Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from September, 2008


Tomb of Raja Ram Mohan Roy Restored in Bristol England

Raja Ram Mohan Roy is one of the great reformers of India who challenged unethical practices Hindu society and culture and fought for women's rights and for an end to the practice of ‘sati.’ He died in 1833 while visiting Bristol in Britain. A tomb was raised here his memory. Raja Ram Mohan Roy’s tomb at Arnos Vale in Bristol had fallen into disrepair. The tomb, an architectural gem, was recently restored and opened to public. The restoration of the tomb was made possible by a donation last year of more than £50,000 from Aditya Poddar, a Kolkata Businessman.In 1997, a statue of Raja Ram Mohan Roy was placed on College Green in Bristol.

Dancing Ganesha Idol from Lladro

Lladro, a Spanish firm noted for high quality porcelain figurines, has issued a limited edition porcelain figurine of Lord Ganesha in a dancing form. The porcelain figurine of Ganesh is part of Lladro 2008 fall issue. The figurine is presently available in many online stores and retails for $920.Dancing Ganesh idol has all the usual attributes from Ganesha’s iconography and includes the gada (or mace), the paasha (noose or rope), and the broken tusk. Dancing Ganesha is third in a series comprising four pieces inspired in the traditional iconography of Ganesha – earlier Lladro had released Veena Ganesha and Bansuri Ganesha.

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 2018, the display of Navaratri Dolls begins on October 10 and ends on October 18.
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 …

Kumbha Rashi Navratri Mantra

Chanting of the Kumbha Rashi Navratri Mantra helps, Kumbh Rashi born person to attain wealth, prosperity, property, job and desire fulfillments. The mantra should be chanted after taking bath in the morning. You should sit in your pooja room or in a quiet place and chant the mantra.

The mantra is ऊॅंप्रभानमः

The mantra should be chanted 21 times.

Chanting of the mantra also helps in overcoming your enemies.

Related article on Navratri
What Are The Food That Can Be Eaten During Navratri Fasting?

Only way to self realization is through knowledge – Yoga Vasishta Quotes

Oneself is one’s own friend or enemy. If one does not save oneself, there is no other remedy. (Yoga Vasishta VI.b. 161.18)What is not attained by oneself through one’s own persistent effort… cannot be attained through anything else in all the three worlds. (Yoga Vasishta IV. 43.18)Devotion to Gods, like Vishnu, is invented only to put on the right track those fools who run away from study, effort and thinking. (Yoga Vasishta V. 43.20)The artificial and showy ways of worshipping God are only for the ignorant and for those whose minds are not fully grown up and are fickle. (Yoga Vasishta VI.A. 30.5)Yoga Vasishta

Inspirational Thoughts from Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi Swamigal

This inspirational dialogue happened when Dr. S.I.Tulaev, Russian Indologist, had an interview with Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi Swamigal, popularly known as Kanchi Paramacharya.Dr. S.I.Tulaev: A man has no temple or church and does not heed to any dogmas. But he always thinks good and does good throughout his life? Could you kindly tell me, Sir, whether such a man has any salvation at the end of his life?Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi Swamigal – Yes…. Don’t think that I am giving you this answer after seeing the modern standards of life. No. This is said in our ancient scriptures themselves.There are many aspirants.The Agnostics, those who enquire into the nature of God and by using their own brain come to the conclusion that there is no God. Secondly, Buddhists, or the Sunyavadins, who believe in non-existence.Thirdly, Jains, who believe in suffering by putting their body to various austerities, vratas.Fourthly, Saivaites, Vaishnavites and others who believe in a personal Go…

Change of Tamil New Year from the First Day of Chithirai to First of Thai legal, says Tamil Nadu High Court

The present Tamil Nadu State Government had changed the Tamil New Year from the first day of the Tamil month of Chithirai (mid-April) to first of Thai (mid-January) through legislation in the beginning of year 2008. This was challenged in the court and now the High Court has given its verdict that there is no unconstitutionality or illegality in changing the Tamil New Year to Thai first day, which is also the Pongal day. The decision to change the New Year date by the state government is based on a decision made in 1922 when over 500 scholars, led by Maraimalai Adigal, founder of the Thani Tamil Iyakkam (Pure Tamil Movement) met at Pachaiyappa’s college in Chennai and decided that Tamils needed a separate calendar in the name of Tamil savant Tiruvalluvar. They also determined that the birth year of Tiruvalluvar was 31 BC. This was accepted in 1971 by the then Tamil Nadu Government headed by M Karunanidhi.Giving its approval to the change of Tamil New Year day the court made the follow…

Swami Ranganathananda on the Significance of River Ganga to Hindus

A special object of reverence in India is the River Ganga, whose water is treated as the symbol of God Himself. No river in the world is treated with such reverence as the Ganga in India, and this from pre-Buddhistic times.
Millions of Hindus bathe in it every year and carry its water in brass pots and jars to their homes, even to foreign countries, to sip a few drops every drop or on special occasions.
A few drops of the sacred water of the Ganga are put into the mouth of dying persons by their relatives. On its banks, thousands of people practice meditation and austerity, getting the stimulation of its holy atmosphere.
Swami Ranganathananda (Source: Eternal values for a changing society)

Interiors of Ananda Nilayam of Tirupati Temple to be Gold Plated – O Balaji when will realization happen

The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams Trust (TTDs) is planning to gold plate the interiors of Ananda Nilayam, the sanctum sanctorum of Lord Venkateswara. The aim is to convert TirupatiTempleBalajiTemple into a GoldenTemple. The interiors – including the walls and ceiling – of Ananda Nilayam will be gold plated after consulting Agama Pandits and archeologists. The exteriors of Ananda Nilayam are already gold plated. Many people want to please Lord Venkateswara with the yellow metal or other costly items when the Lord was pleased with the sweat-drenched beaten rice (Poha or Aval) of Kuchela, which even contained mud. HE was satisfied with the remnants of food that Draupadi gave. HE was satisfied with the gruel that Vidura gave in his humble abode. He exists everywhere even in gold and dirt. For thousands of years Santana Dharma has been trying to teach this immortal truth but sadly very few realize it. Nearly 100 tonnes of pure gold will be needed for the purpose of gold plating and it is …

Navratri Fasting – How to do Navaratri Upvaas?

There are many Hindus who observe Navratri Vrat or fasting during the nine days of Navratras. Most people observe a partial fast during Navaratri and abstain from non-vegetarian food, alcohol etc.  In 2018, Navratri begins on October 10 and ends on October 18. The fasting is generally dedicated to Goddess Durga. In South India, especially in Kerala, Navratri Vrat is dedicated to Goddess Saraswathi. Puranas indicated that the importance of Navarathri fast was narrated by Goddess Durga to one of her devotees.
There are no strict rules for any fasting in Hindu religion and usually, the devotees decide how they want to do the fasting during the period.
In South India, the nine days of Navratri is divided into three parts – three days each for Goddess Durga, Goddess Lakshmi and Goddess Saraswati. In North India, there is no division but is dedicated to Mother Goddess or Shakti.
People take bath in the morning and evening during Navratri period. Some devotees only consume food after bathi…

Dr B L Atreya on Philosophy in India

In India, philosophy has never been only an intellectual pursuit of knowledge of the Ultimate Reality. The task of a philosopher here is not over with his having constructed a metaphysical system, which satisfies the intellect. The intellect is not the whole man. He has other aspects, equally or probably more alive in him, which seek for satisfaction. Man aspires to seek for Power and Joy as much as for knowledge. It is really doubtful whether man would have philosophized at all, if he were absolutely happy and if all his wants were satisfied. The chief concern of man therefore is not to know what God is but to know how he can become God. If the self-satisfied and perfect absolute God is ever free from want and is Blissful in itself, what is that to us? It will be like an enormous treasure of wealth existing somewhere, which we cannot use. That everything is dear to us for own sake is an eternal truth discovered by Yajnavalkya long, long ago. An important part of the task of a philoso…

Words of Wisdom from Prasnottari of Adi Shankara

What is Holy Water?
One’s own pure mind.

What is Realization?
That which brings about freedom.

Who is the greatest of enemies?
Lust combined with anger, falsehood, greed and desire.

What is the source of sorrow?
The notion ‘mine.’

What is great gift?
Fearlessness at all times.

Guruvayur Sri Krishna Temple in Kerala provides Online offering facility

The famous Guruvayur SriKrishnaTemple in Kerala is now providing online facility to devotees to conduct pujas and offerings at the temple through its official website. Guruvayoor SriKrishnaTemple in Kerala is visited by thousands of devotees daily from India and abroad and many people find it very difficult to conduct pujas or make offerings. Now the Guruvayur Devaswom Board (the governing body of the Temple) is providing online facility to devotees to perform offering from anywhere in the world. You can also make online donation to the temple.The online offerings that can be made are: PalpayasamNaipayasamNarayaneeyam 1 chapterGanapathi ArchanaButter NivedyamSugar & PlantainBhagavatha SapthahamBhagavatham 1 ChapterArchana PurushasookthamArchana AshtotharamArchana ShasranamamSastha ArchanaGhee Lamp 1Sreekovil Ghee Lamp6Sreekovil Ghee Lamp AllSree Kovil Ghee LampLalitha SahasranamamBhagavath Geetha 1 chapterAshtapathi One ChapterLalitha Sahasranama ArchanaYou can find more details…

Hermann Hesse’s Novel Siddhartha Translated in Sanskrit

Siddhartha, based on the early life of Gautama Buddha, is one of the most famous novels of Hermann Hesse, who received Nobel for Literature in 1946. The translation into Sanskrit, which was originally written in German, is done by L. Sulochana Devi, who is a Reader at GovernmentSanskritCollege, Trivandrum.Sanskrit Version of Siddhartha is published by the Kerala Chapter of the Hermann Hesse Society of India. Siddharta has been one of Hesse's most widely read works. Its English translation in the 1950s became a spiritual guide to a number of people around the world.

Threat of Submersion Looms Over Mamallapuram Temples as Sea Water Level is on the Rise

The Mamallapuram Temples, earlier known as Mahabalipuram, located along the Coromandel Coast in Tamil Nadu faces the threat of submersion due to sea level rise. Mamallapuram monuments and temples were founded by the Pallava kings in the 7th and 8th centuries and are carved on rocks. They are also on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The famous ShoreTemple is also under threat from sea level rise.
V Gangadharan Writes in ExpressBuzz about the threatAddressing a joint expert workshop on conservation organized by the Archaeological Survey of India and the Janssen Phasrmaceutica, Belgium here, Director of Environment, Government of Tamil Nadu, R Annamalai, said the issue of climate change poses a real threat to the conservation of the timeless monuments. The sea level has constantly risen in Mamallapuram too like elsewhere.“If the trend continued, the monuments which are rich reminders of our hoary cultural heritage may go under the sea by the end of this century,” he said, adding that a mon…

Bhagavan Nityananda on the OM Symbol

The Omkar vibrates like a storm in the sky. It has neither beginning nor end. It is the stage manager of the divine drama. The body of man is a string of Om, it is filled with Om. All that is, inside us, outside us, everywhere, is born of Om. It is present in everything. The Shakti that is the Omkar is not finite, It is infinite and indivisible. It exists in all creatures. Pranava is Om. When Om unites with prana and moves in the body, this is Pranava. When nature and the subtle are separate, it is Pranava; when both are felt to be one, there is the Oneness - Om.Om is seen everywhere. The Shakti that is Om fills and penetrates the universe, It is formless, It is the light in all directions. Bhagavan Nityananda

Why Mango Leaves are used for Decoration during Hindu Pujas and festivals in South India?

Torana or festoon of fresh mango leaves is an indispensable part in all South Indian Hindu pujas and festivals. Mango leaves are strung on a thread and hung on the doors and windows. The main reason why mango leaf is preferred is that they last longer than other leaves. They are also thick and sturdy. There is no specific symbolic meaning as such.It is believed that the long life of mango leaves helps it to generate oxygen. And this property of the leaf helps it to absorb carbon dioxide and infuse fresh oxygen. Therefore there is a popular belief that mango leaves are specifically used during pujas and festivals to generate oxygen as large crowd gather during these days in a confined place.Mango leaves are also used to cover the neck of the Kalash pot used during Puja.

Thoughts on Control of Mind from Yoga Vasishta

The mind, tainted by desire and aversion, contributes to worldly life; the very mind, stripped of them, is said to bring it to an end. It is mind that is creator of the world. Mind is the real person. That what is done by the mind is considered as really done and not that which is done by the body only.Except through the extinction of the mind brought about by the renunciation of the desired object – which is within a person’s capacity to do – there is no way to attain the plane of beatitude.Summoning up your will, by reducing the mind to nought, rise to the supreme state where there is none – neither you nor anyone else.Yoga Vasishta(Source: Journey to the Sublime – compiled by K N Subramanian)

Goddess Worship in Hinduism

Hinduism is perhaps the only living religion that has a long and thriving tradition of Goddess Worship dating from ancient times. The Worship of Mother Goddess is found in the Indus valley civilization and terracotta Mother Goddess figures dating back to 1000 BC has been found in other parts of India. Goddess Worshipped in Hindu religion is associated with procreation, motherly care, preservation, fertility, nourishment, knowledge, wealth, savior in times of difficulty, love and compassion. Along with her positive traits, she can also be a terror, who will unleash calamity; she can cause and cure distresses. Thus Mother Goddess is also believed to be a personification of Nature – she is Shakti – nothing exists without Her. It must be noted here that that Mother Goddess cult developed and flourished in India before the arrival of the idea of religion. The idea of religion was alien to India and was introduced by Muslim invaders and later on by Europeans and Christian missionaries. Rig …

Why is Vishwakarma Puja celebrated on a fixed date – September 17?

Vishwakarma Puja, or Biswakarma Jayanti, is celebrated annually on September 17 in Bengal, Orissa, Jharkhand, Assam, Tripura and other parts of Eastern India. Majority of the Hindu festivals are not celebrated on a constant date because most auspicious days and festivals depend on the lunar calendar and on tithi – lunar day, which changes annually. But majority of times Vishwakarma puja falls on September 17 (very rarely it might vary by a day).
This is because Vishwakarma Puja day is calculated based on the transit of the sun. The two major schools of almanacs followed in Bengali are the he Suryasiddhanta and Bisuddhasiddhanta. Both subscribe to the same view.
Vishwakarma Puja is dedicated to Lord Vishwakarma the divine architect of the universe in Hinduism. Sudeshna Banerjee writes about this interesting aspect in The Telegraph, Calcutta. “Vishwakarma puja is scheduled on the last day of the Bengali month of Bhadra, more specifically on Bhadra sankranti. That is when the sun transits…

Quotes – Indira Gandhi on Nataraja Idol

One cannot but marvel at the deep insight and sweep of imagination of our ancients to visualized cosmic energy in the form of Nataraja. The dance of the Nataraja symbolizes truth and beauty; realization and dissolution; force and rhythm; movement and change; time flowing and time still. The Nataraja is a representation of the divine as creator and artist.Indira Gandhi – Former Prime Minister of India
(Source: In her foreword to C. Sivaramurti's monograph of 1974 on Nataraja)

Pitri Paksha

Shraddh or Shradh offered during Pitri Paksha (dark fortnight or Krishna Paksha) in the month of Ashwin or Ashwini (September – October) is of great importance in Hindu religion. Shraddh, also known as Tarpan, is the ceremonies and rituals performed for the departed souls of dead ancestors in Hinduism. Pitri Paksha Shradh is a period of 15 days and the most important day is the Mahalaya day. It is believed that the souls will attain peace by the Shraddh rituals performed during the fortnight. In 2017, Pitri Paksha begins on September 6 and ends with Mahalaya Pitri Paksha on September 19.

It must be noted that in regional calendar followed in Maharashtra Pitri Paksha falls in the month of Bhadrapada.

According to Hindu tradition, the Shraddh performed on Ashwin Pitri Paksha reaches the ancestors immediately and their souls will rest in peace. Hindu Puranas are full of details about Shraddh, especially Agni Purana, Garuda Purana and Matysa Purana. It is Yama, the god of death in Hindu…

Challenge Christian Conversion Methods in India with Non-Violence and Self Introspection

Violence is not the answer to any problem. Violence only breeds hatred, resentment and more violence and the vicious cycle continues. The conversion method adopted by Christians in India was condemned by Hindus in private and many Hindus showed a callous attitude towards the Christian conversion issue. But dramatic developments around the world in the past three decades saw secular Hindus becoming insecure and threatened and this was cleverly exploited by fundamentalists. A very minority section in Hindu society started adopting tit for tat method and the majority of secular Hindus kept silent.Christian aggression in the form of conversion was met with violence by Hindus. Churches were attacked or burned, poor people were killed and thousands were rendered homeless. What did Hindu society gain from this meaningless violence? Nothing! In a democratic society there are several non-violent methods to show protest. Printed literatures and methods employed by Christian missionaries for con…

Aditya Purana Quotes

Shiva says to Skanda: Jnana (knowledge) is never the attribute of Atma (Self). Atma itself is of the nature of Jnana, which is all pervasive, eternal and auspicious. I am the self of all beings. The supreme ruler is one only. All the objects are fictitiously imposed on me. All the world is only Consciousness. Ignorant people see it as world. Wise people see the world as the mere Self. This truth, incomprehensible for the ordinary, was taught by Vashishta to Rama in bygone times. Aditya Purana – Chapter 15(Source: Journey to the Sublime – compiled and edited by K. N. Subramanian)

Oldest Community Durga Puja Pandal in Kolkata City

The Durga Puja Pandal and ‘baroari’ puja of Bhowanipur Sanatan Dharmatsahini Sabha on Balaram Bose Ghat Road in Bhowanipore is the oldest community Durga Puja in Kolkata. The first community Durga Puja was held here in 1910 when the city was Calcutta and was the capital of British India. The puja is being held here for 99 years without any break. In 2008, the Durga Puja of Bhowanipur Sanatan Dharmatsahini Sabha will begin on October 4. Next year it will be the 100th year of Durga Puja celebrations.Sudeshna Banerjee Writes in The Telegraph“The puja may have receded from the spotlight but it never stopped, not even during the famine of 1943,” says Anil Mukherjee, the 83-year-old puja committee president whose grandfather Khagendranath Sashtri, a Gita scholar, was one of the founders. The area was home to author Premendra Mitra, mathematics teacher Keshab Chandra Nag and Justice Shyama Prasad Mukherjee, who were all involved with the puja. The souvenirs still carry a list of the office…

Ramayana The Epic – New 3D Animated Feature Film on Ramayan

Epic Ramayana is a favorite subject for Indian animation industry. There have been numerous animation projects based on Ramayana and the latest to join the list is ‘Ramayana The Epic’, directed by Chetan Desai and produced by Maya Entertainment Pvt Ltd. The 100-mintue 3D Animated Feature Film will feature Hindi actors Manoj Bajpai, Juhi Chawla, and Ashutosh Rana in the voices of Lord Ram, Mata Sita, and Ravan.The Hindi language version of ‘Ramayana The Epic’ is expected to release in early 2009. Later, the movie will be dubbed into regional languages and English.(Image belongs to Maya Entertainment Ltd.)

Chola Period Shiva Nataraja Bronze Auction To Fetch More Than A Million Dollars

Christie’s, one of world’s leading art business and a fine arts auction house, is auctioning a Chola Period Shiva Nataraja Bronze idol in New York on September 16, 2008 and the estimated auction price is more than one million dollars. The Nataraja statue from Tamil Nadu in South India belongs to the Chola Period – 975 AD. In the idol, Lord Shiva as Nataraja is dancing over the dwarf Apasmara with his left leg raised, his principal right hand in abhaya mudra and his principal left hand pointed towards his raised foot, holding a damaru and flaming oil lamp in his other hands, the snake coiled about his waist and the goddess Ganga reclining on his flying tresses, surrounded by an aureole of flames.
The height of the idol is 73.7 cm. Estimated price is $1,000,000 - $1,500,00. This idol is an early example where the flaming halo forms an arch as opposed to a circle in middle to late Chola. Only very few such idols are in private or public collections.Apart from Shiva Natara…

Mankameshwar Temple in Lucknow Gets First Woman Chief Priest

The famous MankameshwarTemple in Lucknow gets first woman chief priest or Mahant. Arunima Singh (25) took over as the first woman Mahant of Mankameshwar Temple on Tuesday. A Mahant in Hinduism is a chief priest of a temple or the head of an Ashram. Arunima Singh, whose new name is Devaigya Puri, holds a diploma in pathology from Indian Institute of Paramedics in Delhi. She succeeds her Guru Mahant Keshav Giri.Virendra Nath Bhatt reports in Indian ExpressDid she face any opposition on grounds of gender? “Tough opposition was expected at the election of a woman as mahant of the MankameshwarTemple but it turned out to be a smooth affair. I had the blessings of my guruji and support of people,” said a beaming mahant Devagiya Puri, facing a rush of disciples eager to touch her feet and seek her blessings. “A divine soul has no gender. Guru parampara is an ancient tradition and anybody can be a mahant, “said mahant Meera Puri, who represents the Shree Panch Dasnaam Junagadh Akhara. Presiden…

Symbolism of Dandiyas – The sticks used during Navratri Dandiya Ras in Gujarat

Dandiyas are the sticks used during Navaratri Dandiya Ras dance in Gujarat. Since the dance involves the rhythmical striking of the Dandiyas, it also referred as stick dance. Dandiyas are referred as dancing sticks. Dandiya Ras dance take place every night during the nine nights of Navratras. 
Each dancer participating in Dandiya Ras carries small decorated wooden sticks which are struck in rhythm. The rhythmical striking of the Dandiyas has a symbolic meaning derived from Gujarati culture and Hindu legends. The Dandiya Ras dancers waving the decorated sticks represent harvesters using their sickles on paddy field. This interpretation is based on the belief that Navratri was once a harvest celebration.
Another interpretation is that the Dandiya Ras dancers swirling round in circles with their sticks colliding in mid-air represents the warriors in the battle between Lord Ram and the Ravana in the Ramayana.

Reformation in Hindu Society is the need of the hour

It is high time that Hindus thought about reformation in Hindu society and religion. There is widespread inequality and there is a lack of concern for impoverished Hindus and this is damaging Hinduism. A section of Hindu society has progressed economically in the last couple of decades, primarily due to their hard work and willingness to adapt to the modern needs. But majority of Hindus are still fighting in the name of caste and they are being exploited by politicians, fundamentalists and Christian missionaries.Untouchability and caste discrimination – Indian constitution has done all that is possible to stop this heinous practice. But sadly Untouchability and caste discrimination still persists in Hindu society. Laws are not going to change the situation; change should happen in the mindset of the people. Know that all this, whatever moves in this moving world, is enveloped by Brahman. Therefore find your enjoyment in renunciation; do not covet what belongs to others – this first st…

Anantha Vratam

Anantha Vratam, also known as Ananta Chaturdasi or Anandapadmanabha Vrat, is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. In 2018, the date of Ananta Vratam is September 23. It is believed that Lord Vishnu appeared in the form of Anandapadmanabha sleeping on the serpent Ananta – the famous Ananta Shayana form. The main ritual on the day is the tying of a sacred thread known as Ananta Daram.
The observance of Ananta Vrata is believed to rid one from all sorrows. Escape from sorrow is not possible by merely performing rituals. But by realizing what Ananta Shayana symbol represents. Meditating on the symbolism represented in Sri Narayana in yoga-nidra on a great serpent bed (Ananta). It is for each person to realize the symbolism. Rituals are just an initial step in the long journey of self realization.
You can find more details about how to observe the Anantha Vratam in this post.

Management Course to Study Hindu Temple Administration

The unique Management course to study Hindu Temple Administration is offered by SomnathSanskritUniversity and is aptly named – Mandir Vyavasthapan. Some people might want to immediately retort saying that Hindu Temples are not business centers. But the amount of donation that several temples are receiving is so huge that most of them are groping in the dark and need professional advice. Professional management is also need to manage crowds during festivals and auspicious days, also in preservation of the temple architecture and above all in matters of security in temples. The one-year diploma course, Mandir Vyavasthapan, was introduced last year by SomnathSanskritUniversity in Gujarat and the response was overwhelming. The course is not merely limited to accounts; there are other subjects like temple architecture, rituals, event management, crowd management, Sanskrit, English, and law.First batch of 500 students are awaiting the results. Candidates have to pass class XII to gain admis…

Dr Annie Besant on the Bhagavad Gita

Moderation is therefore the keynote of the Bhagavad Gita and the harmonizing of all the constituents of man, till they vibrate in perfect attunement with the One, the Supreme Self.Have no personal interest in the event; carry out the duty imposed by the position in life, realize that Ishvara, at once Lord and Law, is the doer, working out the mighty evolution that ends in Bliss and Peace; be identified with Him by devotion, and then perform duty as duty, fighting without passion or desire, without anger or hatred; thus activity forges no bonds, Yoga is accomplished, and the soul is free.Dr Annie Besant

Hindu Blog Turns 2

The first post on hindu-blog.com happened two years ago. It was a spurt of the moment decision to begin Hindu Blog. With no good guide to follow, I groped in the dark during the first few months. There were no visitors, no friends, no ideas exchanged but I was learning a lot about Hinduism. So the thought of quitting never came to my mind. And by the time the core teachings of Sanatana Dharma had done its magic – it taught me that all I had to do was realize the Brahman in me and what was stopping me from self realization was the ego and ignorance that had accumulated from various sources. So to cleanse myself of ego and ignorance, I started learning and it continues…While learning, I came across several interesting ideas, thoughts and facts and I started sharing it through the blog. Then slowly people started visiting the blog, ideas were exchanged and ideas for a particular post started evolving from these exchanges. So Hindu Blog is primarily the result of what Hindus want to know …

Thoughts of Sri Swami Chidananda – Truth is Existence, Eternity

The nature of the Supreme is existence. This can be illustrated by an example. You go to a jungle and see a tree there. The tree is. Suppose a wood-cutter cuts the tree; it is then called ‘log’. Though the tree has changed its form and name, its existence has not disappeared. It exists in the name and form of the log. If the log is then made into planks of wood, then the log is not there, but the planks of wood are, or each plank of wood is, there. The existence aspect continues. Suppose these planks are converted into tables or chairs; then the planks are not there, but still the tables and chairs are there. If after some years the tables and chairs become useless and are reduced to pieces of wood, then the tables and chairs are not there. If these pieces of wood are burnt, then the ashes remain. The wood now exists as the ashes. And if the ashes are also annihilated, according to the scientists, they still remain as atoms. Thus existence continues. The ultimate Truth is Existence, E…

Official website of GSB Seva Ganesh Mandal in Wadala

G S B Sarvajanik Ganeshotsava Mandal in Wadala is one of the richest and popular Ganapati Pandals in Mumbai. This is the 57th year of Ganeshotsava celebrations of the GSB Seva Mandal in Wadala (Matunga). The official website of the mandal is offering the opportunity to book the pujas online and also make donations online. The annual Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav takes place  at the Dwrakanath Bhavan Complex.
The website has pages on history of the mandal, social activities undertaken by the samiti and detail information on daily schedule. There is also a photo gallery. You can find the official website of G. S. B. Sarvajanik Ganeshotsava Mandal here.

A List of Popular Ganesh Pandals in Mumbai during Ganesh Chaturthi 2008

There are thousands of Ganesh Pandals in Mumbai during the Ganeshotsava festival. Each mandal tries to outsmart the other by bringing in fresh ideas to the pandals. Lord Ganesha is represented differently in each pandal. It is impossible to say which one is the best but there a few pandals that get attraction due to devotion, simplicity, tradition, history and innovative ideas.Update:-Popular Ganesh Pandals 2009 in Mumbai
Here is a list of Ganapati pandals in Mumbai during Vinayaka Chaturthi 2008. Please note that the list is not based on any criteria. Keshavji Naik Ganpati at Girgaum is the oldest Sarvajanik Ganesh Mandal in Mumbai Located at Tilak Times Keshavji Naik Chawl, Girgaum, the history of the mandal dates back to the first Sarvajanik Ganesh festival in Maharashtra in 1893. The 2.5 feet idol here is noted for its simplicity. There is no much fanfare but mandal still keeps the tradition of Sarvajanik Ganesh festival call given by Lokmanya Tilak.Lalbaugcha Raja in Parel is undo…

Swami Harshananda on the Symbolic meaning of Nandi – the bull in front of Shiva Temples

Nandi, the happy one, – the bull on which Lord Shiva rides – represents virility and strength, the animal in man. In Shiva temples, there is always a reclining bull placed in front of the chief shrine or just outside it, with the head turned away from the deity but the gaze fixed on it. It is interpreted as the Jivatman, the individual soul, with its animal nature pulling it away from God, but His grace pulling it back to him.Swami Harshananda(Source: Principal Symbols of World Religion by Swami Harshananda)

Official Website of Khairatabad Ganesha

Hyderabad Khairatabad Ganesha is one of the most popular Ganesh Pandals in India and the Ganapati idol here is more than 40-feet in height and is the tallest Vinayaka Chaturthi Ganesh idol in the world. This year Ganapathi Deva Khairatabad is offering the opportunity to request for pooja online through its official website.
The Official website of Khairatabad Ganesha also has an interesting session on the making of Ganesha idol.
Another wonderful page is the photo gallery of the  Khairatabad Ganesha idols of yesteryears from 1954 to the current year.
You can find the official website here - ganapathideva.org.

Introduction to Vedanta in Online Virtual Classroom

Swami Sunirmalananda, a monk of the Ramakrishna Order, will be introducing Vedanta in an online virtual classroom on Sunday, 07 September, 2008 10:00 PM To 11:00 PM (GMT-03:00) Brasilia. The online virtual classroom is available on website WiZiQ.Swami Sunirmalananda will be talking about the following subjects in the online class:What is this Vedanta?What is its history? What has it contributed to the world?How can Vedanta affect our day-to-day lives?What has this philosophy, or culture, or religion to do with the rest of the world?Can the world become better if Vedanta spreads?Can anybody, of any faith and culture, accept Vedanta?You can join the public session at www.wiziq.com/public.WiZiQ is web portal where you can teach and learn using an easy-to-use Virtual Classroom.

Learn Bhagavad Gita Online in Virtual Classroom

Narottamanand Das, a computer engineer from PEC and associated with ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness), is providing an opportunity to learn Bhagavad Gita Online at Wiziq. The first online session an Introduction to Bhagavad Gita will be presented on Friday, 05 September, 2008 9:00 PM To 10:00 PM. Narottamanand Das about the session – In the first session we will discuss the importance of Bhagavad Gita ,the spirit behind it and requirements for understanding Bhagavad Gita. This session being an introductory session would be useful for everyone tied up in maddening material race, relationship tangles and mental confusion. One who would understand Gita would attain supreme peace and eternal bliss.One can visit www.wiziq.com/public to join this session.WiZiQ is a website where you can teach and learn using an easy-to-use Virtual Classroom. As a learner you can attend public sessions on various topics from academics to anything under the sun.

Get Eco-friendly Ganesha Idols for Free in Hyderabad – One Man’s Dedicated Movement

To spread the message of nature friendly Ganesh Chaturthi festival, Mr. Vijayram, a sweet maker and painter, is giving away free eco-friendly Ganapati idols in Hyderabad. The only price one has to pay while buying is to sign on a small printed pledge which states that – the taker of the idol will do his bit in spreading awareness on the need to replenish the depleting groundwater table in Hyderabad. Mr. Vijayram distributes free clay Vinayaka idols from ‘Emerald’ sweet shop on the IndiraPark road right opposite Ramakrishna Math. Mr. Vijayram makes around 10,000 idols and distributes them in Hyderabad.Ranee Kumar writes in The HinduA symbolic representation of the water pledge is displayed at the threshold of the shop in two goblets containing crystal clear water and polluted water of Hussainsagar, respectively.Even the sweets in his shop are packaged in echo-friendly paper bags! “I believe in practising what I preach. Already I have pumped in my own money and got 40 water harvesting p…

Krishna Avanti Primary School to open in September 2008 – First state-funded Hindu Faith School in Britain

KrishnaAvantiPrimary School located on Camrose Avenue, EdgwareHA8 6ES in Harrow, north London is UK's first Hindu faith-based Voluntary Aided state school. The school will open on September 15, 2008 and is working in affiliation with ISKCON (the International Society for Krishna Consciousness) as the official faith advisor. The school is promoted by i-foundation. Telegraph UK reports that there are 4,621 Anglican schools in England, 2,027 Roman Catholic schools and 26 Methodist schools. A further 38 are classed as Jewish, nine are Muslim and three Sikh. KrishnaAvantiPrimary School will be the first Hindu faith school in Britain. Here is what the Head Teacher of Krishna Avanti Primary School has to say about the school:At Krishna Avanti Primary School, the Governors and staff aim to provide a world class learning environment where all pupils are valued and encouraged to realize they have unlimited potential spiritually, emotionally and academically.This is a school where we will h…