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Showing posts from April 12, 2016

Goru Bihu - The first day of Assamese New Year

Goru Bihu is the first day of the Rongali or Bohag Bihu celebrations, which is the Assamese New Year. Goru Bihu 2018 date is April 14. It is observed on the last day of the Chaitra or Chot month and is dedicated to cattle and other domesticated animals. Goru Bihu is popularly known as the festival of cow.

On the Goru bihu day, the cows are rubbed with a paste of Matikalai (a kind of local pulse), mustard and turmeric and are given a proper washing in the ponds.

Pieces of gourd, brinjal, turmeric and bitter-gourd are thrown at the cattle. While throwing the vegetables at the cow, people say – Eat gourd, eat brinjal, Grow from year to year, Your mother is small, Your father is small, May you be a large one.

Then, the cows are fed with fresh vegetables and rice cakes. The animal is then thoroughly cleaned using ‘Dighalati leaves’ – a plant with medicinal value.

In the evening, the cows are tied using new ropes. The cowshed is thoroughly cleaned and is smoked with incense to remove all…

Story of Ravana and Kartavirya Arjuna

Kartavirya Arjuna was a famous king who ruled from his capital Mahishamati on the banks of Narmada River. He obtained the boons of a thousand arms from Lord Dattatreya. The popular story of Ravana and Kartavirya Arjuna is found in the Uttara Ramayana.

Legend has it that Kartavirya and his wives were picnicking on the banks of Narmada River. The king stopped the mighty river with his thousand arms for his wives to enjoy.

During this time, Ravana was passing in his pushpaka vimana (aerial chariot). It was time for his daily prayers. He saw the dry Narmada riverbed and decided to perform prayers to Shiva on it.

Ravana made a Shivlinga out of sand and commenced his prayers.

Kartavirya and his wives now decided to end their picnic and return to the palace. The king removed his thousand arms and let Narmada River resume its flow.

The sudden surge of water in the river swept away Ravana and the Shivling.

Ravana was furious at his prayer being disrupted.

He soon found out the cause for the d…

Difference between Adhyatma Ramayana and Valmiki Ramayan

Adhyatma Ramayana is one of the versions of Valmiki Ramayan and it gives more importance to the teachings of Vedanta. Here are some of the important difference between the two texts.

Adhyatma Ramayana is believed to have been composed by Ramanandacharya. Some scholars believe it was composed by Sage Vyasa.

The text is in the form of a dialogue between Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati.

Rama is identified as Parabrahman in the text. Mata Sita is identified as primordial prakrti. Important characters in the Ramayana are aware of this truth. It is occasionally reminded to the readers that all forms are manifestation of the Parabrahman.

Adhyatma Ramayana consists of 4,242 verses and is divided into seven sections – Bala, Ayodhya, Aranya, Kishkindha, Sundara, Lanka and Uttara.

The text also contains Mahatmya Adhyaya.

In the Ayodhya Kandha, Sage Narada arrives a day before coronation of Sri Ram and informs him about the purpose of his incarnation – it is to destroy the demons and restore Dhar…

Kanyakumari Temple History

Kanyakumari Temple, also known as Bhagavathy Amman Temple, is located at the confluence of three seas of Tamil Nadu. The history of temple is associated with Goddess Bhagavathy. This temple was constructed by Parasuram, the sixth avatar of Lord Vishnu. The temple was renovated by one of the kings of Pandya Dynasty.

It is believed that Goddess Bhagavathy took the form of a virgin and killed the demon Banasura on Vijayadasami, the last day of Navratri festival.

Another legend has that she still remains in this form in the Kanyakumari Temple in Tamil Nadu in Southern tip of India due a broken marriage promise.

Related Goddess Kanyakumari Story of Goddess Kanyakumari and Demon Banasura