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Thursday 19 October 2017
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Thakura Saranga Dasa

Thakura Saranga Dasa

Thakura Saranga Dasa

Among Lord Chaitanya’s exalted followers was a great Vaishnava named Thakura Saranga Dasa. He used to live in Navadvipa Dhama in the village Mamagacchi of Modadrumadvipa. He was an ardent servant of the Deities of Sri Sri Radha-Gopinatha.

Sri Sri Radha-Gopinatha deities

Sri Sri Radha-Gopinatha (small Deities on the right) Worshiped By Sri Saranga Thakura, Sri Sri Radha Madana-Gopala (large Deities in center) Deities served by Sri Vasudeva Datta and Sri Sri Gaura-Gadadhara (Deities on the Left), Deities worshipped by Sri Puri Gosvami

He used to offer all kinds of service to the Deities throughout the day and in the evening join Lord Chaitanya’s Harinama Sankirtana across the Ganga at Mayapura. There is a Bakula tree in the courtyard of the temple in which Thakura Saranga Dasa served his Deities. According to local lore, the tree at that time seemed to be dying having dried up significantly. When Lord Chaitanya pointed this to Saranga Thakura, he simply remarked, “My Lord, there is no hope for this tree but for your mercy.” Lord Chaitanya immediately hugged the tree and revived it to full health. The tree to this day stands strong albeit with a hollow main trunk.

saranga-thakuras-siddhabakulatree

Bakula Tree in the courtyard of Radha Gopinath Temple in Mamagacchi, Modadrumadvipa

Srila Prabhupada glorifies Thakura Saranga Thakura in his purport of the Caitanya Caritamrita Adi Lila Chapter 10 verse 113.

Another name of Ṭhākura Śāraṅga dāsa was Śārṅga Ṭhākura. Sometimes he was also called Śārṅgapāṇi or Śārṅgadhara. He was a resident of Navadvīpa in the neighborhood known as Modadruma-dvīpa, and he used to worship the Supreme Lord in a secluded place on the bank of the Ganges. He did not accept disciples, but he was repeatedly inspired from within by the Supreme Personality of Godhead to do so.

Thus one morning he decided, “Whomever I see I shall make my disciple.” When he went to the bank of the Ganges to take his bath, by chance he saw a dead body floating in the water, and he touched it with his feet. This immediately brought the body to life, and Ṭhākura Sāraṅga dāsa accepted him as his disciple. This disciple later became famous as Ṭhākura Murāri, and his name is always associated with that of Śrī Sāraṅga. His disciplic succession still inhabits the village of Śar. There is a temple at Māmagācchi that is said to have been started by Śārṅga Ṭhākura. Not long ago, a new temple building was erected in front of a bakula tree there, and it is now being managed by the members of the Gauḍīya Maṭha.

In the Gaura-gaṇoddeśa-dīpikā (172) it is stated that Śāraṅga Ṭhākura was formerly a gopī named Nāndīmukhī. Some devotees say that he was formerly Prahlāda Mahārāja, but Śrī Kavi-karṇapūra says that his father, Śivānanda Sena, does not accept this proposition.

Extract from Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Adi Lila 10.113 by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada




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