S rila Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Goswami Maharaj entered Nityalila on 21st April amidst 6 days long round the clock Sri Harinam Sankirtana, when His favourite bhajan ‘Radha Kunda Tata Kunja Kutira…’, was being sung. Srila Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Maharaj is a grand disciple of Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura and disciple of His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad Srila Bhakti Dayita Madhava Goswami Maharaja, founder of Sri Chaitanya Gaudiya Math.Born on April 24,1924 at Amlapatti-Gwalpara, Assam, India, Srila Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Goswami Maharaja joined the institution in 1947 after completing His Masters Degree in Philosophy at Calcutta University (India). He served the Sree Chaitanya Gaudiya Math as its Secretary and took Sannyas in 1961.
As per instructions of HH JAYAPATAKA SWAMI, full ceremony of honoring an Acarya was performed by ISKCON Mayapur. Maharaja was received with big Kirtan by devotees and special invocation and Sanyas suktas by the Gurukulis . His transcendental body was brought in procession in Bhakti Siddhanta Road. At ISKCON Mayapur main gate, special decorations and arrangements were made to receive Maharaja with flower showering on His divine body. Originally, it was planned to enter temple through Bhajan kutir and thereafter will proceed to the main temple of Sri Sri Radha Madhav. Panca Tattva and Narasimhadeva for special Darsan. On the court yard will be given full honors by devotees with special Vaishnava songs and then procession will proceed to His Divine Grace’s Math. Due to logistics & late arrival at late night by 9;30 pm, it was not possible to enter into the ISKCON campus but the devotees assembled in large numbers and honoring of Maharaja was done in vaishnava way by senior ISKCON Mayapur devotees.
On 22nd April, parikrama with the transcendental body of Maharaja in holy places of Navadvipa took place. Maharaja’s divine body was brought in procession into ISKCON Mayapur campus at noon, where outside the temple courtyard, he was honored with arti and pushpanjali, with singing of Je Anilo prayers, by HH Gauranga Prem Swami, HH Bhakti Nityananda Swami, HG Jananivas prabhu and many senior devotees of ISKCON Mayapur. Later, he was laid in samadhi ceremony at Sree Chaitanya Math.
Today, on 23rd April, Smriti sabha or glorification of HH Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Maharaja is taking place, where he is remembered with affection by his godbrothers, disciples and vaishnavas in Navadvipa dhama.
Offering to Srila Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Maharaja on the occasion of His tirobhava
My dear respected Sri Srimad Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Maharaja,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to His Divine Grace Bhakti Dayita Madhava Maharaja. All glories to His Divine Grace Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Goswami Prabhupada Thakur. All glories to your spiritual uncle and my diksa guru His Divine Grace Abhayacaranaravinda Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.
My good fortune was when I stayed at the Sree Caitanya Gaudiya Matha in Kolkata and you helped me adjust, finding me a sitting place based on my initiation date. You took me to meet Bhakti Dayita Madhava Maharaja and he told you to take care of me. Since then in 1970, I was connected with you. Soon after that, I was given the sannyasa order by my diksa guru, His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, who in 1977, created the Bhaktivedanta Swami Charity Trust and in which your guru, His Divine Grace Bhakti Dayita Madhava Maharaja, was made one of the trustees. When His Divine Grace Bhakti Dayita Madhava Maharaja entered into his eternal lila with Lord Krsna, we asked you to take up the responsibility of being a trustee for the Bhaktivedanta Swami Charity Trust. You were kind enough to take up this responsibility. Moreover, you accepted a leadership role in the Sarasvat Gaudiya Vaisnava Association. You did all these services while you were leading your institution and preaching widely. Even some foreign devotees have also taken your shelter. I was honored to attend your 50th anniversary of sannyasa. You would give us spiritual and philosophical inspiration talks at our Bhaktivedanta Swami Charity Trust. Not having you present will be a vacuum difficult to fill. You are entering into the eternal lila. You will be in spiritual bliss but we will be missing you, being deprived of your transcendental association and friendship. I and the ISKCON movement feel proud that a vaisnava like yourself has graced the earth. At the same time, we feel separation, feeling deprived of your spiritual and encouraging association. I hope that the members of your matha whom you leave behind will be able to take ahead the institution and that our friendship and collaboration will continue.
Yours in divine service,
Tridandi Goswami Jayapataka Swami