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Showing posts from June 10, 2019

Story of Monkey King Bali (Vali) and Ravana

Monkey King Bali or Vali, the brother of Sugriva in the Ramayana, was the ruler of Kishkinda. One of the most popular images of King Bali is that of him dragging the ten-headed Ravana. The story of Bali and Ravana is very popular as it is funny and also teaches the valuable lesson that arrogance only leads to downfall. Bali had got the boon that he would get half the strength of his opponent who he chooses to fight. Ravana who heard about this wanted to kill Bali as the demon king thought that Bali would be a threat to him in future. Ravana decided to kill Bali from behind when he went to take bath in the sea. He thought that the monkey could be easily overpowered. He then reached Kishkinda. Ravana found Bali meditating on the seashore one morning and slowly reached him from behind. The idea of Ravana was to hold Bali by his tail and hit him on the ground and kill him. Bali who realized the presence of Ravana behind him did not move. Instead he slowly put his

Gangadhara Shiva – Story of Shiva as Gangadhar - Ganga On Head

Gangadhara Shiva is the form of Shiva that holds Ganga on his matted locks. The story of Gangadhar Shiva is associated with the arrival of Ganga on earth. Legend has it that sixty sons of King Sagara were protecting the Ashwamedha horse. In an Ashwamedha Yagna, the emperor releases a horse which travels through different kingdoms. Those kings who are ready to be a vassal of the emperor do not object the horse running through their kingdom. But those kings that are not ready to be a vassal stop the horse and then the issue is settled on the battleground. The sixty sons of Sagara were known to be cruel and they practiced all forms of Adharma. Saints, human beings and Devas were fed up with their activities. All of them complained to Indra, the king of Devas. He promised to get solve the problem. It must be noted that in some Puranas it is not sixty but King Sagara had sixty thousands sons as a result of a boon. The sixty were following the horse released by King S

Meghamala – An Ancient Hindu Text On Meteorology

Ancient Hindus took ken interest in meteorology, and their close observations resulted in the development of this science. Meghamala is an ancient Hindu text on meteorology. Ancient Hindus were particularly involved in predictions about matters concerning rains, as they were very vital for an agricultural economy. And it was quite natural that it gave rise to several works on rainfall in different parts of the Indian subcontinent. One such works is Meghamala, which is known only through manuscripts, and is still awaiting a critical edition. Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute, Pune, possesses four manuscripts of this text. Of these, the first two are called Raudri Meghamala and the colophon of the first represents it is a section of Gargi Samhita (iti sri gargisamhitayam raduri meghamalayam garbha samyogam samaptam iti). The third one was copied in Vikram Samvat 1759 (1839 AD). These differ very little from one another and are in the form of a dialogue between Shiva and

Jyeshta Abhishekam Srirangam - Jyeshta Abhishekam 2023 At Srirangam Ranganathar Temple

Jyeshta Abhishekam is an important ritual at the world famous Srirangam Ranganathar Temple dedicated to Bhagwan Vishnu in Srirangam, Tamil Nadu. Jyeshta Abhishekam 2023 at Srirangam is on July 1 and July 2 (before sunrise). The ritual is observed on the ‘kettai’ nakshatra (Triketta or Jyeshta birth star) in the Tamil month of Aani (June – July). The ritual marks the holy anointment of herbal oil to the presiding deity of Sri Ranganathar. The murti of Bhagavan will be cleared of all kinds of damages. Water is carried in golden and silver pots from Cauvery River in procession to the temple. There will be no public darshan of the sanctum sanctorum of Lord Ranganathar during the two days of Jyeshta Abhishekam. Second day morning, the ‘Anna prasada uthsavam’ marking the present of holy food to Lord Ranganathar will be performed in front of the sanctum sanctorum. Fruits, coconut, and ghee would be among the holy articles to be presented to the deity. The ritual is perfor

Meditation – Madhvacharya School Of Thought

Madhvacharya deals with the topic of meditation in his Tantrasara Sangraha. His other works like Gita Bhashya, Brahmasutra Bhashya and Bhagavata Tatparya Nirnaya also throw light on the topic of meditation. Tantrasara Sangraha explains that only those who have realized Brahman are eligible for moksha or liberation. This means Brahman is realized through upasana (spiritual practice). Upasana is of two kinds. One is total occupation of oneself all the time by way of studying, teaching, writing and discussion etc., of Vedas, Vedanta and other related Shastras. The second method is dhyana (meditation) on Parabrahman (Vishnu). A clear comprehension of Brahman i.e, the object of meditation is the prerequisite to practice meditation. The method of meditation (dhyana) consists of four steps: Yama (self discipline) Niyama (regulatory discipline) Asana (postures) Pranayama (rhythmic breathing). Yama – Comprises non-violence, truthfulness, non-stealing, restrain of s

Hijra Blessings – Story Of Kinnar Blessing Babies And Power Of Their Blessings

Hijra or Kinnar are invited to weddings and during childbirth for blessings in India. It is believed that the blessings of transgender or third sex have special powers. The story of power of the blessings of Kinnar is associated with Lord Ram and his exile in the Ramayana. When Lord Rama was exiled and left for forest, several citizens of Ayodhya followed him. There were Hijras among those that followed Sri Ram. When he reached the forest edge, Bhagavan asked the citizens to go back to their respective homes. Many of them returned back to their homes. When Bhagavan Sri Ram returned after 14 years he found that Hijras had not left the place. They waited at the border of Ayodhya for 14 years. They did not go back. They lived on the border waiting of Bhagavan Sri Ram. Bhagavan was moved by the devotion of Kinnars and gave them the boon that their blessing will always be true and it will be fulfilled. From that time onwards Hijras were invited during wedding and child