Monday, September 29, 2008

Mahatma Gandhi Jeyanthi

Mahatma Gandhi - Father of Indian Nation who struggled for getting Independence of India. Gandhiji is otherwise called as M.K.Gandhi, Mohandass Karamchand Gandhi. Mahatma Gandhiji's birthday is often referred as Mahatma Gandhi Jeyanthi celebrated on 2nd October every year. This year, Mahatma Gandhi Jeyanthi falls on Thursday. Every Indian nationals should pay respect and homage to Mahatma Gandhi on this occasion.

Mahatma Gandhi Statue is situated at the front of the Meenakshi Amman Temple East Chithirai Street, between the entrance of Meenakshi Amman and Lord Sundareswarar (East Tower).

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Navratri Kolu Utsavam - Nine Nights Utsavam - Madurai Meenakshi Amman Temple

During the Nine nights of Navratri, Goddess Meenakshi Amman is decorated with the various Alankarams at the Meenakshi Amman Kolu Mandapam. In this Mandapam, a small tank is there. Various beautiful and wonderful Rangoli (color kolam) is performed every day over the water fully filled in the tank. It is one of the speciality in this festival. Below are the list of Utsavams of Nine nights (Navratri) at Madurai Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple.

30.9.2008 - Meenakshi as Raja Rajeswari, presiding deity of Sri Chakra, Mother of Love and Grace.
1. 10. 2008 - Meenakshi preaching Manickavasagar who is the saint of Saivam Religion.
2.10.2008 - Meenakshi teaching the spiritual knowledge to all four Vedas viz. Rig, Yajur, Sama and Atharvana Vedas.
3.10.2008 - An incarnation of Thadathagai Pirattiyar (Meenakshi).
4.10.2008 - Meenakshi Amman Thirukkalyanam.
5.10.2008 - Meenakshi Offering food to Gundodharan (Leader of Boothaganams who are living in Kailash Lord Shiva's Place).
6.10.2008 - Meenakshi giving Shakti Vel to Lord Muruga.
7.10.2008 - Meenakshi as Mahisasuramarthini
8.10.2008 - Meenakshi performing Shiva Pooja
9.10.2008 - Vijayadasami, Worshipped with 108 Veenas (a traditional musical instrument of indians) in order to gain the educational benefits for children.

Apart from this everyday from 30.9.2008 to 8.10.2008 there are various cultural and spiritual programs are conducted and organised by the Madurai Meenakshi Amman Temple Devasthanam located at the Kalyana Mandapam. Everyone is requested to visit the Navratri festival and gain the ample grace of Goddess Meenakshi.

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Navratri Kolu Festival 2008 - Durga Puja - Dandia

Navratri Festival - Festival of Nine Nights (Nav - Nine Ratri - Night) often referred to as "Navratri Kolu Festival" major festival of Hindus celebrated by South Indian People. This festival is celebrated as "Durga Puja", "Dandia", "Dusshera or Dassera" by North Indian People. At Madurai Meenakshi Amman Temple, this festival is celebrating splendidly nine days every year. This year Navratri Kolu Festival begins on 30 September 2008 and ends on 9 October 2008.

Navratri Kolu Festival - Festival of Dolls. In the Second Pragaram of Meenakshi Amman Temple, the left side is fully decorated with color lights and various dolls and on the right side so many vahanas referred as vehicles carrying God and Goddess during festivals or utsavams are standed. Apart from this the whole Meenakshi Amman Temple towers (Gopurams) and Golden Lotus Tank are illuminated with color lights which looks like the heaven in the earth.

Significance of Navratri:
1st day to 3rd day of Navratri - Dedicated to Durga Matha (Durga Puja), Goddess of Power and Energy
4th day t0 6th day of Navratri - Dedicated to Lakshmi Matha (Lakshmi Pooja), Goddess of Wealth
7th day to 9th day of Navratri - Dedicated to Saraswati Matha (Saraswathi Puja), Goddess of Knowledge and Intelligence
10th day - Vijayadasami, symbol of victory. On this occasion, Lord Rama killed Ravana. Goddess Durga killed the devil (Asura) Mahisasuran. Hence, most of the people wish to start the education of their children on this day which would bring the brainpower and knowledge.

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Sarva Mahalaya Paksha Amavasya 2008

Sarva Mahalaya Paksha Amavasya - Dedicated to departed ancestors. Amavasya is nothing but the New Moon day. Mahalaya Paksha means the fourteen days of Mahalaya. This year, Mahalaya Amavasya falls on 28th September, 2008, Mahalaya Paksha ends on this day. This is the most important Amavasya than any other, since our departed ancestors (Pithru) are ready to bless their family on this occasion. During this period, thousands of people who lost their parents took a holy dip in various rivers and sea like Rameshwaram (Holy Pilgrimage) and offering Pithru Tharpanam to satisfy the ancestors. Praying and offering Tharpanam on this occasion are the best ways to get the grace and blessings of the departed ancestors. Another important thing in this Amavasya is that to provide food and water to others (Annadhanam). As we all know, the fundamental necessities of human being are food, cloth and shelter. Rather than donating cloth and providing shelter, donating food is great. To survive in this world, we need air, food and water, hence donating food is the best way to get the blessings of the Supreme Lord and departed ancestors and also bring it to you in the right path after your death.

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Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Vinayagar Chaturthi - Ganesh Puja Festival 2008


Vinayagar Chathurti - Celebrating as the sign of the birthday of Lord Ganesh (Elephant Headed Hindu God) who is the son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. The purpose of birth of Lord Ganesh is to destroy the devil “Gajamugasuran”. Goddess Parvati created the Lord Ganesh with her sweat and energy along with the soil and sandal in order to guard her when she takes bath. Trying to guard his mother's bath, Lord Ganesh was beheaded by Lord Shiva who later was persuaded by Parvati to revive him. Finally Lord Shiva promised always the first pooja will be performed to Lord Ganesh before any auspicious things to be done.

Vinayagar Chaturthi in Meenakshi Amman Temple

Vinayagar Chaturthi Festival is celebrated every year in the Tamil Month of Avani starting on the shukla chaturthi, fourth day of the waxing moon period. This festival is celebrated all over India and in other countries on Wednesday, September 03, 2008. In Meenakshi Amman Temple, this festival is devoted to “Mukkuruni Vinayagar”. Mukkuruni means three times of six. This idol has recovered while the King Tirumalai Nayacker digged the land for constructing a tank which is popularly known as “Mariamman Tank” now. Ganesh Puja is well being performed with the new Ganesh idol and fruits by everybody. Even though, we offer pray with several fruits and other things, the most favorite dish of Lord Ganesh is “Kolukattai” a famous south Indian dish. Hence the Meenakshi Amman Temple devotees offered a huge kolukatti to Mukkuruni Vinayagar. As its name implies, the kolukattai is prepared with the 3*6 times ie. 18kg of rice. No other temple proposed such a huge prasadam to Lord. This festival is celebrated as “Ganesh Puja” in the North zone of India.

On this occasion, all of us should pray and get the ample grace of Supreme Lord Ganesh. May the Lord gives you the health and wealth for your entire family.

"Wish You All a Very Happy Vinayagar Chaturthi and Ganesh Puja Festival"

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