It lies at a distance of three miles to the east of Joyrambati. It is the sacred birthplace of Sri Ramakrishna and the field of the various activities of his boyhood. The readers will find a detailed account of this holy place in the English booklet called 'The Holy Kamarpukur' as also in the Bengali brochure named Sridham Kamarpukur.
Ramakrishna Yogashrama, Koalpara is a sub-centre of Sri Sri Matri Mandir, Joyrambati
Koalpara is one of the places which, like Joyrambati and other nearby villages, is intimately connected with sacred memories of the Holy Mother. She used to take rest in this village on her way to Calcutta via Bishnupur. She called it her parlour and resided several times in this village. An Ashrama (monastery) was started here in the year 1909 and the Holy Mother installed the portraits of Sri Ramakrishna and herself in the Ashrama-shrine and daily worship is since being carried on here. Besides, the Holy Mother lived occasionally in the 'Jagadamba-Ashrama' which belonged to a devotee. It stands very close to the Koalpara-Ashrama at the end of this village.
Apart from observance of daily worship and other festivals Ramakrishna Yogashrama, Kolapara runs a Charitable Homoeopathic Dispensary. It has extended its service in various areas like providing books for poor students, Educational help, Medical help, Umbrellas to poor students, Bicycles to poor students, Tube wells for safe drinking water, Blankets for poor villagers etc.
This village is about two miles to the west of Joyrambati. Hridayram Mukhopadhyay, a nephew of Sri Ramakrishna, was born in this village, Sri Ramakrishna used to go there very often to see his nephew. Hriday once earnestly requested Sri Ramakrishna to be present in his house during the worship of the Goddess Durga. Though he was not able to be physically present there for some unavoidable reasons, he fulfilled the desire of Hriday by appearing daily there during the worship in his subtle body, and Hriday was mightily glad to see the Master every day during the evening worship and Sandhi-puja. Now-a-days only the remnants of this place of worship (Chandimandap) exist.
Once when Shyamasundari Devi was living with her father in the northern part of Shihar, she had occasion to sit in the dark beside a potter's oven under a bel (Bilva) tree. There suddenly issued a jingling sound from the direction of the oven, and a beautiful little girl dressed in a red cloth, came down from the tree. She laid her soft hands round Shyamasundari's neck from behind and said, 'Mother, I have come to your house', whereupon she fell unconscious. Her relatives came searching for her and carried her home. On regaining consciousness she felt as though the little girl had entered her womb.
Shihar has the distinction of possessing a stone temple, built after old architectural patterns and dedicated to Shiva under the name Shantinath.The annual celebrations attracted the villagers from far and near who came to hear Kirtana or to witness open air country theatres called Yatra. Duriong one such kirtana at Hriday's house a strange thing happened. Sri Sarada Devi, then a mere child, sat in the lap of woman who asked her in merriment, after the Kirtan, 'Whom among the great number of people, assembled here, would you like to marry?' Sri Sarada at once lifted her two tiny hands and pointed to Sri Ramakrishna sitting not far away. At that time she had no idea of what matrimony was; but the unseen power that guided those little hands saw to the fulfilment of the wishes of that unerring heart.
It is a well known historical place in West Bengal. During the regime of the Malla Kings it was an invincible fort encircled by seven moats and adored with a plenty of temples. Sri Ramakrishna once told the Holy Mother that Bishnupur was a hidden Vrindaban and that she would be able to see this place in future. The Holy Mother had at that time some misgiving as to the possibility of her visiting the place. But when, with the opening of railways, many people began to go by train to Calcutta via Bishnupur, she also on her way to Calcutta at first went to Bishnupur by a bullock-cart and then from there to Calcutta by train. The prophetic utterance of Sri Ramakrishna was thus fulfilled to the letter a few years after his passing away.
As she was not acquainted with anyone at Bishnupur, she used to take rest there by the side of the two big tanks, namely 'Poka Bundh' and 'Lal Bundh' and had her meals prepared in a nearby wayside inn. Subsequently, the house of Sri Sureswar Sen a great devotee of the Holy Mother, became the resting place of the Mother as also of other devotees.
A very remarkable incident regarding the Holy Mother's grace, took place at the railway station of Bishnupur. A coolie at the very sight of the Holy Mother ran to her and exclaimed in joy 'You are my Janaki'(the Divine consort of Sri Ramachandra). I have been searching for you for a long time. Where had you been so long?' So saying, he began to shed tears of joy profusely. The Holy Mother affectionately consoled him and asked him to bring a flower. He brought it and placed it very reverentially at the feet of the Holy Mother who initiated him then and there and thus fulfilled his long-cherished desire. Thereafter when the whistle for the starting of the train was blown, he along with other coolies shouted with joy, 'Victory unto the Mother Janaki'.
The temple of God Madanmohan is very famous at Bishnupur. There is hearsay to the effect that the image of Madanmohan, which is now to be found in a temple at Baghbazar at Calcutta, formerly belonged to the King of Bishnupur. Besides this, there are still in existence many other temples which show the artistic and architectural skill of that age and testify to the glorious traditions of the past.
There is also a big cannon named 'Dalmadal' which, it is said, the God Madanmohan Himself manned and thereby saved the Kings of Bishnupur from the depredations of enemies. The image of Goddess Mrinmayee is also to be found installed in a temple that stands by the side of the Lal Bundh Tank. Sri Ramakrishna, on the occasion of his visit to Bishnupur, passed into ecstasy at the sight of this Goddess.
It was in this extensive field of Telo-Bhelo that the Holy Mother met with a dacoit and his wife at night and was able to win their hearts by her affectionate dealings, childlike simplicity and Divine personality.