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Showing posts from December 12, 2007

Pichhwais – Decorative Temple Hangings behind the idol of Krishna at Nathdwara

Pichhwai or Pichwai is a decorative cloth hanging hung behind the idol of Shrinathji (Lord Krishna) at Nathdwara in Rajasthan and other shrines of the Pushti Marga. Pichhwais are changed depending on the festival or occasion and a different painting is placed behind the idol. This traditional art is no longer limited to the devotional circle and nowadays Pichhwai wall hangings and Pichhwai pillows are used in living rooms. In the strict spiritual sense, the painting is a highly enthusiastic expression of love for Lord Krishna and plays an important role in the festivals of the Vallabhacharya sect. During the darshan of Shirnathji, the Pichhwais behind the idol evoke a specific mood. The favorite theme in these paintings is the immortal Radha Krishna scenes from Vrindavan along with gopis. Other important themes include royal processions on elephants, courts scenes, horse rides and camel rides. The paintings are noted for its intricate detailing of jewelry, clothing, hairdressing and b…

Get Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple Prasadam through India Post

The Indian Department of Posts has made arrangements for dispatching the Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple Prasadam. The prasadam packet known as Swami Prasadam will contain a sealed tin of aravana payasam, one packet of appam, vibhoothi, sandal paste, abhishekam ghee, manjal (turmeric powder), kumkum, pepper, vibhoothi from Vavar Mosque and a small laminated picture of Swami Ayyappa.
The prasadam items are available through post during the mandalapooja and makaravilakku season and on the first few days of the Malayalam months. The devotees wishing to receive the prasadam through post have to remit Rupees 210 by money order in the post offices. The address for remittance is The Executive Officer,
Travancore Devaswom Board,
Sabarimala, 689713,
Pathanamthitta District,

The prasadam packets will be dispatched through registered parcel post. Out of the money order an amount of Rupees 10 will be used for providing ‘annadanam’ (free meal) to the pilgrims. No idea how the Travancore Devaswom Boa…

Swami Chidananda on Spiritual Life and Spiritual Practices

The vast, vast majority of human beings are human animals only. They are totally rooted in body consciousness. They have no idea of being something else, something other. Even their mental function is instinctive. It's all a reaction to whatever happens to them, not a purposeful independent exercise of their mental faculty. They have no time for it. From the moment they get up, they are absorbed by their daily activities.

And the whole of the spiritual life is a gradual elimination, eradication, of the animal within, and the refinement or purification and education of the entire human nature so that it loses its movement in all other directions and starts taking on an ascending vertical direction. Once the human nature is given an upward turn, one simultaneously starts awakening the sleeping Divinity with the help of all one's spiritual practices. If one knows that the spiritual process, the spiritual life, is the elimination of the animal, the refining and directing upward of …