Biographies of various saints.
Sri Paramesvara Das Thakura - disappearance day
Raga - Sun, 26 May 2002 17:14:20 +0530
Today (on Purnima) we are celebrating numerous festivals. One of them is the disappearance day of Sri Paramesvara Das Thakura (also known as Paramesvari), a dear servant of Srimati Jahnava Devi.
The following biographical data is extracted from the Gaudiya Vaishnava Abhidhana.
Paramesvari Das Thakura was one of the twelve Gopalas. A Vaisnava poet and a brahmana by caste, Paramesvara belonged to the lineage of Nityananda Prabhu. His Sripata was at Ketugrama (or Kaugrama), though he later settled at Khardaha. According to GGD. 132, he was Arjuna in his past incarnation. (CC. 1.11.29)
Bhaktiratnakara (13.244-246) states that on his way from Vrndavana Paramesvara stayed briefly at Garalgacha village. At the command of Jahnava devi, Paramesvara installed the Deity of Radha Gopinatha at Tada Atpur.
Paramesvara accompanied Jahnava devi to Vrndavana. He is said to have had supernatural powers. When Narottama Thakura came to Khardaha, Paramesvara thoroughly informed him about the route to Puri. (Bhaktiratnakara 8.219)
He died on a full-moon day in the month of Vaisaka (April-May). The cooking spud which Paramesvara used during sankirtana is placed by the side of his samadhi on the occasion of his death anniversary.
Raga - Sun, 26 May 2002 17:18:50 +0530
Some additional bits of information on Paramesvara Das Thakura.
Sri Paramesvara dasa Thakura appeared in a family of physicians. His Sripat is at Atapur, which was on the Canpandanga branch of the Howrah-Amrah rail line. Rail service on this line has been discontinued. Direct bus service is available from Howrah station; it is about a 2 hour journey from there.
Atapur was previously known as Visakhala. Sri Sri Radha-Govinda are still residing at his Sripat. In front of the temple are two Bakul trees and in between them is Paramesvara Thakura's Samadhi mandira.
Sri Krsna das Kaviraj Gosvami has written: "Paramesvara das, said to be the fifth gopala of Krsna-lila, completely surrendered to the lotus feet of Nityananda. Anyone who remembers his name, Paramesvara dasa, will get love of Krsna very easily." [C.C. Adi11.29]
Sri Kavi Karnapura Gosvami has written: namnarjunah sakha prag yodasah paramesvarah, "Paramesvara dasa Thakura was previously the cowherd friend of Sri Krsna named Arjuna."
Sri Vrindavana dasa Thakura has written:
nityananda jivan paramesvar das
jahar vigrahe nityananda vilasa
krsna das paramesvar das dvi jon
gopabhave hoi hoi kore sarvakkon [C.B.]
"Paramesvara is the life of Lord Nityananda and his form (body) is the place of his pastimes. Krsna dasa and Paramesvara, being in the mood of cowherd boys, are always raising a commotion."
When Jahnava Mata attended the festival at Kheturi, Paramesvara accompanied her and went to Vrindavana with her as well. He installed Sri Sri Radha-Gopinatha at Atapur in accordance with the desire of Sri Jahnava-devi, who was personally present during the installation celebration.
paramesvari dasa thakura bandibo sabdhane
srigale loyar nam sankirtan sthane
One day, near Sri Rampur, at Akna Mahesh (the Sripat of Kamalakara Pippalai), there was a festival of nama-sankirtan going on within the temple of Lord Jagannatha there. Paramesvara was present and was dancing in a completely God-intoxicated state. At that time some miscreants passed by there, and seeing a dead fox lying on the road, they picked it up and threw it into the midst of the sankirtan party.
The highly exalted Vaisnavas present didn't feel any anger towards those ignorant fools, but Paramesvara felt sad to see the unfortunate dead fox, and so by his merciful glance he brought it back to life. Then that fox trotted out of the nat-mandir (kirtan hall) to the utter bewilderment of those miscreants, who then immediately fled from the spot.
Paramesvara dasa Thakura accompanied the Deity of Radharani that Sri Jahnava-devi sent to Vrindavana for Sri Govinda. He was the very dear servant of Sri Jahnava Mata.
His disappearance is on the full moon day of the month of Vaisakha. On that day the khunti* that he used in sankirtan is placed next to his samadhi mandir.
*khunti - this is a symbol carried on a staff preceding the kirtana party. Supposedly its history dates from the time when the Kazi gave his promise that no one would ever disturb the sankirtan parties again. This was an emblem of the Kazi, and its presence infront of the sankirtan party indicated that the party was sanctioned by the Kazi and thus no one should disturb them. Today it is decorated with eyes, tilak, flower garlands and cloths, and worshipped as a manifestation of Mahaprabhu Himself.