Kashishwar Pandit’s Gaur Govinda arrives at Govindaji’s temple
Kashishwar Pandit was a disciple and personal servant of Srila Ishwar Puri, the spiritual master of Lord Chaitanya. So next Radhanath Swami explains how the deity of Sri Gaur Govinda came to this temple:
“As Ishwar Puri was leaving the world, he ordered Govinda and Kashishwar to render personal service to Sri Gauranga Mahaprabhu. After Lord Chaitanya returned from south Indian tour, the two of them arrived. They fell at the lotus feet of the Lord and informed Him that they were meant to be His servants. But Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu felt very ashamed, because they were His Godbrothers and personal servants of His own spiritual master. How could he receive service from them? Therefore, He enquired from Sri Sarvabhauma Bhattacharya, who replied, “The order of the spiritual master is all-powerful and it must be carried out, above and beyond other forms of social etiquettes. They have been ordered by their guru Maharaj to serve You.” So Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu accepted them as His personal servants. Kashishwar Pandit was very strong in his physical condition and when Lord Chaitanya would dance ecstatically, he would personally hold the crowds back to facilitate the Lord to beautifully dance in ecstatic love. As the Lord would walk through the crowds, he would also arrange a pathway by which the Lord would not be disturbed. And by the arrangement of Lord Chaitanya, he was also in charge of the distribution of prasad.
One day in Gambhira Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu was talking to His devotees. He said, “I have not heard from Rupa or Sanatan for a long time. I wonder why.” And right when He said that, a messenger came in, walking all the way from Vrindavan and said, “O Lord! I have a message from Rupa Goswami.” When Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu got this letter, Rupa Goswami was sharing his joy that Govinda Dev had once again manifested, to deliver the material world with His all attractive mercy. Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu was very happy. He was overwhelmed with ecstasy. He could not control His love when He heard this news.
Then He took Kashishwar Pandit to a private place, and instructed him to go to Vrindavan and assist in the worship of Lord Govinda. Kashishwar began to lament. How could he live without the personal association of Sri Gaurasundar? He lamented piteously. Gauranga Mahaprabhu understanding his heart gave Him a beautiful Deity of Himself, of the name ‘Gaur Govinda’. This was a Deity of Lord Krishna in which Lord Sri Chaitanya had personally manifested. Lord Chaitanya told Kashishwar how to worship this Deity , “Whenever you will worship this Deity, you will see Me and you will feel My presence. Whenever you will offer Him food, you will see Him eating. You should worship Him in great love.” Then Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu embraced Kashishwar Pandit and sent him to Vrindavan.
This is a very important story. Because of the power of the love of Kashishwar, Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, for the first time, came to the western provinces of India in the Deity form. Kashishwar traveled to Vrindavan and placed the Deity of Gaur Govinda on the right side of Sri Govinda Dev, and dedicated the rest of his life to serve these two deities. Not far away from Govind Dev temple, are 64 samadhis of great Gaudiya Vaisnava saints and amongst them, one of the primary Samadhi is of Kashishwar Pandit – the personal associate of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and servant of Rupa Goswami and Radha Govind.”