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Showing posts from December, 2014

Ishvara Gita

Ishvara Gita is a holy text which is part of the Kurma Purana. The text is associated with Moksha or liberation. In the text, Suta asks Sage Vyasa to share the knowledge which will help in attaining liberation.
Vyasa then describes the Ishvara Gita to the gathering of great saints. It is believed that Shiva explained the nature of Brahman and gave the knowledge of Moksha or liberation to sages Sanatkumara, Angiras, Bhrigu, Kanada, Kapila, Garga, Vamadeva and Vasishta. This was narrated by Vyasa to the gathering.
Legend has it that the sages led by Sanatkumara performed intense austerities. Vishnu appeared before them. They wanted to know the secret of the world – how things continually revolve, what is this world, and why was it created; what is the soul, what is final beatitude, and what is the real nature of Parabrahman.
Vishnu then directed them to Shiva who as Maheshwara narrated the secrets to the sages. These secrets are found in the Kurma Purana in the form of Ishvara Gita.

Kuravi Veerabhadra Swami Temple Timings – Opening and Closing and Darshan Time at Kuravi Veerabhadra Swamy Temple

The fierce form of Shiva Gana Veerabhadra is worshipped at the famous Kuravi Veerabhadra SwamiTemple. Opening and closing time and darshan timings are given below. Kuravi Veerabhadra Swami Temple Timings is subjected to change during festivals, important rituals and during grahan (solar and lunar eclipse).
KuraviVeerabhadraSwamiTemple Timings Morning opening time – 4:15 AM to 1:00 PM Evening opening time – 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Detail puja timings Suprabhatha Seva – 4:15 AM to 4:30 AM Early Morning Puja – 4:30 AM to 5:00 AM Arijitha Seva, Abhishekams, Nijadarshan – 5:00 AM to 11:30 AM Alankara Seva – 11:30 AM to 12:00 PM Archanas, Naivedya and Prasad distribution – 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM Temple closes at 1:00 PM Darshan and Archanas starts from 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM Bhakathoswa Swami Vaari Kalyanam – 5:00 PM Pradoshakala Puja – 6:00 PM Pavalimpu Seva – 7:30 PM Temple closes – 8:00 PM
On Monday the temple has extended timing from 4:15 AM to 1:30 PM

Bhadrachalam Vaikunta Ekadasi 2017 Live – Bhadrachalam Temple Mukkoti Ekadasi 2017 live online

The famous Vaikunta Ekadasi festival at Bhadrachalam Sree Seetha Ramachandra Swamy will be observed on December 29, 2017. The opening of the Uttara Dwara and darshan at BhadrachalamTemple will be aired live online from 3 AM IST on December 29, 2017. The web streaming is available from 3 AM in the morning
Link – You can watch the live streaming here Sri Vykuntha Ekadasi Mahotsavamulu - Utthara Dwaara Darshanam 2017 Live

Canada Hindu Calendar 2017 in pdf – Based on Time in Canada – Toronto – Vancouver – Canada Hindu Panchang 2017

Canada Hindu Calendar 2017 in pdf is presented by mypanchang. It contains all the important festivals, auspicious time etc as per Hindu Panchang 2017. The calendar is based on time in Canadian cities like Toronto – Vancouver etc. It must be noted that the vrat, festival dates in India and Canada might be different many times. So if you are residing in Canada and are keen to follow the local time then the calendar will be of great help.
Please note that the calendar is purnimat – that is a Hindu month in this calendar starts after Purnima. This calendar is followed in North India.
But the festival and vrat dates are applicable in all regions.
Link – Canada Hindu Calendar 2017 in pdf

As long as you have desires you will have suffering – Sri Anandamayi Ma

As you love your own body, so regard everyone as equal to your own body. When the Supreme Experience supervenes, everyone's service is revealed as one's own service. Call it a bird, an insect, an animal or a man, call it by any name you please, one serves one's own Self in every one of them.
Everyone is right from his own standpoint.
How can one impose limitations on the infinite by declaring this is the only path — and, why should there be so many different religions and sects? Because through every one of them He gives Himself to Himself, so that each person may advance according to his inborn nature.
As long as you have desires you will have suffering. If you go somewhere else you will have other difficulties. You can’t get peace as long as there is desire. If you contemplate God, the desires will go.
Sri Anandamayi Ma

Devasena – Story of Devasena - wife of Kartik or Muruga

Devasena is the wife of Kartik or Muruga, who is the commander of the army of Devas and who is also the son of Shiva. Story of Devasena is found in the Mahabharata. She is also known as Jayanti and Devayanai.
Devasena was the daughter of Prajapati. She along with her sister Daityasena was captured by demon king Keshin.
Daityasena agreed to become part of the designs of the demon king. But Devasena did not relent.
She was rescued by King Indra and protected as she was daughter of his mother’s sister.
Indra then found her a suitable and powerful husband in Kartik.
It must be noted that in some Puranas, Devasena is mentioned as the daughter of Indra.

Shree Shantadurga Fatarpekarin Temple at Fatorpa in Goa Launches an Official Website

ShreeShantadurgaFatarpekarinTemple at Fatorpa in Goa is dedicated to Goddess Shantadurga. The official website of the temple was launched during the four day zatra festival. The temple website provides all important information including festival dates and history. Information regarding halls and accommodation are also provided. Currently there is no online booking facility.
An important highlight of the website is its gallery and beautiful pictures of temple and surroundings.
LinkOfficial website of Shree Shantadurga Fatarpekarin Temple

About Goddess Shantadurga

State of carving for anything blocks all deeper experience – Nisargadatta Maharaj

Cease being fascinated by the content of your consciousness.
The state of carving for anything blocks all deeper experience.
One is always free. You are both conscious and free to be conscious. Nobody can take this away from you.
Do not think that you are the body. Give yourself no name and no shape. In the darkness and silence reality is found.
Whatever you may say will be both true and false. Words do not reach beyond the mind.
Wisdom tells me I am nothing. Love tells me I am everything. And between the two my life flows. Nisargadatta Maharaj

Vaikunta Ekadasi Festival Live Online from Srirangam Ranganathaswamy Temple

The official website of SrirangamRanganathaswamyTemple will upload Mohini Alankaram ritual and the Vaikunta Ekadasi for real-time viewing. Mohini Alankaram also known as ‘Nachiar Tirukkolam’ is on December 28, 2017. Vaikunta Ekadasi is on December 29, 2017.
The official website of SrirangamRanganathaswamyTemple.

Abhimanyu in Mahabharat – Story of Abhimanyu

Abhimanyu was the son of Arjuna (the third of the Pandava brothers) and Subhadra (sister of Sri Krishna) in the Mahabharata. He had married Uttara, the daughter of King of Virata. The story of Abhimanyu has continued to inspire generations as he died fighting like a true warrior at a young age of 16.
Abhimanyu was treacherously killed by the Kauravas on the 13th day of the Kurukshetra battle in the Mahabharata. He had fought heroically and breached the Chakravyuha formation created by the Kauravas. But he was trapped inside and killed. Six Maharathas – Drona, Karna, Kripa, Ashwathama, Duryodhana, and Duhshasana – and numerous other warriors together had attacked Abhimanyu. Before falling down, Abhimanyu had killed scores of Kauravas including many important warriors like Martikavata of Bhoja, Shatrunjaya, Chandraketu, Mahavega, Suvarcha and Suryabhasa. He also killed younger brothers of Shalya and Karna, Vastiya, Shalya’s son, one hundred princes of various kingdoms, Lakshmana (Duryo…

Srirangam Temple Calendar 2015 in pdf – Free Srirangam Ranganatha Swamy Temple Calendar 2015 with Pictures of Srihari Vishnu

The Srirangam Temple Calendar 2015 in pdf contains important festival dates in the famous SrirangamRanganathaSwamyTemple at Tamil Nadu. The calendar has seven beautiful images of Sri Namperumal (Srihari Vishnu) during various Sevas. The calendar is free for download and is in pdf format.
The pictures are that of
Pranavahara Vimanam Sri Namperumal Rathnangi Seva Sri Namperumal – Thayar Serthi Seva Sri Namperumal Vimana Padhakka Seva Sri Namperumal Muthu Kreedam Seva Sri Namperumal Thanga Kili with Pulinaga Malai Sri Ranganachiar

Link - you can download Srirangam Temple Calendar 2015 in pdf here

Ishwara Gita Teachings

Know that the soul is of a pure and subtle nature, unaffected by external or internal object; it is invisible, but manifests itself as Purusha, Prakriti, Mahaeshwara and Time.
Through the supreme soul (Paramatman) this universe is produced and annihilated; for it is the cause of Maya which delusively displays an endless variety of apparently exiting forms.
But the supreme soul itself neither creates nor is created; it is neither earth nor sea; fire nor air; nor hearing, touch, sight, smell nor taste; it has neither feet, nor hands, nor other organs; it neither acts nor suffers, for it is neither Purusha nor Prakriti, nor Maya: for, as the mind is distinct from the thoughts which arise in it, so is the supreme soul distinct from the illusive appearances which it generates; and as the shadow in water is separate from its object, so is the soul of each created being from the illusion which it contemplates; because, when released from liability of transmigration, the liberated soul beco…

South Africa Hindu Calendar 2015 in pdf – Based on Time in South Africa – Durban – Johannesburg – South Africa Hindu Panchang 2015

South Africa Hindu Calendar 2015 in pdf is presented by mypanchang. It contains all the important festivals, auspicious time etc as per Hindu Panchang 2015. The calendar is based on time in South African cities like Durban – Johannesburg etc. It must be noted that the vrat, festival dates in India and South Africa might be different many times. So if you are residing in South Africa and are keen to follow the local time then the calendar will be of great help.
Please note that the calendar is purnimat – that is a Hindu month in this calendar starts after Purnima. This calendar is followed in North India.
But the festival and vrat dates are applicable in all regions.
Link – South Africa Hindu Calendar 2015 in pdf

Britain Hindu Calendar 2015 in pdf – Based on Time in United Kingdom – London – Manchester – Hindu Panchang 2015 for England

United Kingdom Hindu Calendar 2015 in pdf is presented by mypanchang. It contains all the important festivals, auspicious time etc as per Hindu Panchang 2015 in Britain. The calendar is based on time in cities in England like London – Manchester etc. It must be noted that the vrat, festival dates in India and UK might be different many times. So if you are residing in Britain and are keen to follow the local time then the calendar will be of great help.
Please note that the calendar is purnimat – that is a Hindu month in this calendar starts after Purnima. This calendar is followed in North India.
But the festival and vrat dates are applicable in all regions.
Link – Hindu Calendar 2015 in pdf for England

Indian mind never has any hesitation in acknowledging its kinship with nature – Rabindranath Tagore

We can look upon a road from two different points of view. One regards it as dividing us from the object of our desire; in that case we count every step of our journey over it as something attained by force in the face of obstruction. The other sees it as the road which leads us to our destination; and as such it is part of our goal. It is already the beginning of our attainment, and by journeying over it we can only gain that which in itself it offers to us. This last point of view is that of India with regard to nature. For her, the great fact is that we are in harmony with nature; that man can think because his thoughts are in harmony with things; that he can use the forces of nature for his own purpose only because his power is in harmony with the power which is universal, and that in the long run his purpose never can knock against the purpose which works through nature.
In the west the prevalent feeling is that nature belongs exclusively to inanimate things and to beats, that t…

Pushan – Vedic Deity in Hindu Tradition

Pushan is a Vedic deity and was of great importance in the Vedic period. Pushan is described in the Vedas as the lord of all things, the guardian of all and the lord of the roads. It is also believed that He is the deity who shows light to the dead in their journey to the next world – this is mentioned in the Atharva Veda.
The term Pushan means to prosper, grow and thrive. He was also given the title – Pashupa, protector of or animals. He is also known as Vimucho napat and Vimochana.
It is mentioned in the Rig Veda that the deity protects cattle, horses, and other domestic animals. He blesses in easy weaving and smoothening the wool of sheep. He also helps in locating hidden and lost things. He guards the roads and is prayed for protection while traveling. In both Grihya and Shrauta sutras, prayers are offered to Pushan before any journey.
Pushan married daughter of Surya, the sun god. He is also a messenger of Surya and helper of Savitrs.
Pushan has a braided hair and a beard. He …

Yadagirigutta Sri Lakshminarasimha Swamy Temple Accommodation to Go Online

Yadagirigutta SriLakshminarasimhaSwamyTemple administration has decided to offer all sevas online including accommodation. This decision was taken after irregularities were found in room booking and allotment of rooms. The online services will be available from January 1, 2015. New Indian Express reports The temple administration of Yadagirigutta has decided to offer all sevas through online from January 1. Executive officer of the templeN Geetha said that there were allegations against some temple staff about misusing the manual allotment of rooms which could be avoided by online booking.   Speaking to newsmen on Monday, she said sitting in her office she can get the status of room allotment and details of those who booked rooms with the new system. Soon online booking of rooms would be introduced while other services like prasadam sales, seva ticket sales would be introduced in a phased manner.

Australia Hindu Calendar 2017 in pdf – Based on Time in Australia – Sydney – Brisbane – Australia Hindu Panchang 2017

Australia Hindu Calendar 2017 in pdf is presented by mypanchang. It contains all the important festivals, auspicious time etc as per Hindu Panchang 2017. The calendar is based on time in Australian cities like Sydney – Brisbane etc. It must be noted that the vrat, festival dates in India and Australia might be different many times. So if you are residing in Australia and are keen to follow the local time then the calendar will be of great help.
Please note that the calendar is purnimat – that is a Hindu month in this calendar starts after Purnima. This calendar is followed in North India.
But the festival and vrat dates are applicable in all regions.
Link – Australia Hindu Calendar 2017 in pdf

There has never been a time when you and I have not existed – Bhagavad Gita

There has never been a time when you and I have not existed, nor there would be a time when we will cease to exist. As the same person inhabits the body through childhood, youth and old age, so too at the time of death he attains another body. The wise are not deluded by these changes.
Contacts of the senses with objects produce cold and heat, pleasure and pain. They come and go and are impermanent. Bear with them.
The person who these cannot afflict, chief among men, who is the same in pleasure and pain, wise, he is fit for immortality.
That which really is cannot go out of existence, just as that which is non-existent cannot come into being. The end of this opposition of ‘is’ and ‘is not’ has been perceived by the seers of essential truths.

Know that by which all this is pervaded to be indestructible. No one can bring about the destruction of the imperishable.
(Gita Chapter 2 verse 12 to 17).

Trinidad and Tobago Hindu Calendar 2015 in pdf – Based on Time in Trinidad and Tobago – Hindu Festival Dates in Trinidad in 2015

Trinidad and Tobago Hindu Calendar 2015 in pdf is presented by mypanchang. It contains all the important festivals, auspicious time etc as per Hindu Panchang 2015. The calendar is based on time in Trinidad and Tobago. It must be noted that the vrat, festival dates in India and Trinidad and Tobago might be different many times. So if you are residing in Trinidad and Tobago and are keen to follow the local time then the calendar will be of great help.
Please note that the calendar is purnimat – that is a Hindu month in this calendar starts after Purnima. This calendar is followed in North India.
But the festival and vrat dates are applicable in all regions.
Link – Trinidad and Tobago Hindu Calendar 2015 in pdf (please note that the calendar is written for Guyana but is applicable in all places in West Indies)

Putana and Krishna – Story of Demon Putana Attempting to Kill Baby Krishna

Demon Putana attempting to kill baby Krishna is one of the most famous incidents in the life of Bhagvan Sri Krishna on earth. The story happens after Kamsa is informed by Goddess Yogamaya that the eighth child of Devaki destined to kill him has all already appeared on earth.

Kamsa then recruits Demon Putana to kill all the newborn children in Mathura.
Putana gets on with her mission and reaches Gokul.
She goes to the house of Nanda Rai and Yashoda in the form of a Brahmin lady and convinces Mata Yashoda that her breast milk has the power to strengthen the baby.
Yashoda gives baby Krishna to her to breastfeed.
She sits down in a closed room and begins to feed Baby Krishna poisoned milk.
Bhagvan realizes that this is a demon in disguise and continues drinking the milk.
Krishna does not stop and the demon soon realized that Krishna was sucking life out of her.
Putana tries to remove baby Krishna.
But he clings to the breast and bites her hard. Immediately Putana transforms to her origi…

Old Durga Puja Songs to Be Digitized

Durga Puja songs as old as 100 year old are being digitized by The Weavers Studio Centre for the Arts.  IANS reports  One of the first Durga Puja albums, "Sharadabali", was released by The Gramophone Company of India in 1914. The company started the tradition of releasing special Sharadiya numbers sung by artists like Manodasundari Dasi, Narayan Chandra Mukherjee and K. Mullick.  The Weavers Studio Centre for the Arts here has taken the lead in digitising the originals (in analog format) and an expert on Bengali gramophone recordings, Susanta Kumar Chatterjee, will be contributing from his vast collection.  "No other format was prevalent in those days except for gramophone or vinyl records. The use of musical instruments a century ago and how artistes had to get it right in a few minutes of the recording process, all these need to be archived as they are vintage," Chatterjee, who has the 1914 "Sharadabali" in his possession, told IANS.

Yogini – Divine Attendant of Goddess Kali and Bhairava Shiva – About Yoginis

Yogini, or Yoginis, are the divine female attendants of Goddess Kali and Bhairava form of Shiva. The exact count of the yoginis differs from scripture to scripture. The most popular belief is they are eight, twelve, sixty four or sixty five. The concept of Sixty Four Yoginis or Chausath Yoginis is very popular in eastern parts of India especially in Orissa.
Two of the popular temples dedicated to Chausath Yoginis are located at Hirapur near Bhubaneswar and at Ranipur-Jharial in Bolangir District in Orissa.
The Yoginis are worshipped to attain supernatural powers. As per tradition, the 64 Yoginis served Goddess Kali and the Bhairav form of Shiva. Yoginis were part of the battles waged by Goddess Kali to restore Dharma.

Srimad Bhagavad Purana refers to the Yoginis as the functionaries of the Devi – Mother Goddess. Yoginis are different from Saptamatrikas or the seven divine mother goddesses. Yoginis belong to a class of subsidiary deities who were associated with the Mother Shakti (Dur…

Yama Temple at Dharmapuri in Karimnagar District in Telangana – Rare Temple Dedicated to Hindu God of Death

Yama Dharmaraja is the Hindu God of Death and temples dedicated to Lord Yama are very rare. On such temple is the Sri Laxminarasimha Swamy Devasthanam at Dharmapuri in Karimnagar District in Telangana.

Yama Dharmaraja is worshipped as a subsidiary deity at the famous SriLakshminarasimhaSwamyTemple. The main murti in the temple is the Lakshminarasimha Swami incarnation of Bhagvan Vishnu.
Devotees offer prayers here after taking a holy dip in the GodavariRiver.
There is a belief that those offering prayers here will not suffer in hell.
The most important puja offered in the temple is the Ayoosha sooktham for long life and good health.
Another important ritual held here is the Ganda Deepam – devotees pour oil into the lamp to mitigate sufferings.
The temple is located around 90 km north of Karimnagar.

Prayers that come out of the very depth of our being are invariably always answered – Dada J P Vaswani

Just as we take care to eat nutritious food, and do exercises like walking, swimming, jogging to keep the body fit and healthy, so, too, we need to nourish, strengthen and sustain the good health of the mind.
The prayers that come out of the very depth of our being are invariably always answered.
There is yet another reason why our prayers are not answered – some of them are so ridiculous, so absurd, that God in Hid Divine Wisdom, ignores them.
Our ancient scripture equates guests with God – Atithi Devo Bhava. Scholars of Sanskrit have commented on the significance of the term atithi – a + tithi, or one who arrives without prior notice of day or date; in other words, an unexpected guest. Even such visitors to our homes should be treated with love and respect. We may not be in a position to prepare and elaborate meal for them; but we should invite them to share our homely meals with courtesy and warmth. This indeed is the true spirit of hospitality.
Dada J P Vaswani

Katya Vilambita Hand Posture of Venkateswara – The unusual left hand posture of Balaji

The left hand of Venkateswara is in the Katya Vilambita posture. The left lower hand of Balaji is straight down and is bend at the wrist towards right. This is the Katya Vilambita Hasta Mudra. The hand rests just below the left hip. This is posture is found in the main murti worshipped in the TirumalaTirupatiVenkateswaraTemple.

Katya Vilambita Hasta Mudra… Katya means formally expressing praise or pay homage, Vilambita means hanging, Hasta means hand, and Mudra means posture…
The most popular symbolic meaning associated with the Katya Vilambita hand posture is that Venkateswara protects and bless his true devotees.
Another belief is that the hand assures the devotees that Balaji will let worldly problems go beyond a level.
The right lower hand is in the famous Varada Mudra – boon giving posture.

Kanaka Durga Temple Laddu Prasadam to Weigh Less

Laddu is the most important Prasadam at the famous KanakaDurgaTemple in Andhra Pradesh. The weight of the Ladoo Prasadam will be soon reduced in order to avoid price hike. Currently a Laddu weighs 100 gms. It will be reduced to 80 gms.
The price of a single Ladoo Prasadam is Rupees 10/-
On an average 45,000 ladoos are sold daily. The number increases to 75,000 on Fridays and Sundays.
During Navratri and Bhavani Deeksha Festivals more than 100,000 ladoos are sold at the temple.
Related About Tirupati Laddu

Someday I will…

Someday I will do this and that. The someday list is long. It is the magic day when everything will automatically or magically fall in place and all wishes will be fulfilled. But will this someday ever come?
The truth is for many people the someday never comes because they never have the courage, money, time or energy to achieve all those things that they intent to achieve someday. So the someday is an imaginary place to dumb all their unfulfilled desires.
It is true that not all items in the someday list can be fulfilled in a short period of time. But there are many that can be achieved if we make that extra effort. An honest view of the list will make us realize that many things can be achieved.
The unattainable goals should not make us self critical. The unattainable goals should not be the reason for laziness and lack of motivation. The unattainable goals should not block all those goals that we can score today and tomorrow.
If you want to visit a place …go do it now…take leave,…

Gandhamadana Mountain - the abode of Kubera

GandhmadanaMountain is frequently mentioned in the Hindu scriptures, especially the Puranas. It is the abode of Kubera and Yakshas. The mountain gets its name from the fragrant and healing herbs that grow on it.
In the Mahabharata it is mentioned that on the slopes of Gandhamadana lives saints, siddhas and semi divine beings like Gandharvas, Apsaras, Kinnaras and Kimpurushas.
One legend has is that Hanuman brought a piece of the mountain to Rameswaram.
The palace of Kubera is located atop the mountain.
A beautiful description of the mountain is found in the Mahabharata.
Some scriptures give the suggestion that the mountain is located near MountKailash. Some scriptures especially the Puranas indicate the location to be in the present day Garhwal Himalayas.
Some scriptures suggest that River Mandakini and Alakananda flow on its slopes.
The mountain is also found in the literary works of Kalidasa and Bana. In Kalidasa’s Vikramorvashiya it is mentioned that Urvashi went to Gandhamad…

Back To Traditional Roots – Marriage in Hindu Temples is on the Rise in Tamil Nadu

Marriages were earlier held in Hindu Temples but there was a break in tradition when people opted for wedding halls or huge marriage halls. But once again many young couples are opting for marriages in ancient Hindu temples. The Hindu reports
“This generation thinks differently,” says Jothi Mahalingam, manager at the Pallava-period Sri Parthasarathy Swamy temple, Triplicane. “People these days like to go back to their traditional roots.” Mahalingam, who has been with the temple for 32 years, adds that, people believe that married life will be prosperous if it begins in a temple, and in the last eight years he has seen a steady increase in the number of weddings conducted here. “To have a wedding at the temple, there are several rules and regulations,” says the man at the ticket counter at Sri Kapaleeshwar temple. “You will need to submit birth certificates, address proof, age proof, a tahsildar-attested document stating that it is the first marriage for both bride and groom, and most …

Multiplicity of desires leads to ambiguity – Yogi Ashwini

Just close your eyes and observe what is going on inside the brain…give it two minutes. You will find so many thoughts – of children, spouse, business, and your emotions. All these thoughts indicate the desire of soul and it is because of these thoughts or desires that we are unable to go beyond human existence; peace and happiness prove elusive.
When the mind is engaged in thoughts of the physical, it cannot think beyond because at one point of time, mind can only do one thing and think of one thing.
Our bodies are programmed to achieve anything, provided it is only one thing at a time.
Words like ekagrata, ek tattva nirantar abhyas, bhumadhya all indicate the path to success as one-pointed focus.
The problem starts when our desires divide. Multiplicity of desires leads to ambiguity; lack of understanding of what one wants makes it difficult to be successful.
Yogi Ashwini

Mastering of the senses is the true path to knowledge – Mahabharata

Men are confounded by the darkness of anger and delight. Bound down by many different kind of nooses, they are not content with their own riches. Because of desire and ignorance, they repeatedly come under Yama’s control. They are like ones without eyes being led by ones without eyes and are borne by their own deeds. There is only one path followed by learned ones. When one sees it, one overcomes death. Such a great person does not become attached.
A man who has not controlled his soul cannot know the Supreme Being.
All rituals and pujas are ineffective if one cannot control the mind and restrain the senses.
Unwavering renunciation of senses, steady abandonment of desire, and constant avoidance of violence is mark of true knowledge.
Mastering of the senses is the true path to knowledge.

Meditation is a state of awakened awareness

Meditation is a state of awakened awareness.
When all modifications, all fluctuations of the mind are gone – now that is, the state of meditation. Having thus transcended the mind, we are one with our real Self.
Mind functions at different levels and thoughts are propelled by mind due to habitual conditioning. We expect certain responses from people, situations and when they do not happen as desired, the mind gets disturbed. The agitations of the mind result in great turmoil and this turmoil, this unrest generates a myriad of thoughts. We pay great deal of attention to all sorts of self-centered activities, like the kind of clothes we wear, the fashion we follow, the car we drive, the membership of particular clubs, and so on. But what we fail to pay any attention to is something very important: How does our mind function?
How can just a thought bring upon pain, anguish, jealousy or joy? We ensure that our house is clean but we are least bothered about our cluttered mind. It is futil…

Story of Hidimba Devi

Hidimbi, or Hidimba Devi, was a forest dweller. Her brother, Hidimba was killed by Bhima, the second of the Pandava brothers. Hidimbi later married Bhima and they lived together for a year. In fact, Hidimbi was the first woman to be married into the Pandava clan. But she was never given this honor or recognition.
Hidimbi happily ruled the kingdom of her brother.
Hidimbi and Bhima had a son named Ghatotkacha. When Ghatotkacha grew up, Hidimbi handed the kingdom to her son and retired deep into the forest to do penance.
The place where she meditated is in Himachal Pradesh and is today known as DungriTemple. The popular belief is that the temple is located at the exact spot where she meditated.
In the region, Hidimba Devi is believed to be an incarnation of Goddess Durga. She is a powerful deity in the region and is the first deity to arrive in Kullu during Dasara celebrations.

Sabarimala Temple Post Office Delivers Letters Addressed to Lord Ayyappa

The post office located near the famous Sabarimala Temple gets hundreds of letters addressed to Lord Ayyappa. Ayyappa gets invitation cards for weddings and shop openings. The letters are mostly from Ayyappa devotees from Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. IBN Live reports  It is a unique post office, and one of its main tasks is to deliver letters to God. Located near the famed Hindu temple at the Sabarimala hills, the post office may perhaps be the only one in the country which does not work round the year. It comes alive when the peak pilgrimage season of the Ayyappa shrine begins on the first day of the Malayalam month in November, and the period ends towards the middle of January.  The post office is also open for 10 days during the Vishu season. Functioning six days a week from 8 in the morning to 8 at night, the six employees, led by 23-year-old Sai G Prakash, have a lot to do.   A feature of the post office is the special pictorial cancellation stamp of the 18 steps tha…

Ego Is Like A Bamboo Plant Which Has Five Defects

According to a spiritual tradition among the Sikhs, ego is like a bamboo plant which has five defects –
It thinks itself higher than everyone else, from all trees and shrubs. It has knots all through—robbing it of all smoothness. It has thorns, even if someone caresses it with love, it pricks them. It looks very strong from outside but is empty inside When one bamboo rubs against another bamboo, it erupts into fire. Forests after forests are reduced to ashes.
Likewise, an egotist person also has five defects that keep him away from the grace of the Lord;
He thinks all others are lesser than him—no one is greater than him. He has knots in his hearts; he says something but has something else in his heart. He may use good, noble words, but is full of poison within. Even if someone comes to him with genuine love, he pricks them. He displays strength outside but is full of insecurities and weaknesses within.
When he encounters another ego, he rubs against it hard, lighting up a fire th…

Krittivasa Shiva – Why Shiva is known as Krittivasa?

Krittivasa is one among the numerous names of Shiva. Shiva is known as Krittivasa because he wears animal hides as clothes. Shiva usually wears a tiger skin. As per some scriptures he also wears elephant skin.
Symbolically, the tiger skin suggests that Shiva is the controller of all powers in the world.
A story is mentioned in the Shiva Purana, which explains why Shiva wears tiger skin. You can read it here.
When Shiva wears elephant skin, he is also known as Gajantaka. You can read the story and symbolism of Gajantaka here.
Another reason for Shiva using animal skins as clothes is that he is the lord of all creatures – Pashupati. He is the divine herdsman.

Sri Ram Sings in Italian and Sita performs Odissi in this Ramayana Opera

Ramlila was recently performed as opera. In this Ramayana Opera, Sri Ram narrated his emotions in Italian and Mata Sita conveyed her emotions through Odissi dance movements.  The Day After writes  Lord Rama sang his feelings when he fell in love with Sita at first sight and attired in traditional dhoti-kurta, he narrated his emotions in Italian. Rama's wife, Sita, however does not explain her emotions through words but through expressive eyes and graceful postures in her Odishi dance.
"I find Ramlila an evergreen subject. We never get bored of this subject but we wanted to present it in different way. Ramayana has never been done in opera. So I thought why not? Since I love Ramayana; I love challenges; I love innovation, so I thought of blending it," Bijoylaxmi Hota, who scripted the opera said.  The fusion could be seen from the costumes and musicians' performances. The conductor of the opera was an Italian and his team of musicians included Italians, Indians and Hu…

Selfishness prompts us to paint everything with ourselves – Swami Vivekananda

When the dry branch of a coconut palm drops to the ground, it leaves only a mark on the trunk indicating that once there was a branch at that place. In the like manner, he who has attained God keeps only an appearance of ego; there re mains in him only a semblance of anger and lust. He becomes like a child.
We color everything with our own selves. We have a brush—a thing comes and we do not like it and we brush a little then look at it. Selfishness prompts us to paint everything with ourselves.
The body comes and goes and is limited. . . The body is not the Real Man; neither is the mind, for the mind waxes and wanes. It is the spirit beyond, which alone can live forever. The body and mind are continually changing, and are, in fact, only names of series of changeful phenomena, like rivers whose waters are in a constant state of flux, yet presenting the appearance of unbroken streams. . . the self-contained Purusha (Self) within is your real nature.
The adjunct of mind is His first and…

Symbolism of Snake in Hinduism

Snake (referred as nagas) is an important symbol in Hinduism. The symbolism attached to the serpents are of eternity, fertility and regeneration. They are the protector of the universe. The popular belief is that 1000-headed snake Ananta is holding the earth. “Ananta, the Lord of serpents, supports the Earth with its mountain and forests.” – states the third chapter of Hathayoga Pradipika.
Ananta is regarded as an emblem of eternity. The divine 1000-headed serpent is believed to be supporting the seven nether worlds below and the seven aerial regions above.

Ananta  Sesha means that which remains after dissolution of the universe. Srihari Vishnu the seed of creation rests atop it.

The prominence of worship of nagas is based on the belief that snakes do not die but they shed their skins and emerge as new. This eternity of snakes became a symbolism. This ageless quality of the serpent is known as Ananta – never ending.
Snake is a symbol of eternity, fertility and regeneration in Hinduis…

About Traditional Forest Route of Sathram-Pulmedu Leading to Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple

One of the traditional forest routes leading to SabarimalaAyyappaTemple starts at Sathram. The route is Sathram – Pulmedu – Sannidanam. The traditional route is popularly known as Pulmedu route and is through thick forest. Thousands of Ayyappa pilgrims are undertaking the journey through this arduous path. It is around 7 km trek from Pulmedu to SabarimalaAyyappaTemple. The New Indian Express reports  Though pilgrims are denied a proper path and potable water, the Pulmedu route is witnessing a heavy inflow of pilgrims since last week.  It is an arduous journey uphill for pilgrims from Sathram to Pulmedu due to the negative attitude of the Forest Department authorities in clearing the undergrowth on the trekking path. Though the Department assured of clearing the path between Sathram and Pulmedu at the review meeting on Sabarimala arrangements, hardly any follow-up action was taken for clearing the forest path for pilgrims who take the traditional route.  The Akhila Bharatha Ayyappa Sev…

Shani Pradosh 2017 dates – Shani Pradosh Vrat Dates in 2017 - Shiva Pradosh on Saturday

Shani Pradosh is observed when Pradosh vrat dedicated to Shiva falls on Saturday. Shani Pradosh Vrat dates in 2017 based on Hindu Panchang and calendars are given below. Pradosh fasting is dedicated to Shiva and falls on the 13th day (during the waxing and waning phase of moon) in a traditional Hindu lunar calendar. 
Shani Pradosh in 2017:
March 25 April 8
August 5
August 19 and
December 30
Saturday is dedicated to Shani is one of the Navgrahas. Shani is widely believed to be a troublemaker in people’s horoscopes and it is believed that fasting and praying on Pradosh day will help in keeping the harmful effects of Shani away.
You may also like to read How to observe Pradosh Vrata? Importance of Pradosh Shanivar Vrat dedicated to Shani Bhagvan

Man can change his destiny not by wishing for it but by working for it – Swami Chinmayananda

Man can change his destiny not by wishing for it but by working for it.
A problem in life is a challenge to be faced. The outer problems, created by the arrangement of happening and the pattern of the available environment are all actually interpreted by the mind, and judged by the intellect. Then only responses arise from us towards them.
If accumulated knowledge adds to form proficiency, the ability to translate that knowledge into action in the appropriate fields is known as efficiency.
Daily prayer and meditation are all wonderful therapeutic agencies in building up peace and happiness within the individual.
Desires are never quenched by enjoyment, it rather inflames them as clarified butter does fire.
The principle is simple you can never solve a problem as long as you are in the problem. Get out of it.
Swami Chinmayananda

Hanuman Chanting Garuda Mantra to Save Sri Ram and Lakshman from the effect of Nagapasha

Hanuman chants the Garuda Mantra in the Yuddha Kanda of the Ramayana to save Sri Ram and Lakshman from the effect of Nagapasha arrow. Indrajit, the son of Ravana, was a master magician and prince of illusions. During the battle in the Ramayana he disappears into the sky and shoots Nagapasha arrow to tie down Sri Ram and Lakshman. Nagas or poisonous snakes form coils on the body Rama and Lakshman and they are made immobile. The poison takes effect on the brothers and both fall unconscious.
The only way to save Sri Ram and Lakshman is by breaking the coils of poisonous snakes. This deed can only be performed by Garuda.
Hanuman then sat down facing east and started chanting the Garuda mantra. Garuda is Lord Vishnu’s vehicle. He is also the avowed enemies of snakes.
Hardly had Hanuman finished chanting the mantra, there was a huge wind in the sky. The huge wind causes waves to rise like mountains. It was the arrival of the divine bird Garuda.
All the snakes had bound Sri Ram and Lakshm…

Sthala Vrikshams in Tamil Nadu Hindu Temples to be preserved through Cloning

Each HinduTemple is Tamil Nadu has a tree attached to it and it is known as Sthala Vriksham. The trees are so unique that some of them are considered as miracle tree. The Vanni tree at the MagudeshwaraTemple at Kodumudi and the mango tree at the EkambershwaraTemple at Kancheepuram are nearly 3,500 years old. Now the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments (HR&CE) Department in Tamil Nadu is planning to preserve these unique trees through cloning. The Hindu reports  Describing every Sthala Vriksham as a unique germplasm, a recent communication of the department urges the officials to take the help of experts from the Agriculture Department or the Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU) for the task.  The communication, issued by Additional Chief Secretary R. Kannan to HR&CE Commissioner P. Dhanapal, also asks the executive officers to ensure that enough clones are kept in carefully quarantined, separate places in nandavanam or flower garden. Even in private temples, the HR&…

Story of the Birth of Shishupala and why he was killed by Sri Krishna

Shishupala was killed by Sri Krishna during the Rajasuya Yajna conducted by Yudhishtira at the Indraprastha. Shishupala was killed by Sri Krishna to give moksha to him. Story of his birth is found in the Puranas and Mahabharata.
Shishupala was Jaya, one of the guards of Vaikunta, Vishnu’s abode. He along with Vijaya had once denied entry to Sanat Kumaras. The sages cursed them to be born on earth.
Jaya and Vijaya then prayed to Vishnu for a solution to the curse. Vishnu told them that they can take seven births on earth as his ordinary devotees or take three births as his enemies.

Jaya and Vijaya opted for three births as enemies as they wanted to return to Vaikunta at the earliest.
They pleaded that they should meet their end in each birth at the hands of Vishnu.
Thus Jaya was born as Shishupala when Bhagvan Vishnu appeared as Sri Krishna.
He was killed by Sri Krishna during the Rajasuya Yajna conducted by Yudhishtira at the Indraprastha. Krishna had promised Shishupala’s mother t…

Ancient Murti of Bhagvan Sri Ram Stolen from Raghunath Temple in Kullu in Himachal Pradesh

A 17th-century murti of Bhagvan Sri Ram was stolen from the RaghunathTemple on the premises of the KulluPalace in Sultanpur in Himachal Pradesh. This is the murti taken out first during the famous Kullu Dasara. Nearly 200 deities from the nearby villages arrive during Kullu Dasara rituals to pay respect to Bhagvan Sri Ram.
The made of ashtadhatu (a combination of eight metals, including gold and silver) is about three inches long and weighs around 500 gm.
Apart from the murti of Raghunath, murtis of Ganesha, Hanuman, Narasimha and Saligram Shila were stolen from the temple.
You can read more about the importance of the deity here.

All troubles come to an end when the ego dies – Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa

Water appears to be divided into two parts if one puts a stick across it. But in reality there is only one water. It appears as two on account of the stick. This ‘I’ is the stick. Remove the stick and there remains only one water as before.
The ego, is like an intruder in a house who has been accommodated and accepted as one of the inmates of the house. But when we begin to look into its antecedents—from where it came, its status, its very existence—then it seems to disappear.
Maya is nothing but the egotism of the embodied soul. This egotism has covered everything like a veil.
All troubles come to an end when the ego dies.
If by the grace of God a man but once realizes that he is not the doer, then he at once becomes a Jivanmukta. Though living in the body, he is liberated. He has nothing else to fear.
This maya, that is to say, the ego, is like a cloud. The sun cannot be seen on account of a thin patch of cloud; when that disappears one sees the sun. Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa

Malayalam Calendar 2015 – Download Kerala Calendar 2015 in PDF format for free

Malayalam Calendar 2015 in pdf for download is provided by the Deepika Newspaper and Kerala Kaumudi in Kerala. Mathurbhumi used to provide calendar for free but they have stopped it. Malayala Manorama too does not provide the 2015 calendar online for free. The 2015 Malayalam calendar contains important festivals in Kerala and uses Malayalam language to mention Nakshatram and festival details.
You can visit the newspaper website and download it here - Deepika Malayalam Calendar 2015 (they mail the calendar)
Kerala Kaumudi Calendar 2015 in PDF format - You download it here at Kerala Kaumudi calendar 2015. (direct download)

Soma Pradosham – Pradosham Vratam Falling on Monday

Pradosham Vrat is dedicated to Shiva and Parvati on the 13th day of a lunar fortnight. Soma Pradosham 2017 dates are April 24 and May 8. Soma Pradosham is observed when the vratam day falls on a Monday.
Monday is dedicated to Shiva. So when the day falls on Monday it is considered highly auspicious day to offer pujas and prayers to Shiva. 
Pradosham as the name indicates is a period just before sunset and after sunset. Roughly, the Pradosham period is between 1.5 hours before sunset and 1 hour after sunset. It is said that Shiva and Parvati are in a happy mood during Pradosham period and they shower blessings on devotees.
Shiva devotees fast on the day and the fast is broken after evening pujas. 
You may also like to read How to observe Pradosham Vrat? Story of Pradosham Fasting Pradosham Vratam dates in 2017

Two plus Two Is Four So Is Three Plus One

When we are ready to accept and respect multiplicity we become a complete human being.
The problem of one-sided thinking is universal in its existence.
It is the problem of finding out the underlying truth behind the multiplicity of expressions, extending into diverse forms of life.
We hold something as true and then fail to understand that different expressions of the same thing are laid out in different ways and methods.
And this non-understanding leads to a hardened stand; we become intolerant and, ultimately, violent.
Fanaticism extends to the way we eat, dress, speak, pray and what not.
We want everyone to be like us! Setting ourselves as the standard of the universe!
Being caught in our prejudices and narrow outlooks, we spoil our lives.
Realize – Two plus Two Is Four So Is Three Plus One
SourceVedanta Kesari August 2014 Editorial

Mahasweta – About Goddess Mahashveta

Goddess Mahasweta is a goddess worshipped in Hinduism. She is the deity who represents Mother Earth. The deity is widely worshipped in eastern parts of India.
In some regions in eastern parts of India, Mahasweta is Goddess Saraswati. She is also referred as Sarbashukla Mahasweta.
Mahasweta means brilliant white and symbolically refers to purity.
In some regions, Goddess Durga is also referred as Mahashveta.
It is also the name of a consort of Surya, the sun god.

Mahabharata Audio in Hindi in mp3 – Download Mahabharat Audio in Hindi for free

Mahabharata Audio in Hindi in mp3 is provided by Ved Puran website. The files are divided into 9 files of nearly 500 mb each. The audio files of Mahabharat are in zip format. You will have to download and unzip the files. Please note that as the files are big, therefore it would be better you first download the small size file and check quality before downloading the entire 9 files.
Link – Mahabharata Audio in Hindi in mp3

On Liberation and Bhakti from the Ramayana

The three ways for Liberation are: Right action for union with The Supreme; Spiritual Knowledge for union with The Supreme Devotional love for union with the Supreme.
Bhakti has three different aspects according to one’s individual nature.
He who worships Me to bring harm to anyone or out of hypocrisy or envy, or is wrathful or harsh or is unkind to others, is drowned in the mode of darkness.
Situated in the mode of passion is the person who, thinking of Me (Bhagvan Sri Ram) as a distinct entity, worships Me through an image for some temporal benefit, or is after sensual pleasure or wants money or fame.
The person who works for God with the conviction that right actions ought to be performed and offered to the Lord, is a devotee in the mode of brightness.
Like the Ganga waters joining the sea and getting mixed with the sea waters, the constant immersion of one’s mental waves in Me (Bhagvan), the fountain of endless virtues, is the pure Bhakti Yoga.

(Source – Bhagvan Sri Ram in Conver…

Gagangiri Maharaj Punyatithi at Gagangad near Kolhapur in Maharashtra

Gagangiri Maharaj was a great sage during the 20th century in Maharashtra. His Punyatithi or death anniversary is annually observed in Paush month as per traditional Hindu calendar followed in Maharashtra. The day is of great significance at the Gagangad Ashram at Gagangad near Kolhapur in Maharashtra. Gagangiri Maharaj Punyatithi 2019 date is February 1.

Gagangiri Maharaj taught about the oneness of nature and living beings.
Thousands of people arrive on the day at Gagangad Ashram and Khopoli Ashram. Special satsangs, prayers, and philanthropic activities are held on the day.
Gagangiri Maharaj Punyatithi is observed on Paush Krishna Paksha Dwadashi Tithi or the twelfth day during the waxing phase of moon in Paush month as per traditional Marathi lunar calendar followed in Maharashtra.

Story of Shamba – Son of Krishna

Shamba was the son of Sri Krishna and his wife Jambavati. The story of Shamba is found in the Puranas and Mahabharata. He was responsible for the annihilation of the Yadavas and the death of Sri Krishna.
Shamba was a very powerful and strong warrior. He had single-handedly defended Dwarka when the city was attacked by the army of King Shalva.
He was in love with Lakshmana, daughter of Duryodhana. He had abducted her from the Swayamvara ceremony but was captured by Duryodhana and the Kauravas. Balarama, the brother of Sri Krishna, rescued them and brought to Dwaraka.
When Dwapara Yuga was coming to an end, Sri Krishna decided to put an end to his avatar. Soon Dharma (righteousness) started disappearing and it was replaced by Adharma.
The Rishis realized what was happening on earth and decided to pay their respect to Sri Krishna. Rishis led by Vishwamitra, Narada, and Kanva reached Dwarka.

Accidently, the Yadavas found out that the sap of Kadamba tree is intoxicating. They started drin…

On Rathas – Chariots Used in Temples in South India

Rathas or chariots are an indispensable part of temples in South India. Mention of Rathas is found in the Sangam literature. Suganthy Krishnamachari has written a wonderful and informative article on TempleRathas in South India. Design, construction, religious importance, architecture and beauty of the chariots are detailed in the article. Excerpts from Temple on wheels in the Hindu  Instructions about the making of the ratha for Vishnu temples, given in the Purushottama Samhita, a Pancharatra agama, conjure up an image of an opulent ratha. It is emphasised that the chariot should have intricate sculpturing, and that the incarnations of Vishnu are to be depicted.   However, beyond all this, there must have been a social purpose behind introducing chariots in temple worship. A ratha is a moving temple, a description no other vahana can lay claim to. Like a temple, it has an adisthanam and Vedis. So a ratha makes it possible for the devotees to worship their favourite God in their own …

How to observe Ekadasi – Ekadashi Vrat Fasting Method

Ekadasi Fasting is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is observed on the 11th day of waning and waxing phase of moon in a traditional Hindu calendar. This is one of the most popular Vrat observed in Hinduism. How to observe Ekadashi was narrated to Arjuna by Lord Krishna and is found in the Bhavisyottara Purana.
When to start Ekadasi Fasting? Lord Krishna advices Arjuna to begin the Ekadasi fasting in the autumn season with Utpanna or Uttpatti Ekadasi occurring during the waning phase of the moon in November – December.
Ekadashi Vrat Fasting Method Ekadasi is the name of the Goddess that arose from Lord Vishnu to defeat Demon Mura. Happy with her divine act, Lord Vishnu blessed her that anyone who observes Ekadasi fast will be freed of their sins and will attain Moksha.
Some people only take a single meal on the Dasami day, the day before Ekadasi. Things needed for Ekadasi Puja and Prayer A picture or photo or idol of Lord VishnuFruitsTulsi leaves (The tulsi leaves should not be picked on t…

Jiva Mahale Punyadin – Vir Jiva Mahale

Jiva Mahale was the bodyguard of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. His Punyadin or Punyatithi or death anniversary is annually observed in Paush month. Jiva Mahale Punyadin 2019 date is January 29.
A great soldier and unsung hero, Jiva Mahale saved Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj by killing Bijapur's general Afzal Khan.
Jiva Mahale Punyadin is annually observed on Paush Krishna Paksha Navami Tithi or the ninth day during the waning phase of moon in Paush month as per traditional Hindu calendar followed in Maharashtra.