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Showing posts from December, 2008


Shakambari Navratri - Importance of Shakumbari Devi Navratri - When is Shakambari Navratri in 2018?

Shakambari Mata, or Shakambhari Devi, is an incarnation of Shakti and is worshipped in many parts of India.  In 2019, Shakambari Mata Navratra or Navarati begins on January 14, 2019 and ends on January 21, 2019. The day is of great importance in many regions in India. It is believed that she feeds those who are hungry with vegetarian food. She is Mother Earth who suffices hunger.

Shakambari Ma is known as ‘the bearer of the greens’ – Shaka means vegetables and Amabari means who bears. Goddess Shakambari is mentioned in the Devi Mahatmya.

Shakambari Mata is worshipped during Navratri and Durga Puja but one of the most famous Navratra dedicated to her happens in Paush month or Pushya Month (December – January).

Shakambari Mata Navratra is a major puja and festival in some parts of Karnataka, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh.

In the Devi Mahatmya, it is said that Goddess Durga appeared as Shakambari after a dry period of hundred years. She brought forth from her body fruits, flow…

Satguru Sivaya Subramaniya Swami Thoughts on Hinduism

It is the unique and all-encompassing nature of Hinduism that one devotee may be worshiping Ganesha while his friend worships Subramaniam or Vishnu, and yet both honor the other's choice and feel no sense of conflict. The profound understanding and universal acceptance that are unique in Hinduism are reflected in this faculty for accommodating different approaches to the Divine, allowing for different names and forms of God to be worshiped side by side within the temple walls.Satguru Sivaya Subramaniya Swami (1927-2001), founder of Hinduism Today

River Sarasvati to Flow Again – Return of Holy Saraswati River

Hindus always believed that the River Sarasvati flowed on earth before disappearing and the river is mentioned in the Hindu Holy scriptures and is worshipped along with GangaRiver. But the existence of River Sarasvati was always questioned by historians with hidden political agenda. Sadly, such historians were ruling the academies for more than 50 years in India after independence. Now, archeologists have discovered the bed of the SarasvatiRiver in BhoresaidanVillage, about 13 km from Kurukshetra in Haryana. The fact is also mentioned in numerous ancient literary texts.Haryana government is now planning to revive the course taken by SarasvatiRiver by building a 50 km-long channel in Kurukshetra. The discovery of the Sarasvati River Bed happened in 2004 when water started oozing out from the dried SaraswatiRiver bed at the Kapil Muni Temple Sarovar at Kalayat.Atul Sethi writes in Times of IndiaA boon that would not have been possible without the discovery of the river bed. "In 200…

Pashupatinath Temple in Nepal to replace South Indian Priests with Nepali Priests

The pujas and rituals in the world famous PashupatinathTemple in Nepal used to be performed by South Indian Priests. But now they have been replaced by Nepali priests. Believed to have been built in the 3rd century BC, PashupatinathTemple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. It is the biggest icon in Nepal and is visited by millions of people. Hindu priests from India performed the pujas and rituals in PashupatinathTemple due to a custom started in 1747 during monarchy in Nepal. It was believed that the death of the king, the father of the nation, all Nepalis had to observe a period of mourning which made them unfit to perform pujas and rituals due to Shraddh. Now the king is no longer the ruler of Nepal and the country has become a secular country. So the old custom has no value.Times of India reportsThe new government that came to power after the pro-democracy movement ousted the king and queen from the temple management.

Soon after that, the Satnamis, a sect that worship Hindu god Vishnu, be…

Adi Shankaracharya Teachings – On Rituals

Rituals are like blankets that veil the truth. They are nets to trap our intellect, forcing us to confine our consciousness to the superficial values of the manifest world. The thinking of a person who believes exclusively in ritual practices becomes confined to this little world. Subtle thoughts of the mind and tender feelings of heart become outward oriented. Such a person begins to believe that everything can be accomplished with the help of rituals.

Because rituals involve material objects and because there is a system as well as a defined goal, a person's expectations grow and become vivid. When someone performs a ritual and the expected results don't occur, as is usually the case, that person becomes disappointed.
In order to cope with the disappointment, the person tries to discover the mistake in the ritual. Then the interpreter, who is usually the priest, takes advantage of the subtle tendencies of the mind of the person performing the ritual and puts the entire blam…

Jnana Prabodhini – Institute offering course to become Hindu women priests

Jnana Prabodhini in Pune, Maharashtra, offers a one-year course which will train women to become priests (purohitas) and rituals associated with Hinduism. There is a great demand for female priests as many families and companies feel that they are more honest and patient in doing rituals and pujas. Another advantage is the communication skill of women priests. The course is strictly based on Vedic rituals. Nearly 19 pujas and sansakaras are taught as part of the one-year course. The response to the course is great and housewives and young women are joining the course. People from other profession are also joining the course. Jnana Prabodhini is located at 510, Sadashiv Peth, Pune and concentrates on education and rural development. You may also like to readHindu women priestsYet another success story of Hindu women priests

Pradosham 2017 dates – Shiva Pradosham Dates in 2017

Pradosham 2017 in Hindu calendar based on India Standard Time. Pradosham or Pradosha, is an auspicious day dedicated to Lord Shiva. Here are the Pradosham dates in 2017. It falls on the 13th day of every lunar fortnight in traditional Hindu calendar. Shiva devotees fast from sunrise to sunset and important rituals and pujas are held during the twilight period.

The Pradosham 2017 dates are based on Indian Standard Time.
Pradosham 2017 dates

January 10, 2017 – Tuesday - Bhauma Pradosham
January 25, 2017 – Wednesday
February 8, 2017 - Wednesday
February 24, 2017 –  Friday

March 10, 2017 –  Friday March 25, 2017 – Saturday - Shani Pradosham
April 8, 2017 – Saturday - Shani Pradosham
April 24, 2017 – Monday - Som Pradosham

May 8, 2017 –  Monday - Som Pradosham
May 23, 2017 – Tuesday - Bhauma Pradosham
June 6, 2017 – Tuesday - Bhauma Pradosham
June 21, 2017 – Wednesday

July 6, 2017 – Thursday
July 21, 2017 – Friday

August 5, 2017 – Saturday - Shani Pradosham August 19, 2017 – Saturday - Shani…

A B Vajpayee Thoughts on Hinduism

Hinduism is a people’s religion and that it has been growing and flowering during the ages. It has been throwing up gods and scriptures all the time. The Vedic gods were replaced long ago by puranic gods. The Vedas were themselves supplemented and elaborated by the Puranas. Hinduism thus emerges as an organic religion, which keeps growing with the growth of religious experience, and conscious of its adherents…… and thus it can cater for all tastes and to all level of spirituality. A B Vajpayee

Upanishad Quotes and Teachings - A Collection of 108 Quotes from Upanishads

There is something beyond our mind which abides in silence within our mind. It is the supreme mystery beyond thought. Let one's mind and one's subtle body rest upon that and not rest on anything else. (Maitri Upanishad)
As the web issues out of the spider, and is withdrawn;
As plants sprout from the earth,
As hair grows from the body,
Even so, the sages say,
This universe springs from the deathless Atman (Brahman).
The source of life. (Mundaka Upanishad 1:1:7-8)
As the ocean into which all waters flow maintains its own nature despite the water pouring in (from all sides), so, he alone attains peace into whom all desires flow in like manner; not he who seeks the objects of pleasure. (Avadhuta Upanishad) Shvetashvatara Upanishad Quotes With earnest effort hold the senses in check. Controlling the breath, regulate the vital activities. As a charioteer holds back his restive horses, so does a persevering aspirant restrain his mind.
Shvetashvatara Upanishad, 2.9.


The soul is born a…

Thanka Anki Procession to Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple

The Thanka Anki procession to the SabarimalaAyyappaTemple is an important ritual during the 41-day Mandala Pooja held at the Sabarimala Shrine. Thanka Anki is the gold ornaments that are adorned on the idol of Lord Ayyappa on the Mandala Pooja day, which marks the culmination of the 41-day Mandala Pooja. The Thanka Anki procession starts from the AranmulaSreeParthasarathyTemple four days prior to the Mandala Pooja day.
Thanka Anki means the Golden Attire – the Golden Attire of Lord Ayyappa, weighing 450 Sovereigns of gold. It was offered to Lord Ayyappa by Sri Chithira Thirunal, erstwhile Maharaja of Travancore in 1973. The Thanka Anki is carried to the Sabarimala Shrine in a specially-decorated vehicle. It will visit numerous temples on its way and opportunity to darshan will be provided for Devotees. The AranmulaSreeParthasarathyTemple is around 100 km away from SabarimalaAyyappaTemple. The deeparadhana on the final day of Mandala Pooja will be performed by adorning the idol of Ayyap…

Book – Heaven on Earth – The Universe of Kerala’s Guruvayur Temple

Heaven on Earth: The Universe of Kerala’s GuruvayurTemple, written by British writer and photographer Pepita Seth, narrates the history of Guruvayoor SriKrishnaTemple, its rituals and beliefs, its traditional style of management, its festivals and its patronage of ancient art forms in Kerala and its elephants. The book is a result of seven years’ research and is supported by brilliant photographs.Driven by passion and respect for Kerala’s culture and traditions, Pepita Seth began seriously photographing and writing about the rituals of Hindus in Kerala from the 1970s. In 1981, she was given official permission to enter Hindu temples in Kerala.The Guruvayoor SriKrishnaTemple is one of the most important Hindu temples in world and is frequented by millions of devotees. The temple is mentioned in the ‘Mahabharata’. The history of the idol worshipped in the temple goes back to the Dwapara Yuga when Lord Krishna lived on earth.“I feel that Guruvayur is important on many different levels:…

Words of Wisdom – Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswati

When adversities overtake us, we blame God and complain that He is blind to our misfortunes. But if we indulge in a little introspection, we will realize that our faults are so enormous that we are utterly unworthy of His grace and, in spite of that we are able to get food, shelter and clothing. It is due to the abundant mercy of God. We must consider the difficulties we encounter as a blessing in disguise.A mother may tie the hands of her child who has the propensity to pick up and eat mud. This seeming cruelty of the mother is for the good of the child. Similarly troubles are verily God's grace to save us. In the entire picture of life, troubles form but a tiny spot. In our inability to visualize the past and the future, we complain when we suffer in the present. A proper perspective will enable us to understand our present plight in its proper setting. Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswati

Tukaram Grantha Parayan Sohala as part of 400th birth anniversary Sant Tukaram at Dehu

Tukaram Grantha Parayan Sohala, sacred book reading, attended by 2000,000 devotees is being held at Dehu village in Maharashtra as part of the 400th birth anniversary celebrations of Sant Tukaram. The week-long programme is organized by the Akhil Bhartiya Warkari Mandal and is attended by devotees from India and abroad. The great saint-poet, Tukaram (1608-1650) was born at Dehu village near Pune in Maharashtra and he spread the devotion for Lord Vithoba (Vitthal) through his poems. Somnath Deshkar writes in Times of IndiaAccording to Prakash Maharaj Bodhale, president of Akhli Bharatiya Warkari Mandal, the 'Grantha Parayan' will be held round the clock for the next eight days. The warkari mandal received over one lakh nominations from devotees to participate in the programme . Huge pandals have been erected and other arrangements for the devotees' convenience have also been made. The pandal can accommodate nearly 60,000 people. A separate conference on Sant Tukaram's l…

Goddess Durga Idol from Lenox India –Limited Edition – $2000

Lenox – US gift and collectible major and manufacturer of fine chinaware, accessories and gifts – released a sculpture of Hindu Goddess Durga in ivory fine china and pure 24 karat gold. Goddess Durga idol is a strict limited edition of 500 pieces and is priced at $2000. Simmi Chopra of Lenox India is credited with this limited edition. Two years back, Simmi had brought out a limited edition Lenox Ganesha Idol. Only 250 pieces of Goddess Durga idol will be released in 2008. The idol is made in ivory fine china and pure 24 karat gold claims the Lenox India website. The idol weighs 8 pound and is hand-painted. The stones used on the idol are Austrian crystal Swarovski gemstones.In the idol, Goddess Durga is depicted as a delicate and beautiful goddess, her strength and energetic movement visible through her position on the tiger and her hold on the weapons.Goddess Durga Idol details from the makers:For Goddess Durga, we wanted to use Red for her Sari, but we had huge production problems …

Sri Ramakrishna Teachings

We must dive deep into the ocean of the Eternal Intelligent Bliss. Fear not the deep sea monsters – Avarice and Anger. Coat thyself with the turmeric of Dispassion and Discrimination. Those sea monsters will not approach you as the scent of this turmeric is too strong for them.
There are pearls in the deep sea, but one must hazard all to find them. If diving once does not bring you pearls, you need not therefore conclude that the sea is without them. Dive again and again. You are sure to be rewarded in the end. So is it with the finding of the Lord in this world. If your first attempt proves fruitless, do not lose heart. Persevere in your efforts. You are sure to realize Him at last.
The human body is like a boiling pot, and the mind and the senses are like water, rice or potato, and other things in it. Put the pot with its ingredients on the fire; it will be so hot as to burn your finger when you touch it. But the heat does not belong to the pot, nor anything contained in it, but is…

Book: Illustrated Ramayana for Children from Chandamama

‘Ramayana – The Epic Journey’ from Chandamama is an attempt to narrate the timeless epic Ramayana in contemporary language and style. Chandamama claims that the book is first of its kind attempt when the Ramayana Epic has been published as a single book with illustrations. Chandamama’s Ramayana is in comic book format with rich illustrations.‘Ramayana – The Epic Journey’ is based on Tamil Kamba Ramayanam, written by Kamban during the ninth century.The major highlight of the book is the hand drawn illustrations. ‘Ramayana – The Epic Journey’
Published by Chandamama
Specifications Pages: 432 pages + 4 cover Format: Illustrated Style
Price: Rupees 449

Swami Avdheshanand named the Hindu of Year by Hinduism Today Magazine

Swami Avdheshananda Giri Maharaj was named the Hindu of the Year and received the 2008 Hindu Renaissance Award from Hinduism Today. Acharya Swami Avdheshanand Giri Maharaj is the head of Shri Panchdashnam Juna Akhada, the biggest of the thirteen Saint Akhadas in Inda. Shri Juna Akhada has more than five million saints in its fold. Hinduism Today Magazine, read by millions around the world, is a global public service to the family of Hindu faiths, produced by a small monastic community based in Hawaii, United States. The magazine also has a digital version and is published once in three months. Hinduism Today explains the reason for choosing Swami Avdheshananda Giri Maharaj for the 2008 Hindu Renaissance Award:Such peerless leaders can come in many forms, reflecting the diverse ways of our faith. Some are silent sages, mystics who take us to the heights of our own being by the force of their own enlightenment. Others are tireless social workers, servants of Hindus in need, helping chil…

Tulsi Plant to Control Pollution in Agra and Save Taj Mahal

Thanks to pollution, the aging white Taj Mahal is slowly yellowing and the government is on a mission to find an apt solution to this perplexing problem. Now the District Forest Department of Agra has come up with a unique solution – Tulsi (Holy Basil). The forest department believes that planting Tulsi around Taj Mahal and Agra might help in saving the monument from deteriorating. The department is hoping to exploit the antipollutant, antioxidation and air-purifying properties of Tulsi plant.Manjari Mishra writes in Times of IndiaThe department will launch the Tulsi plantation drive from January 2009. The public-private joint venture is expected to provide an eco-protection cover to sensitive Taj trapezium zone surrounding the 17th century monument as well as the other two world heritage monuments like the Agra Fort and Aitma-ud-Daula tomb. Tulsi was (Occinum sanctum) chosen for its anti-pollutant, anti-oxidation and air-purifying properties, making it an ideal ornamental shrub in th…

Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswati on White Ash and Shiva Worship

When any object is consumed by fire, it becomes charred. If that black residue is burnt again, it becomes white ash. White ash continues to remain white even when burnt again. This shows that white is the ultimate and black is proximate to it. Science tells us that diamond and coal are basically one. White and black are not colors. The primary colors get separated from the objects to which they are attached when subjected to the test of fire and ultimately they turn white.Similarly, in the mental and spiritual place, the Ultimate Reality is Shiva, who is white and proximate to Him is Parvati, who is dark. When we test everything in the fire of Jnana, or true knowledge, the residue is Shiva. Ash in the material plane corresponds to Shiva in the spiritual plane. We smear our bodies with the sacred ash to remind ourselves of Shiva and the fact that the ultimate goal of life is Shiva.Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswati

Pushkaram Rivers - The 12 Rivers Where Pushkara is Held

Pushkara, or Pushkarams, is a popular Hindu ritual and festival which is held along 12 rivers. A Pushakaram along a particular takes place once in 12 years when Jupitar (Brishaspati) enters a particular zodiac. Here are the names of 12 rivers that play host to Pushkaram or Pushkara – the river festival.
Ganga River Narmada or RevaRiver Saraswati Yamuna or Jamna Godavari Krishna Cauvery or Kaveri Bhima or BhimarathiRiver (Tambrapani) Pushkaravahini (Brahmaputra) Tungabhadra Sindhu or Indus Parineeta (Sapranitantasi) (Pranahita)
Jupiter enters a particular Zodiac sign and the Pushkaram is held during the period in which Jupiter travels through the Zodiac.
Name of The River              Zodiac sign
Ganges                                 Aries
Narmada                              Taurus
Saraswati                            Gemini
Yamuna                                Cancer
Godavari                               Leo
Krishna                                  Virgo
Kaveri                     …

Quotes and Teachings of Mother Meera

People can help by receiving the Light and letting it change them. They should be peaceful and harmonious.

To be harmonious means to be whole; to love others and to enjoy your life; to respect the dignity of others; to know yourself and your difficulties and to work with them so you become free and are able to help others.

Humility brings harmony. A humble person is integrated with reality and is happy, because humility brings happiness.

When you are open, the Divine can pour itself into you. When you are changed, the Divine can work through you.

People suffer a great deal in life without knowing why. When there is Grace, you are helped to know why and to change. The greatest pain is ignorance. When the pain is clear, you can find its source and can change.

Realization is absolute feeling, absolute freedom to love everything and to know everything. It is the unrealized man who is like a stone; the realized man is like a bird, all life and true energy and beauty.
Any pain that comes i…

Self Learning Sanskrit CD from Rastriya Sanskrit Vidya Peetha

Rastriya Sanskrit Vidya Peeth (RSVP) has released a self learning Sanskrit CD in interactive mode named Samskrtasiksika. This interactive CD is a unique approach to help aspirants to learn Sanskrit Language quickly and thoroughly. It is designed by Sanskrit language experts from leading universities. Rashtriya Sanskrit Vidyapeetha is a DeemedUniversity established under Section 3 of UGC Act, 1956 and is located at Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh.

The Self Learning Sanskrit CD concentrates on perfect pronunciation, different styles of conversation, excellent styles of speech, several styles of reading prose and poetry, writing styles of Devanagari, script, grammar in simple way, sanskrit literature and science in Sanskrit words for daily use.
Animated Stories in Sanskrit, Sanskrit songs and shlokas, antyaksari, fun with words, fun with numbers, quiz and exercises are also part of the CD.

The cost of the Samskrtasiksika CD is Rupees.200/-. Outside India it is US $12. Postal Charges a…

Dada J P Vaswani Teachings

Is not this hunger of every human heart, someone to love us? But this it the paradox of love, that you must love someone before you can receive love. The love that goes out of you to others returns to you. Love moves in a circle: and it is you who must make the circle move!
Love gives and gives and gives and seeks no return. Therefore, love has nothing to lose and consequently, nothing to fear.
When you have nothing to do, do not let the mind wander after useless things.
But close your eyes, shut out the world, bring yourself in God's presence and offer to him brief prayers. That is the way of growing beautiful within!
The mind can hold only one thought at a time. Let it be a God-thought. And you will grow Godlike!
Even as particles of dust cling to our clothes and we wash them with water and soap, even so there are particles of noise which cling to our hearts, to our minds and to our souls. They need to be cleansed every day in the waters of silence.
Silence is very much like a r…