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Rich History and Architecture of Sri Rangji Temple Vrindavan

In the serene town of Vrindavan, Uttar Pradesh, lies the magnificent Sri Rangji Temple, a place of profound spiritual significance and architectural splendour. This temple is a testament to its founders’ devotion and the timeless legacy of Sri Goda Rangamannar, lovingly known as Goda or Andal, a renowned 8th-century Vaishnava saint and Alwar.

The Beloved Andal and Her Devotion

At the heart of Sri Rangji Temple’s history is the remarkable story of Andal’s devotion to Lord Krishna. Andal’s literary masterpiece, “Tiruppuvai,” beautifully encapsulates her deep love for Lord Krishna and her longing to be united with Him in the divine land of Vrindavan. She fasted, sang songs in His praise, and wished to become His bride. Her prayers were answered when Lord Ranganatha, an incarnation of Lord Krishna, became her bridegroom.

One can witness this divine union within the sacred precincts of Sri Ranganath Mandir. Sri Krishna, portrayed as the bridegroom, holds a walking stick, a customary symbol in traditional South Indian marriages. To His right stands Andal, and to His left, the majestic Garuda, Sri Krishna’s Vahana (mount). Andal’s three heartfelt wishes, expressed in “NachiyarTirumozhi,” found their fulfilment in this sacred abode.

The Divine Manifestation in Vrindavan

Andal’s first wish, to spend her life at Lord Krishna’s feet in Vrindavan, became a reality through the dedicated efforts of Sri Rangadeshik Swamiji. Sri Rangadeshik Swamiji, inspired by the wish of brothers Seth Sri Radhakrishnaji and Sri Govind Dasji of Mathura, established Sri Goda Rangamannar in Vrindavan. His unwavering determination led to the construction of this glorious temple.

In 1845, skilled labourers from Sri Rangam were brought to Vrindavan, and construction began in earnest. The devoted efforts of the brothers and the grace of Sri Goda Rangamnaar culminated in the temple’s completion in 1851 A.D., at a total expenditure of Rs 45 Lacs. The result was the magnificent GodaRangamannar Mandir, a symbol of divine love and devotion.

Architectural Marvel

The architecture of Sri Rangji Temple is a harmonious blend of South and North Indian temple styles. Inspired by the renowned Sri Ranganatha Swami temple of Sri Rangam, this temple showcases the skilful craftsmanship of the local artisans. The traditional South Indian style is evident in the five concentric rectangular enclosures surrounding the sanctum sanctorum.

Two splendid stone gates, carved in the Jaipur style, adorn the eastern and western sides of the temple. As you enter through the west gate, a 50-foot-high wooden chariot greets you, brought out only once a year during the Brahmotsav festival.

The temple’s grandeur continues with a towering seven-storeyed gopuram, electrically operated Leelas depicting the tales of Lord Rama and Lord Krishna, and a symmetrical garden where Andal’s divine presence is celebrated every Friday evening. Stone fountains add to the enchanting ambience, operating on special occasions.

A Spiritual Journey Within

Inside the temple, a clockwise journey leads you through various sacred spaces. The cookhouse, the shrines of Sri Raghunathji (Lord Ram), Sri Paudanathji (Lord Ranganath), and the Vaikunth Dwar are encountered along the way. The “Vahan Ghar” houses the divine mounts, paraded during temple festivals.

Passing through the clock tower, you’ll reach the impressive 50-foot-high gold-plated “Dhwaja Stambha.” Continuing the clockwise path, you’ll come across the Sri Sheesh Mahal, where Lord Goda Rangamannar resides during the Jhoola Utsav. Further sandhis include Sri Sudarshanji, Sri Narsimhaji, Sri Venkateswara (Tirupati Balaji), Sri VenuGopalji, Sri Alwar Sannidhis, Sri Ramanujacharya Swamji with Sri Nammalwar, Sri Nathmuni Swamiji, Sri Madhurkavi Alwaar, Sri Rangadeshik Swamiji (Temple Founder), Sri Yamunacharya Swamiji (Alwandar), and Sri Kanchipurna Swamiji.

At the temple’s heart lies the Sannidhi of the main deity, Sri Goda-Rangamannar, guarded by “Sri Jaya-Vijaya.” Sri Goda-Rangamannar, in the “Mool-Vigraha” form, is accompanied by Sri Goda Devi to His right and Sri Garudaji. The “Utsav-Vigraha” of Sri Goda-Rangamannar and other divine manifestations add to the spiritual ambience.


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