Dwarkadheesh Temple in MathuraThe most important temple in the city of Mathura, Dwarkadheesh temple is dedicated to the Dwarka king - Lord Krishna. As sacred River Yamuna flows nearby, most devotees purify themselves by taking a dip in its holy waters and then head towards this temple. It is an ancient temple located in the midst of a very important bazaar. The tunes of Radhe Radhe Radhe, Barsane wali Radhe and Hare Krishna Hare Krishna will sanctify your ears as you walk through to reach the destination. Most shops here, sell shringar or the dresses and other decorative items for the Lord.
It was constructed in 1814 by Seth Gokul Das Parikh of Gwalior estate. He was appointed as a treasurer there. Since he was a great devotee of Lord Krishna and his consort Radha Rani, he decided to erect the shrine. Today, the temple is administrated by the Vallabhacharya followers. The temple is amazing and striking in every aspect. It is designed as a huge haveli that is fit for none but the king.
As one enters the temple premises, the intricate carvings and minute detailing in its structure just cannot be missed out. The opulence of this temple is incomparable.
The cameras, mobile phones and other electronic items are not permitted inside the temple premises. You can either leave them in your hotel room or deposit them in the nearby shops. Most devotees take a bunch of flowers, tulsi leaves and some food item to offer to the Lord. The temple can be entered through one of the two gates and once inside, one can get a better view of the two-storey haveli that has a spacious wide courtyard wherein pilgrims from all parts of the world collect and glorify the Lord. The devotees can have a glimpse of the second level from the ground floor as the entry is restricted.
On the ground level is the main temple where the deities are placed at a slightly higher platform. A fleet of stairs connect them to the devotees standing low. Beautiful paintings depicting the pastimes of the Lord - His birth, Leela with the gopes and gopikas and his entire life span stand firm on the railings of the second level. The main deities are the Lord Krishna and His beloved Radha Rani. Apart from them, the temple also houses other Gods on the Hindu Pantheon. One can catch a glimpse of the local art and architecture in the structure of the temple. Excellent artwork, carvings and paintings adorn the temple grounds and the walls.
Shringar Aarti at Dwarkadheesh Temple in Mathura
Before the Shringar Aarti, the curtains of the sanctum are drawn and the priests dress up the Lord. With the loud ringing of the bell, the curtains are opened and the Lord, usually dressed up in yellow kurti and blue dhoti (being His favorite colors) and decorated with various ornaments and scented flowers, is now visible. Flanked by His queens Satyabhama and Rukmini on both sides, it is a sight to behold. Before the aarti commences, the priests show Him His reflection in a mirror which is a part of the prayer ritual. At the same time, in the temple room, the loud chants of Jai Shri Krishna start echoing. Devotees close their eyes and pray while the priests start the Shringar Aarti.
After the aarti gets over, the devotees move on for the circumambulation. There are many devotees who would be sitting along the path, threading the flower garlands for the main deities. The green tulsi plant which is the eternal consort of Lord Krishna is also worshipped by the devotees. On one side of the temple, sits the bhajan mandali that consists of a group of people singing hymns to glorify the Lord. Since the bhajan is sung in the local language, Braj Bhasha, most people fail to understand its meaning. Nevertheless, the strong verve in their singing and its unique rhythm goes beyond the soul of all those who are present there.
Festivals at Dwarkadheesh Temple in Mathura
Apart from Diwali, Holi and Janamashtami, Jhoolan Yatra is highly captivating and leaves the devotees spell-bound. It is a 13-day festival that takes place during the month of Shravan or August. Thousands of devotees from all corners of the world gather and take part in the festivities. The Lord along with His consort Radha Rani come out from the sanctum and enjoy the swings. The gold polished swing is adorned with precious and semi-precious stones, garlands and a huge variety of flowers. It is placed in one corner of the temple room and the Divine Couple sit here to bless all the devotees who come here. One can plan a trip to Mathura during the festivals and enjoy being a part of them as they are celebrated with great grandiose in this part of the country.
How to Reach Dwarkadheesh Temple in Mathura
Dwarkadheesh Temple is only 4 km from Mathura Junction. It will take hardly 10 minutes to reach the temple if you take an auto. If you plan to take a rickshaw, you can cover this distance within 15-20 minutes depending upon the traffic conditions.
The Agra airport is just 60 km away. You can take a cab or take a bus to Mathura depot from the Agra airport and reach the temple by taking a connecting auto or rickshaw.