Friday, 30 September 2011

Somnath Temple

सौराष्ट्र देशे विशदेतिरम्ये ज्योतिर्मयं चन्द्रकलावतंसम 
भक्तिप्रदानाय कृपवातीर्नाम तं सोमनाथं शरणं प्रपद्ये
[Saurashtra deshe vishadeti ramye, Jyotirmayam Chandra kalavatamsam
Bhakti pradanaya kripavateernam, Tam Somnatham sharanam prapadye]
[I seek refuge of the Somnath who resides in the holy and beautiful Saurashtra, who dazzles with light, who wears the crescent moon, who has appeared there to give the gift of devotion and mercy]
श्री सोमनाथ महादेव प्रथम आदि ज्योतिर्लिंग हैं ज्योति अर्थात ज्ञान और ऊर्जा का प्रकाश मानव सभ्यता के प्रारंभ से ही परम तत्त्व की खोज हो रही है ऐसी ही एक बात ज्योतिर्लिंग के प्राकट्य के साथ जुडी है शिव पुराण की परंपरा के अनुसार एक बार श्री विष्णु भगवान और श्री ब्रह्मा जी के मध्य महत्ता की प्रतिस्पर्धा हुई जिसका निवारण करने के लिए परमात्मा ने अपना ज्योतिर्मय स्वरुप प्रकट किया जिसका रहस्य स्वयं श्री विष्णु जी और श्री ब्रह्मा जी भी नहीं समझ सके करुणा के सागर परमात्मा शिव ने कहा 'आप तीनो अर्थात ब्रह्मा विष्णु और रूद्र मेरे ही स्वरुप हैं मेरी ही ऊर्जा से आप सृष्टि का निर्माण संचालन और प्रलय करते हैं मेरा ही अंश सृष्टि के प्रत्येक जीव एवं निर्जीव पदार्थ में विराजमान हैभगवान शिव  का यह दिव्य स्वरुप आदि ज्योतिर्लिंग के स्वरुप में प्रकट हुआ

Somnath, or the protector of the Moon God, is the first among the twelve Aadi Jyotirlingas.

Somnath temple stands at the shore of the Arabian ocean on the western corner of Indian subcontinent in Gujarat State. It is also known as Deo Pattan, Prabhas Pattan and Pattan Somnath. It is believed that the Somnath temple here was originally built by Somraj, the Moon God himself, out of gold, and then rebuilt by Ravana in silver and then by Krishna in Wood, then by King Bhimdeva in stone. This pilgrimage is one of the oldest and finds its reference in the ancient texts like Skandpuran, Shrimad Bhagavat, Shivpuran etc. Rig-Veda & other scriptures have quoted importance of pilgrimage to this place along with Ganga, Yamuna & Saraswati. In  the Shiva  Purana  and Nandi  Upapurana, Shiva  said, `I  am always present everywhere  but  specially  in  12  forms  and places as  the  jyotirlingas`. 
According to Ancient Indian traditions Chandra (Moon God) was relieved from the curse of his father-in-law Daksha Prajapati. As per the story, Moon was married to Twenty-Seven daughters of Daksha. However, he favoured Rohini and neglected other queens. The aggrieved Daksha cursed Moon and the Moon lost power of light. With the advice of Prajapita Brahma, Moon arrived at the Prabhas Teerth and did penance to Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva blessed and relieved him from the curse of darkness.

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Sarveshwari Jagdishwari - bhajan

Album Name: Maa lyrics : Members of Sri Aurobindo Society Pondicherry
Release Year: 1993

Mere Man ke andh tamas mein - bhajan

Ambe Charan - bhajan

Monday, 26 September 2011

Geeta Gyan Yagya, Lucknow

Swamini Amitananda ji during discourse

Geeta Gyan Yagya was organised by Lucknow centre of International Vedanta Mission, Indore where discourse on Chapter 13 of Shrimad Bhagwadgeeta and Kathopnishad was given by Swamini Amitananda ji. Swamini Poornananda also attended the Gyan Yagya.

Gyan Yagya was held from 18th to 26th September 2011 at Hari Om Mandir, Lalbagh, Lucknow.

Swamini Poornananda

Friday, 16 September 2011

Shri Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple, Srisailam

Location: Sri Sailam near Kurnool. Located in the forests of Nallmalai hills, on the Rishabhagiri hills by the banks of Patal Ganga, Krishna river in Kurnool district, Andhra Pradesh. This celebrated mountain is also named as Siridhan, Srigiri, Sirigiri, Sriparvatha and Srinagam.

Bhramaramba Mallikarjunaswamy Temple dedicated to Lord Mallikarjuna Swamy (a form of Shiva) and Devi Bhramaramba (a form of Parvathi) is located here. It constitutes one of the 12 Jyotirlingam shrines of Shiva and is one of the greatest Shaivite shrines in India. The presiding Deities of this kshetram Lord Mallikarjuna Swamy is one of the twelve Jyothirlingas and Goddess Bhramaramba Devi is one of the eighteen Mahashaktis and both are self-manifested.  The unique feature of this kshetram is the combination of Jyotirlingam and Mahashakti in one campus, which is very rare and only one of its kind.
Bhramaramba Shrine

Located adjacent to the Mallikarjuna temple is a shrine dedicated to Goddess Jagdamba known as Bhramaramba here. It has great significance. According to legend, Parvati assumed the shape of a Bee and worshiped Shiva here and chose this place as her abode. One can hear the buzzing sound of a bee though a tiny hole in this temple where Parvati, in the form of a bee, slew the demon Mahisasura.

Monday, 12 September 2011

Srikalahasti - (Vayu Sthalam - Air)

There are five very important Shiva temples in Southern India where the Lord is worshiped as manifestation of five elements – earth, water, air, sky & fire. These temples are called panchabhoota sthalam. Although relatively unknown in other parts of the country, they hold much religious importance here. These are important ancient Shiva Kshetras (Shiva Temples) of Southern India.
Srikalahasti, one of the panchabhoota sthalam, is the Vayu Sthalam representing Air. The others are - Tiruvannamalai (Thejo sthalam - Fire), Kanchipuram (Prithvi sthalam - Earth), Tiruvanaikaval (Appu sthalam - Water) & Chidambaram (Akasa sthalam - Sky).
Importance: Srikalahasti is one of the ancient temples included in the Saiva pilgrimages and is popularly known as "Dakshina Kailasam". Primary deity is Sri Kalahastheeswara Swami (Shiva) with consort Gnana Prasunambika Devi (Parvati).

The Lingam here is swayambhu, and it is white in colour. The Main lingam is untouched by the human beings, even by the priest. Abhishekam is done by pouring a mixutre of water, milk, camphor and panchamrita. Sandal paste, flowers, and the sacred thread are offerred to the Uthsava murthi, not the main Lingam. Even today the flame placed in Garbhagraha inside the temple flickers indicating the presence of the wind while there is no entry of wind to disturb the flame. The air is just sufficient to breathe in. This according to a belief is the existence of Shiva in the temple

The goddess here is Parvati as Gnana Prasunanmba and is said to be the sister of Lord Venkateswara at the Tirumala temple. According to another legend, Parvati was once cursed by Shiva to leave off her heavenly body and become a human. She meditated here, and was finally blessed by Lord Shiva, who not only restored her to her original status but also endowed her with the highest of divine knowledge. It is believed that the goddess with divine powers here has cured women who were possessed by evil spirits.  

The main festival in this temple is Mahashivratri, which lasts for 10 days.

Saturday, 3 September 2011

Chandrika Devi, Lucknow

सर्व मंगल मांगल्ये शिवे सर्वाधसाधिके
शरण्ये त्र्यम्बके गौरी नारायणी नमोस्तु·ते

Chandrika Devi Temple in Lucknow is an age old temple, situated around 30 Kms away from the city at the Sitapur Road near Bakshi Ka Talab.
Nau-Durgas (nine Durgas) are worshiped in the form of पिण्डी (statues) in this temple known as Chandrika Devi or Mahi Sagar Teerth (मही सागर तीर्थ). The Devis appeared and were established here on call/invitation by Sage Narad.

As per Skandpurana, Nau-Durgas (Nine Durgas) appeared at this place after great penance by Sage Narad for "Lok Kalyan" - benefit of the devotees. Firstly, four Mahadevis appeared in four directions for protection of this teertha. On the East, Skandswamy established "सिद्धाम्बिका देवी" ("Siddhambika Devi" - who had appeared earlier as mool prakriti at the start of Srishti – the creation). In the South "तारा देवी" ("Tara Devi" - daughter of Himalaya and by whose power Kachchhap Bhagwan rescued the Gods), in the West "भास्वरा देवी" ("Bhaswara Devi" - who illuminates Sun God & others) and in the North "योग नन्दिनी देवी" ("Yog Nandini Devi" - who had earlier appeared from the Body of Bhagwati Parashakti and because of her blessings all four Sankadik mahatmas achieved yoga) appeared from there original places on the special aradhana by Narad. After establishment of all four Mahadevis in four directions for the purpose of protection to this place, Narad performed penance and invited NAU-DURGAS from different directions to this place:-
East: "त्रिपुरा देवी" ("Tripura Devi" – by whose power Lord Shiva killed Tripurasur. Sage Narad brought her from Amresh mountain), "कोलम्बी देवी" ("Kolambi Devi  - by whose power Lord Vishnu in his Varah avtar pulled up the earth from the water. Narad brought her from Varahgiri mountain through his Shakti yoga), "कपालेशा देवी" ("Kapalesha Devi" - she is the power of the entire world. Narad alongwith Kartikeya established her here).
West: "सुवार्णक्षी देवी" ("Suvarnakshi Devi" – with her blessings a person becomes favourite of all 33 crore Gods & Goddesses), "चर्चिता देवी" ("Charchita Devi" - called from Rasatal or abyss), "त्रैलोक्य विजया देवी" ("Trilokya Vijaya Devi" - Moon God conquered all three lokas due to her blessings).
North: "एक बीरा देवी जी" ("Ek Beera Devi ji" - brought from Brahmlok), "हरसिद्धि देवी" ("Harsidhdhi Devi" - very powerful and was brought from Shakottar. Those who worship her do not get disturbed by Dakini), "चण्डिका देवी" ("Chandika Devi" - अधिष्ठात्री or main devi of this teertha, is established in Noth-East direction "Ishaan". She appeared from the body of Parvati ji and killed demons Chand-Mund).
Now these Nau-Durgas are worshiped here in the form of Statues (pindis) after they were established by Thakur Beni Singh Chauhan about 250 years back

Aarti of Maa Chandrika