The word Simantadvipa is another island of the nine islands of Sri Navadvipa dham. It is just adjacent to Antardvipa. This island represents the Sravanam (or hearing the Lord’s pastimes) stage of devotional service. The word Simantadvipa is made up of two words – Simanta (which means parting of the hair on our head) and Dvipa (which means island). This place was also known as Simuliya during Lord Caitanya’s pastime.
There’s a story behind why this place is called Simantadvipa. Lord Siva was once dancing in great joy chanting the name of Gauranga. Seeing this, mother Parvati asked him to explain the reason for it & who Gauranga was. Lord Siva explained that Lord Gauranga was none other than Lord Krishna who would be appearing in Kali yuga and very mercifully spread the congregational chanting of holy names to all the fallen souls without any consideration. He further explained that by so spreading the chanting of holy names, Lord Gauranga would drown everyone in pure love for God.
Hearing this wonderful narration, mother Parvati came to this place & started performing penances to please Lord Gauranga. The Lord personally appeared before her in his golden form & asked the reason for her penances. Parvati explained that her presence was mutually exclusive with the Lord’s since she existed only where the Lord is absent in this creation. This way she was deprived of the Lord’s personal association in His pastimes. Then Lord Gauranga consoled her saying that she is very much essential in His pastimes in the material creation and that she guards Sri Navadvipa dham as Praudha Maya. During the course of her discussion with Lord Gauranga, Parvati took the dust of the Lord’s lotus feet & applied it on the parting of her hair on head (referred to as Simanta). Hence this island is called Simantadvipa. There’s a temple of Parvati here called Simanti devi.
Lord Gauranga enacted several pastimes on Simantadvipa like stealing the bananas of His dear devotee Sridhara Kolaveca, punishing Chand Kazi who had ordered that kirtans be stopped.
There are several places of visit in this place like:
- Samadhi of Chand Kazi
- Lord Jagannath’s temple – It is said that Lord Jagannath has enacted several pastimes here with many of His devotees. Many devotees even in the recent past have reported of such loving exchanges with the Lord.
- Simanti devi temple
- Visrama Sthana (Kolaveca Sridhara’s place)