The universe is called ‘Visva’ or ‘Vishva’ in Sanskrit. Words – form, image, figure, manifestation, appearance, representation mean ‘Rupa’ in Sanskrit. Therefore, ‘Visvarupa’ means the face-form of the universe. In the Hindu religion and mythology, Visvarupa is considered the form of deity Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu is also the creator and the preserver of the world. Mahotsava means the grand-great occasion or festival. Therefore, Sri Visvarupa Mahotsava marks this annual holy occasion.
Sri Vasvarupa Mahotsava marks the Sannyasa anniversary of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Sanskrit word ‘Sannyasa’ means abandonment, renunciation, abode, leave, or depart. Mahaprabhu means great Saint, Master or great soul. The occasion of Sri Vasvarupa Mahotsava is on the 25th of September 2018.
On this day, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu aka Vishvambhara took the Sannyasa and ventured out to find his elder brother Visvarupa. In this search for his brother, he found that he had left his body in Pandarapur. He had attained perfection and had entered bliss, the spiritual world. Often, Lord Caitanya is also regarded as a form of Lord Krishna. Pandarapur in the current day is the holy pilgrimage town on the banks of river Bhima. It falls in the District Solapur, in the Indian State of Maharashtra.
In the present day, lacs of devotees visit this pilgrimage city of Pandarapur on the river banks each year; especially the Vithoba temple there, but in the period of June-July. They offer prayers to Lord Vishnu and also Lord Krishna. Lord Krishna is the 8th incarnation, an avatar of Lord Vishnu.
A Mantra for Lord Vishnu is—
Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya
ओम् नमो भगवते वासुदेवाय