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Showing posts from March, 2008


Jawalamukhi Temple Chaitra Navratra Mela 2019 - Jawala Ji March - April Navratri Festival

JawalamukhiTemple located in Kangra District in Himachal Pradesh is one among the Shaktipeeths. Legend has it that the tongue of Sati (Shakti) fell here when Lord Vishnu cut the dead body of Sati into pieces to pacify Lord Shiva. Jawala Ji Chaitra Navratri Mela is one of the important fair held here. Jawalamukhi Temple Chaitra Navratra Mela 2019 date - April 6 to April 14.
This unique temple, also referred as Jawalaji, does not have an idol instead there are nine flames burning continuously from the fissures in the temple. Since the Goddess is worshipped in the form of celestial flame she is known as Jawalamukhi. Nobody has been able to recognize the fuel source of the sacred flame.


Nearly half a million devotees from Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Chandigarh, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and other parts of India arrive at Jawalamukhi temple during the Chaitra Navratri mela or Vasant Navratri festival.
Chaitra Navratri is the Durga Puja during the spring season. It is observed mainly…

Yoga Vasishta on Fate

There is nothing called fate.
Fate does not exist.
Fate is ever unreal.
Fate does nothing. Only imagination is such.
Except the state of a corpse, motionless is not seen in this world. The acquisition of results arises out of movement or action. Therefore fate is nonsensical.
Fate has been fashioned by fools. Those having that as the highest object are destroyed. But the wise have arrived at this position of excellence by means of manly effort.
Among those with weak intellects, fate is only a consolation in their sorrow. This is a comforting word. Really, there is no fate.
The attainment of fortunate or unfortunate things of a result accomplished by fruitful human effort in this world is described by the word ‘fate.’
On obtaining the results of one’s own actions, those statements such as ‘this is so circumstanced,’ have attained fame by the name ‘fate.’
Under those very circumstances, the firm belief that there is fate is assumed by the foolish on account of wrong perception, just as…

Upanishads Quotes on Brahman

Know Him Who is the origin and dissolution of the universe – the source of all virtues, the destroyer of all sins, the master of all good qualities, the immortal, and the abode of the universe – as seated in your own self. He is perceived as differed from, and transcending, the tree of Samsara as well as time and form.May we realize Him – the transcendent and adorable master of the universe – Who is the supreme Lord over all the lords, the supreme God above all the gods, and the supreme Ruler over all the rulers.He has nothing to achieve for Himself, nor has He any organ of action. No one is seen equal or superior to Him. His great power alone is described in the Vedas to be of various kinds, and His knowledge and strength and action are described as inherent in Him.No one in the world is His master, nor has anybody any control over Him. There is no sign by which He can be inferred. He is the cause of all and the ruler of individual souls. He has no parent, nor is there any one who is…

First Roti to Cow and Last Roti to Dog Helps in Solving Janam Kundli Problems

The core teaching of Hinduism is seeing the Divine in all animate and inanimate. Based on this teaching, Hindus have come up with numerous totke (small processes) for solving problems in life. Offering the first roti (chapathi or wheat flour bread) to cow; and the last roti to dog helps in solving Janam Kundli problems.

Now many people think this is just a superstition and it will not bring any changes in life. This is not true such processes help in the person connecting with other living beings. This develops positivity and weeds out negativity.


Janam Kundli problems are due to the bad positioning of Navgrahas or the nine planets. This period results in negative and destructing thinking. Such small processes helps in keeping out all kinds of bad thoughts and energy.

Such beliefs are not common among all Hindus. It is only believed by a few Hindus in a specific region.

This belief is more common in North India.

An Example of How Non-Hindus Especially Westerners View Hinduism

I accidentally stumbled on a western education blog discussing Hinduism. Most of the people who were participating in the discussion were not scholars but common people and they were learning about Hinduism in this education blog. The discussion was initiated by Mrs. Caracappa in her blog by asking – Do you think that Hinduism would be an easy religion for you to follow? Give examples from your book why you would think it is easy or not easy to follow.No idea which book they were discussing. If it is any of those books written by Christian Missionaries – it is an easy guess what the nature of the content will be.We get to read a lot of crap regarding Hindus and Hinduism on the internet most of which are sponsored by Christian missionaries. The aim of such websites, blogs and newspaper articles is mudslinging and to spread misinformation. Such articles on internet should be dismissed in the same manner in which Hindus thwarted all attempts by Christian missionaries to convert Hindus on…

Ancient Hindu Temple Excavated in Jaljali Village in Assam

The people in JaljaliVillage near MangaldaiTown in Assam always believed that the pond (Jaljali tank) in their village was holy. Villagers always equated the water in the pond to that of Ganga. And recently when the pond was cleaned, out came idols and sculptures of a Vishnu and Shiva temple.Villagers are elated at the discovery as it confirms their age-old belief regarding the sanctity of the Jaljali tank. They have started worshipping the idols. In fact, the village is already being frequented by thousands of people from nearby districts. Archeologists are of the view that the temples relics are dated to 10th or 11th century AD. It is being concluded that an earthquake might have destroyed the temple and buried it. The temple bears the stamp of the Indo Aryan style of architecture and was lying for centuries under water. Presently, there is a functional temple on the western banks of the Jaljali tank. The recently excavated idols and sculptures are placed here – importantly idols of…

Rigveda Quotes

Let your aims be common, and your hearts of one accord, and all of you be of one mind, so you may live well together.

The truth is One; the wise call it by many names.

Kindled in various forms, the perennial flame is One; sprinkling the world with golden beams at dawn; painting the evening clouds with changing colors, the sun is one.

One should perform karma with nonchalance without expecting the benefits because sooner or later one shall definitely get the fruits.

He who gives liberally goes straight to the gods; on the high ridge of heaven he stands exalted. Rig Veda

Hanuman Heritage Festival at Dattatreya Yoga Center in Trinidad and Tobago

The famous Dattatreya Ashram at Orangefield Road, Carapichaima in Trinidad is organizing a Hanuman Heritage Festival from April 10th to 20th, 2008. The DattatreyaYogaCenter in Trinidad and Tobago is noted for an inspiring temple and the world famous 85-foot statue of Lord Hanuman, which is one of the tallest Hanuman statues in the world. Hanuman Heritage Festival will be taking place under the guidance Sri Ganapathi Sachchidananda Swamiji. One of the main objectives of the festival is to explore and benefit from work, wisdom, devotion and exemplary life of Lord Hanuman for the attainment of a higher level of consciousness.There will be regular pujas during the festival days and includes Homams and Havans. The highlight of the festival is the lectures and discussions on Lord Hanuman by leading scholars from India, Trinidad and Tobago and other countries. The festival also provides the opportunity to experience Hindu culture through music, dance, art and cuisine. The festival conclud…

Swami Rama Quotes

You are searching for something without understanding that it is within you. Search within. This is a direct approach. Do not search for God outside. God is already within you. When you come to know that God dwells within you, then your life will totally change and you will be transformed. When you have perfect control over the modifications of the mind, you will attain the highest level of consciousness or samadhi.
When you practice meditation, initially you come in touch with yourself and all your thought patterns; you come to understand your inner dialogue. Then, you learn to discriminate – to select and reject; and finally, you learn how to work with yourself.Spiritual practices, undertaken at an early age, have a profound and long lasting effect.
Human beings have tremendous potential provided they are taught to train themselves on all levels – physical, mental, and spiritual. Let us teach our children how to become aware of themselves on all levels. With a calm and one-pointed min…

Online Live Darshan of Shiva Linga at the Kashi Vishwanath Temple

Shri Kashi Vishwanath Mandir in Varanasi, dedicated to Lord Shiva, is one of the most famous Hindu pilgrimage centers in India. Now the ShriKashiVishwanathTemple authorities have made arrangements for online live darshan of the Jyotirlinga (Shiva Linga) worshipped in the Viswanath Mandir. The KashiVishwanathTemple is one among the twelve Jyotirlingas in India. It is a great opportunity for Hindu devotees to have a glimpse of the highly venerated symbol of Brahman – the Shiva Linga – from the comfort of their home.

The live darshan can only be seen through the Internet Explorer Browser. The live streaming does not support Firefox and Opera browsers. The live darshan is on the Windows Media Player and you will need it to have enabled in your browser. Usually this option is automatically enabled in most browsers.

Please note: The online live darshan of the Shivling will be obstructed by devotees and therefore you will need tons of patience to have a proper glimpse of the Jyotirlinga. T…

A Temple Dedicated to Duryodhana in Kerala

Duryodhana, the eldest of the Kauravas and the main villain in the Mahabharata, is worshipped in certain temples in India. Temples exclusively dedicated to Duryodhan are very rare, the reason being his evil deeds against the Pandavas. One such rare temple dedicated to Duryodhana in South India is the MalanadaTemple in Kollam District in Kerala.
Legend has it that Duryodhana who was searching for the Pandavas during their exile got lost in the dense jungle here. A weary and tired Duryodhana was picked up by people of the Kurava community and they provided him food and shelter. In return, Duryodhana is believed to have helped the community.
Duryodhana is worshipped as ‘Malayappooppan’ and there is no idol for the deity. Rituals and customs followed here are Dravidian in nature and the chief priest of the temple is from the Kurava community.
The temple also has small shrines dedicated to other important characters in the Mahabharata who were allies of Duryodhan during the 18-day war. T…

Swami Abhedananda on the Concept of Good and Evil in Hinduism

In the voluminous writings of Hindu sages, there is no word that means creation out of nothing. The word, they use, literally means ‘projection’ and not creation, answering to the modern idea of evolution. They said that good and evil are relative terms, one of which cannot exist without the other. What we call good depends upon the existence of what we call evil, and evil exists only in relation to good. Being interdependent terms they cannot be separated. In trying to separate them and to make each stand by itself as independent of the other, we not only destroy their relative and interdependent nature, but also destroy the terms themselves.
‘Good and evil of this world of duality are unreal,are spoken of by words, and exist only in the mind.’ (Bhagavatam, XI, Chapter XXII.)
Evil cannot exist alone. If we try to make evil stand by itself as entirely separate from good, we can no longer recognize it as evil. Consequently, according to the Vedanta philosophers, the difference between g…

Vishvavani – Online Sanskrit Magazine

Vishvavani, the Online Sanskrit Magazine, is the outcome of an online network of students, faculty and alumni of Indian origin from various Universities in United States. Into its third edition in March 2008, Vishvavani features a wide range of topics including a Sanskrit crossword puzzle.

Currently, Vishvavani is the only active online Sanskrit magazine. Apoorvavani was the first online Sanskrit magazine but it is currently not active.
Vishvavani is brought out by Campus Samskritam Network (CSN) which mainly consists of members from MIT, UMD, CMU, UPitt, PSU, UPenn, Caltech, Purdue and others. Sowmya Joisa and Avinash Varna are the editors of the magazine.
The group is also promoting Sanskrit blogging and main aim of CSN is to promote Sanskrit, with emphasis on the US and US universities.
Vishvavani is currently hosted on speaksanskrit.org and you can read the magazine for free in PDF format here - Vishvavani Home Page. (update the link was removed from the original source)

Sri Ashutosh Maharaj Quotes on Religion

The word religion is derived from the Latin word ‘re ligare’. Re means ‘back’ and ligare means ‘to the origin’. Together they mean ‘that which binds one back to the origin’. The origin of all jivas is paramatma. To get to the origin is the ultimate aim of human life. This necessitates realization of God within the human body.Religion is essentially the manifestation of divinity already in man. It is not anything gross which is to be stuffed into a man from outside. It is present in every human being. It is essentially the uncovering of what lies hidden in the inner realm. It is seeing and experiencing the inner world with a divine eye, just as the two eyes see the maya-ridden world outside. While the latter binds us to the elusive phenomenal physical world of objects, the former unites us with Supreme Brahman resulting in the manifestation of our true divine nature.There is no real difference between an ignorant materialist and the highest ecclesiastical giant who can render high-wind…

Sayings of Basavanna

Why should you try to mend
The failings of the world, sirs?
Correct your bodies first, each one of you!
Correct your minds first, each one!
Lord Shiva does not approve of
Those who shed crocodile tears
To their neighbor’s grief.The rich will make temples for Siva.
What shall I, a poor man, do?
My legs are pillars, the body the shrine,
the head a cupola of gold.
Listen, O lord of the meeting rivers,
things standing shall fall,
but the moving ever shall stay.Basavanna

Swami Nityaswarupananda Quotes

Our life is a mixture of opposites like joy and sorrow, success and failure, good and evil... As long as we consider this world to be real, we cannot escape the pairs of opposites nor eradicate the sense of duty. The only way out of this state of things is to realize the unreality of the world, and renounce our identification with it. Being in the world but not of it.The Atman is the only substance of the universe, just as clay is the only substance of a pot. The pot is nothing but clay with name and form superimposed on it. So is this universe nothing but the Self with name and form superimposed on It. Just as waves, foam, and bubbles are nothing but the sea, and are non-different from it, so the universe is nothing but the Self, and is non-different from It.In reality the Self is ever free. It never enters into a state of bondage. It is our ignorance that we think ourselves bound; and this thought makes our supposed bondage persist and continue. If, however, we constantly think of o…

Mataji Vanamali on the Hindu Concept of Mother Goddess

The first word uttered by the human infant is ‘Maa’. Our first relationship with the world is through the mother. She is the embodiment of love, tenderness, security and comfort and the source of all nourishment. To the infant she is indeed God. To transfer this concept to a Cosmic Being who is the Mother of all, who nurtures and cares for all was but a step which all the ancient cultures took. Therefore the concept of the divine as the Mother is as old as life itself. She is the eternal womb of all creatures, human, animal and sub-human. Whenever you see maternal love, in a bird or animal or human being, know it to be but a reflection of the Divine Mother’s love for her creation. She is the one who has given us birth but she is also the one who can free us from this mundane existence.

In her transcendental aspect she is Para Brahma Swaroopini or the form of the Para Brahman or the Absolute. They cannot exist separately, like the dynamo and the battery which charges it, one cannot exis…

Are Hindu Calendars Faulty?

Based on Hindu calendars Makara Sankranti is celebrated in January 14 or 15 now. But the day the sun shines overhead on the Tropic of Capricorn (Makara) is on December 22 (the winter solstice). Biman Nath, an astronomer and writer, in an article in the Frontline titled ‘the story of India’s faulty calendars’ asserts that the Indian regional calendars are faulty and they are actually 24 days ahead of the correct Indian National Calendar or Saka calendar. To be frank I am always confused with the regional calendars in India. Indian states in the north and the east use a solar calendar in which months are either 30 or 31 days long. Kerala and Tamil Nadu also use a solar calendar. Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Gujarat use lunar calendars in which months are 29.5 days long. But I don’t know whether they are faulty simply because the explanations that we get on Indian calendars are confusing. It is hard for a common man to understand Indian regional calendars.The article ‘the s…

Swami Tejomayananda Quotes and Teachings

Swami Tejomayananda quotes and teachings are on various topics and are from numerous sources including books, newspaper, articles, videos and speeches. (Swami Tejomayananda, a disciple of Swami Chinmayananda, is the Chairman and spiritual head of Chinmaya Mission worldwide.)
Swami Tejomayananda quotes and teachings One can either be a master of circumstances or a victim of them. If one says that he has the inspiration but has no opportunities, then that person is not sufficiently inspired. A truly inspired person will create the opportunities and charge ahead. I heard a joke recently that illustrates what I am saying. It is said that one must learn from Noah. He floated his company when the world was in liquidation!
If you are truly inspired by your work or job, then you will be totally absorbed in it, and things or events around you will not distract you. So, most importantly, you have to find that work or job which truly inspires you. Also realize that someone else cannot live your…

Universal Society of Hinduism

Few days back several online newspapers carried a report about the formation of an organization named ‘Universal Society of Hinduism’ (USH). The President of the society is the Nevada-based Hindu priest Rajan Zed, who came into limelight by delivering open prayers in various state assemblies and the Senate. The executive director of the society is Journalist Dharam Loonaa.The newspaper reports said the organization aims to provide worldwide Hindu identity, enhance understanding of Hinduism, to foster inter-religious dialogue and to promote the ethics, spirit, culture and philosophy of Hindu heritage.But the formation of the organization was not reported by any prominent newspapers. Neither was I able to locate the website of the organization. I guess the organization is in its infancy.But yesterday some of the major newspapers and television channels did report that the Universal Society of Hinduism has expressed fear that the upcoming Hollywood movie ‘The Love Guru’ may lampoon the r…

Shri Shri Nimishananda Quotes on Awareness

What quality prevents life from becoming mechanical? What ingredient ignites zeal and keeps boredom at bay? Awareness. If we are constantly aware, life is always interestingWe enjoy everything for everything inspires us. Awareness is not alertness. Alertness requires effort and has an element of stress and tension. Awareness is alertness without tension. When we are in this relaxed state, zeal and interest are spontaneous.

From interest come memory and dedication. We should do nothing mechanically. Even stirring a spoon of sugar into a cup of tea should be done with complete awareness. Then there is always a deep sense of joy and connectivity with Divinity.Awareness is a relaxed and expansive state that eliminates tension. If we are constantly aware, we give cravings no scope to take root. Even drinking a cup of tea can be done with complete awareness so that we savor every sip. Then the tea is enjoyed by the body, senses and mind. There is satisfaction and no craving.

When we fulfill a…

Uttarakhand Vegetarian Dish and Snack – Urad Dal Ki Pakodi

Some of the vegetarian cuisines of Uttarakhand (Uttaranchal) are based on easily obtained seasonal ingredients. Recipes are simple and filling. Urad Ki Pakodi or Urad Daal Ki Pakodi is a dish specially made to mark celebratory and other occasions. Urad Ki PakodiFor 8 to 10 personsPre-preparation: Soak 1 cup split Urad dal with skin overnight. You can also use Urad dal without skin or polished one.Ingredients1 inch piece ginger, chopped coarse
1 green chilli
2-3 pieces of clove
½ tsp cumin powder
¼ tsp asafetida powder
Salt to taste
1 bowl of water
Oil for fryingFor Garnish2tbsp sesame and cumin. Cooking MethodStrain soaked urad daal well. If you are using urad with skin, the while washing rub it well to remove as many of the skins as possible and swirling them out. Place washed dal in a mixi or blender along with all the other ingredients – ginger, green chilli, clove, cumin, asafetida and salt. Make a grainy paste using the minimum amount of water.When in the paste form, remove it to a bowl…

Inspirational quotes from Swami Ranganathananda

Whatever may be the current maladies, whatever may be the dismal social situation around us, we may assure ourselves that these are only passing phases. There is enough wisdom and inspiration available in the world to take humanity on the road of man's spiritual growth…Vedanta says: Do not stagnate. That is the only warning it gives to man; do not convert wayside rest and sleep to death, but recoup and move on. Let the current of water flow; stagnant water is unhealthy; flowing water is pure and healthy. Human life must be a continuous unfoldment. Arrested and made stagnant at the sensate level, life ceases to be life and becomes death. Today's human life all over the world shows the evils of such stagnation. We have to stir up the waters of life, remove the clogging materials, and make it flow on as a healthy stream of human energy, revealing greater and greater dimensions of truth, beauty, and goodness.Swami Ranganathananda

Bhagavad Gita and Communism

In a thought provoking article written in the New Indian Express, Justice K P Radhakrishna Menon suggests that the admirable communist principle that there shall not be differentiation among human beings lies hidden in the Bhagavad Gita.
After briefly explaining Communism – as a political doctrine based on Marxism and Leninism – and the failure of communist states, Justice Radhakrishna Menon explains how Bhagavad Gita tries to attain equality through the concept of Brahman.
Some excerpts from the article: (Could not find the link to the original article on the newspaper’s website as it appeared in a city edition of the New Indian Express)
Marx lost sight of the differences seen in human beings living at a sensory level, out of which emerges all the evils in society, namely crime, violence, evils of caste and racial attitude, evils produced by the unchecked desire for money and power and such similar evils when he established scientific communism ‘which has as its central tenet the co…

Tejo Bindu Upanishad Quotes on Jivanmukti

He who realizes I am beyond the three bodies, I am the pure consciousness and I am Brahman is said to be a Jivanmukta.
He is said to be a Jivanmukta who realizes I am of the nature of the blissful and of the supreme bliss, and I have neither body nor any other thing except the certitude ‘I am Brahman’ only.
He is said to be a Jivanmukta who has not at all got the ‘I’ in myself, but who stays in Chinmatra (absolute consciousness) alone, whose interior is consciousness alone, who is only of the nature of Chinmatra, whose Atman is of the nature of the all-full, who has Atman left over in all, who is devoted to bliss, who is undifferentiated, who is all-full of the nature of consciousness, whose Atman is of the nature of pure consciousness, who has given up all affinities (for objects), who has unconditioned bliss, whose Atman is tranquil, who has got no other thought (than Itself) and who is devoid of the thought of the existence of anything.
Tejo Bindu Upanishad (Source: The discussio…

Sri Sri Ravishankar on Shivratri and How to Observe or Celebrate Mahashivaratri

Shivaratri is the day of Lord Shiva. Shiva is the lord of meditation and therefore the lord of awakening. Shiva Tatva means to be awakened. Shivratri is thus an occasion to awaken one’s self from all sorts of slumber. Shivaratri is not a night to be slept over. One should try and be up through the night. It signifies being aware of everything you have and being grateful about it. Be grateful for the happiness which leads to growth, and also for sadness which gives a depth to life. This is the right way of observing Shivaratri. For the pious, the following method of Shiva worship is advisable – sit down in lotus posture, do some Pranayam to stabilize your breath, then indulge in Dhyana, followed by chanting of ‘Om Namah Shivaya’. It is the greatest mantra and the devout should drown himself in its Kirtan. Shivaratri worship leads to fulfillment of a devotee’s wishes. There are certain days and time frames in a year that enhance one’s mental and spiritual faculties. In such times, whate…

Mathur – A Karnataka Village That Speaks in Sanskrit

Sanskrit, or Samskrita, is the primary tongue of the villagers in Mattur, or MathurVillage in Karnataka. The village, which is around 10 km from Shimoga, having been making sure that the ancient language flourishes in their village. Subha J Rao writes in the Magazine section of The Hindu about this interesting village and the effort the villagers are taking in keeping Sanskrit alive.Some excerpts from the articleThe seed for change was sown in 1982, when the organization, Samskruta Bharathi, got together a 10-day programme to teach the villagers spoken Sanskrit. And, people in this primarily agricultural society eagerly took part in the unique experiment. Now, Sanskrit has become the primary tongue for many of the residents.This village and the neighboring Hosahalli are mainly populated by Sanketis, who speak Sanskrit at home. And, it is not just them who speak the language. The village has a fair share of people from other communities, and all of them are exposed to Sanskrit. Local t…

Hanuman Comic from Virgin Comics and Deepak Chopra

Comic Book based on Hanuman is the March 2008 edition in the India Authentic Series presented by Deepak Chopra and Virgin Comics. This is the 11th book in the India Authentic Series based on Hindu Gods. The previous editions of India Authentic series from Virgin comics have been noted for its high quality illustrations. About comic based on Hanuman from the flyer from Virgin comics.A mere mention of his name is said to put fear in the hearts of the mightiest demons. It is said that the chant of his name protects one from the vilest of evil spirits. He is god unlike any other. Born with the body of an ape, but a heart as large as hundred suns, blessed with the strength to move mountains, leap across oceans and fly faster than the swiftest of birds.From the pages of the great Indian epic Ramayana, Virgin Comics and Deepak Chopra as part of the pathbreaking India Authentic series, bring to you the tale of a god who is both a scholar and warrior, one whose name is synonymous with devoti…