Govardhana is a hill located near the town of Vrindavana, in the Mathura district of Uttar Pradesh, India. It is considered sacred especially in the Vaishnava traditions within Hinduism.Known as Govardhan or Giriraj it is the sacred center of Braj and is identified as a natural form of Krishna.
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The name 'Govardhana' has two primary translations. In the literal meaning, 'Go' translates to 'cows', and 'vardhana' translates to 'nourishment'. Another meaning of 'Go' is 'the senses' and 'vardhana' can also mean 'to increase' - thus the name is also translated by devotees of Krishna as 'that which increases the senses' in their attraction to Krishna. In this connection, it is believed that the personality of Govardhan blesses the devotee by increasing his devotion . Thus, by residing in the foothills of Govardhan Hill, all the senses and the respective duties of a soul attain divinity and are more inclined to perform service to Krishna
Govardhan Puja is celebrated the day after Diwali. It is the day Lord Krishna defeated Indra, the deity of thunder and rain. As per the story, Krishna saw huge preparations for the annual offering to Indra and questions his father Nanda about it. He debated with the villagers about what their 'dharma' truly was. They were farmers, they should do their duty and concentrate on farming and protection of their cattle. He continued to say that all human beings should merely do their 'dharma', to the best of their ability and not pray or conduct sacrifices for natural phenomenon. The villagers were convinced by Krishna, and did not proceed with the special puja (prayer). Indra was then angered, and flooded the village. Krishna then lifted mount Govardhan and held it up as protection to his people and cattle from the rain. Indra finally accepted defeat and recognized Krishna as supreme.