Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Govatsa Dwadashi- Festival for Cow

Govatsa Dwadashi:
Govatsa Dwadashi is the day to worship the cow along with her calf. This is called as Guru Dwadasi in Andhra.This Vratam is  associated with the cow. The festival is observed on dwadashi Krishna paksha of karthika Masam.

 Cultural Beliefs:
According to these scriptures there are many legends Utanpad, a King was the one who started this fast on earth. His wife observed this fast and was as a consequence was blessed with a son. Thus, the childless couples should definitely observe this fast to obtain the pleasure of a child. People should worship the goddess Cow with pure heart and faith to get fruitful results.

 Lord Krishna was fond of cows. It is believed that all the gods and goddesses reside a cow. The items/products made of milk such as cottage cheese; kheer, curd etc. are used in havana and puja. Mixtures of five milk products are used for purification before the puja. The person observing Govatsa dwadashi fast should adopt brahmachari and sleep on the floor. The devotee should worship Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva with a pure heart. The observer is blessed with all kind of worldly pleasures in life.

Interesting Facts:
Protection of environment from the instability generated during the period of Deepavali. During the period of Deepavali the flow of Shakti filled with energy is activated in the environment. As a result the Earth’s environment is harmed at a subtle level. This causes instability in the environment. In order to save from the consequent harm, before Deepavali, the vratham of Govatsa Dwadashi has been recommended. On the day of Govatsa Dwadashi through the manifest frequencies of Sri Vishnu the stability is maintained in the environment.

How to Perform Govatsa Dwadashi vratham?
The person who is observing the fast should wake up early in the morning and take bath in a river. They should wear clean clothes after bath and take the resolution for fast. The food is only eaten only once in the day time. The cow is given bath along with its calf and adorned with flowers and clothes. Apply sandalwood on the forehead. Worship the cow with incenses, flowers, water, rice, copper while chanting the below given chant.

Kakshiroarnasambhute Surasuranskriteya|
Sarvdemaya Matarghanadharya Namo Namah|

After performing this ritual, the observer should feed food items made with urad dal to the cow. Chant the following mantra while doing this ritual.

Surabhi Twam Jagnmartdevi Vishnupade Sthita |
Sarvamaya Grasam Maya Datmiman Gras |
Tat Sarmeya Devi Sarverladkrite |
Martarmabhilashit Safalam Kuru Nandini |

Listen to Govatsa story and fast for the whole day. Remember the god you believe in and perform aarti in the evening before eating the food. This vratham is done by consuming one meal. However, in the meal cow milk and the dishes made from it and fried foods should not be consumed.

Scientific Reasons:
In the morning or evening the frequencies of Sri Vishnu in manifest form are attracted in the cow in higher proportion. These frequencies accelerate the unmanifest frequencies of Sri Vishnu in 10 % more proportion. After the worship, the cow should again be paid obeisance with spiritual emotion. If for any reason the worship of cow with sixteen substances is not possible, we can worship with five substances also. The worship of cow teaches us to view Divine Principle in every animate and inanimate object. The person observing a vratham acquires all the pleasures of life.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Nagula Chavithi - Festival for Snake God

Nagula Chavithi:
This festival is celebrated on the fourth day of kathika Masam after Deepavali. This is mainly a women’s festival. On this day women observe fasting and worship snake god and perform Naga Pooja. It is a ritual performed for children’s better health.

Cultural Beliefs:
There is a close relationship between snakes and the gods. Lord Shiva is known as Naga Bhushana, Lord Vishnu as Sesha Thalpa Sai, Lord Ganesh as Naga Yajnopaveetha and Lord Kumara Swamy as Naga Swarupa. Several gods have been associated with snakes.

The popular legend for Nagula Chavithi is that during the churning of the ocean by gods and demons in search of Amrutham,a snake was used as rope and in the process; a terrible poison (garalam) emerged. The poison would have affected the whole world, but for Lord Shiva, who swallowed it and retained it in his throat. His throat turned so Lord Shiva is also called “Neelakantha”. However, a few drops spilled and to ward off the evil effects, people worship the Cobra, the king of snakes, to pacify the brood and protect themselves from any ill effects.

How to perform Nagula chavithi:
On the day before to Nagula chavithi people have to take head bath, because if we do head bath on Nagula chavithi it is believed that we are giving dirt to god.We should get up early in the morning and take head bath without use of any kind of shampoo or shikai.

For Naivedyam prepare sesame laddu (Nuvvula vanda), vadapappu and chalimidi.
Sesame laddu (Nuvvula vanda): Mix sesame and jaggery in equal quantity and do laddus. Jiggery can be mixed as per their taste this is also called as chimmiri.
Vadapappu: Soak half cup of yellow moong dal in two cups of water for about an hour. Drain the water at pooja time.
Chalimidi: soak the rice grains in water for half an hour. drain the water and spread the rice on a clean cloth to air-dry for about 15 minutes. Take the semi dried rice and ground it to fine powder. For 1 cup rice add 1 cup of jaggery and mix well. 
  • Devotees go to 'Naga Putta' (Snake pit) and offer naivedyam and perform puja there.
  • Take Turmeric, kumkum, cow milk, crackers, coconut, banana, flowers, incense sticks(agarbathi) to the temple.
  • Go to the Snake pit Decorate it with flowers and pour the cow milk Turmeric, kumkum, rice flour into the pit.
  • Put the naivedhyam that is prepared Sesame Laddu, Vadapappu, and Chalimidi near the snake pit. Keep banana, tamboolam ,agarbathi and light a deepam.
  • Do pradakshinas around the snake pit for 3 or 5 times .Apply soil that is near the snake pit to ears. Fire crackers for formality. 
Recite this mantra to makes yourself free from Sarpa bhayam and Sarpa dosham
Sarpapasarpa bhadranthe dooram gachcha mahavisha
Janamejaya yaganthe asthika vachanam smara
Ananthaya namasthubhyam sahasra shirasthe namaha
Namosthu padmanabhaya nagaanaam pathaye namaha
Anantho vasukim sheshah takshakah kaliyasthadah.

Interesting Facts:
Nagula Chavithi day is noted for offering milk and eggs to the snakes by devotees. Snakes don’t drink milk so this should not be encouraged as it leads to the death of snakes.

Nava Naga Stotram, a powerful mantra for Naga Devata is used to worship the nine Nagas of Hinduism. The names of the nagas are Ananta, Vasuki, Shesha, Padmanabh, Kambal, Shankhapal, Dhrutrashtra, Takshaka and Kalia. This powerful mantra can be chanted on Naga Panchami, Naga Chaturthi and Shasti days. If the mantra is prayed daily in the morning it will keep one protected from all evils and helps to become victorious in life. 
Nine Naga Devata Mantra:
Anantam Vasukim Shesham
Padmanabham cha Kambalam
Shankhapalam Dhartarashtram
Taxakam Kaliyam Tatha

Merits of Recital

Etani Nava Navaami Naganancha Mahatmana
Sayam Patenityam Prathahkaale Visheshita
Tasya Vishabhayam Naasti Sarvatra Vijayaa Bhaveth

Strange Facts:
  • Our DNA structure will be in the form of a snake.
  • The human sperm cells if seen in the microscopic resemble the shape of snake. Their movements will also be similar to snake.
  • In the Sanathana Dharama, ”Naga Bhandam” symbolize the tradition of husband and wife. The couple should be accompanied in a steady way to achieve the betterment of the spiritual path is reminiscent of the nagabandham.
  • By doing Nagaradhana, there will be no problems in ear and eye.
Scientific Reasons:
  • As this is winter and cold season and snakes in the fields come out of their homes and eat rats which destroy the crops to give us more yields. Snakes in fresh water kill most of the micro organisms to give safe water for drinking. They are also responsible to make the soil fertile for the crops. So we need to show gratitude and feed them with milk on Nagula chavithi.
  • The Snake represents the male generative organ people develop certain mental vibrations on seeing snakes. The human brain acts as the mind, and it in the form of the head of a snake. All the nerves in the body start from the brain, and pass through the neck into the vertebrae. This back bone resembles a snake. According to psychology, if this part of the body is stimulated, in order to promote fertility, through mental concentration, then the mind responds and engenders the necessary positive effect on the nervous system.
  • As per astrology, the planet Rahu represents a snake and is also the deity for Rahu. The effects of Rahu result from the curse of a snake (SarpaDosha- an obstruction to fertility) and this can be rectified by worshiping snakes. Married couples, desirous of having children or those who already have children, should perform Nagula Chavithi

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Karthika Masam - The Auspicious Month

Karthika Masam:
Karthika Masam is the most auspicious month among Hindus. It begins on the day after Deepavali and also marks the beginning of winter season. It begins in the eight month of the year after the sun entering into Scorpio. There are several rituals and customs that have to be followed during this month.

Cultural Beliefs:
Karthika Masam begins from Aaswayuja sukla pournami up to one month. In this Month Lord Shiva and Maha Vishnu are worshipped and prayed. People during this month observe strict rituals. The daily activities starts early in the morning taking bath with cold water, going to temple, lighting deepam, fasting and saligrama pooja. The most auspicious days in this season are Mondays which is very important to Lord Shiva. As per the puranas it is believed that by performing the karthka Masam vratham we can drove away the past karmas and the sins committed can be destroyed. Lighting Lamps with ghee made from the cow’s milk during the sunrise and sunset brings prosperity, wealth, health into our lives. It also burns the material desires in between our birth and death.

Also Tulasi plant is prayed and worshiped daily by lighting a deepam during this month. There is story behind this Tulasi came as a sister of Goddess Lakshmi when amrita Mantham Ocean is churned. Tulasi wanted to marry Lord Vishnu but Lakshmi did not like this and cursed her to become a plant. But Lord Vishnu took pity and for fulfilling her wish he gave a boon that when he is in form of saligram, tulasi will be close to him. On Kartika Shukla Dwadashi Tulasi plant is decorated and prayed.

Interesting Facts:
  • Lord Vishnu goes to sleep on Ashadha suddha ekadashi and wakes-up on Karthika suddha ekadashi.
  • Lord Shiva protected the world by killing Tripurasuras on Karthika pournami.
  • Ganga (Goddess of river Ganges) enters in to all rivers, canals, ponds and wells and makes them as pious as Ganga.
  • Ayyappa deeksha is also taken during this month and is continued up to Makara Sankranthi.
Karthika Masam Procedure:
  • People should get up at Brahma Muhurtha time.
  • Take bath with in the river or sea (including hair) if possible or take bath at home before sunrise.
  • Perform Pooja at home by offering naivedyam. Visit temples on Mondays.
  • Recite each chapter in Karthika puranam daily for 30 days.Also people recite Vishnu Sahasranamalu.
  • Daily morning and evening perform light deepam. Light deepam at tulasi plant in the evening after the presence of stars.
  • Lighitng deepam in Lord Shiva temple is very beneficial.
  • Eat meal once a day. Don’t eat non veg food.Strictly avoid onions and garlic.
  • Charity (Danam) has to be given to the poor and the people in need.
  • Daily Japa(meditative repetition of a mantra or name of God) has to be performed.
  • On karthika pournami light deepam with 365 wicks at Lord Siva temple or at tulasi plant.
  • Fasting has to be observed especially on Naguala Chavithi, Ekadashi, Pournami.
  • People should perform archana and abhishekam to Lord Shiva.
  • For some families they will be karthika Masam nomulu they should follow the rituals very strictly.
  • Vana Bojanalu (eating food) under the amla tree will remove off the sins committed.
  • Some people use deepam made of rice flour or Gooseberry to light deepam.
  • On the last Day of Karthika Masam is also very auspicious known as "Poli Swargam" ie Amavasya day.
  • On the last day Light deepam with 31wicks(mainly with puvvu vottulu 31 mailny because for the whole karthika masam) on a banana trunk or plaintain stem(aarti dimma) and leave in the river.If not possible to light deepam near the river or else if not possible in the river You can light a deepam near the tulasi plant at home and in a big tub place filled with water and place the deepam.
Find out More information at Details of 30 Days Karthika Masam


  • By following the karthika Masam rituals one can get individual discipline, society values. According to these ethics only our ancient scriptures are written.
  • Doing bath before sunrise near the rivers or lakes makes us to learn getting up early in the morning.
  • By having cold water bath we can face the winter season. Also we can come to know about the water pollution and healthiness.
  • By doing charity all the other people can eat food.
  • You can come to know the things better if you face them.
Scientific Reasons:
  • The sun passes through the each zodiac sign throughout the year. The constellations corresponding to that signs in the cosmos will bring influence upon the beings on the earth and create a sacred and pure environment.
  • Sacred Bathing is washing all kind of physical and mental impurities which cleans the astral and emotional feelings and also droves the past karma. Water is a form of energy, it refresh the atomic substance of the body and mind. In this month the water is charged with the special electro-magnetic power before the sunrise so taking bath in this water cures stomach, lever, general disorders, etc.,
  • After rainy season the rain water which come comes from the sky touches the trees will channel the rivers and sea. So rivers and sea or any water storing points get medicated and scared
  • Lighting lamps in houses, the lamp vapors will create a shield of protection from virus and germs which are more in this month virus and germs and insects breed more in this month.
  • Worshipping Holy Tulasi creates a healthy environment in the house by preventing all the disease causing toxic chemical bacterial agents are in the atmosphere. The plant is used for curing diseases like asthma and other lung diseases. Lighting lamp near tulasi plant gives prosperity and Deliverance from sins.
  • Fasting will boost your immunity system. The inner meaning is eat less and live healthy
  • Fasting is mentioned in yajurveda karma kanda. A person has different types of behavior and thinking. They are classified as Satwa, Tamas and Rajas.Satwa mind people are restful and creative, Rajas mind people are full of desires and greedy, Tamas mind people is full of destructions and negative thoughts. All of us have these types of minds. We should learn to maintain balance in between these minds. Milk, fruits, dry fruits are offered to god; therefore the same food if we eat promotes satwa in our body. Fasting on the pournami is important as it brings more vibrations in the nature and the mind is difficult to be controlled.
  • A meditation in the morning and evening brings positive vibrations in the mind. Japa, dana brings involves in the process of removing toxic substances or qualities.
  • To overcome Virus, germs and insects or to fight with disease's fasting and tulasi plant are two crucial things to maintain health in karthika Masam. 

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Deepavali - Festival of Lights


Deepavali is a Hindu festival which means rows of lamps in sankrit. In north they called this festival as Diwali. Deepavali falls on the new moon night; lamps are lit to brighten this moonless night. Deepavali in south gets its name like deepa (light) and olli (oil in Tamil). In ancient times all the languages were interlinked and used to have influence over other languages. The celebration includes the lamp and candles lighting and burning of crackers. Sweets are distributed among friends and relatives.

Cultural Beliefs:

As per Hindu mythology deepavali is celebrated when
  • The Goddess of wealth, Lakshmi took human form during the churn of samudra-manthan ocean
  • Lord Rama killed Ravana. After 14 years of vanavasam he returns to his kingdom Ayodhya. People welcomed him by lighting diyas in rows.
  • Lord Krishna killed Narakasura the king of demons.
  • vishnu was in vamana avtara who helps Goddess Lakshmi from being a prisoner.This is one of the reason for worshipping goddess Lakshmi during deepavali.
  • Pandavas returned back home after being banished by kauravas.
  • Sikhs celebrate Diwali as it was the day when the first stone of golden temple was laid and also sikh guru harogobind was released from imprisonment.
  • Jains celebrate Diwali as this day marks the achievement of nirvana by Mahavir.
Interesting Facts:
  • This festival signifies the victory of good over evil. The Festival tells us to kill our inner demons and purify the soul with goodness by lighting up of the lamps.Fireworks indicate that we remember to keep ourselves happy over good things.
  • People wear new clothes,share and eat special food, fire crackers and  enjoy the festival together with family,friends and relatives.
  • Goddess Lakshmi will not enter a dark house. The lamps also welcome home the spirits of dead ancestors, who are believed to visit on this auspicious night. Also the light frightens away any evil spirit that might be wandering near the house on this night.
  • This is an important harvesting season. The festival is very important for business people as their granaries will be full, and the weather will be good, at the end of the monsoon and before the winter. People began their new year with this happy occasion, after paying their debts and clearing their ledgers.

The festival is of five days Dhanatrayodashi, Narak Chaturdashi, Lakshmi pooja, Bali Pratipada, Bhai duj.

1. Dhanatrayodashi: This day marks the beginning of deepavali celebrations. It is the thirteenth day of Krishna Pasha. Lord Dhanwantari came out of the ocean with Ayurveda for mankind. On this day at sunset people should take bath and offer Naivedyam to Lord Yama raj and light deepam (known as Yama Deepam) at the tulasi tree for protection from untimely death.
2. Narak Chaturdashi: on this day Lord Krishna killed Narakasura and made the world free from fear. On this day people should apply oil to body to relieve from tiredness and take bath so that deepavali can be celebrated with utter devotion.
3. Lakshmi Puja: Goddess Lakshmi puja is worshipped to achieve the blessings of wealth and prosperity.
4. Bali Pratipada: King Bali was very generous and used to give many gifts. He used to excessively to underserving also So Lord  Vishnu was born as vamana and asked alms for King Bali to give a land which covers three of his footsteps. King Bali fulfilled his wish and Lord Vishnu crushed king Bali into the underworld in his third step. Prahlada (grandfather of Bali) pleaded Vishnu to Forgive Bali.
On Bali's request, Vishnu granted a boon that people on earth would remember him and would worship him. That is the reason for Balipadyami.
As per the puranas Lord Krishna lifted Govardhan Mountain and holded it like an umbrella to save the people of Gokul. So On this day, Govardhan Pooja is performed.
5. Brathru Dwitiya: The last day of Deepavali known as Brathru Dwitiya or Bhagini hastha is dedicated to sisters. In the Vedic era Lord Yama raj has visited her sister Yamuna and gave her a boon that whosoever visits her on this day shall be liberated from all sins and Moksha. So from then on-wards brothers visit their sisters on this day to enquire of their welfare and the sister prays for her brother's safety, success and well-being.

Diwali Festival Procedure:

People should wake up early hours in the morning. We have to do head bath, clean the house(especially the west side of your house as it is more auspicious)  and pooja room. God photos or idols have to be cleaned and applied sandal, kumkum. We should apply turmeric and kumkum to the doors of the house, decorate the main door of the house with Toranam (mango  leaves), decorate the pooja toom with good Rangoli designs.

Goddess Lakshmi photo (preferable with green saree) or idol (made of silver or clay) has to be arranged for the pooja with lotus flowers, white Lilly flowers, rose flowers and with red rice(Akshintalu).

For Naiveydam arrange guava fruit, Ravva laddus, Kesari Bath, snacks like Ariselu and Murukku.
Perform the pooja by reciting Sri Lakshmi astottaram, Sri Mahalakshmi Stotra. Along with that recite the Sri Lakshmi Sahasranamam, Kanaka Durga parayanam and especially narakasuravadha in Bhagavatam.

On Deepavali day if we perform Sri Lakshmi Ashtothra pooja we will be benefited with happiness and prosperity. If Married Ladies perform kumkum pooja on the day they will be blessed with long life with her husband as per the Vedas.

On Deepavali day as per the astrologer’s suggestion If we perform Lakshmi kubera or vaibhavalaksmi Vartham we can overcome debt-distress, financial difficulties and get good prosperity. Kubera is the deity where we can learn the art of saving money as he is the treasurer.

Process: This pooja can be performed on the Deepavali day or any Tuesday or Friday as per your convenience. Keep a photo of Kubera. Draw Rangoli with rice flour for numbering of 27 20 25, 22 24 26, and 23 28 21. Keep 9 coins on three of the numbers on the Rangoli. Use Red flowers for the pooja. Coins and Red flowers are mandatory. Recite the kubera sloka ort mantra for 11 times and light the Deepam. There is a belief that by doing this we can complete the tasks successfully.
Kubera Mantra
Klim klim Sreem vittesvaraya Sreem Om Om Namah Hreen Sreem Hreen

Some Rituals to follow:
  • Thirteen wheat flour lamps with oil and cotton wicks has to be kept outside the main door of the house facing south (direction of Yama raj)
  • Lantern has to hang above the main door right side as it symbolizes the active divine energy and cleanses the atmosphere spiritually.
  • While doing the Lakshmi puja unbroken rice has to be used to place the Goddess Lakshmi idol.        
Scientific Reasons:
  • In ancient times there was no electricity and people used to have hard time. They have to protect themselves from insects and darkness during this season the weather will be cloudy and there would be no stars.
  • As per Astorlogy deepavali festival is based on Lunar calendar(based on the movements of Moon) while other  festivals are based on solar calendar(based on the movements of Sun).
  • Before the four months of deepavali the fire principle is absent in the atmosphere that dominate the environment, this festival destroys the distressing elements.
  • The tradition of Abhyanga Snanam is a beauty treatment.It will nourish the skin with layer of ayurveda oil and powereful herbs. These oils contains the elements that heals the cracked skin and also restrain the ageing. This also helps in controlling obesity, enhance the fat in thin people.
  • The monsoon is the time for insects and fungus to breed.In the end of the monsoon, houses has to cleaned and painted. Things and belongings have to dried before winter.Mosquitoes are born more in the rainy season so the crackers furing this festival act as anti-biotic for the skin diseases. other than insects lighting deepam gives warmth in the winter.