Saturday, April 26, 2014

RamaSetu - An Engineering Marvel

Rama Setu which is also called Adam's bridge is built by Vanara Samuha(Monkeys' group) on the order of Lord Sri Rama. Nala is the architect who is descendent of Vishwakarma designed this bridge. This is built with limestone shoals which are chained to each other. It is located between Pamban Island also called Rameswaram Island, the south-eastern coast of TamilNadu, India and Mannar Island, the northwestern coast of SriLanka. It is proven geologically that this bridge the former land connection between SriLanka and India.

The bridge measure 18 miles almost 30 kms long. This bridge is the separation between Palk Strait(northeast) and the Gulf of Mannar(southwest). The sea here is very shallow with a depth of 3 ft to 30 ft(1m to 10 m) where the navigation hindered and some sandbanks are dry.In 15th century, people use to pass by foot until unless it is deepened by the storms and the records in the temple say that Ramasetu is completely above the sea level till it was broken by a cyclone in 1480 CE.

The floating stones are from Rameswaram which are used to construct RamaSetu to cross the sea in order to reach SriLanka. It was clearly stated in ancient text 'Valmiki Ramayana-Yudhakanda 6.22.50 -72. Wood from variety of trees are used as foundation of the bridge on the top the trees large stones were arranged in sequential order.


Interesting Points:

  • In 2005 Indian UPA Govt. launched Sethusamudram Shipping Channel Project which aimed to clear the bed of Ramasetu by scooping out mud. But Supreme Court in 2007 involved to stop this process to protect Ramasetu and Hindu religious beliefs.
  • A British cartographer in 1804 prepared a map on this bridge which called this bridge Adam's bridge. This is probably named referring Islamic Island which Adam used to reach Adam's peak in SriLanka, where he stood on a single foot for hundreds of years leaving a footprint mark of the same. The peak and the island are named after this legend, Adam.
  • In Skanda Purana an interesting point was described that there is a installation of three Shiv-lings at the beginning, middle and end of the RamSetu.
  • Many politicians commented on Lord Rama history and Ramasetu origin.
  • Ramasetu was built by Vanaras in 5days as per valmiki ramayana. Lord Rama called this bridge as Nala-Setu on the name of engineer but people called it as Ramasetu, SetuBandhanam while generations passed.
  • According Atomic Energy commission scientist's there exist large quantity of that radioactive element available below Ramsetu. Which produces 4 Lac Mega watts of electricity every hour for the next 150 years.
Scientific Reasons:
  • There is a scientific proof behind these floating stones not to float.These floating stones do have air cavities inside i.e., the air is trapped when formation itself and so the density is very less in water. To be simpler, these stones weigh lesser when compared to other rocks of same size. If the density of a thing is lesser to water then it will float, it is the nature. These stones float 10% above the water, it means the weight of this rocks are 10-20% less than the normal rocks of the same size. Currently, this bridge is covered with an iron mesh. This gives an example of air cavity theory.
  • Limestone's will float in salt water(impure) and they sink in normal water(pure).

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Akshantulu - Act of Blessing with Rice grains

Akshantulu will be prepared by mixing rice with turmeric or Vermillion Powder and ghee. They are used to bless the youngsters. They are often used in Hindu marriages, festivals and in some important days. By sprinkling these on the head, elders bless the youngsters by saying 'Deergayushman bhava' - Live long, 'Santana Praptirastu' - soon you will conceive a child, 'Arogya praptirastu' - Live healthy, 'Ishwarya praptirastu' - Live with Luxury,'Sakala soukhya prapthirasthu' - Bless with a full of happiness.

Cultural Beliefs:
'Akshantulu' is derived from the word 'Akshatalu' means 'AA + Kshitam'(which can't be destroyed). Rice grains will be obtained after hulling the grains. The grains which are not broken in this process, the unbroken rice which are used for giving blessings are called 'Askhintulu'.

Among 'Navagrahas'( nine planets) in astrology, Lord Chandra rules bad habits,mother, behavior and mood. By donating rice, people can overcome ill effects of Lord Moon.

In Hindu marriages, bride and groom used to play Talambralu by pouring lots of akshantulu on their heads. This act indicates, welcoming the bride into the family. Bride is represented as Dhanalakshmi( Goddess of wealth) and bridegroom welcomes her into his family by pouring lots of rice as Talambralu. Bride groom is represented as Lord Vishnu. Bride welcomes him by pouring rice as Talambralu.
Interesting facts:
  • Blessings need to take from elders Father,mother,elders and famous people.
  • With out considering age all Hindus will take blessings from temple priest and gurus or saints.
  • In every traditional ritual we offer 'Akshintulu' to Lord Ganesha.
  • The 'Shodopachara puja'( 16 steps of worship) we offer 'akshintulu' to the deity.
  • Hindus believe that these 'Akshintulu' has power to fulfill all the desires when used in the act of blessings.
  • All kayanotsava mahotsavams perfomed wouold be distributed with akshantalu which are the talambralu for Gods in that function and if the unmarried people who take these as akshantalu from their elders would be maaried soon.
  • Especially, talambralu used on the auspicious day called Sri Rama Navami in Bhadrachalam, it is beleived that people who take these as akshantalu would be married by next preceeding Sri Rama Navami. Unmarried people who take these would be married and the married who take these would be blessed with a peaceful married life like Gods'.

Scientific Reasons:

  • Scientifically human body is a big electric station. The up and downs of body current indirectly affects the mood and health of a person. When ever people bless their children, the positive current will charge the rice grains when they bless with these rice grains with positive charge will balances the negative currents in the person who take blessings from elders.
  • Our body has 24 electrically charged points and from these points, electricity will reach the entire body. In these 24 points, our head is the main distributing point. When ever people receive blessings, the 'Akshantulu'( positively charged particles) will touches the head and head charged with positive currents and distributes positive currents to entire body.
  • Mixing turmeric or Vermillion Powder and ghee to rice grains will stop spreading virus or bacteria which causes illness from the person who give blessings to their children.

Check the related article Touching feet of Parents & elders