Srila Prabhupada disciple Deena Bandhu Das, who is renowned as a pilgrimage guide, storyteller and scholar of Vraja area folk tales and temple histories, has re-released his book Vraja Lila Part One in print and Kindle editions.
For the new editions, released on April 18th, Deena Bandhu has personally revised and enhanced the work since its last publication back in 2007.
“It has been out of print for many years, and devotees are always asking for copies, so we’re now making it available to all on Amazon.com,” he says.
Vraja Lila Part 1 follows the Vraja Mandala parikrama, or pilgrimage path starting at Vishram Ghat in Mathura, and then moves all the way up to Nandagram. Along the way, Deena Bandhu takes readers through Madhuvan, Talavan, Kumud Van, Bahulavan, Radha Kunda, Govardhan, Kamyavan, and Nandagram.
At each place, he tells captivating descriptions of temples and Lord Krishna’s pastimes, which he has spent the last thirty years collecting from Brijabasi locals and temple Goswamis.
“I have lived in Vrindavana since 1984, and began leading parikramas in 1985, inspired by Guru Das, the late Padmalochana, and Dhruva Maharaja,” says Deena Bandhu. “I always had a talent for telling stories, so I decided to dovetail it in Krishna consciousness.”
Deena Bandhu leads devoees on parikrama from Javat to Ter Kadamba
Since then, Deena Bandhu’s live renditions of Vraja Lila have been one of the main attractions of ISKCON’s Vraja Mandala Parikrama, especially during Kartik in the autumn, and in the lead-up to Holi.
For those that can’t be there in person, the book Vraja Lila Part One recaptures the magic. “In addition to his detailed knowledge of scripture and local history, Deena Prabhu’s keen sense of humour and dramatic story-telling style keeps audiences captivated,” reads Vrindavan Today’s review. “Deena Bandhu’s sense of humour peppers the book and makes it an amusing as well as spiritually uplifting read.”
Vraja-Lila Part Two was also printed a few months back, but is only available personally from Deena Bandhu at present, as he travels around the world. A Kindle edition is set to be released on Amazon soon.
The second book starts at Javat and comes full circle back to Vishram Ghat. On the way, Deena Bandhu tells stories about Kokilavan, Kosi, Sheshashayi, Khelanvan, Ram Ghat, Biharvan, Aksaya Vat, Chir Ghat, Bhandirvan, Baelvan, Man Sarovar, Lohavan, Dauji, Gokula, and finally Raval.
All the funds collected through from the books go to maintain and expand a small temple in Vrindavan called Vrinda Kunda.
“I hope readers relish the lively narrations of Krishna’s pastimes all around Vraja,” says Deena Bandhu. “I love giving devotees a genuine experience of Vraja. Many times they come and see the places, but don’t know the significance and they miss a lot of places. I want that everyone who comes to Vraja should never forget Vraja. That's my service.”
* * *
Purchase Vraja Lila Part One on paperback here: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1514759195/
And on Kindle here: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07CBHZW22/
Part Two is available here: http://www.divyabooks.com/vraja-lila-part-two[ dham ] [ holy-dhama ] [ pilgrimage ]