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Showing posts from September 26, 2008

Navaratri Dolls

The display of dolls during Navaratri is a major event in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and for some communities in Karnataka and Kerala. This display of dolls is known as Navratri Kolu or Golu. In Andhra Pradesh, it is known as Bommalu Koluvu. The dolls symbolically represent the army or assembly (durbar) of Goddess Durga. It is also believed that the assembly is held just before the famous battle between Goddess Durga and Mahishasura, which ultimately ends in the victory of good over evil. In 2014, the display of Navaratri Dolls begins on September 25 and ends on October 3.
Navaratri Kolu dolls are a proud possession for many families and to find 50 or 100-year-old Navratri dolls is not rarity in a traditional Hindu family in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. The most important Navaratri dolls are the Marapachi figures – a pair of male and female.
Majority of the dolls displayed are of Hindu gods and goddesses. Also on display are figures of prominent personalities, historical characters…

Dashain in 2010

Dashain is one of the most important festivals in Nepal and it is the Nepali counterpart of the 9-day Navratri Festival and Durga Puja in India. Dashain is worship of Mother Goddess and the origin is traced to Durga killing demon Mahishasura. Mostly, it is a ten day festival. In 2010, Dashain begins on October 8 ends on October 16. In some regions of Nepal and for some communities Dashain is a 15-day festival.Dashain begins with the Ghatasthapana, a pot containing seeds which will sprout and reach nearly 3-inch to 5-inch length by the final day of Dashain. Some of the rituals that are observed during Dashain are quite similar to those observed during Navratri and Durga Puja in India.The eighth day of Dashain is referred as Kala Ratri there is sacrifice of animals to the Goddess. Animal right activists and Nepali government is trying hard to educate the general public to not to perform animal sacrifice but very few are listening to the campaign. Sadly, the finer aspects of Dashain is l…

Ayudha Puja

Ayudha Puja, or Ayuda Pooja, is observed on the ninth day of Navratri festival, mainly in South India. It is also part of the 10- day Dasara festival in North India. In 2016, the date of Ayudha Puja is October 10. Literally, Ayudha Puja means the worship of weapons. Nowadays, Ayudha Puja means ritual purification of the tools that one use to make a living. Saraswathi Puja and Ayuda Puja are observed on the same day in South India.
Goddess Durga carries numerous weapons which were given to her by various male deities. Therefore there is a belief that the weapons carried by Durga represent the various forces in Nature – Durga’s energy rests in these weapons.
Today, Ayudha Puja is the day when Hindus keep the tools and objects that are used to make a livelihood for pooja. The tools and implements are not touched on the Ayudha Puja day. It is only taken on the next day morning with renewed vigor after the blessings from Goddess.
Which tool one keeps during Ayudha Puja depends on his/her…

Quotes on India from Swami Vivekananda

One vision I see as life before me, that the ancient Mother India has awakened once more sitting on her throne rejuvenated more glorious than ever.If India wants to raise herself once more, it is absolutely necessary that she brings out her treasures and throw them broadcast among the nations of the earth and in return be ready to receive what others have to give her.So long as the millions live in hunger and ignorance, I hold every man a traitor, who having educated at their expense pays not the least heed to them… Kindle their knowledge with the help of modern science. Teach them history, geography, science, literature and along with these the profound truths of religion.Swami Vivekananda

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