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Showing posts from October 28, 2015

Diwali 2015 day and date calendar in India

The most popular Hindu festival Diwali literally means ‘an array of lamps.’ Diwali 2015 day and date calendar in India is given below.

November 9 – Dhanteras – Dhan Trayodasi – Yamdeepdaan. November 10 – Diwali in South India – Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Karnataka. November 10 – Narak Chaturdashi November 10 – Kali Chaudas – Hanuman Puja November 11 – Diwali in North India November 11 – Lakshmi Puja in India all regions November 11 – Chopda Puja or Muhurat Puja in western parts of India November 12 – Bali Pratipada November 12 – Diwali Padwa November 12 – Annakut / Govardhan Puja November 12 – Gujarati New Year November 13 – Bhai Dooj or Bhau Beej November 13 – Yama Dwitiya in South India

Story – Who was the fiercest in the Kurukshetra war in the Mahabharat – Bhima or Arjuna?

Bhima and Arjuna once had an argument as to who was the fiercest in the Kurukshetra war in the Mahabharat. Both claimed that they inflicted the greatest damage on the Kauravas. None of the Pandavas or those who participated or witnessed the battle was able to decide who was the fiercest.

Finally, Bhima and Arjuna decided to ask Barbareek, the bodiless head, who witnessed the Kurukshetra war from a hill.

When asked who was the fiercest in the battle and who inflicted the maximum damage on the Kaurava army, Barbareek answer was spectacular. 
Barbareek said that he did not see Bhima or Arjuna, he only witnessed Vishnu’s Sudharshana Chakra (discus) cutting the heads of Adharmic kings and people on earth. The earth then took the form of Goddess Kali and drank the blood of the greedy and power hungry kings.

Dancing Ganesha – Natraj Form of Ganesh

Dancing idol of Ganesha is mainly worshiped during 10-day Ganesh Chaturthi festival. It is also known as Natraj Form of Ganesh. This pose of Ganapati is widely seen in paintings and sculptures. In this form, Ganesha is musician and blesses devotees with skill and efficiency in music, dance and arts.

As per some beliefs, this pose symbolizes positive energy. It is also associated with creation and destruction.

Miniature sculptures of Dancing Ganesha are available today for sale. However, they are not worshipped in homes.
In homes, generally the sitting form of Ganapati is worshipped.

Sage Gautama and Ahalya

Story of Ahalya, wife of Sage Gautama, is from epic Ramayana. The story involving Sage Gautama and Ahalya is mentioned during the exile period of Bhagavan Sri Ram and is found in the Bala Kanda chapter of Ramayan. Bhagavan Sri Ram touches a stone near the Ashram of Sage Gautama and it suddenly turns into a woman. This was Ahalya who was cursed by her husband to become a stone.

The unearthly beauty of Ahalya infatuated Indra, the king of demigods. He attempted to seduce her by taking the form of Sage Gautama. Ahalya did not stop the advances of Indra, although Ahalya knew it was not her husband who was approaching her.

Sage Gautama, who had gone for his morning bath, suddenly returned and Indra took the form of a cat and escaped from the ashram. Sage Gautama realized through his yogic powers what had happened. He cursed his wife, turning her to stone, and put a curse on Indra as well.

It is said that Indra was cursed to roam around with 1000 vaginas on his body. Later Indra did penanc…

Deulgaon Raja Balaji Temple near Jalna in Buldhana - Shri Balaji Devasthan in Deulgaon Raja

Deulgaon Raja Balaji Temple is a famous temple dedicated to Balaji or Lord Venkateswara. It is located at Deulgaon Raja near Jalna in Buldhana District. Shri Balaji Devasthan is around 24 km from Jalna.

Legend has it that during ancient times it was impossible for the people of the region to visit the Tirupati Balaji Temple. It is said that on the request of devotees Balaji manifested here at Duelgaon Raja.

Lord Venkateswara is worshipped here along with Goddess Lakshmi. The murtis are made using five precious metals.

The most important festival in the temple is organized during Navratri (October) and it is known as Laleet. Huge poles are erected during the period, which falls down at the end of the festival.

Reclining Idol of Ganesha – Symbolism and Importance of the Sleeping Idol of Ganesh

Reclining idols of Ganesha are very rare and is mostly seen in paintings and sculptures. Vinayaka Chaturthi pandals give importance to sleeping form of Ganesha and is installed during the festival. There are some symbolisms associated with Sleeping Idol of Ganesha.

The popular belief is that reclining pose of Ganesha symbolizes wealth, luxury, comfort and prosperity.

In such murtis, Ganesha reclines on a pillow.

Sleeping murti of baby Ganesha is very popular but it is not worshipped.
Reclining and sleeping pose Ganesh is rarely worshipped in homes.

Diwali in Kerala

Diwali is not widely celebrated in Kerala. In Kerala, Deepavali is observed to commemorate the killing of the demon Narakasura by Lord Krishna. Diwali in Kerala in 2018 is on November 6. This is observed on Krishna Paksha Chaturdasi in Tula Masam as per traditional Malayalam Calendar mostly a day before Diwali in North India.

The only ritual that is followed in Kerala during Diwali is ritualistic bathing in the early morning hours by applying oil on head and on the body.
Lighting of crackers is another ritual that is enthusiastically done in many regions in Kerala.

Story – Sage Bhrigu’s Curse on Agni

Sage Bhrigu’s curse on Agni narrates how Agni came to devour everything that is there on earth. Sage Bhrigu married Puloma who was  famous for beauty. Beauty of Puloma was also admired by a demon.
Puloma knew about the demon’s intention but she did not care about it.
Years went by and once the demon happened to see Puloma but he could not recognize her. He enquired to a sage standing nearby as to who the woman was? The sage was Agni in disguise.
When the demon understood it was puloma, he wanted to know where he can see and talk to her.
The sage replied that she can be seen and talked to only if Sage Bhrigu allows and for this you have to go to the ashram of Sage Bhrigu.
The old desire was reignited and the demon decided to kidnap Puloma.
Puloma was pregant at this time and when the demon tried to forcefully take her away, the child fell from her womb. The boundless light that appeared from the baby annhilated the demon.
Sage Bhrigu who realized that it was Agni who gave the demon t…

How to do or observe Karva Chauth Vrat? - How to perfrom Karva Chauth Fasting?

Karva Chauth is a popular fasting in Hinduism and is mainly observed in North India. In 2017, Karwa Chauth is on October 8. Here is a brief idea on how to do or perform Karva Chauth Vrat? It is performed by a married woman for the well being of her husband. The fast starts before sunrise and ends after worshipping the moon. Today, the fast is seen as a symbol of love. 
The simple way to fast on the day is to wake up early have a bath, offer daily prayers and consume some food before sunrise. In the evening, pray to Goddess Parvati, wait for the moonrise. Have a look at the moon and enjoy a good dinner with husband and family. Remember, all rituals are meant for the satisfaction of the ego, Gods don’t need rituals. Santana Dharma teaches to get over all rituals and understand the Brahman – the Supreme Force present in you and in everything.

The traditional way contains several steps and it is as follows:

On the day, married women wake up before sunrise and take bath and offer their usua…

Diwali and Christmas – Differences and Similarities

Diwali and Christmas are two of the important festivals in India. Here are some of the differences and similarities.

Both Christmas and Diwali are a religious festival. Diwali marks the return of Bhagavan Sri Ram, Mata Sita, Lakshman and Hanuman to Ayodhya after 14-year exile period. Christmas is the birthday of Jesus Christ.

If Christmas is synonymous for cakes, then Diwali is synonymous for sweets.
Gifts are exchanged in both Diwali and Christmas. However, in Diwali there is no figure like Christmas father.

Lighting arrangements are part of both the festival. Diwali lamps  (diyas) are lit during the period. During Christmas, it is stars.

Diwali is observed for five days and it is the most important holiday season in India and for Hindus around the world.

Christmas too is the most important holiday season throughout the world.

Diwali is mainly restricted to Hindus. Christmas in India is largely restricted to Christians but Hindus do participate in Christmas carols and programs.

Diwali and New Year

Diwali marks the end of a lunar year in traditional Hindu calendar followed in Gujarat. New Year begins on the day after Diwali. In 2017, Diwali is on October 19 and Gujarati New Year is on October 20. Vikram Samvant 2074 begins on the day. Diwali and New Year is considered the most auspicious period in an year especially for business community.

The Hindu calendar followed in Gujarat is also known as Vikram Calendar, or Vikram Samvat, and a month is calculated from the day after no moon or Amavasi to next Amavasi. The first month in a Gujarati Calendar is the Kartik month.

In the Hindu calendar popularly used in North India the year begins with Chaitra Shukala Pratipadha (March – April). In this calendar too, the current year is 2074.

You may also like to read Hindu New Year - Different New Year Dates in Hindu Religion

Bommghatta Hanuman Temple – Hulikunteraya Hanuman Temple near Bellary in Karnataka

Bommghatta Hanuman Temple is popularly known as Hulikunteraya or Hulikunteswamy Temple. This ancient shrine is dedicated to Ram Bhakt Hanuman. The temple is located about 80 km from Bellary, 23 km from Kudligi and 55 km from Hampi.

Legend has it that the murti of Hanuman worshipped in temple was discovered by a cowherd, named Bommaiah, in a grass bush. As the murti was found under the bush of grass on the banks of a water tank, the murti has been named as Hulikunteswamy.

It is said that the murti was hidden in a grass for long time. Then a divine cow and calf joined among the cows of a cowherd. The cow started giving large quantity of milk. But one day it started giving milk. The cowherd then noticed that the cow was shedding her milk near a bush. When the cow realized that the cowherd had seen her shedding milk it disappeared. The cowherd then checked the area and found the divine murti of Hanuman.

There are murtis of Shiva, Sri Rama, Sita, Lakshmana, Anjaneya and Garuda in the temp…

Budhi Diwali Festival at Nirmand Village in Kullu in Himachal Pradesh

Budhi Diwali festival at NirmandVillage in Kullu in Himachal Pradesh is observed from Margashirsh Amavasya for three days. In 2018, Budhi Diwali is on December 7. This is the no moon day in the next month after the Diwali. Also known as Dark Diwali, Budhi Diwali is observed because the villagers here believe that the news of Sri Ram returning to Ayodhya reached late in the remote villages in the region.
Bonfires are lit on the nights of the festival and people sing and dance on stories in the Mahabharata. Hindustan Times reports  Pritam Dev, a resident of Nirmand village, said in the district, the festival was celebrated to commemorate the killing of the demons, Dano and Asur, who resided there in form of snakes. “Buddhi Diwali festival is our rich cultural heritage, which reminds our epic culture of Ramayana, besides adopting modernity in the festival,” said another resident Joginder Shukla.
“According to the ritual, in day time people dance in long chain according to age and outsid…

Diwali in Maharashtra – Mumbai – Pune - Nashik

Diwali is the most popular festival associated with Hindu religion. Diwali 2018 date in Maharashtra – Mumbai – Pune - Nashik is November 7. Diwali literally means ‘an array of lamps’ and symbolizes the removal of spiritual darkness and the ushering in of knowledge capable of realizing Brahman (That) – the Supreme Being present in all living and non-living. In 2018, the Diwali dates in

Maharastara are – Vasubaras on November 4
Dhanteras or Dhan Trayodashi or Yamdeepdan  ison November 5 Narak Charudashi on November 6 Diwali on November 7 Lakshmi Puja on November 7 Diwali Padwa – November 8 Bali Pratipada – November 8 Govardhan Puja – November 8 Bhau Beej – November 9 Yama Dwitiya – November 9

Diwali is celebrated by all Hindu communities but the reasons and legends differ from place to place and from community to community. The most important legend associated with Diwali is the return of Lord Ram to Ayodhya after 14 years of exile. It is believed that people lit lamps on the day to wel…