Dvaraka is one of the seven sacred cities of India; for Vaishnavites (see VAISHNAVISM) it is also one of the four places renowned for the special presence of god (the other three are BADRINATH, RAMESH-VA R A M, and Puri). KRISHNA is said to have fled here to escape from the evil Mathura king Kamsa, who had tried so often to kill him, and the city is con-sidered the capital of Krishna’s kingdom.
   Dvaraka is on the sea in Saurashtra, a region of Gujarat. Krishna’s birthday, the HOLI festival, and DIVALI are three special festival days at Dvaraka. There is a huge temple complex devoted to Krishna. The city is also the site of one of the four monastic centers established by the great sage SHANKARA in the eighth century.
   Further reading: E. Washburn Hopkins, Epic Mythol-ogy (Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, 1986): S. R. Rao, The Lost City of Dvaraka (New Delhi: Aditya Prakashan, 1999).

Encyclopedia of Hinduism. . 2007.

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