Udupi – 2nd Vrindhavan
Udupi can be considered as the second vrindavan in India. When you hear the name Udupi first thing that comes to our mind is the cutest lord Krishna. The Krishna Matha was founded by the Vaishnavite saint Shri Madhwacharya in the 13th century. He was the founder of the Dvaita school of Vedanta. It is believed that Madhwacharya found the murti of SriKrishna in a large ball of gopichandana.
Story behind the Idol of the Lord: From where the idol came
There is story regarding the Sri krishna idol that is used for main worship. The story goes like this – It is believed that the idol was made by Rukmini – Krishna’s greatest devotee and beloved wife, for her daily worship, after krishna left to his abode Vaikunta and after Rukmini performed Sati and when dwaraka was about to get submerged Arjuna took all ladies children and wealth along with him to Hastinapur, on the way they were attacked by bandits and they looted all wealth along with that wealth they took the idol also. It is believed that those bandits abonded this idol near a pond – which had holy sandlewood, as years passed the idol got submerged in Gopichandanam and after many years A sailor from Dwaraka loaded this heavy lump in his boat as ballast, in one of his trips along the west coast. The ship was caught in a terrible storm while sailing in the western coast of Malpe. When the meditating Sri Madhvacharya sensed this by his ‘aparoksha’ or divine jnana (knowledge), he got the ship safely to the shore by waving the end of his saffron robe and quietening the storm. The pleased captain of the ship offered Sri Madhvacharya the sandalwood piece containing the statue of Sri Krishna. When Sri Madhvacharya was taking this sandalwood piece it broke and the idol came out. Sri Madhvacharya took it to the lake, purified it and installed it in the matt.
Why the idol is viewed from small window?
Unlike other temples, Lord is not viewed from the main door of “Garbhgudi” there is a story behind that too..Kanaka Dasa came to Udupi as a pilgrim. Sri Vadiraja Tirtha knew about this pious devotee of the Lord, and made arrangements for his stay in a hut in the roadside in front of the temple. Kanaka Dasa used to play on his tambuura and sing in the hut, but the wall of the temple was there between the icon and himself. Being of a lower class, by tradition he was forbidden to enter the temple and have darshana of Sri Krishna. The wall of the shrine was, of course, a barrier to the physical eyes, but who could prevent the vision of his inner eyes They were fully open and the Sri Krishna was visible to Kanaka Dasa.
Some time passed and then one night there was an earthquake and a small crack appeared in the wall of the shrine. And the idol of Lord Krishna turned around, and through the crack Kanaka Dasa was able to have darshana of Krishna. Sri Vadiraja Tirtha became devotion of Kanaka dasa and enlarged it and turned it into a window. To commemorate Lord Krishna’s darshana to Kanaka Dasa, the window has been designated as ‘Kanaka’s window’. From that time onward, no one was discriminated based on caste to enter the temple, to worship the lord.
Krishna Janmashtami in Udupi:
It is considered that lord himself resides in Udupi and accepts all worshiping, and so janmashtami is grandly celebrated in Udupi. On this day Krishna’s favorite dishes are prepared and served and the lord is decorated with sacred flowers, jewels and sacred leaves. Large number of devotees witness this celebration. Various of cultural activities are also arranged on account of this celebration. Food offerings are done in large quantity to devotees.
As Krishna’s devine presence is witnessed and as he is loved in Vrindavan, so is he worshiped loved and his divine presence is felt here in Udupi. We are blessed to have him with us, and us with him.