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Tamal Krishna Goswami 
Passes Away in Mayapura 
on March 15

From Anuttama Dasa, 
ISKCON Communications Minister
Hare Krishna 
Hare Krishna 
Krishna Krishna 
Hare Hare 
Hare Rama 
Hare Rama 
Rama Rama 
Hare Hare

 

Mayapura, India¾ At approximately 7 a.m. local time, His Holiness Tamal Krishna Goswami left his body at the age of 55, after sustaining injuries in a car accident. He was traveling in a taxi with two devotees, bound for the Calcutta airport after leaving Mayapura at 4:15 in the morning.

Vrindavanesvari Dasi of Auckland, New Zealand, the wife of Kalasamvara Dasa also passed on. She was born on this date, March 15, in 1961. Kalasamvara Prabhu was injured, but not severely. The status of the taxi driver is not yet known.

The taxi had driven approximately halfway to Calcutta before the accident occurred. It was reported that the driver ran into a tree while trying to avoid a truck on the road. Tamal Krishna Goswami, Vrindavanesvari dasi, and Kalasamvara were taken to the Anulia Hospital in Ranaghat.

Announcements were made at the Mayapura temple shortly after the accident, and several carloads of sannyasis and godbrothers rushed to the hospital. At the temple it was initially reported that Tamal Krishna Goswami and other devotees were unconscious from the accident. Tamal Krishna Maharaja’s and Vrindavanesvari Dasi’s passing on was announced at approximately 7 a.m.

The accident occurred at Phuliya, near Shantipura, about sixty kilometers from Mayapura. This very sacred place is mentioned several times in the Caitanya-caritamrita in connection with the pastimes of Srila Haridasa Thakura. Phuliya is the place where Haridasa Thakur lived in a cave and chanted 300,000 names of Krishna daily. There, Haridasa also resisted the temptation by Maya, and this is also where he was beaten in twenty-two marketplaces for his devotion to the holy name.

All seminars and courses in Mayapura have been cancelled for the day. The devotees will be holding kirtanas and glorifying Tamal Krishna Maharaja in special meetings throughout the day. Speakers have noted that today is the anniversary of the disappearance of Jagannatha Dasa Babaji Maharaja and Rasikananda Prabhu.

During a mid-day session of remembrances by senior devotees, Kesava Bharati Prabhu read from Tamal Krishna Goswami’s will, which had been forwarded by phone from Dallas, Texas. In the will, Maharaja had stated that he wanted his body to be placed in samadhi at Govardhana; but he specified one alternative, namely, that if he were to pass away in Mayapura, then his body should be placed in samadhi in Mayapura.

"Tamal Krishna Maharaja was a great pioneer," said GBC Chairman Giridhari Swami, a close friend of Tamal Krishna Goswami’s. "He led the society and the preaching for Srila Prabhupada. He served on the first GBC body. He was empowered to purchase the first land for Mayapura, and he infused energy into the book distribution in America through the Radha-Damodara party."

"Maharaja had not been to the Mayapura annual meetings for several years because he had taken a leave of absence from the GBC to complete his doctorate work," Kesava Bharati Prabhu said. "Every evening after the meetings this year, a large group of devotees, including many sannyasi godbrothers such as Niranjana Swami, Radhanath Swami, Sivarama Swami, B.B. Govinda Swami and Jayadvaita Swami, packed into his rooms and chanted together for a couple of hours. Tamal Krishna Goswami was absorbed in a mood of relishing the chanting in the dhama. Just as he was leaving this morning, he spoke to me again about this chanting. He said that kirtana is so wonderful; it is the way to purify our hearts and solve many problems."

Tamal Krishna Goswami was completing his doctorate work at Cambridge University. According to Ravindra Svarupa Prabhu, Maharaja was completing the last chapter of his Ph.D. thesis, which is about Srila Prabhupada. He was serving as the Governing Body Commissioner for Taiwan, the Philippines, Fiji, Texas, Mayapura and Calcutta. He was the author of several books on Krishna consciousness.

"A prominent limb of Srila Prabhupada’s legacy has left the world," said Radhanath Swami. "The list of Tamal Krishna Goswami’s accomplishments is so vast; he was empowered by Srila Prabhupada to accomplish many difficult, difficult tasks."

Submitted by Anuttama Dasa
ISKCON Communications Minister

© CHAKRA 15 March 2002

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