Krittivasa Shiva – Why Shiva is known as Krittivasa?



Krittivasa is one among the numerous names of Shiva. Shiva is known as Krittivasa because he wears animal hides as clothes. Shiva usually wears a tiger skin. As per some scriptures he also wears elephant skin.

Symbolically, the tiger skin suggests that Shiva is the controller of all powers in the world.

A story is mentioned in the Shiva Purana, which explains why Shiva wears tiger skin. You can read it here.

When Shiva wears elephant skin, he is also known as Gajantaka. You can read the story and symbolism of Gajantaka here.

Another reason for Shiva using animal skins as clothes is that he is the lord of all creatures – Pashupati. He is the divine herdsman.

Sri Ram Sings in Italian and Sita performs Odissi in this Ramayana Opera



Ramlila was recently performed as opera. In this Ramayana Opera, Sri Ram narrated his emotions in Italian and Mata Sita conveyed her emotions through Odissi dance movements. 
The Day After writes 
Lord Rama sang his feelings when he fell in love with Sita at first sight and attired in traditional dhoti-kurta, he narrated his emotions in Italian. Rama's wife, Sita, however does not explain her emotions through words but through expressive eyes and graceful postures in her Odishi dance.
"I find Ramlila an evergreen subject. We never get bored of this subject but we wanted to present it in different way. Ramayana has never been done in opera. So I thought why not? Since I love Ramayana; I love challenges; I love innovation, so I thought of blending it," Bijoylaxmi Hota, who scripted the opera said. 
The fusion could be seen from the costumes and musicians' performances. The conductor of the opera was an Italian and his team of musicians included Italians, Indians and Hungarians too. 
Dances were performed to the rhythm of ghoomar, dance music, shehnai and Indian percussion instruments. "Originally when I wrote, I wrote it in English but I wanted it in Italian, the poems. So I wrote it in English and sent them. Then they translated it but even then they didn't like it; the composer did not like it. He thought it was not poetic enough. So he then got someone to do the proper lyrics and then it was composed in Italy itself," says Hota.

Selfishness prompts us to paint everything with ourselves – Swami Vivekananda



When the dry branch of a coconut palm drops to the ground, it leaves only a mark on the trunk indicating that once there was a branch at that place. In the like manner, he who has attained God keeps only an appearance of ego; there re mains in him only a semblance of anger and lust. He becomes like a child.

We color everything with our own selves. We have a brush—a thing comes and we do not like it and we brush a little then look at it. Selfishness prompts us to paint everything with ourselves.

The body comes and goes and is limited. . . The body is not the Real Man; neither is the mind, for the mind waxes and wanes. It is the spirit beyond, which alone can live forever. The body and mind are continually changing, and are, in fact, only names of series of changeful phenomena, like rivers whose waters are in a constant state of flux, yet presenting the appearance of unbroken streams. . . the self-contained Purusha (Self) within is your real nature.

The adjunct of mind is His first and subtle covering, then, there is this body which is His gross, outer covering. The indivisible, changeless, self-effulgent Purusha is lying hidden under these delusive veils, therefore your real nature is unknown to you.
Swami Vivekananda

Today’s Hindu Calendar – December 18, 2014 – Tithi, Vrat, Good Time, Nakshatra, Rashi and Festival



Tithi in Hindu Calendar on Thursday, December 18, 2014 (Today) – Krishna Paksha Ekadasi Tithi or the eleventh day during waning phase of moon in Hindu calendar and Panchang in all places. It is Krishna Paksha Ekadasi Tithi or the eleventh day during waning phase of moon till 8:45 AM on December 18. Then onward it is Krishna Paksha Dwadasi Tithi or the twelfth day during waning phase of moon. All time based on India Standard Time.

Nakshatra – Swathi or Chothi Nakshatra till 8:25 PM on December 18. Then onward it is Vishaka or Vishakam Nakshatram.

Rashi or Moon Sign – Tula Rashi.

Festivals, Vrat and Auspicious days – Ekadasi Fasting

Kali Yuga Year – 5116

Vikram Samvant 2071 – Paush Krishna Paksha Ekadasi Tithi or the eleventh day during the waning phase of moon in Paush month in North India - Delhi, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Chhattisgarh, Orissa and Jammu and Kashmir.

Jayanama Samvatsar/ Shalivahana Saka 1936 – Margashirsh Krishna Paksha Ekadasi Tithi or the eleventh day during the waning phase of moon in Margashirsh month in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Maharashtra and Goa

Vikram Samvant 2071 – Margashirsh Krishna Paksha Ekadasi Tithi or the eleventh day during the waning phase of moon in Margashirsh month in Gujarat.

3rd day of Margazhi Masam in Tamil Calendar followed in Tamil Nadu. (Jaya Year)
3rd day of Dhanu Masam in Malayalam Calendar in Kerala. (Kolla Varsham 1190)
2nd day of Paush Month in Calendars followed in Assam and Bengal. (Bengali Year 1421)

Bad Period on December 18, 2014
Rahukalam – 1:43 PM to 3:04 PM
Yamagandam – 7:02 AM to 8:22 AM
Gulikai – 9:42 AM to 11:03 AM
Durmuhurtham – 10:36 AM to 11:19 AM
Durmuhurtham – 2:53 PM to 3:36 PM
Varjyam – 3:34 AM to 5:14 AM

Good Time on December 18, 2014
Abhijita Muhurta – 12:02 PM to 12:44 PM
Amirta Kalam – 1:32 PM to 3:12 PM

Yog – Atiganda (Bad Yog) till 6:11 PM. Then onward it is Sukarman (Good Yog).

Karana – Balava (Good) till 11:53 AM. Then onward it is Kaulava (Good) till 11:56 PM. Then onward it is Taitila (Good).

Rest all hours that are not part of Bad Period are Good time. When bad period overlaps into good period, that much time of bad period should be eliminated from good period.