‘Gata-varsha’ (The Last Year) is an editorial written by Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura for Sajjana Tosani, Vol.12, Issue 1 in 1900. The Thakura reviews the spiritual achievements made during the last year, and predicts that in the future, people from all nations will come to the birthplace of Mahaprabhu. He also mentions his son, Siddhanta Sarasvati in connection to the publication of Padma Puruna.
Gata-varsa (The Last Year)
by Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura
(translated by Swami B.V. Giri for the Bhaktivinoda Institute)
By the grace of Sriman Mahaprabhu we have completed our eleventh year. It is a matter of great joy to us that in the last few years we have seen many kinds of improvements in the world of spirituality, when plague, famine and war have greatly increased the misery of men. First of all, Srimati Vishnupriya Patrika has taken a new form. In Sridhama Vṛndavana, by the endeavours of some people, a spiritual monthly called GauḍeSvara Vaishnava was created. In the metropolis of Calcutta, another spiritual magazine called Vaishnava Pratibha has emerged. At one time there was no other spiritual magazine except for this Sajjana Tosani magazine. Sajjana Tosani has created such spiritual excitement in the minds of many people that so many magazines have emerged nowadays. This is a very good sign. There is no doubt that no matter how much Vaishnava dharma is propagated in these magazines, many things will be published about Sri Gauranga and the prema-dharma that He preached. We hope that in all these journals, the teachings of the pure Vaishnnava dharma, as authorised by Sri Caitanya-caritamṛta, will gradually be propagated in a pure fashion. I saw again that a weekly newspaper called Nivedana has come out in the world. Although there is a lot of material news in this journal, we have high hopes, since we have seen a few spiritual discussions within it.
Hari-nama kirtana has been especially popular in the city of Calcutta since last year. No matter what the aspirations of these kirtana communities may be, by abandoning the Jatra theatre, many people are collectively propagating hari-nama – whatever their reason, their wandering through the city is an excellent deed. Destroying a plague is a trivial result for Sri-hari-kirtana. It is our hope that many mahatmas, after associating with sadhus, will become inclined to search for the true result and become pure Vaishnavas.
The main objective of all great deeds performed by anyone in this world is to maintain the preaching of the birthplace of Sri Sri Gaurangadeva for the benefit of future devotees. Happily, in the midst of all the spiritual uproar, righteous men are endeavouring for the betterment of Sridhama Mayapura. It is not the intention of the Lord to make a big fuss by spending more money in Sri Mayapura. Those who will be born as devotees amongst all the nations of the world, will one day hope to see the birth-place of Sri Sri Mahaprabhu from many, many distant lands. Those who endeavour to keep the flow of services in Mayapura strong, will be counted amongst the main benefactors of the world of Vaishnavas that will appear in the future. There is no doubt that by all these activities, the dharma of Sri Mahaprabhu will be especially propagated throughout the world.
During the last one year, authors of transcendental literature have not been idle in producing books on bhakti-tattva. In the last year, Siddhanta Sarasvati has attempted to collect and publish in Bengali Sri Padma Purana, which is worshippable by all the Devas. A respected gosvami, who is the crest-jewel of his lineage, has published four parts of Sri Bhagavat Sandarbha in Devanagari script. An English translation of Srimad Ramanuja’s Sribhasya commentary on the Vedanta–sutra has been published with great endeavour by two Madrasi scholars. The book Vedanta-sara by Srimad Ramanuja has been printed in the Western Provinces with an English translation by a foreign scholar. We have heard that Sri Siddhanta Sarasvati will also publish the original and Bengali translation of this book for the world very soon.
As Bhaktivinoda Thakur said:
“Those who endeavour to keep the flow of services in Mayapura strong, will be counted amongst the main benefactors of the world of Vaishnavas that will appear in the future.”
With the above in mind, we humbly request our readers to be ‘counted amongst the main benefactors of the world of Vaisnavas’, as well as the general populace of the world by helping to finish the historic TOVP project. During the 2024 Mayapur Gaura Purnima Festival the Nrsimha Wing in the TOVP will be opened and a major celebration observed for three days from February 29 – March 2. We need your help to achieve this milestone.
Go to the Give To Nrsimha Fundraiser today and see how you can participate.
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