Located about 2 kilometers from the Vrindavan Railway Station is one of the most revered early modern Hindu temples in Vrindavan, the Radha Raman Temple. It is dedicated to Lord Krishna, who is considered to be Radha Raman, meaning one who gives pleasure to Radha. The temple is known to have the original Shaligram deity of Krishna alongside Radharani, which is the self-manifested deity from Shaligram Shila and has a mystical smile on his face. The Radha Raman temple complex also has the samadhi of Gopal Bhatta, located right next to the appearance place of Radha Raman.
Radha Raman Temple is said to be one of the most significant among the 7 temples of Thakur of Vrindavan. It holds importance especially among the followers of Gaudiya Vaishnavism. The temple was beautifully crafted when it was established in 1542 but was renovated later in 1826 by Shah Behari Lallji. Another interesting fact about this temple is that even though it is dedicated to and named after Radha, there is no deity of Radha Rani in the temple. There is only a crown kept next to Krishna to signify her presence.
Legend of Radha Raman Temple
On the Poornima day, he put them in a wicker basket after worshipping them and went to take some rest. The next morning, on uncovering them, he saw only 11 Shilas and a deity of Lord Krishna playing the flute. Basically, it was one of the Shilas that had self-manifested itself into a deity which came to be known as Radha Raman. This the story of the appearance of Radha Raman and the original Shila is placed in this temple.
Festivals Celebrated at Radha Raman Temple
Chandan Yatra: The deity of Radha Raman is completely covered with Chandan, that is sandalwood paste to provide relief from the unabated heat in the summer months of May and June. The process is carried out with small deities as well, for about 21 days.
Jhulan Yatra: The swing festival or Jhulan yatra is celebrated at the beginning of the rainy season by placing the small deities on a solid teakwood and gold plated swing in the courtyard of the temple.
Balaram Purnima: It is celebrated at the end of Sharavan month to mark the appearance of Lord Balaram.
Janmashtami: On this day, Lord Krishna’s birthday is celebrated from morning to night. The temple is decorated elaborately, with hordes of pilgrims visiting for darshan. Before midnight, Maha Abhishek of Sri Krishna is done followed by bhoga offering and aratika.
Radhashtami: This festival is celebrated to mark the birth of Radha. The day comprises of half day fast, Abhishek and feast.
Kartika: In the month of Kartik, devotees offer lamps to the deities in the evenings and chant the glories of Lord’s kartik pastimes. Diwali, Govardhan Puja and Vraja Mandala Parikrama all take place in the month of Kartika.
Gaura Purnima: It is celebrated to commemorate the appearance of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Devotees fast till moonrise. This day also marks the last day of the Holi celebrations in Vrindavan.