Radhashtami is celebrated on the eighth day of the bright fortnight (shukla paksha ashtami) in the month of Bhadra. Radhastami is celebrated by Krishna devotees as the appearance anniversary of Srimati Radharani, who is Krishna’s greatest devotee, the feminine aspect of the Absolute Truth, and Krishna’s energy Personified. It is a very special day for all the Gaudiya Vaishnavas, as by obtaining the mercy of Srimati Radharani one can easily achieve Krishna-bhakti.
“Srimati Radharani is the mother of the universe, the spiritual mother of all souls. And the concept of mother is the most sacred symbol—that of purity, selflessness, caring, sharing, nurturing, and love. That is why our sacred mantra is the holy names. It is the holy names in the vocative. Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare / Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.
“‘Hare’ means ‘Radhe.’ It is a plaintive, desperate cry for the mother. ‘Radhe! Please wake us up from this nightmare of mortal life! Remind us of the father we have forgotten and take us home!’”
In the Krishna consciousness movement, devotees carefully worship Srimati Radharani as the bestower of devotional service to Krishna, by attentively chanting her name in the maha-mantra, by worshiping her deity form, and by following the instructions of the most merciful Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, who is the combined form of Radha and Krishna.
The appearance day of Srimati Radharani is celebrated with utmost fervor in ISKCON Sri Narasimha Giridhari Mandir. On this auspicious occasion the Deities are adorned with a new dress. The altar is decorated with brilliant, colourful flowers which spread their fragrance everywhere.
In the evening, the utsava Deities of Sri Sri Gandharvika Giridhari receive a splendid abhisheka. Devotees perform kirtanas and glorify Srimati Radharani by singing wonderful songs composed by Vaishnava Acharyas. Hundreds of devotees visit the temple to witness. Devotees in the Deity kitchen prepare an elaborate bhoga with more than 50 varieties along with many sweet dishes, pastries, and cakes for the pleasure of Sri Gandharvika. An elaborate arati is performed as the devotees sing Radhikastava written by SrilaRupaGosvami.