Om Visnupada Sri Srimad Jagannatha dasa Babaji Maharaja appeared in this world sometime around 1750 A.D. in a remote village in the subdivision of Tangail, in the district of Mayaman Singh, in what is now known as Bangladesh. He belonged to a very aristocratic family. The Gaudiya Vedantacarya Srila Baladeva Vidyabhushana’s initiated disciple was Uddhava dasa Babaji, and his initiated disciple was Madhusudana dasa Babaji, and Jagannätha dasa Babaji accepted Babaji initiation from Madhusudana dasa Babaji Maharaja. According to the Gaudiya-vaisnava-jivana, the diksa-guru of Jagannatha dasa Babaji was Jagadananda Gosvami of Sringarvat, Vrindavana, whose vesha-guru was Krishna dasa Babaji of Govardhana fame.
Jagannatha dasa Babaji’s life and soul was the chanting of the Holy Name and rendering service to Vaisnavas. Although he was almost bent double in his old age, still, during the time of kértana, his body would expand to well over six feet, and his appearance would replicate the dancing figure of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. His favorite disciple was Bhagavat dasa Babaji, who had accepted Babaji initiation from him. Gaura- kisora dasa Babaji took Babaji initiation from Srila Bhagavat dasa Babaji Maharaja.
Srila Jagannatha dasa Babaji’s personal servant and disciple, Sri Bihari dasa, was very stout and powerful. Due to Babaji Maharaja’s advanced age he could apparently not walk. Sri Bihari used to carry him everywhere on his shoulder in a bamboo basket. He used to strictly and regularly follow the vows of Caturmasya (the four-month-long rainy season). In the first month he would take only four bananas each day in the evening. In the second month he would only take guavas. In the third month he drank some buttermilk. And in the fourth month, he consumed only the flowers of the banana tree. He once went to Rishikesh to purify his chanting, which involved the performance of the purificatory practice called purascarana. This penance had to be performed with extreme rigidity. He used to bathe at three o’clock in the morning and chant inside a closed room until sunset without speaking or eating. In order to complete the vow properly one is expected to take bath after each call of nature and even after passing air. Once, after observing this regimen for two months, he inadvertently spoke to Bihari däasa. He began the entire process again and completed his vow in three months’ time.
Srila Jagannatha dasa Babaji used to stay six months in Vraja and six months in Navadvépa-Dhdma. According to Gaudiya-vaisnava-jivana, at the advanced age of 146, when he was set to travel to Navadvipa from Radha-kunda, many Brijbasis and other Vaisnavas went to him to inquire why he was leaving Vraja-Dhama at such an advanced age. In a very humble and transcendentally depressed mood he replied, “You can all stay here in Vraja-Dhama because you are all pure Vaisnavas. I am very offensive, and therefore it is better for me to stay at Navadvipa. Their Lordships Sri Sri Gaura-Nitai do not count one’s offenses, as They have appeared to liberate all offenders. But here in Vraja-Dhama offenses are counted and reactions thereto are strictly enforced.” This was his last journey to Navadvipa-Dhama. A few months after his arrival, on the first day of the new moon in the month of Phalguna, a fortnight before the anniversary of Lord Caitanya’s appearance, he entered the Lord’s eternal pastimes.