H.H. Caitanya Candra das Maharaja
Serving Guru Maharaja in Australia
HH Chaitanya Chandra Maharaja’s Life story, in short. (by his disciples)
1947 Chaitanya Chandra prabhu was born in a high-class Brahmana family in the town of Balasore, in India’s Odisha State. His father was a well known Sanskrit scholar and was worshipping Narayana and Jagannatha in his household temple. His mother was a housewife and would assist his Father in the daily seva-puja. Since childhood, Chaitanya Chandra prabhu was interested in doing puja in his father’s temple, as well as in the public recitation of Srimad Bhagavatam, and in performing Jhulana-Yatra and Ratha-Yatra with other children. Due to his family’s poverty he could not go for higher education, so he worked in the government offices to support his family.
In 1984 Chaitanya Chandra prabhu met his Guru, Sri Srimad Gour Govinda Swami Maharaja in Bhubaneswar where he was working as a government officer. He took initiation from his gurudeva on the 30th of March 1985. Then, in 1988 Chaitanya Chandra prabhu, at the request of his gurudeva, voluntarily resigned from his government service and joined the Sri Sri Krishna-Balarama Temple in Bhubaneswar dhama as the Temple President. In 1993 Chaitanya Chandra prabhu took on additional responsibility as the Temple President of Sri Sri Radha-Gopaljiu in Gadei Giri.
After his revered spiritual master departed this world, in 1996 Prabhu resigned from his responsibilities at the Sri Sri Krishna-Balaram temple in Bhubaneswar and exclusively took care of the Sri Sri Radha-Gopaljiu temple in Gadei giti. During his tenure as temple president both Bhubaneswar and Gadei giri temples were constructed and completed. 1997 Chaitanya Chandra prabhu took over the responsibility of the Berhampur Sri Sri Rama Govinda Temple in the southern part of Odisha where construction is still going on. Beside that, he has also taken responsibility for another centre, Bahanaga, in the northern part of Odisha, where the temple construction is also still going on.
Since 1990, he was travelling with his Guru Maharaja to different corners of the world. After 1996, when his Guru Maharaja departed, he continued to visit South-East Asia, Australia, America, Europe and Russia. In 2011, Chaitanya Chandra prabhu was accepted by the Governing Body Commission (GBC) of ISKCON as an initiating guru and has accepted many disciples from all over the world.
You can listen to Maharaja's classes on https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRzQZjB9hxnhILSTtLTOVUw
and is on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100015763471008
H.H. Haladhara Swami Maharaja
Maharaja, garlanded, Surrounded by First Disciples in Bhubaneswar
H.H. Bhakti Prana Gopinath Swami Maharaja
HH BP Gopinath Swami is an early follower and disciple of Srila Gour Govinda Swami, and held several positions at the Bhubaneswar Temple during our Guru Maharaja's presence. He was vice President for many years, and also was in charge of the Nama Hatta and Padayatra programs. He is currently based in Cuttack and has travelled to Indonesia for preaching purposes.
Patita Pavana das prabhu
Sri Patita Pavana prabhu is one of Srila Gurudeva's earliest disciples. In fact, prabhuji took initiation from Guru Maharaja even before the first batch of disciples did so in 1985. He is a retired civil engineer, and was responsible for the construction of the Bhubaneswar and Gadei Giri temples. He also designed and built the Radha-Gopinath Lotus Temple at Iskcon Bhubaneswar.
Atmarama das prabhu
Sri Atmarama prabhu is a seniour devotee based at the Bhubaneswar Temple. He took initiation from Guru Maharaja in 1985, and spent much time personally with His Divine Grace over the years. He was, at one time, the Tempe President at Iskcon Bhubaneswar (and also was vice-president for many years), the head of the Life Membership program, and also held many other responsible positions. And Guru Maharaja took Atmarama prabhu with him when he travelled to Europe in 1992, as his personal servant. Prabhu has started travelling outside of India, and preaching in his own right, as Guru Maharaja's representative, with his first tour to South Africa in 2019, and he is currently on the Iskcon sannyasa waiting list.
Though prabhuji mainly speaks in Oriya, and also Hindi, there are a few English language lectures you can watch on YouTube, such as https://youtu.be/5VNSsq0fB1g ... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jWA-lRzil1M ... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AC5JlyUJuyA and https://youtu.be/rvZSIDz8Kc0 .
Nimai Pandit das prabhu and Manjmedha devi dasi
Manjumedha devi dasi
Madhavananda das prabhu
H.H. Murali Krsna Swami Maharaja
Gunacuda devi dasi
Gunacuda devi dasi became an initiated disciple of Srila Gour Govinda Swami in 1994, on Nityananda trayodasi. She lived for several years in Bhubaneswar, and was a mainstay on the Hare Krsna Utsav and Padaytra programs in Orissa, where she would preach every evening in the local Oriya language (much to the satisfaction of Sri Srimad Gour Govinda Swami). With her family - Vrindavan das and their son Gopal - she eventually moved to Mayapur to teach at the gurukula, where she became a Principle. She is now Priniciple at Bhaktivedanta Manor gurukula.
Titiksu das prabhu and Jayanti Sri dasi
Titiksu prabhu and Jayanti Sri dasi, along with their daughter Rasika Nagari, and together they run the Vanisanga website www.gourgovindaswami-vanisanga.com which has pages on Instagram, as well as -
You Tube https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKCaUCcWnep36oOQLLybjDA and elsewhere on the internet.
They have been posting daily quotes from Guru Maharaja, along with his videos for many years now.
Purusottama Tirtha das prabhu
Purusottama Tirtha prabhu took initiation from our most revered Guru Maharaja in the early 1990s. He was based for some time in Surinam, and is currently the temple president of the Iskcon centre in Antwerp, Belgium.
Puskaraksa das prabhu
Puskaraksa prabhu came to Krishna consciousness in 1980, and was Srila Gurudeva's first western disciple. He first heard from Guru Maharaja on his 1985 European tour, and was most fortunate to have been his servant for Guru Maharaja's two week stay in France. At that time, he realized that Srila Gour Govinda Swami was in fact a top most vaisnava, and took initiation from him on Ramanavami, 1986. Prabhuji spent some time at the Bhubaneswar temple in the mid 1990s, where he was looking after the Temple's public relations. Prabhuji currently lives in France.
Satwatpati das prabhu
Satwatpati prabhu was first connected to the Bhubaneswar Temple in 1989, but joined as a full-time brahmacari in 1994, taking intiation from Srila Gurudeva in 1995. He was been a book distributor, and was attached to the Nama Hatta, and Padaytra, programs. He has been Head Pujari at the Temple for the past two decades, and, after being vice-president for a number of years, has been co-President since 2019. Currently, he is looking after the Pujari department, Youth and Congregation preaching, Sankirtan department and is the director of the Namahatta program. He also heads up the Bhubaneswar Temple extention centres at Jajpur Road, Nayagarh, and Jeypore.
Upendra Misra das prabhu
Upendra Misra prabhu is one of the co Temple Presidents at Bhubaneswar. He is in charge of the day to day running of the Temple and has looked after Srila Gurudeva's Smriti Mandir and Samadhi for many years.
Nru Hari das prabhu
Nru Hari prabhu became a member of Iskcon in the early 1980s, joining the Paris temple. He met our Guru Maharaja in Mayapur in 1988 and later that year became his initiated disciple. He moved to England, where he spent time serving at Soho Street, Bhaktivedanta Manor and Birmingham temples, and the Liverpool preaching centre. Guru Maharaja gave him the instruction to preach in East Africa, where, along with his ex-wife Priti laksana dasi, they established an ashram and orphanage in Uganda. (Priti laksana mataji is still very much involved with the preaching there.) Nru Hari prabhu has been based in the USA for the last ten years, and is currently living in Seattle, but he travels widely visiting temples and festivals world wide, preaching and performing kirtan.
Naba Kisore das prabhu
Naba kisore prabhu was the dedicated personal servant of Srila Gour Govinda Swami for the last few years Guru Maharaja was present here. Whenever Guru Maharaja would travel around the state he would always be accompanied by Naba Kisore and Sadhu prabhus.
Jagannath Misra das prabhu
Jagannath Misra prabhu joined ISKCON in 1987 and received diksa in 1992 when he moved to Bhubaneswar, where he stayed full time until 1997. He expressed his desire to study Oriya and preach in Orissa, which was approved and encouraged by Guru Maharaja. His full time service during his five year stay was learning the language of our beloved Gurudeva and preaching in Oriya on the Namahatta programme in the villages, and attending the annual Padayatra celebrations.
He is now translating documents written in Oriya by associates of Gauranga Mahaprabhu that have never before been translated into English. So far he has translated the maha-bhava-prakash written by Kaniya Khuntiya; and the vaisnava-lilamrita written by Madhava Pattnayaka.(see Oriya biographies for more info.) Serving in co-operation with Choti Mangalapura project he will shortly undertake the translation of Professor Fakir Mohan's Phd. thesis on the life of Caitanya Mahaprabhu in Orissa.
Nalini devi Dasi
Nalini devi dasi and her daughter Priya at their London Ratha Yatra book table
Nalini devi dasi first heard from Guru Maharaja in Sri Mayapur dhama, during the Festival in 1992, where he told her she should go to Bhubaneswar and cancel her other travel plans in India at the time. She did so, and surrendered to his lotus feet. She took initiation from His Divine Grace in Bhubaneswar a couple of years later, on Gaura Purnima, 1994. Starting in August 1992, Guru Maharaja would always visit Nalini Mataji's house whenever he would come to the UK. Nalini travelled around Europe following His Divine Grace in 1994 and 95, and would cook twice daily for him and do many other sevas.
Beginning in 2004, Nalini Mataji was very much involved in establishing and maintaining Saranagati Bhavan, an ashram run by Iskcon Bhubaneswar, in Mayapur, as well as Srila Gurudeva's Pushpa Samadhi in the Dhama.
In 1996, she set up what was originally the European Tape Ministry, Srila Gour Govinda Swami Media Services, which she still runs to this day and can always been seen at the London Ratha yatra with her Srila Gurudeva book table. Mataji is also involved in many local preaching programs and does street book sankirtan.
Anupama das prabhu and Madanalasa devi dasi
Anupama dasa (in white)
Madanalasa devi dasi at initiation
Anupama prabhuji explained that both he and Madanalasa devi dasi feel most fortunate to have been initiated by our beloved Srila Gurudeva as some of his last disciples on Sri Krsna Janmastmi 1995, at the ISKCON Bhubaneswar temple. When Srila Gurudeva visited Europe on his final tour to the continent in July 1995, His Divine Grace stayed in their apartment in The Hague for five days, where they managed to render many personal services at his lotus feet. The couple travelled to Sri Mayapur Dhama with Srila Gurudeva in 1996 and were present in his room, witnessing, as Srila Gurudeva performed his antya lila.
Acyutananda das prabhu
Acyutananda prabhu, top right
Acyutananda prabhu joined Iskcon in London some time in 1982. After spending time in the Soho Street, Bhaktivedanta Manor and Caitanya College temples in the UK, where he was mainly serving as a sankirtan devotee collecting funds for the temples (after a brief time spent serving HH Sivarama Swami), Acyutananda prabhu became involved with the Padayatra program in India. He then took shelter of the lotus feet of our beloved Srila Gurudeva in 1990, and moved in to the Bhubaneswar temple a short while later. There, under the instruction of Srila Gurudeva, for many years he was running the very successful Food for Life program, and would regularly go overseas to raise funds for it's maintenance. Currently, Acyutananda prabhu lives in the Principality of Wales.
Lila Avatar das prabhu
Lila Avatar das prabhuji first joined Iskcon back in 1973, but left after some time. He again joined the Temple in 1990, and based himself at Gita Nagari, where he would build the Radha Damodara Temple, with the grace of his beloved Gurudeva. Prabhuji was crying daily before the deities and Srila Prabhupada that Srila Prabhupada would his guru. Then in 1992, His Divine Grace Sri Srimad Gour Govinda Swami Maharaja made a visit to Gita Nagarai, and after hearing Srila Gurudeva's class, Lila Avatar prabhu was one hundred percent convinced that Guru Maharaja was Srila Prabhupada's true and pure respresentative. Prabhu explains, "From that day till the day Srila Gurudeva left our mortal vision there is no doubt in my mind that he is the pure representative of our Gaudiya Vaishnava Parampara." Lila Avatar prabhu was present in the room during Srila Gurudeva's final pastimes, and had stayed close by Guru Maharaja during those last few days in Sri Mayapur Dhama. After Srila Gurudeva's departure in 1996, Lila Avatar prabhu married into the Giri family and spent a couple of years in the village of Gadei Giri. Then, together with his wife and son, he moved to Bhubaneswar where they were based for the next couple of decades. Every year Lila Avatar would go to Vrindavana for the festival where, together with a team of younger devotees, he distributed thousands of Srila Gurudeva's books to eager devotees attending the festival. Lila Avatar prabhu and family have recently moved to the United States.