When Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī was living in Vṛndāvana, there were not very many temples. At that time the three principal temples were those of Madana-mohana, Govindajī and Gopīnātha. As a resident of Vṛndāvana, Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja offers his respects to the Deities in these temples and requests God’s favor: “My progress in spiritual life is very slow, so I’m asking Your help.” In the fifteenth verse of the Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Kṛṣṇadāsa offers his obeisances to the Madana-mohana vigraha, the Deity who can help us progress in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. In the execution of Kṛṣṇa consciousness, our first business is to know Kṛṣṇa and our relationship with Him. To know Kṛṣṇa is to know one’s self, and to know one’s self is to know one’s relationship with Kṛṣṇa. Since this relationship can be learned by worshiping the Madana-mohana vigraha, Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī first establishes his relationship with Him.
When this is established, in the sixteenth verse Kṛṣṇadāsa offers his obeisances to the functional Deity, Govinda. The Govinda Deity is called the functional Deity because He shows us how to serve Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. The Madana-mohana Deity simply establishes that “I am Your eternal servant.” With Govinda, however, there is actual acceptance of service. Govinda resides eternally in Vṛndāvana. In the spiritual world of Vṛndāvana the buildings are made of touchstone, the cows are known as surabhi cows, givers of abundant milk, and the trees are known as wish-fulfilling trees, for they yield whatever one desires. In Vṛndāvana Kṛṣṇa herds the surabhi cows, and He is worshiped by hundreds and thousands of gopīs, cowherd girls, who are all goddesses of fortune. When Kṛṣṇa descends to the material world, this same Vṛndāvana descends with Him, just as an entourage accompanies an important personage. Because when Kṛṣṇa comes His land also comes, Vṛndāvana is considered to exist beyond the material world. Therefore devotees take shelter of the Vṛndāvana in India, for it is considered to be a replica of the original Vṛndāvana. Although one may complain that no kalpa-vṛkṣa, wish-fulfilling trees, exist there, when the Gosvāmīs were there, kalpa-vṛkṣa were present. It is not that one can simply go to such a tree and make demands; one must first become a devotee. The Gosvāmīs would live under a tree for one night only, and the trees would satisfy all their desires. For the common man this may all seem very wonderful, but as one makes progress in devotional service, all this can be realized.