Sri Bodendral Saraswati Swamigal of Kanchi
The samadhi or tomb of Sri Bodhendra Saraswathi, the 60th Shankaracharya of Kanchi matha is located in the town of Govindapuram in Thanjavur district, India and is an important Hindu pilgrimage destination.
Govindapuram is a beautiful village situated on the river bank of Veeracholan(A branch of River Cauvery) and located in between the cities of Kumbakonam And Mayiladuthurai in the Tanjore Cauvery belt of Tamilnadu. In this village, in a calm and serene atmosphere on the river bank, The Jeeva Samadhi of Sri Bhagavan naama Bodendra Saraswathi Swamigal, the 59th Peedathipathy of Kanchi mutt is Present. Even today one can feel the spiritual Presence of Sri Bodendral in his Adhistanam at Govindapuram.
Bodhendra Saraswathi, the 17th-century pontiff of the Kanchi matha reached Govindapuram during the course of his wanderings in the Cauvery delta. He was attracted by the beauty of the place and decided to attain samadhi or salvation at the spot.
One morning, in the Purattasi (September-October) month of the year 1692, Bodhendra Saraswathi attained Jeeva Samadhi sitting in an yogic state. He attained Videha Mukthi at Govindapuram on Full Moon day in the month of Proshtapada of the cyclic year Prajotpatti (1692 AD).
Sri Sri Bodhendra Saraswathi Swamigal
Govindapuram is located on the Kumbakonam Mayiladudurai Highways, 12 Kms from Kumbakonam.
Bus Stop: Govindapuram Agraharam
Nearest Railway Station : Kumbakonam
Sri Bhagavannama Bodhendra Saraswathi Swamigal alias Sri Bodhendral was born in Mandana Misra Agraharam at Kanchi as the son of Kesava Panduranga. Sri Bodhendral's former name was Purushothama.
It was Sri Bodhendral who stressed the efficacy of devotion as a means to liberation in this Kali Yugam. Sri Bodhendral therefore undertook the great task of Nama Siddhantha, or establishing the supreme efficacy of reciting the names of Bhagavan in many of His writings, chiefly in Namamritha Rasayana and Namamritha Rasodhaya.
It was Sri Bodhendral who stressed the efficacy of devotion as a means to liberation in this Kali Yugam. Sri Bodhendral therefore undertook the Nama Siddhantha, or establishing the supreme efficacy of reciting the names of Bhagavan in many of His writings, chiefly in Namamritha Rasayana and Namamritha Rasodhaya. Sri Bodhendral's mission of Nama Siddhantha was pursued with equal vigor by Sridhara Venkatesa Ayyaval of Tiruvisainallur and by Sathguru Swamigal of Marudanallur.
It was the Nama Siddhanta of Sri Bodhendral that was ultimately responsible for the evolution of Bhajana Sampradhaya as an institution in the religious life of the Hindu community in South India. Sri Bodhendral performed Tatanka Pratishtha at Jambukeswaram and while returning to Kanchi He attained Videha Mukthi at Govindapuram on Full Moon day in the month of Proshtapada of the cyclic year Prajotpatti (1692 AD).
Samadhi of Bodhendra Saraswathi Govindapuram
During his yatra Bodhendral once went to a village called Thirukokarnam for nama pracharam. He was initiating everyone in that village with Rama nama. A dassi came there to him and asked if she could also chant Rama nama and if he would initiate her. Bodhendral initiated her with Rama nama without any hesitation. Those days sanyasi’s were not even allowed to speak to women and when he directly initiated a women that too a dassi, the villagers started speaking ill about him.
After some days Bodhendral left the village. The dassi was chanting Rama nama religiously and would chant though out the day. Bodhendral happened to come back to that village after some time. By the time Bodhendral came back she had finished chanting crores of Rama nama. The dassi came to have a darshan of Bodhendral and after prostrating to him she left this world through Kabala moksham(spirit leaving the body, opening the top of her skull at her own will) in front of her guru like how a yogi leave this world. The villagers were surprised seeing this and realised their mistake.
One day kids were playing in the banks of Kaveri. They would keep their feet in the mud and close it with mud and then remove the disappeared leg from the sand. Bodhendral had now planned to leave this world, so he went to the children and said that he would come out if they buried him inside the sand. Taking this for true the kids dug a pit and asked him to get inside. They then closed him completely with sand while he was meditating.
Next day people in the village were searching for Bodhendral and they couldn’t find him. The kids then told them that he is buried under the sand and that he had asked them to do that. The villagers were now frightened. They then decided to start digging there and all of a sudden there was a voice saying that he was in Samadhi here and that no one should disturb him. After a few years the exact location of his Samadhi was forgotten as they had not build an Adhishtanam.
After 100 years of his Samadhi, Maruthanallur Sadguru swamigal decided to find his Samadhi and build an Adhishtanam around it. He searched for the exact location in Govindapuram. He would tie his legs and crawl on the river bank as he did not want to accidentally touch the Samadhi on his feet. At one place he could hear Rama nama being chanted and he immediately found out that it was the location where Bodhendral had attained Samadhi. He then went to Maharashtrian king who was then ruling Thanjavore and with his help built the Adhishtanam there.
Source: Reposting it from Amritha Vahini Google group.