O n the banks of the Ganges in Mayapur, West Bengal, a region of tree-shaded villages and fertile farmland, ISKCON’s international headquarters is located; Srila Prabhupada chose it as such because it’s the place where Lord Chaitanya appeared.
Lord Sri Krishna incarnated as Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu 500 years ago to inaugurate the yuga dharma (religious practice) for this particular age of quarrel and hypocrisy with the mission to flood the world with the highest love of God, a love that had rarely been revealed to this world before.
The message of Lord Chaitanya and the preaching mission of His envoy, Srila Prabhupada, exists to reinforce the genuine identity of the soul amid a world intent on borders, boundaries, and bodily designations. Srila Prabhupada’s International Society for Krishna Consciousness crosses those boundaries, fuelled by the most crucial element of Lord Caitanya’s character: His compassion for the fallen souls of Kali yuga, all of whom are searching for peace within themselves and their environment. As a stone thrown into the middle of a pool creates concentric circles, so a global community, with its attention focused on the center, can create an international environment of harmony. That center is the essence of spirituality. That essence is Sri Mayapur Dhama.
The greatest acaryas have proclaimed that of all religions there is no comparison to the purity of the surrender and the Love of the gopis. And of the gopis the origin of all spiritual love is Srimati Radharani. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is Krishna in that mood of Sri Radha, to distribute her love, to distribute the rasas and the happiness of Vrindavan to everyone.
When Krishna appeared, Sri Vrindavan dham was only accessible to only a very rare few. But Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu opened up the gates to invite and welcome everyone into the pastimes of Vrindavan. That took place here in Sri Navadwip. Therefore our Vaishnava scriptures and Acaryas declare that Navadwip and Vrindavan are absolutely non-different. They are one.
In the age of Kali Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and His associates who are all descendents of Goloka Vrindavan they performed the lila of Vrindavan. As Vrindavan is Madhurya Dham, the place of highest spiritual sweetness Navadip is Audarya dham, where that sweet pastimes are opened for everyone. The most magnanimous, the most accessible and the most rich with loving occasions, of all holy places in this universe is Sri Navadwip dham.
S rila Prabhupada wanted Mayapur to be brought to the attention of the world. He called it the most important place in the universe. He wanted a temple of unparalleled size, majesty, and beauty built in Mayapur.
Based on this vision lays the foundation of TOVP – Temple of The Vedic Planetorium. The ToVP is the biggest Vedic temple being built in the last 1000 years. Srila Prabhupada is the original ToVP architect. In his letters and conversations he had clearly outlined its key features. The temple is coming up honoring all those instructions.
TOVP is the root of the ISKCON tree. From this root the highest spiritual nourishment will reach all devotional branches all over the world.
Srila Prabhupada made Mayapur the center of ISKCON. He once said, “I have named this temple Sri Mayapur Chandrodaya Mandir, ‘the Rising Moon of Mayapur.’ Now make it rise, bigger and bigger until it becomes the full moon. And this moonshine will be spread all over the world. All over India they will come to see. From all over the world they will come . . .” . The ToVP touches the life of every ISKCON friend and member in a way unlike any other ISKCON temple. By watering this root, one will feel more strongly connected to the mission of the Lord.