Skip to main content


Showing posts from September, 2014

Belnauti – Bilva Amantran Sashti during Durga Puja

Belnauti, Bilva Abhimantran Sashti, is one of the initial rituals performed during Durga Puja. It is performed on the sixth day, or Sashti day, of the Shukla Paksha of Ashwin month. Belnauti 2018 date is October 15.

Amantran is inviting Goddess Durga into the puja area. The rituals on the day are performed by qualified priests. The most important rituals of Durga Puja begin from the next day morning – Saptami Day.

The important rituals on the Belnauti day include unveiling the face of Durga Idol and Kalparambho. Bodhon, Amantron and Adibas are some of the other main rituals on Sashti day.

Thandu Mariamman Kovil Timings – Opening and Closing Time at Dhandumariamman Temple in Coimbatore

DhandumariammanTemple in Coimbatore is dedicated to Mother Goddess Mariamman. The temple timings are given below in detail. Opening and Closing Time at Thandu Mariamman Kovil might change during festival, important rituals and during Grahan – lunar and solar eclipse.
Opening and Closing Time at Thandu Mariamman Kovil
Morning hours – 6:00 AM to 1:00 PM Evening hours – 4:00 PM to 9:00 PM 
Important Pujas in a day Kaala Santhi – 8:00 AM
Uchie Kalam – 12:00 PM
Saya Rachai – 6:30 PM
Artha Jamam – 8:30 PM

Belur Temple Timings – Opening and closing Darshan Time at Belur Chennakeshava Temple

Dedicated to Hindu God Vishnu, the BelurChennakeshavaTemple houses Chaturbhuja Vishnu who is popular here as Chenna Keshava – the handsome god. Detail Belur Timings is given below. Please note that the opening and closing darshan time will be extended especially during the car festival in March – April. The darshan time will be short when there will be grahan – lunar or solar eclipse.
BelurTemple Timings
Morning hours Darshan Time is from 7:30 AM to 1:00 PM Evening hours Darshan Time is from 2:30 PM to 7:30 PM

Thandu Mariamman Kovil Contact Address with Phone number – Location Map of Dhandumariamman Temple in Coimbatore

DhandumariammanTemple in Coimbatore is dedicated to Mother Goddess Mariamman. The temple location, contact address with phone number is given below. Thandu Mariamman Kovil is one of the popular shrines in the city and is more than 300 years old.
Thandu Mariamman Kovil Contact Address:
Avinashi Road,
Coimbatore - 641018 Phone  : 0422 - 2300360 E-Mail   :

The Sixteen Sanskars in Hinduism in Hindi with meaning in English

There are sixteen sanskars in Hinduism. They are the important functions during a life time of Hindus. The sixteen sanskars are given in Hindi with their meaning in English:
Grabhadhan: Conception,Punsavana: Fetus protection,Simanta: Satisfying wishes of the pregnant Mother,Jaat-Karma: Child Birth,Naam Karma: Naming Child,Nishkramana: Taking the child outdoors,Annaprashana: Giving the child solid food,Mundan or Choula: Hair cutting,Karna Vedh: Ear piercing,Yagyopaveet: Sacred thread,Vedarambh: Study of Vedas and Scriptures,Samaavartana: Completing education,Vivaah: Marriage,Sarvasanskaar: Preparing for Renouncing,Sanyas (Awasthadhyan): Renouncing,Antyeshti: Last rite, or funeral rites.

Uttaraphalguni Nakshatra Tarabalam – Good Tarabalam for Uttara Phalguni Birth Star Born People

Uttaraphalguni Nakshatra (birth star) born people will have good Tarabalam generally with following Nakshatra born people: Uttara Phalguni Tarabalam is used for looking marriage compatibility, business partnership and other deals.
Uttaraphalguni Good Nakshatra Tarabalam with:
Ashwini Bharani Nakshtra Rohini Arudra Aslesha Magha Nakshtra Purvaphalguni Hasta Swati Jyeshta Nakshtra Moola Nakshtra Purvashada Sravanam Shatabhisha Revati Nakshtra
Please note that this is only a general list. Please note that in some regions Tarabalam is calculated daily based on the day’s Nakshatra. In such cases the general list should be ignored.

Darpan during Durga Puja – Mirror offered to Goddess Durga during Pooja

Puranas and Hindu Holy Scriptures are filled with instructions regarding various aspects of Durga Puja. On the third day of the puja – the third day from Mahalaya – a mirror, vermilion and thin cotton dipped in dye are offered. Usually only a silver coated looking glass is offered as a mirror. But in some instances Darpan – a speculum mirror is also offered.

The darpan mirror is used while bathing the murti of Goddess Durga – whenever there is a ritual bathing of Goddess Durga, it is the reflection on the darpan mirror that is bathed not the original murti.

The darpan is also immersed in a pot of water on the morning of Dasami day when the murtis bid farewell.

It must be noted that many Puranas talk about pujas and rituals that are performed from the Mahalaya day to Dasami day but most of them are not followed today. Today the puja only starts from the sixth day after Mahalaya and the important days are seventh, eighth and ninth.

Giving is the secret of abundance – Swami Sivananda

There is no end of craving. Hence contentment alone is the best way to happiness. Therefore acquire contentment.
Man sees his own reflection in all people but foolishly imagines that they are different from him and he fights with them.
Every human being is the author of his own health or disease.
Giving is the secret of abundance.
Put your heart, mind, and soul into even your smallest acts. This is the secret of success.
Real spiritual progress is really and accurately measured by the peacefulness, serenity and calmness that you manifest in waking state.
Life has meaning only in the struggle. Triumph or defeat is in the hands of the gods. So let us celebrate the struggle. Swami Sivananda

Goddess Kameshwari

Goddess Kameshwari is a manifestation of Mother Goddess Shakti. She is closely associated with the Goddess Lalitha form. She is the queen of love. When Mother Goddess is Kameshwari, Shiva becomes Kameshwara, the lord of desire who is ever youthful.
Prayers, stories and worship of Goddess are mentioned in the Brahmanda Purana.
In some scriptures, Goddess Kameshwari is equated with Goddess Kamakshi.
There is a legend which states that once Brahma performed intense tapas to please Mother Goddess. She is said to have appeared before. Brahma called Her Kameshwari because her eyes were brimming with love for humanity.
Some scholars are of the view that Kameshwari is Kundalini – the psychic power coiled at the base of the spine as per yoga.
Goddess Kameshwari form is mainly worshipped in Srinagar and Kanchipuram.
Today, the true Sadhana of the Goddess is very rare and is mainly followed by rare Tantric followers.

Card Game Based on 108 Divyadesams

Srimaan Card Game is based on the 108 Divyadesams – the 108 temples dedicated to Bhagvan Srihari Vishnu in South India. The card game helps in understanding each Divya Desam and it also helps in identifying the Perumal and Nachiar worshipped in each shrine. The main aim of the card game is to create a spiritual atmosphere while playing and also help in gathering crucial knowledge regarding Vaishnavism.

You can find more details about the game and how to buy it here at the Srimaan Trust Website.

Significance Meaning and Symbolism of Ringing Bell in Hindu Temple - OSHO

When you ring the bell of a temple – not half asleep but with alertness – that creates a discontinuity in your thoughts, a sort of break in the chain of your thoughts, and you become aware of a changed atmosphere. There is a similarity between the sound of the bell and the sound of OM; in fact there is some inner relationship. The sound of the bell continues charging the temple all the day long and the sound of OM also charges the temple with its vibrations.
No one should enter the temple through that door of doors without ringing the bell, for only through the sound itself can you enter. The uniqueness of a bell is that it keeps resounding long after you ring it, so the resonance keeps sounding as you enter the main entrance. In that sound alone is the key to your entry into the temple.
Through the sound, as it were, you enter into God's abode. The temple is a symbol of God's dwelling. When it is sounding constantly you need not ring the bell, but we have formulated a metho…

Boyakonda Gangagamma – Goddess Durga Temple on top of Boyakonda hill Near Punganur in Chittoor District of Andhra Pradesh

GoddessDurgaTemple located on top of Boyakonda hill Near Punganur in Chittoor District of Andhra Pradesh is a famous shrine in the region. The murti worshipped here is famous as Boyakonda Gangagamma and the temple which is around 60 km from Chittoor is visited by thousands of people. Legend has it that Goddess Durga appeared here in the form of an old woman to protect the tribes of the region and defeat the forces of a greedy Nawab.

The tribal people who lived in the region were constantly harassed by the army of the Nawab. The escape from the violence, the tribal people propitiated Goddess Durga in the form of Jaganmatha.
The tribal people got the darshan of Goddess in the form of an old woman. She then took a ferocious form and annihilated the army of the Nawab. The sword used by the goddess in the battle fell on a rock atop the Boyakonda hill and it cracked. It is today worshipped and seen as a living testimony of the divine power of Maa Durga.

Navratri – Dasara is the most impor…

Saptamatrikas – Seven Divine Mothers – Saptamatris

In Hinduism, Saptamatrikas are the seven divine mothers and is often associated with Shiva and Shakti. The Saptamatrikas are Brahmani, Vaishnavi, Maheshwari, Kaumari, Varahi, Indrani and Chamundi. Stories about Sapta Matrikas are found in the Varaha Purana, Kurma Purana and the Mahabharata. Yogeshwari, a Shakti created by Shiva, is also mentioned among the Saptamatris and then the count becomes eight.
Saptamatrikas are among the numerous incarnations of Goddess Shakti. But their characteristics differ from region to region and from scriptures to scriptures. General belief is that the Saptamatrikas appeared to defeat the thousands of Anadhakas that were born from the blood of demon Andhaka.
Andhaka was actually the third son of Shiva. Lord Shiva injured demon Andhaka when he tried to take away Goddess Parvati. Andhaka had received a boon that a single drop of blood spilled from his body will create thousands of Andhakas. So when Shiva injured Andhaka thousands of Andhakas appeared fr…

Kalash Sthapana Mantra – Prayer While Keeping Navratri Pot - Navratri Ghatasthapana Mantra

Navratri Kalash Sthapana Mantra is chanted by those people who keep the Navratri pot as part of the nine day puja. The prayer given below is in Hindi. The ritual is also known as Ghatasthapana Mantra. The lamp lit during Kalash Sthapana should use ghee as medium not oil. If you are opting for a full prayer then you should perform the 16-step puja.

A simple Kalash Sthapana Mantra is

This mantra can be chanted while arranging and keeping the kalash etc for puja.
Kalash Sthapana Mantra

Apart from the above mantra one should also chant Durga Saptashloki

In Kalash Sthapana, a pot or kalash with an image of Goddess Durga is installed in the house on the day. The pot or kalash is filled with water and is covered with cow dung and seeds (like barely or wheat) are sown on the dung. The pot is kept on a sand bed and seeds are sown on this too.
Special pujas are conducted on the pot and water is sprinkled daily. The seeds sprout and reach about 3 or 5 five inches on…

Matunga Temple – Marubai Gavdevi Temple

MarubaiGavdeviTemple located at Matunga in Mumbai is a 400-year-old shrine dedicated to Mother Goddess Shakti. The goddess worshipped here is known as Goddess Marubai. She is a combined manifestation of Goddess Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswati.

Legend has it that the original murti of the Goddess Worshipped in temple appeared under a neem tree during the 18th century. The local villagers worshipped the deity and therefore the temple got the name Marubai Gavdevi.
The local villagers who used to worship the deity believed that she had the capacity to heal people. That's why she is called Marubai, because she saves people from various illnesses. It is said that during epidemics people drank the water used for abhishekam in the temple and used to get cured.
Navratri is the most important festival observed in the temple.
Daily morning routine includes Aarti and Abhisheks. Bhajans are organized during the afternoon. Daily evening aarti also attracts thousands of devotees.
Chandi Havan on …

Significance of Navratri

The nine-day festival symbolically represents the victory of good over evil – Goddess Durga slaying Demon Mahishasura and Lord Rama killing Ravana - this is the main significance of Navratri. This same struggle is constantly taking place in human hearts and the nine-day Navratri Vrat gradually prepares a devotee to shed evil and merge with the Brahman - Supreme Truth or God. Like Mahishasura, the human mind armed with ego, anger, greed, lust and envy negate the Supreme Truth. The nine-day Navratri vrat slowly annihilates the Mahishasura in us and help us to realize us that we are part of Brahman – the supreme spirit present in all animate and inanimate.
The physical fight between Goddess Durga and the demon Mahishasura has its ups and downs. Goddess Durga fought Mahishasura and his army for nine days and nine nights. Similarly, in the fight against evil tendencies like ego, anger, lust and other animal instincts make us weak and a person too faces and downs. The destructive aspect of…

Words of Wisdom – Dnyaneshwari

Wisdom is that, by which all troublesome activities melt away.
He, who does not jump in the floods, need not be afraid of being drowned. He, who observes rules of health, will remain healthy. Similarly he, who on all occasions of activity and non-activity will not entertain the sense of "I" (Ahankar), need have no fear in this world. Thus when the sense of unity has dawned and when everybody else appears as part of self, how can the feeling of fear arise?
When salt is put in the water, it becomes water. So with unity, there remains no animosity.
The true mark, therefore, of purity of intelligence is, that the mind is directed towards the true form (of Self) and the intelligence has no other purpose except this.
Like the tree which gives the leaves, the flowers, the shade, the fruits and the roots without distinction; give to the needy with a cheerful heart. This is true charity.

Construction of Vedic Fire Altar – Agnichayana in Vedas

Agnichanaya is the term used to refer to the Vedic fire altar construction in the Vedas. All yajnas are perfumed after constructing the altar. Details regarding the construction of Vedic fire altar are found in the Shatapatha Brahmana. It is mentioned in this scripture that the mere construction of the altar is highly meritorious.
The vedic fire altar symbolizes the universe and is the representation of the body of prajapati, the creator.
The mantras and prayers to be chanted while constructing the altar is mentioned in the Vajasaneyi Samhita of Yajur Veda.
Thousands of bricks are used in the construction and many of the bricks have special shapes and names.
The most common shape of a Vedic altar was in the form of a hawk with outstretched wings. There were numerous other shapes like trough, chariot wheel etc.
The Vedic fire altar of the Soma sacrifice had five layers.
A sacrifice is performed when a layer is built. When the first layer is built soma sacrifice is performed; when the…

On Hindu Temples Destroyed by Mughal Ruler Aurangazeb

The religious intolerance practiced by Mughal Ruler Aurangazeb is well known. The number of Hindu temples destroyed during his ruler is yet to be ascertained as the left historians who dominated the universities after independence and who also had a free hand in deciding the history of Hindustan conveniently tried to destroy all documents that could have helped in determining the atrocities committed by the Mughal rulers on the Hindus in Hindustan.
Truth can be hidden for a small period of time but cannot be destroyed. Truth will come out one day. Slowly many Indian newspapers and magazines are attempting to unravel to what happened to Hindus during the rule of Mughal rulers like Aurangazeb. The New Indian Express writes  Aurangzeb, like his predecessors, was determined to reinforce and expand the might of the Mughal Empire to the farthest corners of Hindustan. His principal obsession was to live his life true to the guiding principles of the Sharia. But his ability to successfully …

Story – Why Shiva Devotees Wear Matted Hair?

Shiva devotees (Aghoris, Tantrics, Naga Sadhus) have matted hair. There is story that happened during the reign of Daksha Prajapati which explains why Shiva devotees wear matted hair.

A great yajna was performed once by sages at Prayag, the confluence of three rivers, Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati. Shiva arrived at the yajna with Sati and all those assembled there stood up and paid obeisance to Mahadev and Mata Sati.  Shiva was seated with great honor.
Soon, Daksha Prajapati arrived at the yajna and everyone stood up and paid respects to him out of fear. Daksha was arrogant due to his superior status in Vedic society. Shiva remained in his seat and did not acknowledge Daksha.
Daksha Prajapati considered this as a mark of disrespect and angrily spoke in the yajna against Shiva. Daksha said that Shiva was uncultured and mannerless. He continued insulting Mahadev by stating that he did not expect anything more from his son-in-law whose attendants are goblins and ghosts and who lives in cr…

About Bhimsen Rath Jatra of Lalitpur in Nepal – Pandava Bhima Worship

Bhimsen Rath Jatra of Lalitpur in Nepal is associated with traders and is observed on the tenth day during the waning phase of moon in Bhadra month as per traditional Nepali Calendar. The festival is dedicated to Bhima, the second of the Pandava brothers.
Bhimsen, who possess unimaginable strength, is worshipped as the God of Commerce by Newar communities or traders. It is believed by the traders that those who worship Bhimsen will be blessed with profit in their business and Bhima will remove all the impediments in their business. The Himalayan Times reports Talking about the Jatra’s beginnings, Kiran Man Pradhan, President of Mangal Tole Sudhar Sangh and the organiser of the festival informed, “It was king Yog Narendra Malla in 1701 who began the chariot festival of Bhimsen which continues till today.”  According to him, King Sri Niwas Malla, father of Yog Narendra, built the three-storied Bhimsen temple on the premises of Patan Durbar Square. And the festival begins once the idol …

Nine Qualities of Devotion as told by Shiva to Sati

Some of the important teachings in Sanatana Dharma were revealed through the dialogue between Shiva and Sati. Here Shiva explains the nine qualities of devotion.
Listening to the names of Supreme Truth Praising God Remembering God at all times Serving God Surrendering the ego to the Supreme Truth Worshiping God in various ways Prostrating before God Dedication to God Friendliness and kindness to all this creatures.

Wise Words – Swami Adbhutananda

If you compare yourself with a person lying on the street, you will not feel pain, rather you will feel peace. As soon as you compare your own situation with that of a rich person, suffering will come to you. Give thanks to God that you are not suffering like the one lying on the street. You have at least a place to stand and some morsels of food to eat; you are not suffering much due to any particular need. One should pray to God when pain and suffering come. Moreover, one should see how many people are suffering more than you. If one can think in this way, one gets the power to endure one’s suffering and obtain peace of mind.
A small part of one’s mind turns towards religion and one starts to grow one’s hair long. My dear, if one grows one’s hair long, will that make one religious? Religion means one will have to realize God in this very life. One does not become religious only by saying: ‘dharma! dharma!’ One needs to do some karma; one needs to perform spiritual practices.

In o…

This is a world of good and evil – Swami Vivekananda

This is a world of good and evil. Wherever there is good, evil follows, but beyond and behind all these manifestations, all these contradictions, the Vedanta finds out that Unity. It says, “Give up what is evil and give up what is good.” What remains then? Behind good and evil stands something which is yours, the real you, beyond every evil, and beyond every good too, and it is that which is manifesting itself as good and bad.
It is grand and good to know the laws that govern the stars and planets; it is infinitely grander and better to know the laws that govern the passions, the feelings, the will, of mankind. This conquering of the inner man, understanding the secrets of the subtle workings that are within the human mind, and knowing its wonderful secrets, belong entirely to religion.

Do not recognize wickedness in others. Wickedness is ignorance, weakness. What is the good of telling people they are weak? Criticism and destruction are of no avail. We must give them something highe…

Goddess Naina Devi

Goddess Naina Devi is a manifestation of Mother Goddess Shakti. The Origin of Goddess Naina Devi is associated with the death of Goddess Sati. After her self immolation, Shiva carried her body around the world and this caused great imbalance in the universe. To put an end to the suffering on earth, Vishnu cut the body of Sati into several pieces. Goddess Naina Devi is believed to have manifested from the left eye of Goddess Sati.
Naina Devi temples are mainly located in North India.  Two of the famous temples dedicated to Goddess Naina Devi are located at Nainital in Uttarakhand in India and at Bilaspur in Himachal Pradesh.

All Naina Devi temples have the same story. The place where eyes of Goddess Sati fell is from where Goddess Naina Devi appeared.
She blesses devotees by destroying all evil. She is kind Mother to those that follow Dharma. To those that follow Adharma, she takes the all vanquishing fierce form.
The main offerings made to Naina Devi are Red Chunni, coconut, items o…

Kapaleshwar Temple in Nashik Asks Devotees Not To Pour Milk on the Shivling

The management of KapaleshwarTemple in Nashik in Maharashtra has asked devotees not to pour milk on the Shivling in the temple as it is polluting the GodavariRiver. Kapaleshwar temple, located on the banks of Godavari river, is one of the oldest temples in Nashik. Times of India reports According to the temple management, at least 3,000 people pour milk over the shivling at the temple every day. Flower sellers at the entrance and near the steps of the temple also sell milk and other articles required for the 'puja'. Each packet sold for Rs 10 has about 250 ml of milk, which means that nearly 750 litre milk is poured on the shivlings - one inside the temple and others around the temple premises. The temple management said that they have created a channel so that the milk poured on the shivling inside the temple is ultimately released into the river. But the milk poured on the shivlings around the premises flows over the steps and comes under the feet of devotees.  The trust'…

Hindu Fasting is turning into Feasting

Fasting food or Vrat recipes are in great demand especially during Hindu fasting dates like Ekadasi, Pradosh, Navratri etc. Oil friend Sabudana Vada, Ekadasi potato, varan bath…there is no end to the list. So Hindu fasting is slowly turning into feasting.
Ekadasi fasting which is observed on the 11th day of a fortnight is not meant to please Vishnu. It is meant to cleanse your body and mind. Avoiding all types of grains on the day means you are doing away with lot of carbohydrate. This once in a fortnight fasting gives the opportunity to throw out all toxins from the body.
The day before fasting in Hinduism one is supposed to eat moderately. After the fasting too one is supposed to eat moderately. This is to help the body to adjust and regulate.
Fasting is also an opportunity to remain silent. A day to reflect on one’s thoughts and feelings. It is also a day to stop all sorts of negative talking and gossiping.
Fasting also provides an opportunity to abstain from extravagance, arroga…

Why Balaram Did Not Participate in the Mahabharata War?

Balaram, the elder brother of Bhagvan Sri Krishna, did no participate in the Mahabharata war. But why did not Balarama participate in a war that saw the greatest warriors on earth assemble in the Kurukshetra. He did not side with Pandavas or Kauravas in the war.
Duryodhana, the elder brother of the Kauravas, was sure that Balaram would side with him. As Balaram was his Guru.
But Balarama did not side with the Kauravas as he did not want to fight against his brother Krishna who was on the side of the Pandavas.
He also did not side with the Pandavas as he did not want to fight against Duryodhana, who was his student.
So when the Mahabharat war was taking place, Balaram went on a pilgrimage.
Related Why Rukmi Did Not Participate in the Mahabharata War?

About God Bhaga – Vedic Deity Bhaga

Bhaga is a Vedic deity mentioned in the Rig Veda and is one of the Adityas. He is associated with Surya, the sun god. Bhaga is the God of the forenoon. Usha or dawn is mentioned as his sister.
Bhaga means patron, gracious god or dispenser.
It is believed that he distributed wealth. He also presides over matrimony and love.
He is prayed for wealth and for blessings in all ventures. He also bestows high status.
In the Mahabharata, Bhaga is one among the Devas or demi gods and is a member of Indra’s court.
In Puranas, he is also named as one of the Rudras.
It must be noted here that there is also deity named Bhaga in Zoroastrianism.

Siva Mooligai Trust of Thiruvengadu in Tamil Nadu Planting Rare Herbs Used by Ancient Siddhars

Siddha texts of Siddhars in South India are store house of traditional medicines. We are slowly losing this knowledge thanks to lack of interest is our traditional cures and medicines. People associated with Siva Mooligai Trust of Thiruvengadu in Tamil Nadu are attempting to revive the medicine of Siddhars by identifying various herbs and medicinal plants. The Hindu reports
Kalyanaraman of Siva Mooligai Trust of Thiruvengadu, has been trekking up hills in search of medicinal plants.

“Kanchi Paramacharya’s brother, Sivan sir, had studied Siddha texts and with his guidance I was able to identify many herbal plants, which we now grow in Thiruvengadu,” he said.

The yellow flower of the Palvalipoondu, when squeezed against an aching tooth, relieves pain; Sarkkarai vilvam helps relieve stomach cramps; Sarkkaraikkolli is good for diabetics.

Despite the fact that many of these plants grow in the hills, Kalyanaraman has successfully grown them in the plains. He said many of them could be grown…

Vrishchika Masam 2018 – Malayalam Vrishchikam Month in Kerala in 2018

Vrishchikam, or Vrishchika Masam, is the fourth month in a traditional Malayalam calendar and is a highly auspicious month. Vrishchika Masam 2018 begins on November 17 and ends on December 15. The 41-day Sabarimala Manadalam Kalam and Vratam begin from the first day of the month. SabarimalaAyyappaTemple opens on the day for the two-month long annual pilgrimage season.

Vrischikam 1 is known as Mandala Kala Arabham or beginning of the Sabarimala season.

Thousands of devotees abstain from non-vegetarian food and observe certain austerities in the Vrishchika Masam mostly dedicated to Lord Ayyappa.

Some of the other important auspicious days in the month include Triprayar EkadasiGuruvayoor Ekadasi and Trikarthika.

The corresponding month in Tamil Calendar is Kartik or Karthigai.

Vrishchika Masam 2018 Ekadasi
November 19 (Guruvayur Ekadasi)
December 3 (Triprayar Ekadasi)

Vrishchika Masam 2018 Pradosham
November 20
December 4

Important festivals include:
November 23 - Chakulathukavu Pongala

Thoughts and Quotes on Vishwakarma Puja

In Hindu Religion, Vishwakarma is the divine architect of the universe. Biswakarma (as called in eastern parts of India) is also called the divine carpenter and is mentioned in the Rig Veda and is credited with Sthapatya Veda, the science of mechanics and architecture. Vishwakarma Puja is dedicated to the first carpenter – artisan who gave us all these wonderful knowledge.

Determination, hard work and patience make a good artisan. He becomes an excellent artisan when he remembers and pays respect to his ancestors and Lord Vishwakarma is the first ancestor of carpenters and artisans.
When we offer prayers to Him, we are offering prayers to all the ancestors who passed down the knowledge of various crafts. We are also praying to keep this knowledge and craft intact and also to pass it on to the next generation.
Daily prayers to Vishwakarma assure safety and success in the respective fields.

The greatness of Hindu tradition is that it respects and finds divinity in all activities of l…

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 9 reflections

Delusion breeds sorrows, knowledge produces joy. The universe is pain-ridden because it is delusion-projected. (9.18)
Wherever and whenever an egocentric action, whipped by selfish desire, is undertaken, gross and painful reactions must necessarily ensue. (9.9)
To live in the ego as a mere embodied self is to live self-exiled from all the Divine potentialities that one is heir to. (9.17)
Complete happiness and satisfaction, perfect contentment and peace, lie only in the innermost precincts of the heart and not in the extrovert fields of profit and success, glory and fame. (9.24)
A devotee who can constantly remember the Divine in all his contacts in life is alone the one who can give to life the respect and reverence that it deserves. (9.27)
Bhagavad Gita Chapter 9

Bishohori Puja at Nartiang Village in Jaintia Hills of Meghalaya – Bishohori Puja Dedicated to Snake Goddess

Bishohori Puja is quite similar to the Manasa Devi Puja observed in Bengal. The puja is dedicated to Snake Goddess and is very popular in the NartiangVillage in Jaintia Hills of Meghalaya. The puja and ritual on the day is dedicated to Goddess Bishohori or Monosha, who is worshipped as the Mother of Snakes.
The ritual is observed during the Bhadrapad Krishna Paksha Panchami Tithi or the fifth day during the waning phase of moon as per Hindu lunar calendar followed in North India. Times of India reports The temple of Bishohori was built by the ancient Jaintia Kings. Bishohori literally means one who takes away poison. "The Jaintia kings had inculcated this ritual from the plains of erstwhile undivided Bengal bordering their kingdom of Jaintiapur," said Naba Bhattacharjee, working president of the Central Puja Committee. "The kings had integrated this borrowed ritual with their own traditional form of worship, which can be witnessed even today among the followers at Nar…

Sri Ramakrishna on Symbolism of Goddess Kali Standing on Shiva

Whatever you perceive in the universe is the outcome of the union of Purusha and Prakriti. Take the image of Shiva and Kali.
Kali stands on the bosom of Shiva; Shiva lies under Her feet like a corpse; Kali looks at Shiva. All this denotes the union of Purusha and Prakriti.
Purusha is inactive; therefore Shiva lies on the ground like a corpse.
Prakriti performs all Her activities in conjunction with Purusha. Thus She creates, preserves, and destroys. Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa
Source - The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna – (page 271 – 2)

Demon Tarakasura – Story of the birth of Tarakasur

Tarakasura was a fierce demon who was killed by Kartik or Muruga. The story of the birth of Tarakasur is a lesson in itself. Legend has it that Sage Kashyapa married 13 daughters of Daksha Prajapati. Of the daughters, Diti was evil minded and Aditi followed Dharma. Diti gave birth to demons and Aditi gave birth to Devas or demi gods.
Diti once demanded from her husband a son who would defeat the Devas. Sage Kashyapa knew it was futile to reason with Diti. So he blessed her with a son named Vajranga, whose legs and hands were hard as diamond.
Diti then asked Vajranga to capture Indra and other devas.
Aditi the mother of Devas prayed to Brahma for help. Brahma approached Vajranga and asked to release the Devas.
Vajranga was a devotee of Shiva and he was against violence. He told Brahma that he had captured Indra and other Devas only to please his mother. Brahma was happy with Vajranga. He then created a beautiful woman named Varangi and she became the wife of Vajranga.
Varangi served …

Avidhava Navami 2018 Date – Avidava Navmi Shradh

Avidhava Navami Shradh is observed on the ninth day of the annual Pitru Paksha fortnight and is dedicated to women who died before her husband. Avidhava Navami Shradh 2018 date is October 3. Avidhava Navami Shradh rituals and rites are strictly followed by widowers.
The rituals performed on the day vary from region to region and from community to community.

In the rituals, instead of gods from Hindu pantheon, demigods like Dhurilochan whose eyes remain half closed are invoked. Dhuri means smoke and lochan means eyes; their eyes remain half closed due to smoke.
In some regions, the Shradh rituals are not performed on the day. Instead food or meal is offered to the married woman’s soul. Some people also feed a Sumangali (married women) on the day. You can find details of how the ritual is performed in Karnataka in this article.

3D printed Durga Murti (Idol) to be the Main Murti during Durga Puja Festival

The Durga Puja festival in 2014 in Kolkata will be unique as for the first time 3D printed Durga Murti (Idol) will be used as the main murti during the festival. Goddess Durga and her family will be created using the 3D printing technology on paper.
The JodhpurPark puja committee is South Kolakata will be installing the 3D model of Goddess Durga. The 3D printed murti stands tall at 8.5 inches and 14 inches wide. Business Standard reports As 3D printing diversifies across the world in fields of medical science, films, art, aerospace, architecture and design and even in organ regeneration, a Durga puja committee in south Kolkata has paved the way for introduction of hi-tech features in sculpting idols instead of the traditional, manually-crafted process using clay.  "We have digitally created a Durga idol, designed by sculpting apps and using 3D printer, which uses standard office stationery (A4 size paper) to make the models from the design. "So you may say that this is a co…

Perdoor Temple in Karantaka - Anantha Padmanabha Temple at Perdoor in Karnataka Dedicated to Hindu God Vishnu

AnanthaPadmanabhaTemple at Perdoor (20 km from Udupi) in Karnataka is dedicated to Hindu God Vishnu. The 6th century temple has a standing murti of the Ananthapadmanabha Swamy form of Vishnu. The murti is of 2 feet height with Shanka Chakra and Abhaya Hasta.
The temple also has a separate shrine dedicated to Shiva – the temple is known as RudraTemple and a Rudralinga is worshipped here.
The murti of Ganesha is found on a pillar at the Theertha Mantapa. All pujas in the temple begin after offering puja to this Ganapati murti.
An Arototsava katte exists in front of the AnanthaPadmanabhaTemple and a Nagabramha Stana is situated nearby.
A Kunjadakatte at which Sri Anantha Padmanabha Utsavamurti (procession murti) is worshipped during Rathotsava festival is too located in the templecomplex.
A MariammanTemple too is located near the temple complex.
The pond attached to the temple is located on the northern side, known as Padma Sarovara, is believed to be the abode of Goddess Lakshmi.

Red Shoe Flower and Goddess Kali – Why is Red Shoe Flower Offered to Goddess Kali

One of the important flowers offered to Goddess Kali is the Red Shoe Flower. There is an interesting story which answers why red shoe flower is offered to Goddess Kali.

Legend has it that Devi took the ferocious form of Goddess Kali to annihilate demons Raktabeeja. Jasun was an ardent devotee of Mother Goddess Shakti. He was impressed with the Kali form of Mother Goddess. He offered red flowers before the eyes of the Goddess. He wanted to make the Goddess look even more ferocious with deep red eyes.
Goddess Kali was pleased with red color flower offerings. She gave the boon that the red shoe flower will be one of her favorite flowers and those who offer it will have her blessings. From that day the flower was known as Jathon, Japakusam and Deviphool.
After this incident devotees started offering Red Shoe flower to Goddess Kali.

Temple Dedicated to Ant – Urumbachan Gurusthanam in Kannur in Kerala

The greatness of Hinduism lies in the fact that Hindus are able to see divinity in all animate and inanimate.  Urumbachan Gurusthanam in Kannur in Kerala reiterates this fact. The temple is located near Thottada in Kannur and there is no murti in the shrine. Devotees offer prayers here to get rid of ant related in problem in their house or property.
For local residents, the temple of ants is Urumbachan Gurusthanam. The faithful offer coconuts to Urumbachan, to free their residences of ants without using any insecticide. The belief dates back to several centuries, though there is no historical evidence. The Gurusthanam is associated with the nearby Udayamangalam Ganapathy temple, considered to be the second important Ganesha mandapams in Kolathunadu.
Times of India reports  According to local legend, the original plan was to construct a Ganapathy temple, where the Gurusthanam now stands.

"The carpenter fixed a stick at the site," said M Narayanan, a former office bearer of th…

Sage Agastya in the Vedas

Sage Agastya is one of the most popular sages in Hinduism. He finds mention in the four Vedas. The first reference of Sage Agastya is found in the Rig Veda. In it he is the son of Mana. In some texts he is referred as the son of Vedic gods Mitra and Varuna.
Sage Agastya is also known as Mana or Manya in the Vedas.
Majority of scholars state that mother of Sage Agastya is the apsara Urvashi.
In some texts Sage Vasishtha is mentioned as his brother.
Wife of the rishi is Lopamudra. It is stated that the Rishi himself created Lopamudra.
From the Rig Veda it is very clear that Sage Agastya is associated with medicines and curing. It is mentioned in the Rig Veda that he cured the leg of Vishpala with the help of Ashwini Kumars.
Rig Vedic hymn (1.179) and (9.25) are associated with the Sage.
Two of his shishyas or students are mentioned in the Rig Veda – Antye and Brihatya.
It must be noted that Sage Agastya is mentioned in the Vedas, Ramayana, Mahabharata, Brahmanas, Aranyakas and in all m…

Website with information on Vaishnava Books in Tamil – English – With Option to Buy Online

Sri Vaishnava Sri is an exclusive website dedicated to Vaishnava books. You get information of important Vaishnava books published in Tamil and English. There is also an option to buy the books online.
The website Sri Vaishnava Sri , Srirangam is maintained by Sri Vaishnava Sri A. Krishnamachari’s son Vasudevan from Srirangam, one of the leading Publishers/ Printers ( Panchajanyam Magazine, Koilozhugu,Nalayira Divyaprabandham,Nithyanusanthanam, Sthotrapatam series – Poorvacharya Stotramala etc)
You can find more about the website here.

Timeless Wisdom of Hindu Saints

If you wish to bring the whole world under your control by just one act, then do this: stop grazing your cow-tongue on the pasture of criticism and ill talk of others.
Reflecting over all scriptures and thinking over and again, one arrives at this conclusion only: always meditate on God.
The fire of knowledge, kindled by discrimination between self and non-self, will burn up the effects of ignorance together with its roots.
Confusion can be destroyed by the realization of pure Brahman, one without a second.
It is a foolish person who identifies himself with a mass of skin, flesh, fat, bones, and filth, while the person skilled in reflection knows his own self, the only reality there is as distinct from the body.

Look at the man who walks on a tight rope. He is performing various tricks, but his mind is only on the rope. So also, we may be doing various things, but our minds must be on God. (This single quote - Sri Sivaratnapuri Tiruchi Mahaswamigal )

Navaneetha Krishna

Navaneetha Krishna is one of the child forms of Bhagvan Sri Krishna. In this form, Child Krishna is seen as dancing with joy on having secured a ball of butter to eat. A small ball of butter is shown in the murti of Navaneetha Krishna. In some images, Sri Krishna is depicted as a crawling baby.
Navaneetha Krishnan concept is very popular in South India.
In the murti form Navaneetha Krishna stands on left leg which is slightly bent at the knee joint. The right leg is lifted up and bent inwards as in dancing.
The right holds a ball of butter in it. The left arm is stretched out.
It is also a very common sculpture and wooden toys of Navaneetha Krishna were very prominent in South India.
Prayers are offered in Navaneetha Krishnan for healthy children by couples. Prayers are also offered for early cure of illness in children. Couples without children also offer prayers to the murti.

Ramnagar Ramlila

Ramnagar is located in Varanasi and the Ramlila held here is one of the most popular Ramlilas in India.

Ramnagar Ramlila was started in 1830 by then Kashi Naresh Maharaj Udit Narayan Singh and is attended by nearly 100,000 people. The play is based on the Ramacharitmanas penned by Tulsidas.
The Ramlila at Ramnagar is noted for its lavish sets, dialogues and other accessories. There permanent structures in the main arena. Temporary structures are also added during the period.
Ramnagar is located across the Ganges from Varanasi.
Important roles are often inherited by families in the region. Local actors fill the other roles.
Ramlila in most other regions is held for 10 days during the Dasara period.

Is Rhodiola The Mrita Sanjeevani of Ramayana?

Mrita Sanjeevani of Ramayana was used to cure Lakshmana who was badly hit by a poisoned arrow. Indian scientists now claim that Rhodiola found in the high altitude mountains could be the Mrita Sanjeevani mentioned in the Ramayan.
Scientists claim that Rhodiola can regulate the immunity system and helping in adapting to challenging environmental situations like high altitude.
But what is of great interest is that it can help in people stay protected form harmful radiation especially of nuclear bombs. Digital Journal reports  Rhodiola is known as Solo in the mountainous Ladakh region, in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. Here, the leafy parts of the plant are used as a vegetable.  Research work from the Leh-based Defence Institute of High Altitude Research (DIHAR) has shown that the herb holds great potential in helping military troops cope with high altitudes, such as the Siachen glacier, which at 5400 meters (17,700 feet) is the highest battlefield on the planet, where the Indi…

All bondages and all belief systems are the creation of human mind and truth is beyond mind – Anandamurti Gurumaa

The impertinent question that begs to be asked is what’s the discriminating line between faith and blind faith? Well, when you follow others without using your wisdom, it can be called blind faith.
Normally, faith is blind because once you know a thing then there is no need to have faith, whether blind faith or just faith, since now you simply know. It is the element of mystery about a thing that calls for faith.
Once you deeply know a thing then the whole phenomenon of knowing becomes complete and total in itself, leaving no room for faith.
But when the question is about God, someone says he is a believer in God, while someone else says I believe in nothing. Either way, you are still a believer.
The day you drop all the belief-systems, even the belief of nothingness, even the belief that there is no God or the belief of God. The day this belief system is totally eradicated from the root is the day when you experience your moksha, salvation or whatever word one would want to use,…

Indra Jatra Festival in Nepal

Indra Jatra is an 8-day festival observed in the Bhadra Month. The most important date is the Bhadrapad Shukla Paksha Chaturdashi – the fourteenth day during the waxing phase of moon in Bhadra Month. In 2019, Indra Jatra important date is on September 12.
The festival begins on Bhadrapad Shukla Paksha Dwadasi with the hoisting of ling (a wooden pole) which symbolically represents Indra, the king of Devas (celestial beings).
The festival is widely observed in the three districts of the KathmanduValley and in Kavre and Dolakha.
During the festival, murtis of Ganesh and Bhairav along with living goddess Kumari are taken around the streets in chariot.
The festival is mainly observed for abundant rains and good harvest.

3-D printed Hindu God Ganesha

Murtis (idols or statues) of Hindu Gods printed using 3-D technology is new and rare but is slowly catching up in India and various countries around the world. A 3-printed exhibition of Ganesha murtis was recently held in Bangalore and was a huge it with the audience. The New Indian Express reports  3-D printing technology has been around for many years now; the first working 3-D printer (stereolithography) was created in 1984 by Charles W Hull. "The industry in India has not taken off in the way it has in countries like Taiwan, Singapore or Malaysia. India has the required manpower but owing to lack of world-class R and D facilities, the industry has taken a backseat. We want to bring this technology to the forefront and what better way than to start it with an exhibition of idols of Lord Ganesha," says Prasad Rodagi, founder director of Altem, which has been in the business of 3-D printing since 2010.  At the exhibition, eight idols inspired by the temples in Maharashtra …

Onam Story – Onam Festival Story of Mahabali and Vamana

The story of Onam festival is associated with the Vamana incarnation of Vishnu and King Mahabali (Maveli). Onam, the most popular festival in Kerala, is the day when the legendary Asura king Mahabali visits his subjects. Mahabali had turned his kingdom into a virtual paradise on earth and the ‘devas’ could not tolerate this and they sought the help of Lord Vishnu to eliminate Maveli. Onam is perhaps a rare Hindu festival in which Lord Vishnu, the vanquisher, is the villain and the vanquished King Mahabali the hero.

As per Puranas, the Asura or demon King Mahabali made the utopian kingdom a reality. His fame spread all over the earth and the netherworld and slowly into the heaven.

Indra, the king of Devas and the ruler of heaven, felt threatened by the growing popularity of Mahabali.

Aditi, the mother of Indra, observed a penance called 'payovrata' to help her son and pleased with her devotion Lord Vishnu was born as Vamana, a dwarf, to Aditi.
Vamana approached Mahabali who w…

Sri Ramakrishna on Three Kinds of Love

There are other kinds of love: sadharani, samanjasa, and samartha. In the first, which is ordinary love, the lover seeks his own happiness; he doesn’t care whether the other person is happy or not. That was Chandravali’s attitude toward Krishna.
In the second, which is a compromise, both seek each other’s happiness. This is a noble kind of love. But the third is the highest of all.
Such a lover says to his beloved, ‘Be happy yourself, whatever may happen to me.’ Radha had this highest love. She was happy in Krishna’s happiness. Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa

The soul that can live alone with itself meets God – Sri Aurobindo

The Divine Truth is greater than any religion or creed or scripture or idea or philosophy.
For all problems of existence are essentially problems of harmony.
The soul that can live alone with itself meets God.
Do not belong to the past dawns, but to the noons of future.
True knowledge is not attained by thinking. It is what you are; it is what you become.
It is only the hypocrite and insincere who believe that they are superior to others. Humility is a state of consciousness.
Sri Aurobindo

Satarupa – the female equivalent of Manu

Satarupa in Hindu Puranas is the female equivalent of Manu – the first man. As per some Puranas she was the mind born daughter of Brahma, the Hindu god of creation. Agni Purana, Padma Purana, Vishnu Purana and Srimad Bhagavd Purana state that the male half of Brahma is Manu and the female half of Brahma is Satarupa.
Some texts are of the view that Satarupa means one hundred forms which includes mainly female forms.
In many texts Satarupa is the wife of Swayambhu Manu.
In some, Manu and Satarupa are the male and female part of Brahma. Daughters are begotten then and they are married to Rishis who then populate the earth.

Animal Sacrifice Banned in Hindu Temples in Himachal Pradesh

Animal sacrifice – especially those of goats, hen, cock, buffalo etc – is still practiced in certain Hindu temples in Himachal Pradesh. Now the high court in the state through and order has banned the practice of animal sacrifice in temples in Himachal Pradesh. Animals are mainly sacrifice in temples dedicated to manifestation of Goddess Shakti and also of Bhairva. Daijiworld reports  "No person throughout the state shall sacrifice any animal in any place of public religious worship, including all land and buildings near such places of religious worship which are ordinarily connected to religious purposes," said a division bench of Justice Rajiv Sharma and Justice Sureshwar Thakur. Disposing of petitions, the bench observed: "A startling revelation has been made in the manner in which thousands of animals are sacrificed every year in the name of religious worship."
"Sacrifice causes immense pain and suffering to the innocent animals. The innocent animals cannot…

Take always the position of the giver – Swami Vivekananda

Take always the position of the giver. Give love, give help, give service give what little you can. But keep out barter. Give out of your bounty as God gives. It will come back to you ten times, but don’t ask for it.
Money does not pay nor learning. Name does not pay nor fame. It is love that pays. It is character that cleaves through the adamantine walls of difficulties.
Repetition is the greatest stimulus that gives an opportunity of exposure to all the Samskaras hidden in the mind at a deeper level. The repetition of Om, and thinking of its meaning, is keeping good company in your own mind. Study, and then meditate on what you have studied. Thus light will come to you, the Self will become manifest.
When there is real purification of the body, external and internal, there arises neglect of the body, and the idea of keeping it nice vanishes.
This thirst after body is the great bane of human life. So the first sign of the establishment of purity is that you do not care to think you…