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Showing posts from August 16, 2013

Story of Lakshman and Atikaya, son of Ravana, in the Ramayana

Atikaya, son of Ravana, was huge like Kumbhakarna. It was Lakshman who defeated Atikaya in the Ramayana. The story of Atikaya fighting Lakshmana is found in the Yuddha Kanda of Ramayana. Atikaya’s mother was Dhanyamalini, one of the wives of Ravana.
Atikaya was huge as a mountain and his eyes were yellowish-brown. His chariot was large and there were fierce weapons in it – both the chariot and weapons were given to him by Brahma. He was conversant in all weapons. He had defeated the Devas in the battle.
Atikaya brushed aside the Vanaras in the battle and headed towards Rama and Lakshman. He proclaimed that he did not want to fight against ordinary warriors and wanted to fight only with Rama or Lakshman.
Lakshman went to fight with Atikaya. The battle was fierce and both warriors were injured. When Lakshman attacked with arrows presided by Agni; Atikaya replied to them with Surayastra. Both continued to nullify each others arrows.
When it seemed there was no end to the fight, Vayu, wi…

Thillai Kali Temple – Thillai Kali Amman Temple in Chidambaram in Tamil Nadu

ThillaiKaliAmmanTemple at Chidambaram in Tamil Nadu is dedicated to Goddess Shakti. Goddess Thillai Kali is a ferocious form of Shakthi. She has four faces like Brahma and is also known as Brahma Chamundeswari. The temple is very unique as Dakshinamurti form of Shiva is also worshipped in this temple in the female form.
The murti of Brahma Chamundeswari face east and she is in standing posture. Special pujas are held during the Rahu Kalam period on Sundays.
StoryThillaiKaliTemple Legend has it that once there was a debate between Shiva and Goddess Shakti as to who is the best dancer. They entered into a dance contest. They both matched each other in steps and no one was superior. Then Shiva performed the Ugra Tandava. But Goddess Shakti could not dance in Ugra Tandava as it involved lifting the leg up.
Goddess Shakti accepted defeat but she was furious as it was not a fair competition. Brahma appeared and asked her to calm down. He praised her as Veda Nayaki – one who represents the V…

Book on Sun Temples in Gujarat – Ugta Rehjo Bhan in Gujarati

Ugta Rehjo Bhan in Gujarati published by the Gujarat State Archeology Department is dedicated to the sun temples in Gujarat. The book explores not just the famous ModheraSunTemple but nearly 100 sun temples scattered from Koteshwar in Sabarkantha to Rander near Surat in Gujarat.
The book is the result of the dedicated work of over a decade by Navinchandra Parekh and Dahyabhai Patel.  Times of India reports  The book says sun worship is as old as the Indian civilization. However, the tradition of worship in an idol form came in the third century BC. Sun worship took its roots from third to the 13th century across the subcontinent including Gujarat after which the trend waned. Places such as Vadnagar, Muli, Than, Delmal, Kotyark and Gop were thriving centers of sun worship and many of these have idols preserved for centuries.  "There have been two traditions of sun worship found in the state. While the idols of Mag Brahmins have Iranian influence (completed with boots and headgear)…

Grahpati Shiva – Story of Shiva as Grihapati

Grahpati Shiva is one of the manifestations of Shiva. The story of Shiva as Grihapati is mentioned in the Shaivagama. Grahpati means the lord of the planets.
Legend has it that once the wife of Sage Vishwanar had a desire to have a son. To fulfill the desire, Sage Vishvanar went to Kashi and offered prayers to Veereshwar Linga there.
After a year, Shiva appeared as a boy before Sage Vishwanar and granted him the boon that He will be born as their son. Shiva said that he will be known as Grahpati.
As per the boon, Suchimati, wife of Sage Vishwanar, gave birth to Grihpati. The sage performed all the sanskaras of the boy.
When the boy was nine year old, Sage Naraga visited Sage Vishwanar and told him that the boy will be struck by lightning during the 12 year of his life.
Sage Vishwanar was saddened by this fact. But Grihapati said that he will go to Kashi and offer prayers to Shiva and will overcome death.
Grihapati went to Kashi and made Shivling and started offering worship to it.