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Showing posts from April 15, 2015

Story of Menaka Apsara in Hindu Religion

Menaka is a celestial woman or apsara and she is one of the most beautiful dancers in the palace of Indra, the king of Devas. Indra who is constantly scared of being disposed by more pious living beings takes the help of Menaka to keep his throne intact. When saints perform intense penance to achieve more spiritual powers, Indra deputes Menaka to distract the saints.
As per Mahabharata, Shakuntala is the daughter of Menaka and Sage Vishwamitra.
Sage Vishwamitra was performing intense austerities. Indra felt his position as king of celestial beings will be threatened if Vishwamitra acquired spiritual powers by virtue of the penance.
So he deputed Menaka to distract the sage. She successfully did this. And Shakuntala was born from the union of Menaka and Sage Vishwamitra.
Later Shakuntala married Dushyanta and they had a son named Bharata, after whom India got the name Bharata.
Apsara Menaka was also the first link in the events that led to the Churning of Ocean or the Samudra Manth…

Vishnu Panchaka Upavasa – Fasting on Five days in a Month

Vishnu Panchaka Upavasa is observed by a staunch Vishnu devotee and is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. As part of Vishnu Panchaka Upavasa, a devotee fasts and does pujas and rituals on five days in a traditional Hindu month. The five days are the two ekadashis, on Poornima (full moon), Amavasi (No moon) and on the Shravan Nakshatra day.
The popular belief is that Vishnu Panchaka Upavasa will help in the removal of sins committed. It is also performed for happy and peaceful life.
A devotee wishing to start Vishnu Panchaka Upavasa must make sure that all the five fasting days are present in that particular month (as per traditional Hindu calendar).
Usually people start Vishnu Panchaka Upavasa on the Ekadasi day falling during the waxing phase of moon in Margasheersh Month (December – January).
The Vrat can also be started if the Shukla Paksha Ekadasi in Bhadra month (waxing phase of moon in Bhadrapad month {August – September}) coincides with Shravan nakshatra.

Juir Sheetal in Mithila Region of Bihar in India and Nepal – Maithili New Year

Juir Sheetal in Mithila is also known as Maithili New Year and is observed in Bihar (the Mithila region of India) and Nepal. It is annually observed on April 14 – in some instances of April 15. Vikram Samvant the official traditional calendar of the Mithila region begins on the day.
April 14/15 marks the first day of the Vikram Samvant in these regions.
Baishakh is the first month of the year.
Officially, the Government of Bihar calls the Maithili New year day as Mithila Diwas. 

Maithili New Year is also known as Nirayana Mesh Sankranti, Nepal Nava Barsha or Tirhuta New Year in some regions of Mithila in India and Nepal.

Musical Pillar at Sri Senpaga Vinayagar Temple in Ceylon Road in Singapore

One of the unique attractions at the SriSenpagaVinayagarTemple in Ceylon Road in Singapore is the musical pillar. The Ceylon road temple’s unique musical pillar was added to the main temple structure in 2009. The musical pillar produces different notes when tapped with a gong.
The SriSenpagaVinayagarTemple musical pillar is 2.1 m tall and weighs nearly 7,000 kg.
The entire musical pillar was carved from a single piece of stone. The special grade granite stone was from Tamil Nadu in India.
Sculptors worked on the musical pillar at Mahabalipuram in India and it took three years to complete the pillar.
The pillar was then transported from India to Singapore.
The pillar has a main column which is surrounded by 12 small columns.
The pillar structure is similar to musical pillars found in South India.
The total cost of the pillar was $200,000.

Dhanishta Navak – Dhanisht Navaka

Dhanisht Navak is related to Hindu astrology especially the Nakshatras or birth stars. It is a period when some activities are not performed. It is mainly observed by certain Hindu communities in north and western parts of India. In 2018, Dhanishta Navak is from May 9 to May 17, 2018.

Dhanishta Navak is observed from the Dhanishta Nakshatra upto Rohini Nakshatra during the waning phase of moon or Krishna Paksha in Jyeshta month as per traditional calendar followed in North India. The corresponding period in Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat and Karnataka is the Krishna Paksha of Vaishak month.

The stars of Nakshatras that are part of Dhanishta Navak are Dhanishta, Satabhisaj, Purva Bhadrapad, Uttara Bhadrapad, Revati, Ashvini, Bharani, Krittika and Rohini.

Some Hindu communities do not undertake any work related to home like repair or wood work etc.

There is also another inauspicious period related to Dhanishta and it is known as Dhanishta Panchak.

Swami Chinmayananda on Life of Harmony

The intelligent philosophy of the Rishis advises man to live in harmony with the situations in life and steadily work on to meet them with discretion and constant application. When we live thus for a period of time, a subjective poise develops, giving us inward peace and tranquility which thereafter, remains unaffected by external threats and onslaughts.
The success and joy in one’s life are measured by the extent of control one has over the inner subjective confusions.
The life of harmony can be lived by rising above our limited egocentric view of things and happenings, and expanding our mind to accommodate a constant awareness of the totality of the world, the entirety of mankind and the vastness and wholeness of the universal problems.
To live a life of harmony, is to recognize oneself, at every moment, to be a member of the entire humanity living in a composite universe and merge one’s life with the resonant cadence of the whole, and bring about a fascinating melody of harmonious…