Monday, 14 April 2014

Jai Hanuman!

Hanuman Jayanti: Celebrating Birth of Lord Hanuman
Hanuman was the living embodiment of the power of Rama naama. Lord Hanuman is an incarnation of Lord Shiva. He was an ideal, selfless worker, a true karma yogi who worked without desire. Hanuman Jayanti is the birth anniversary of Lord Hanuman. As per Hindu calendar it is celebrated on Chaitra purnima. This year, Hanuman Jayanti will be most auspicious as it will fall on Tuesday, 15th of April 2014. Tuesday and Saturday are considered auspicious to worship Lord Hanuman. 

People across the nation believe that Hanuman provides them protection from the wrath of which craft or from the evil spirits. To express gratitude to the deity Hanuman, every year a grand celebration is organized on Hanuman Jayanti in several states across India on the full moon day.

Hanuman is an ardent devotee of Lord Rama, and is worshipped for his unflinching devotion to the god. From early morning, devotees flock Hanuman temples to worship him. It is good to paaraayan (recite) Hanuman Chalisa on this auspicious day. People start their spiritual discourses before sunrise. They wear red or orange coloured clothes and observe a full day fast

They apply sindoor and place flowers to lord hanuman’s photo or idol. Offer jaggery, chana or besan ladoo as prasad. Devotees chant Hanuman Chalisa, 108 names of Hanumanji Sundarkand sing bhajans and mantras. There is huge celebration at temples across the nation. 

Lord Hanuman endows extraordinary power and wisdom. Devotees strongly believe that if one worships Lord Hanuman with full devotion he/she will get blessed for power, fame, courage and healthy physique. Lord hanuman is known as kashta bhanjan - the one who provides relief from problems. He is a friend of Lord Shani. So worshiping Hanumanji also provides relief from grah dosh especially mangal dosh and shani dosh. Worship of Hanuman protects you from the dangers and disturbances from enemies. He blesses us with strength, wisdom, courage and confidence. 

So get peace, power, purity – worship Lord Hanuman on his birth anniversary, send Hanuman Jayanti messages, wallpapers, images, gifts and more for friends and relatives. You can also buy worship items like japa malas and small idols made of mercury (parad), crystal (sphatik) or Ashtadhatu (8 metals) more online on this auspicious day. Happy Hanuman Jayanti Puja, 2014!  


A Grand Welcome to the New Year 
Puthandu, popularly known as Varsha Pirappu, is the New Year's Day for the people of Tamil Nadu in Southern India. It marks the beginning of the Dravidian New Year in Tamil Nadu. This festival is held on the first day of Tamil month Chithiram, which usually falls on the 14th of April. It is believed that Lord Brahma, (the God of creation, according to Hindu mythology) began creating the world on this day. This festival is celebrated with traditional gaiety and enthusiasm all over Tamil Nadu.
On the occasion of Puthandu, Hindus believe that offering special prayers in the temple brings them prosperity. It is also the day to give an auspicious start to the coming year by looking at all nice and wonderful things such as gold, fresh fruits, vegetables, rice, betel leaves, nuts and coconuts, which are kept in a decorated pile in front of the garlanded deity. The focus is on prosperity throughout the year, and a prayer to thank almighty.

Varsha Pirappu begins with viewing the Kani of the auspicious things. Early in the morning on this auspicious day, the entrance of the house is decorated with Kolam (Rangoli), a design made with rice flour. The doorways are decorated with mango leaves to mark the auspiciousness of the occasion. After an early ritual bath, the whole family prays together. The children take the blessings of their parents.
A special dish called 'Maanga Pachadi', made of raw mangoes, jaggery and neem flowers is served during lunch. This signifies all the different aspects of our life, reminding us to face happiness and sorrow with equal ease. Since this festival marks the beginning of the New Year, food prepared is very special, with particular emphasis on pulses and cereals.
Families together enjoy the special lunch. The rest of the day is spent visiting relatives, friends and exchanging New Year greetings and gifts. A large number of devotees wait in queues from dawn at temples especially temples like Meenakshi temple in Madurai, Manakkula Vinayagar temple in Pondicherry for darshan.
On this auspicious day, a grand Car Festival is held at Tiruvadamarudur near Kumbakonam. Festivals are also held at Tiruchirapalli, Kanchipuram and many other places in South India. Several fairs and cultural programs are also organised at different places all over the state, to mark the occasion.

It’s a brand new year and we want to wish Puthandu to everyone across the globe! It’s always fun to celebrate festivities with friends and family. You can get beautiful worship items and gifts  to celebrate this day in style with your near and dear ones.

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Mahavir Jayanti

Honouring the Last Tirthankar

Mahavir Jayanti is one of the most important religious festivals of the Jain community in India. This festival is celebrated with great zeal and enthusiasm in India and across the world to honor the birth and philosophy of Lord Mahavira. Mahavira was the last Tirthanka of Jainism in India. He was born on the thirteenth day of the rising moon of Chaitra to King Siddartha and Queen Trisala in Bihar. He was named Vardhaman by his parents. 

Mahavira lived as a prince. However, he started meditating and had developed a deep interest in the core beliefs of Jainism at a very early age. He renounced the throne and his family to seek spiritual truth and spent twelve years as an ascetic when he was 30. He spent most of his time meditating and preaching non-violence to people and also showed utmost reverence to all living beings.

While enduring the penance, he controlled his senses and chose an extremely ascetic life. His courage and exemplary action in controlling the senses earned him the name Mahavira. He devoted the rest of his life preaching the truth of spiritual freedom. Mahavir Jayanti is celebrated every year to commemorate his preaching and Jain philosophy. Mahavira is the last Tirthankara, who preached the essence of life, virtue and non-violence towards all living beings.

Jains across the globe celebrate Mahavir Jayanti in a grand way by visiting temples and offer ceremonial bath, known as 'abhishek', to Mahavira's idol. The temples are lavishly decorated with flags to mark the birth anniversary of Lord Mahavira. Mahavir Jayanti is also observed with festivities on the 8 day holy period of “Paryushana”. 

Majestic chariot processions that include horses, elephants, drummers and chanters are also carried out with the images followed by millions of devotees while chanting prayers. Silent prayers are offered and his preaching is recapitulated in the form of sermons to the followers on this day. Traditional dishes are prepared on this particular day and alms are offered to the poor. 

On the auspicious occasion of Mahavir Jayanti, sermons are also held in shrines or temples to preach the philosophy of spiritual freedom and virtue. Important chapters from the life of Mahavira are read out to the devotees that also contain biographies of Jain Tirthankars. Devotees and followers of Jainism send Mahavir Jayanti messages to relive the great teachings and life of Lord Mahavira. You could find some lovely gifts and worship items online to share with your loved ones to celebrate the holy occasion. The day ends at the shrine, temple or communal area where people meditate and pray.

Get into the spirit of spirituality and refresh the teachings and messages of Lord Mahavir on this auspicious day of Mahavir Jayanti.

Monday, 7 April 2014

Jai shri Ram!

Celebrating Lord Rama's Birthday
Are you all set to celebrate the birth of Lord Rama? On 08Th April, Tuesday this year arrives one of the most auspicious days of the year, Ram Navami. Ram Navami is a famous Hindu festival that celebrates the birth of Lord Rama, son of King Dasharatha and Queen Kausalya, of the Ayodhya kingdom. Ramnavami falls on the 9th day of the bright fortnight of the month of Chaitra (March-April). Ram navami is one of the most important festivals of the Hindus, particularly the Vaishnava sect of the Hindus. It is also called as the Chaitra Masa Suklapaksha Navami.

Rama is one of the ten avatars of Lord Vishnu, and one of the two most popular, along with Krishna. Rama is an epitome of perfection fulfilling all his duties towards both family and subjects. Rama was the first of the four sons of King Dasharatha. 

Ram Navami Celebrations start on Gudi padwa, which is the first day of Chaitra; and continue for 9 days. On this auspicious day, devotees repeat the name of Rama with every breath and vow to lead a righteous life. People pray to attain the final beatitude of life through intense devotion towards Rama and invoke him for his blessings and protection.
Many observe a strict fast on this day. Ram Navami is an extremely colorful ceremony, highly inspiring and instructive too. Temples are decorated and the image of Lord Rama is richly adorned. The holy 'Ramayana' is read in the temples all nine days. As per astrology, worshipping Lord Rama by chanting mantras, reading Ramayana, listen to bhajans brings good health, wealth and prosperity. 

In Ayodhya, the birthplace of Sri Rama, a big fair is held on this day. In many regions across south India people celebrate "Sri Ramnavami Utsavam" for nine days with great fervor and devotion. The South Indian devotees chant the holy name of Rama and celebrate the wedding anniversary of Rama with Sita on this day. 

People chant the sacred Mantras "Om Sri Ramaya Namah" or "Om Sri Ram Jai Ram Jai Jai Ram". Devotees greet one another with "Sri Ram" or "Jai Ram-ji-ki". A "havan" or sacred fire ceremony is also performed. Leaflets, booklets and books relating to Lord Rama are distributed.

The periodic readings (parayans) of the Ramayan, spiritual discourses (kirtans) and beautifully embellishing Shriram;s statue is worshipped by hundreds of people. During these nine days, reciting the Ramaraksha prayer (stotra) eleven times daily with a resolve (sankalpa) fulfills all prayers. It also helps in curing various ailments and brings good luck and prosperity.

A grand celebration on this day takes place in Ayodhya, Sitamarhi, Rameswaram and Bhadrachalam. At some places Rathayatra or chariot procession (Shobha yatra) of the Lord Rama, Mata Sita, Lakshman and God Hanuman is carried out by the thousands of people after taking a holy dip in the sacred river, Sarayu or Ganga. Many places in North India host fairs in connection with the festival, culminating in spectacular fireworks on Rama Navami.

Celebrate this holy festival with great enthusiasm by sending Ram Navami wishes to your loved ones. Listen to the holy bhajans and chants of Lord Rama, watch inspirational Lord Rama movies and videos online and buy worship items, malas and more.