Pujyapad Most Revered Srimad Bhakti Pramode Puri Goswami Maharaj used to comment, "It is profoundly significant that the Advent Day of Srimad Bhakti Dayita Madhav Goswami Maharaj falls on the Disappearance day of Srimad Gaur Kishore Das Babaji Maharaj on Utthan Ekadasi Tithi and His Disappearance Day falls on the Disappearance day of Vaishnav-Sarvabhauma Srimad Jagannath Das Babaji Maharaj on Sukla Pratipad Tithi (the first lunar day of pight fortnight)."
  The Holy Birthplace of Srimad Madhav Goswami Maharaj is situated at the bank of the Padma River, which is near Premtoli where Srila Narottama Thakur experienced ecstatic feelings of Divine Love while bathing as per the direction given by Srimad Nityananda Prabhu in a dream. Sri Gauranga Mahaprabhu kept Divine Love in the custody of Padmavati Devi (the Presiding Deity of the Padma River) to offer it to Narottama Thakur when he would come there to take bath.

Revered Bhakti Dayita Madhav Maharaj was born of a high caste brahmin family. His Grandfather, Sri Chandi Prasad Deva Sarma Bandyopadhyaya, was a well-reputed prominent person of Vikrampur, Dacca (Bangladesh). His father's name was Sri Nishikanta Deva Sarma Bandyopadhyaya; His mother's name was Srimati Saibalini Devi. His mother was of a highly dignified, sober temperament, a wise woman endowed with many good qualities, and as such, an object of reverence to all. His father passed away in His childhood. His parents named Him Sri Heramba Bandyopadhyaya. His pet name was Ganesh.

Extraordinary saintly qualities were manifested in Him from boyhood. He was adored by all and was a universally accepted leader in every sphere. He strictly observed ethical rules and celibacy (pahmacharya) and taught others to observe celibacy and moral rules. His guardians and teachers were astonished to hear profound words of wisdom from the boy. At the age of eleven years, He memorized the complete Gita, merely by hearing it from his mother. He practiced severe penance by taking only boiled food once in a day in his home at Calcutta. At that time while He was invoking Sri Krishna for His Grace and was weeping severely in the grief of separation from Krishna, He was blessed by seeing Sri Narada Goswami in a dream and received Mantra from Him. However, He could not remember the Mantra completely after waking from the dream. He became disappointed, and out of persistent solicitousness, left the house and went to the Himalayan Mountains beyond Haridwar where He stayed at a stretch without food for three days, continuously wailing and praying for the Grace of Sri Krishna. At last, He heard a prophetic, divine message directing Him, "Go back to your place. Don't be disheartened. Your Gurudev has appeared there-- take absolute shelter of His Lotus Feet." He then came down from the mountains, remained for sometime at Haridwar and later returned to Calcutta.
 He went with friends to Sri Mayapur, the Holy Birth-Place of Lord Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, and met His Gurudeva, His Divine Grace Srimad Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Goswami Prabhupada at Sri Chaitanya Math in the year 1925 AD. He was attracted to Him upon seeing His Divine Spiritual Personality. Taking absolute shelter at His Lotus Feet, He took initiation from Him at Sri Gaudiya Math, at 1, Ultadanga Junction Road, Calcutta on November 1, 1927 AD. He joined the Sri Gaudiya Math Institution immediately after taking initiation and also made His devout vow of celibacy, even though young of age. Within a very short time, He was regarded as one of the favorite disciples among the entourage of Srimad Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Goswami Prabhupada. This was due to His devout devotion to Guru, His competence in rendering all kinds of service, and His untiring enthusiasm and diligence to serve Vishnu and the Vaishnavas. Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Goswami Prabhupada, seeing His undaunted spirit to contribute to the objective of the Institution by way of practicing and propagating the Gospel of Divine Love of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, used to commend Him by saying, "His energy is volcanic energy". Srimad Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Goswami Prabhupada never hesitated to send Him to perform any important task or to send Him out as an advance party because He was confident and sure that the task at hand would be successfully completed in due course. He actively helped in organising preaching festivals as well as Parikramas of Vraja and Navadwip Dham, establishing preaching centres and the Maths, spreading the message of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu in the cities and villages. He also established shrines of Mahaprabhu's Lotus feet (Pada-pithas) in many of the places the Lord had visited, restored other holy sites, published transcendental books and magazines in order to spread the message of pure devotion. Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Goswami Prabhupada had so much confidence in Srimad Hayagriva Das Brahmachari (Madhav Goswami Maharaj), that He first selected Him to be sent to foreign countries for preaching, for which purpose His Passport and all necessities were ready. But Rajarshi Sri Saradindu Narayan Ray, one important household devotee, objected to this proposal saying that Sri Hayagriva Das pahmachari was young and very beautiful, "There may be difficulty in sending such a beautiful, young pahmachari to foreign countries. Instead an old Sannyasi should be sent there." At his suggestion, Param Pujyapad Srimad Bhakti Pradeep Tirtha Maharaj was sent instead. Srimad Hayagriva Das Brahmachari resembled His Divine Grace Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Goswami Prabhupada in appearance so much, that many outside people wrongly thought Him to be the son of Srimad Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Goswami.

Srimad Madhav Maharaj took Tridanda Sannyas at the age of forty from his God-brother, His Divine Grace Srimad Bhakti Gourav Vaikhanas Maharaj (a Sannyas disciple of Srila Prabhupada Bhakti Siddhanta), at Sri Tota-Gopinath Temple, Purushottam Dham on Gaura-purnima in the year 1944. He became renowned in the Gaudiya Math as His Divine Grace Parivrajaka Acharya Tridandi Swami Srimad Bhakti Dayita Madhav Goswami Maharaj. As per the direct instruction of His Divine Grace Srimad Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Goswami Prabhupada, His Divine Grace Madhav Goswami Maharaj started His preaching in Assam and established three Maths at: [1] Tezpur, [2] Guwahati and [3] Goalpara. He also managed the seva-puja of Sorbhog Sri Gaudiya Math (in Assam), founded by Srimad Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Goswami Thakur.

'Hyutkale Purushottamat' - Sri Krishna Bhakti will spread from Sri Purushottam Dham in Orissa - predicted Sri Vyasdev in Padma-Purana. This prophecy was fulfilled after the appearance of Srila Prabhupada in the house of Srila Thakur Bhaktivinode in Puri. Srila Gurudeva recovered this most munificent place of the appearance of Srila Prabhupad Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur after great effort for which he is justly renowned.

'A gigantic spiritual personality', Srila Gurudeva pierced the fortress of impersonalist philosophy in Punjab, where he was first to introduce the Divine Love of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Tenth in the preceptorial line from Lord Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Srila Gurudeva founded Sree Chaitanya Gaudiya Math organisation Institution in 1953 and established many large preaching centers. He wandered from village to village, travelling by foot and sometimes by oxcart, simply to bring the greatest good to every living being to turn them toward Krishna.

He also took over the service of the 500 years old temples of Lord Jagannath at Jasra, Chakdah and at Agartala, Tripura. He established Sri Chaitanya Vani Press in Calcutta. He preached extensively in different parts of India spreading the divine message of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu irrespective of caste, colour or creed.

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Jai Gurudeva