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Pancha Bhoota Shiva Temples – Shivlings Representing Five Elements

Pancha Bootha sthalams are five ancient temples in India where Lord Shiva is represented in the form of five elements – earth, water, fire, air and ether. In these five temples, linga or lingam which symbolically represents Lord Shiva is in the form of elements. Ether is known as ‘akasha’ in Sanskrit and is occasionally referred as Sky or Space while referring to the Pancha Mahabhutas. The five temples that represent Shiva in the form of five elements are: Earth – Ekambaranathar Temple or Ekambareswarar Temple in Kanchipuram – Shiva Lingam here is the element earth. The Shiva Lingam here is believed to have been created by Goddess Parvati from sand or earth.   Water – Jambukeshwar Temple or Thiruvanaikaval Shiva Temple near Trichy – Jambukeshwara represents the element water. The deity is found under a Jambu tree over a small river. The small stream engulfs the idol during the rainy season. Fire – Arunachaleswara Temple or Annamalaiyar Temple

Story – Matsya Avatar Of Vishnu And Demon Makara Who Stole the Vedas

Story of Matsya avatar of Vishnu and demon Makara, who stole the Vedas, is found in the Padma Purana. As per this Purana, demon Makara was the son of Sage Kashyapa and Diti. Makara was very powerful and he challenged the Devas and defeated them. Intoxicated with victory of Devas and his huge power, he forcibly entered Brahmaloka and took away all the four Vedas from Brahma. He took the Vedas under the ocean and hid it there. As Vedas were lost, there was no Dharma on earth. Soon Devas received no yajna and they become powerless. There was utter chaos on earth. Adharma made its presence felt in the form of Demons and evil men. They ruled the earth. To find a solution, Brahma and Devas went to Kshirasagara, or milky ocean, and offered prayers to Vishnu. Vishnu promised to bring back the Vedas and with it Dharma on earth. Vishnu then took the form of a fish or matsya and entered the ocean. He then annihilated the powerful demon Makara and retrieved the Vedas.

Existence Alone Existed – Nothing Else Existed In The Beginning

We see golden ornaments. Beautiful and ugly we call them, but the gold tester sees only gold in them. To him there are no ornaments, ugly or beautiful. He sees so much weight in gold. We believe our senses, but our senses deceive us. Ignorance is the great deceiver. It is maya. It makes us see things differently from what they are. And this whole creation is maya. It draws our attention away from God, the Reality, and makes us see a phenomenal world. The actor becomes so identified with his act that he regards his fellow actor as a real scoundrel and kills him on the stage. It seems impossible but it has happened. This is maya. The other train moves out of the depot, but we think that our train is moving. The earth moves, but we think that the sun moves. We whirl through space, but we think we are stationary. We are like the little boy who asked his mother to tell him a story for his diversion. And the mother told him of three princes who were never born and who went hunting in the f

3 December 2022 Tithi – Panchang – Hindu Calendar – Good Time – Nakshatra – Rashi

Tithi in Panchang – Hindu Calendar on Saturday, 3 December 2022 – It is Shukla Paksha Dashami tithi or the tenth day during the waxing or light phase of moon in Hindu calendar and Panchang in most regions. It is Shukla Paksha Dashami tithi or the tenth day during the waxing or light phase of moon till 8:25 AM on December 3. Then onward it is Shukla Paksha Ekadashi tithi or the eleventh day during the waxing or light phase of moon till 7:24 AM on December 4. (Time applicable in all north, south and eastern parts of India. All time based on India Standard Time.)  Good – Auspicious time on December 3, 2022 as per Hindu Calendar – There is no good and auspicious time on the entire day.  Nakshatra  – Uttara Bhadrapada or Uthrattathi nakshatra till 8:58 AM on December 3. Then onward it is Revati nakshatra till 8:36 AM on December 4. (Time applicable in north, south and eastern parts of India).  In western parts of India (Maharashtra, Gujarat, Goa, north Karnataka and south Rajast

Shrinathji Form of Sri Krishna – Story of Shrinathji of Nathdwara

Shrinathji form of Sri Krishna is worshipped in the famous Nathdwara Temple in Rajasthan. This form of Sri Krishna is also known as Govardhanadhari. The story of Shrinathji is associated with the Govardhan Mountain. The murti of Shrinathji is swayambhu – it appeared on its own. It is believed that Sri Krishna appeared in the dream of famous guru Vallabhacharya and assured him that He will appear on earth again to help his devotees attain moksha or liberation. Legend has it that a cow used to daily shed her milk in the opening in the Govardhan Mountain. The cow was known as Dhumar and was a direct descendent from the cows that Sri Krishna attended to in the Vrindavan. Soon the villagers came to known about the cow shedding its milk at a particular spot and they discovered the murti of Sri Krishna in the form of Shrinathji in August 1409 AD. On the same day, Guru Vallabhacharya was born. The murti appeared in its entirety in 1478 AD and Vallabhacharya consecrated the mu

Prapancasara

Prapancasara is an ancient authoritative work on mantras and tantras. This text which talks about mystic syllables and diagrams is traditionally ascribed to Adi Shankaracharya. There are two editions of Prapanchasara. While the Srirangam edition contains 33 chapters, the edition of Arthur Avalon has 36 chapters. But the contents do not vary. Though some commentators refer to the work as that of Shankaracharya, Sarada Tilaka of Raghava Bhatta refers to it only as the work of Srimad Acharya. In Satchakra Nirupana of Kalicarana also, the author is said to be Srimad Acharya. There are commentaries on the work, like Prapanca-sara-sambandha-dipika, Prapanca-sara-vivarana, Prapanca-sara-samgraha and Satsampradaya. The important topics dealt with in the work are the following The glory of sabda – Brahman (reality as sound) The glory of the letters Bhutalipi (scripts of the elements) Explanation of preceptor and sacred mantras or chants Articles of offering Sacred mantras (sounds) to ge

Banyan Tree Stories in Hinduism

Banyan tree, known as Vata in Hindi and Aal in Tamil, is a highly auspicious tree in Hinduism. Here is a look at some of the important banyan tree stories in Hinduism. The name banyan is said to have been given to the tree by the British when they saw merchants (baniyas) assemble for business under the tree. The Sanskrit word ‘vata’ means to surround or encompass, derived from the tree’s ability to put down aerial roots and cover an enormous area. The tree is mentioned in Rig Veda (1.24.7), Atharva Veda (IV.37.4; V.5.5) and Aitareya Brahmana (VII.30.31.) At end of a cycle of creation, there is a great flood ad Narayana sleeps on single leaf floating in the turbulent waters. The single leaf is described as that of a banyan tree. (Srimad Bhagavata Purana 3.33.4). The tree is mentioned in Ramayana (2.52.68) – the latex of the tree was used to braid the hair of a sanyasi. Ramayana (2.55.23) also mentions about the enormous tree. The tree is part of the Panchavati (3.13.21) and Sita c

Symbolism In Sri Krishna Stealing Clothes Of Naked Gopis

Sri Krishna stealing the clothes of naked bathing gopis and they coming out naked from the river to take their clothes is a lila of Bhagavan Sri Krishna mentioned in the Srimad Bhagavad Purana. There is deep symbolism attached to this lila of Sri Krishna. Speaking on the subject Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa said – There are eight fetters that bind a person to the world. The gopis were free from all but one: shame. Therefore Krishna freed them from that one, too, by taking away their clothes. On attaining God one gets rid of all fetters. (source - Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna Friday, September 19, 1884). Gopis were great devotees of Bhagavan Sri Krishna but they were still attached to their bodies. They had not given up the notion of body. They were yet to be convinced that there is no second here. To completely merge in Bhagavan one needs to give up all that is perishable including the body.

2 December 2022 Tithi – Panchang – Hindu Calendar – Good Time – Nakshatra – Rashi

Tithi in Panchang – Hindu Calendar on Friday, 2 December 2022 – It is Shukla Paksha Navami tithi or the ninth day during the waxing or light phase of moon in Hindu calendar and Panchang in most regions. It is Shukla Paksha Navami tithi or the ninth day during the waxing or light phase of moon till 9:49 AM on December 2. Then onward it is Shukla Paksha Dashami tithi or the tenth day during the waxing or light phase of moon till 8:25 AM on December 3. (Time applicable in all north, south and eastern parts of India. All time based on India Standard Time.)  Good – Auspicious time on December 2, 2022 as per Hindu Calendar – Good and auspicious time on the entire day.  Nakshatra  – Purva Bhadrapada or Pooruruttathi nakshatra till 9:43 AM on December 2. Then onward it is Uttara Bhadrapada or Uthrattathi nakshatra till 8:58 AM on December 3. (Time applicable in north, south and eastern parts of India).  In western parts of India (Maharashtra, Gujarat, Goa, north Karnataka and south

Dakashinang Sankranti In Kamakhya Devi Temple – Kali Puja In July

Dakashinang Sankranti In Kamakhya Devi temple is a famous Goddess Kali Puja held on July 16 or July 17 every year. In 2023,  Dakashinang Sankranti date is July 17,2023. It is held on Karka Sankranti or when Dakshinayana starts. The main puja is performed at the main peetha sthana of Goddess Kamakhya. Boli puja (sacrifice of goats, buffalos, pigeons etc) and naivedya are also offered on the day. The main puja is held at midnight, when goats and buffaloes are sacrificed. The goats and buffaloes are brought by devotees to the temple. The head of the sacrificed animals are offered to the Goddess. As per local history, a rock near the temple was cut to create a road to the temple. A famous Tantric Ramani of the region warned the people not to cut the rock as it was a primary rock that supported the Kamakhya Peetha. But his warning fell into deaf ears. Soon an epidemic of cholera broke out in the region and numerous people especially those involved in the construction of road and break