CONTROVERSIES IN DIFFERENT FORMS & MANIFESTATIONS


CONTROVERSIES IN DIFFERENT FORMS & MANIFESTATIONS

When our ego goes berserk
We tend to consider ourselves cut above others
Create situations and conditions at the throw of a hat
In its wake we sow the seeds of differences
Between ourselves and friends around us
Breaking the bond
We’ve developed with each others
Over a period of time
And we become sworn enemies of each other
Thirsting for each others’ blood, for nothing.

One controversy breeds another
Creating a heap of controversies
Generating ill-will and bad blood
Alas! Where peace becomes the first victim
Giving the affected people the sleepless nights
This process goes on and on, unending
Engulfing the societies in its ill-designs
Till such time writ of sagacity and fair-play revisits.

Politics and controversies are chums so dear
That the former becomes helpless without help of latter
More intense the controversy
More the political entity gets popularity
Controversies and politics are bed-fellows actually
For cleaning the filth of stables of politics
Cleansing the inner conscience political entity is a must.

Controversies may be religious
Or personal in nature
Robs us of positive feelings
Humility and humane touch
And becomes a cause of breaking well-knit family’s fabric
Even societies cannot remain immune to its ill-effects.

Best course is to create and generate a feeling of trust
Between humans of all hues
On the principles of give and take
With each other
Since all of us are our Creator’s creations
With no difference in any forms or manifestations.

UNNECESSARY CONTROVERSIES


Misunderstanding,  if allowed for a long period of time, creates a seed of suspicion in the minds of people; which gets sprouted resulting in breakage of existing relations. This sprouted seed becomes a tree after a period of time, thereby, giving fruits of negativity –thus resulting in breakdown in relationships, creation of doubts and fears and in some cases breakdown of law and order. This negativity in various forms and manifestations brings in its wake various hurdles which retard our growth and development (materially and spiritually). These misunderstanding could be at our homes, workplace or in our communities of which we are the members. What controversies could result could be construed from the bombings which happened in SRI LANKA a few days back on EASTER PURV (CELEBRATIONS) wherein many of the people were mascaraed. This inhuman and uncivilized act is really mindless. Controversy may be any, differences could be any but no civilized human could even think of committing acts like this. Celebrations were turned into unfortunate drama of death and mayhem. What a crying shame.
Then there are people who are confirmed controversial; they create and change situations and conditions suiting their own whims and fancies thus generating controversies where none exists. Such people, with negative mindset, spread negativity around them. They are the master-controversy-crofters.


Way out is to show them the mirror and give them time to mend their ways. If they still persist in their nefarious designs/ill-intentioned indulgences then avoiding them is the best course of action or taking the help of law enforcing agencies is the best solution.


OUR IMAGE COULD BE SULLIED DUE TO CONTROVERSIES


The controversy means to fall prey to unnecessary hullabaloo or uproar where none exists. Creation of these controversies could tarnish our and sully our image without our fault. We are affected by the controversies internally and externally in the eyes of the society as a whole.


Way out is to not to fall prey to tall talk which may put us in unnecessary controversies for nothing.


CONTROVERSIES DO ARISE BECAUSE OF UNNECESSARY ARGUMENTS


Sometimes we enter into controversies of our own creation and other times these just happen you want these or not. We should avoid arguments if it is possible. Nobody has ever won an unnecessary argument. If we win an argument and lose a friend then such winning is of no use.


Way out is to avoid arguments as far as possible even when we have to temporarily retreat our steps.


CONTROVERSIES AND POLITICS ARE TWO STRANGE BED-FELLOWS


It has been observed that where there is politics, controversies are not far to seek. In other words, we can say that politics is a fertile ground for controversies. To expect a controversy-free politics is like asking for moon on earth but a modicum of clean politics could be ensured if our political parties speak more about development of the general masses than politicize everything for personal gains.


Way out is to educating the voters to vote for those who could ensure solving their multifarious problems.


WHEN WE DEMEAN WOMEN (KUPIT NARI) WE TEND TO CREATE CONTROVERSIES


It is empirically proven fact and substantiated by life experiences, a home where there is no respect for the GRAHE LAKSHMI (house-wife), such a house cannot be termed as a sweet home since it is always embroiled into one controversy or other. Wherever women are insulted (Kupit Nari) and controversies created around them, that house cannot be termed as a home with peace and prosperity. Here there is no love and affection between the inhabitants of the house-hold. In such house-hold, there are pulls and pressures with all sorts of controversies abounding.


To make our house a sweet home, we should always give due respect to the lady of the home to create appropriate ambience for a healthy living relationship in the household.


CONTROVERSIES AT OUR HOMES


There are times when the relationship between the couple gets drubbing because of some harmless differences. If the same are not mended within a short span of time then these snowball into unlimited proportion leading to relationship problems. It is well said, ‘a stitch in time saves nine’ therefore, we should make endeavor to patch up before it is too late.


As far as possible, avoidance of situations and conditions which may create suspicion and if suspicion has arisen, it is necessary that we explain our position and come out unscathed or else these should be settled on the principles of give and take – YOU FORGET SOME AND THE OTHER PARTY TOO FORGETS HIS/HER PART then these controversies could die their natural death. Controversies are like bad dreams which ought to be forgotten, the sooner this done the better it would be for our peaceful existence.


BREAKDOWN OF CONFIDENCE DUE TO CREATION OF CONTROVERSIES


It has been seen that where there is breakdown of confidence (Vishvas Ghaat), it become a fertile ground for controversies. We can safely imagine the condition of a home, community or a country where there is breakdown of confidence. There is mistrust and misrule.


Way out is to make sincere efforts to retrieve our confidence by our good karmic deeds and remove every shred of controversies in which we are surrounded.


CONTROVERSIES IN THE WORK PLACES


Sometimes back, I remember a most unfortunate incident which took place at the work place. Many a times these controversies are created while we are not present at the workplace. When I came back after my emergency leave, I was informed by one of my colleagues that orders have been passed to divest me off an extra-responsibility assigned to me by the organization – the success of which would have a huge bearing on my future career progression and admiration which I must have garnered due to project fructification. I felt very disappointed. I wanted to ask the head of the organization the reason for taking me off the project. The head of the organization did not divulge any substantive information but tried to change the subject at hand. After analyzing the pros and cons of the episode and also after knowing from some of my colleagues who were equally concerned about my predicament, I came to know that one of my friends had misrepresented the facts and instigated the head of the organization against me and created a situation and hence avoidable controversy which had a far reaching future ramifications on my performance. As I was not present when this controversy crept up, and nobody listened my part of facts, therefore, a temporary setback though.


Many a times, we fall into controversies for which we are not responsible. If controversies are not created by us, we shall feel pain when we get embroiled in controversies unnecessary. While if an individual is responsible for an indiscretion, concerned individual will have to do all sorts of explanations. He will have to tell several lies in order to hide one lie but lie would be nailed one day and that individual would be caught.


It should be borne in mind that if we have acted righteously, truthfully, with freewill and adopting certain degree of care and caution, we shall come out of any situation come what may. Here our self-intent, content, delivery in freedom, unconditioned intention and freedom from outcomes is important. The self confidence, self knowledge or self awareness with which we deal with a situation we have put ourselves lead to quick resolution of any controversies which may arise from time to time.


CONTROVERSIES WHEN WE OVERLY PROTECT OUR CHILDREN


It is an undisputed fact that we should handle our children with care; provide them needed protection, give the reward when it is needed but give a gentle slap on the wrist as and when required. We all know that all parents love their children but difficulty arises when we unnecessary protect them when they are at fault. Then controversies creep in as it happened the other day. It so happened that two students (Named Ram and Sham- names changed to hide their actual identities) had arguments in the school play ground on some innocuous thing. Ram told his parents about these arguments and added many things including beating by Sham (which later on were found to be wrong). The father of Ram went to Sham’s house and both the parents had a unsavory arguments which turned into a mud-slinging match and then pulling and pushing. An FIR was registered. It did not stop there, a case was then filed in the Court too! Seemingly an innocuous argument between the two students but not handled properly turned into an unnecessary controversy and subsequently bad blood between two families, wastage of time which could otherwise must have been utilized in productively.


The best way is to listen our children but we should never jump into conclusion that our children cannot be wrong.


RELIGION BASED CONTROVERSIES WHEN TRUE MEANING OF SOMETHING IMPORTANT IS NOT INTERPRETED PROPERLY


One of the most glaring controversies are created and become the cause of differences in the societies is due to not understanding the true meaning of religion and its scriptures. This misunderstanding takes ugly turn. We saw what happened in Sri Lanka a few days back. These differences should not be allowed to fester or else our societies would be torn apart.


According to Bhagwad Gita: According to the three modes of material nature and the work associated with them, the four divisions of human society are created by Me. And although I am the creator of this system, you should know that I am yet the non-doer, being unchangeable.


Here Lord Krishna explains about four Varnas and division of society based on GUNA KARMA – according to the qualities and karmic deeds of an individual. Here there is no mention of Varna according to the birth of a person in the particular family. But some people with vested interests interpret it differently just to create a wedge in the society. In other words, good Karmic deeds leads to higher Varna and bad ones leads to lower Varna.


RIGHT INTERPRETATION OF VARNA – CASTE SYSTEM BASED ON KARMA RATHER THAN BIRTH IN A PARTICULAR FAMILY


Karma or deeds good or bad actually determines the higher or lower Varnas. Another verse in Bhagwad Gita clearly explains the concept of Varnas: So, Even the distinction between castes is artificial – and karma determines what profession you’ll belong. For example, a person born in Brahmin family could prove to be a good soldier which earlier on was the task assigned to the Kshatriyas, a Kshatriya could get higher knowledge suited for a Brahmin or could prove to be a good businessman or Shudra or could transact manual jobs with felicity. These things are happening now in our real lives. But there are people who are hell vent on creating controversies where none exist.


These controversies could be created by anybody just to create misunderstanding and bad blood based on religions, castes, creed, cultures, regional based differences, language based differences, etc. When we tend to forget the true meaning and its significance is not taken care of then differences do creep in. Many a times, these self-created things are given undue credence then more contradictions and contradictions spring up causing still more differences.


It is relevant to quote my own family history. I am from a Brahmin family. My father should have been a temple priest according to the Varna our family belong. But my father was a 1ST WW veteran, a different Karmic Deed (Kshtriya) than assigned by Varna beliefs. Now as far as caste is concerned, I should have married my offspring in Brahmin families only but it is not so. One of my daughters is married in the family of Shudra and my son is married in Kshtriya family. Therefore, in actual practice, now a days caste considerations have taken a back seat. Only those who want to create controversies and difference for their selfish ends use these as a weapon for garnering their votes and thus rule over them.


It should always be remembered that our faith and belief or religious beliefs are personal in natural. These are the pathways to reach our final destination i.e. God connectivity. Pathways may be different but the destination remains the same for everybody so why create controversies where none should exist.


CLEARING OUR NAMES OFF CONTROVERSIES


If it is important to clear our name then we have to make concerted efforts to prove our innocence. (It is ironical that society holds people guilty until proven innocent but some tag of blameworthiness still remains in the form of suspicion in the minds of people! Whereas the law says a person is to be considered innocent until proven guilty.) In Ramayana, Sita Mata  had to prove her innocence through Agni Pariksha and even then she was not believed. So people may still not believe our innocence even if we prove it. If the matter is not very critical or important, one could ignore the entire issue. Time will bring out the truth.

Controversies should not be allowed to persist because:-

  • Controversies, if allowed to persist take gigantic form and manifestation which may be disastrous affect on the lives of the law avoiding citizens.
  • If any controversy is created unnecessary by us, we should make sincere efforts in proving our innocence. If the other party is not agreeing then the best course of action is to; agree to disagree and that should be all.
  • Unnecessary arguments if allowed to aggravate, grow the seeds of differences which may take a dangerous turn, we should try not to enter into those arguments which have got no end in sight. We should always clarify our part, rest should rests with others’ judgment.
  • We should not be overly judgmental about anything under the sun since this will also enhance the gap between different individuals and create condition or fodder for more controversies.
  • Caste based or religion based controversies are very dangerous and should not be allowed to fester otherwise these will have ominous portents for the growth and development of human race.  

How do I apologize to someone for disappointing them?


How do I apologize to someone for disappointing them? – (As asked by some one)

In life, we are assigned different jobs or are constrained to do some actions which are not ethically correct but your position and assigned task is such that you have to be upright and give your opinion or express yourself contrary to what your colleague or friend would expect. For instance, you are assigned by the authorities in which you are serving, the task of investigating a case against your best friend; in which case, you have to go deeper into the nuts and bolts of the case and come to the conclusion. If you find that your friend or colleague is involved directly or sometimes indirectly; there are two scenarios open to you, you either exonerate your friend (even knowing fully well with evidence that he/she is fully involved in the case in point) then you will consciously be doing an unethical and perhaps immoral task of letting go a person who should be given lesson for his/her indiscretion. I think nobody will stoop so low as to save a person (even though your own best friend). We should always take into cognizance that if we let an errant individual escape then we are setting a bad precedence and I think you should not do.

Then secondly, finding that your friend is involved, you can give your recommendations in a dispassionate manner without any bias and also can water down the case (if you wish) that your friend should not repeat the same thing thereafter and also record the statement of your friend as to not to repeat the same folly again. Having done this, your own conscious self would be chaste and clean, no ill-will or ill-feeling for your friend. If your friend still thinks that you had been bias to him/her then let him do so at his own peril. Friends who are having more expectations from us even for shoddy deals should face the music, and better be let at the mercy of their fate. This may be as a member of family, as a member of society, as a member of formal and information institutions.

You have not mentioned (not even an iota of indication) in what way you have ‘let down that person horribly’ . If the above mentioned scenarios are not relevant then if you have let-down a male or female friend of yours by not paying his/her money loaned out to you then make amends and pay him/her money with interest accrued thus and express your heartfelt apologies.

If you have robbed the modesty of your friend when that friend of yours believed you more than she/he believed herself/himself, then you are responsible for an act of ethical and immoral turpitude and should do everything at your command to offer your sincere apologies and if possible compensate that person for the indiscretions you have done. If you are not doing so, then you will be earning KARMIC DEBITS of highest proportions and you know it will boomerang on you sooner than later. But sincerity of your apologies should not be only for a show but there should be honesty of purpose too.

LORD HANUMAN JI’S BIRTH ANNIVERSARY : MAY HIS BOUNTIES REMAIN GRACING US ALL


LORD HANUMAN JI’S JYANTI TODAY

Lord Hanuman Ji is the son of mother Anjana (An Apsara who was cursed by a Rishi to take birth on earth in Vanara family) and father Kesari the King of Sumeru. The Wind God Vayu had also a role in his birth besides being the Guru of Hanuman Ji. Lord Hanuman Ji is a well-known devotee of Lord Rama who is one of the pivotal characters epic Ramayana. His name has been mentioned in Vedas, Puranas, besides in Jain, Buddhist and Sikh scriptures. He is also known as an incarnation of Lord Shiva. He is not only worshipped in India but also in Nepal, Myanmar, Cambodia, Malaysia and Indonesia.

 Hanuman Jyanti marks the birth of HANUMAN JI to father King Kesari and mother Anjani with the bounties of Wind King Pawan Dev Ji. The devotees who have strong influenceof Shani Dev Ji should worship Hanuman Ji. In this context, reciting of Hanuman Chalisa eight times is very effective to please Shani Dev Ji (Satron). He is hugely respected for His prowess and the one who bestows his graces on those KARMA YOGI are honest and sincere in their prayers.

Hanuman Jayanti is an important festival of the Hindus. Lord Hanuman is a passionate devotee of Lord Rama Ji. He is widely known for his undaunted loyalty to Lord Rama. Hanuman is the symbol of strength and energy besides known for devotion to Lord Rama. He is said to be able to assume any form at will, brandish the gada (including many other celestial weapons), and even move mountains which he exhibited when needed for bringing a medicinal plant to save the life of Lakshmana the brother of Rama.

The devotees celebrate this day, worship Lord Hanuman Ji and also keep fast on this day and seek his blessings besides offer Ladoos to Him as these are liked by Him. They receive Parsad in the form of sweets, flowers, Tilak etc. The Param Bhakta of Lord Hanuman Ji also recite devotional songs praising Lord Hanuman Ji for his Shakti and Bhakti and also seek his blessings besides sing HANUMAN CHALISA in his praise for receiving his graces

PRAYER BY THE DEVOTEES

On this auspicious day, devotees of Lord Hanuman pray him and seek his protection and blessings. They flock to temples to worship him and present religious offerings. In return, The devotees receive parsada from the temple priests in the form of sweets, flowers, coconut etc. People also celebrate him on this day by reciting various devotional songs (especially Hanuman Chalisa). The devotees also recite Beej Mantra – OM EH REEM HANUMANTE SRI RAM DOOTE NAMON. In this Hanuman Ji is prayed for being a devout messenger of Lord Rama who is a symbol of strength and energy.

It has also been mentioned in Valmiki Ramayana that Hanuman’s father Kesari, the king of Sumeru was the son of Brihaspati. Due to the intense prayers of Anjana and Kesari to Lord Maheshwara, a son was born to them named Hanuman an incarnation of Lord Shiva. Vayu (The deity of Wind). He too had a role in the birth of Hanuman Ji and that is why we term him as the son of Vayu.

In Vishnu Purana, there is also a mention of the birth of Hanuman Ji. Narda Muni wanted to marry a beautiful princess for which he wanted to have Lord Vishnu like face. Instead, Lord Vishnu gave him the face of a monkey, thereupon Narda cursed Lord Vishnu that this ape-like face (Vanara) will assist him when he would be in dire need. This was also the reason of Hanuman Ji’s birth because, without his help, the task of defeating Demon King Ravana would have been very difficult.

VARIOUS NAMES OF LORD HANUMAN JI AND THEIR SIGNIFICANCE

Lord Hanuman Ji is Rudra Avtara, another name of Lord Shiva. He is also worshipped by various names by His devotees  such as Bala Ji (Child Hanuman),  Anjaneya (Son of Anjana), Mahavira (Full of bravery and courage bestowed upon him by Sun God), Balarka (Sadrushanana like the rising sun), Batnasiddhikara (Granter of Strength), Bajranghbali (With huge strength), Bhakta Vastsaka (Protector of devotees), Bhavishya (One who knows about future happenings), Chiranjevini (Immortal), Chaturbahave (Four armed), Danta (Peaceful), Dheera (Most courageous), Deenabandhave (Defender of the oppressed), Daithyakulantaka (Destroyer of the demons), Kesrisuta (Son of kesri), Hanumanta (One with Puffy cheeks), Intrajit (Remover of the effect of Indrajit’s Brahmastra), Jai Kapeesh (Hailing monkey), Kapishwara (Head of monkey army), Kabalikruta (One who swallowed the Sun), Kumarabrahmacharine (Bachelor with youthful strength), Panchavaktra (Five faced), Pratapavate (Known for his bravery), Yogini (Yogi par excellence), Rudraveerya (Born of Shiva), amongst so other names for showering of His graces and blessings. He is known for His ritualistic healing power and have the power to remove the evil spirits from the bodies of the devotees and Mehandipur, the Abode of Sri Bala Ji exerts its positive influence on His devotees.

From the various names that Lord Hanuman Ji is known, it is evident that he helps his devotees to cure their sufferings, comes to their rescue in tiding over their difficult situations, curing them of their ailments caused due to some ill-effects of magical powers, one who bestows us courage as He is known for his courageous acts which He exhibited while Hanuman Ji  was taken to Demon King Ravana’s palace in chains by his son Meghnatha while He was on the mission of locating Sita Maa in the custody of Demon King Ravana. He not only burnt the Golden Lanka of  Ravana but also exhibited very benign demeanour to Ravana’s brother Babishana, a Ram Bhakta himself – PROVING HIS MULTI-FACETED ROLE AMONGST THE DEVTAS.

A DEVOUT BHAKTA OF LORD SRI RAMA

Lord Hanuman Ji is known for his Bhakti and for Lord Rama besides his heroic initiatives and power are well known to us all. He is known for his martial arts – amongst which use of gadha, wrestling, acrobatics and also meditation. He is an epitome of celibacy/chaste and inner control including devotion to his duty. He performed the special role in helping Lord Rama in retrieving Sita Maa after Demon King Ravana abducted her from Panchbati in the disguise of a Sadhu by deception.  Hanumanji was sent to Lanka for getting information on Sita Maa. He surmounted several hurdles while crossing the ocean. When he reached in Lanka, Sita Maa felt very pleased but at the first instance, she was skeptical about him since she thought that he could be one of the deceptive stances of King Ravana. But on showing the golden ring of Lord Rama, she was convinced that he was actually the doot or Messenger sent by Lord Rama for locating her.

LORD HANUMAN JI’S VISIT TO LANKA IN SEARCH OF SRI SITA MAA

Subsequently, Hanuman Ji expressed his desire and asked for permission to allow him to have some fruits from the Vatika (garden) of Ravana as he felt very hungry due to his long and tiring sojourn. She allowed him but with reservation since she did not want that any harm should happen to the Ram’s doot. When allowed to have fruits, Hanuman Ji started not only taking fruits but also uprooting the trees. When the demon guards intervened, he killed them all. This news went to King Ravana, he sent his son Meghnath who with deception brought him in front of Ravana – that was the opportunity Hanuman Ji was waiting for; firstly to convince the king to return Sita Maa to Lord Rama with respect besides asking for his forgiveness for kidnapping her. This was vehemently opposed by the king Ravana who was filled with the ego of his prowess along with he being one of the fondest Bhaktas (worshippers) of Lord Shiva. He flatly refused to do so. Instead, on the advice of his advisors,  he ordered that the tail of Hanuman Ji be burnt. Having lit the tail, Hanuman Ji showed to the Lankan what he could do. He burnt the entire Lanka by hopping from home to home. All this sent a shock wave to the entire Lankans – an indication of things to come for Ravana for his misdemeanor. During this, Hanuman Ji met Ravan’s brother Vabhishana who was Lord Rama’s Bhakta. During this period, Hanuman Ji liberated Lord Shani Dev Ji, the dispenser of Justice from the confinement of Ravana.

WHY SINDOOR IS IMMERSED IN LORD HANUMAN’S STATUE

We immerse sindoor on the idol of Hanuman Ji which is liked by Hanuman Ji. We also apply some of the sindoor on our forehead from the foot of the idol of Hanuman Ji. There is a legend for this too. While Sita Maa was applying sindoor as a tika on her forehead, Hanuman Ji asked why she was putting vermilion on her forehead. She replied that it was t ensure the long life for her husband – Lord Rama. Hanuman Ji for ensuring the long life of Lord Rama applied sindoor to his entire body and that is why we smear his entire idol with it.

A WELL KNOWN LEGEND ABOUT HANUMAN JI’S TEST FOR HIS LOVE AND DEVOTION 

Hanuman Ji was the chief devotee of Lord Rama. This was proved by a legend. While Maa Sita Ji wanted to award Hanuman with gems’ garland, Hanuman simply broke the pieces of garland. Sita Maa felt very surprised and wanted to know about the reason for breaking the garland pieces. In reply to this, Hanuman Ji told that the image of Ram Ji resides in His heart and therefore he needed no gift of any kind. Then, Hanuman tore the part of his chest, and lo and behold, the image of Lord Rama and Maa Siya Ji was there etched. All this proved that in every atom of Hanuman Ji, Lord Rama remained stamped.

SRI HANUMAN CHALISA

In Hanuman Chalisa, Hanuman has been described to be a reservoir of knowledge who ensures for the awakening of general people. He is the messenger of Lord Rama, the son of Anjana and Kesari. He helps in removal of ignorance and helps in enlightenment. He is the worshipper of Lord Ram and Maa Sita. The magnificence of his attire has been mentioned. He was sent was dispatched to Lanka as the messenger to know about the whereabouts of Maa Sita where he killed many demons. Even Vibhishan the brother of Lankesh knew everything about Lord Hanuman Ji. Despite his knowledge, energy (Shakti), empowered by boons by different God-heads in various aspects, his prayer, and love to Lord Rama excelled everything else. Those who pray Him are bestowed with all sorts of bounties and his graces remain with them.  He is the ultimate remover of bad luck from our midst if we sincerely pray Him.

The Valmiki Ramayana and Ramayana written by Goswami Tulsidas very compressively tell us the details of Ayodhya King Dashratha and all the description till the end. These amongst others are very popular amongst the people.  

Hanuman Ramayana. There is the description of Hanumat Ramayana in old Hindu scriptures – Vedas and Sikandpurana etc. This was the description of Ramayana codified by Lord Hanuman Ji. This was codified by Hanumanji with his nails on the rocks. After reading this descriptive Ramayana, Maharishi Valmiki got very disappointed as his own written Ramayana was not as good as he had seen the one written by Hanuman Ji. Lord Hanuman Ji got moved by the concern of Valmiki Ji, therefore, he threw that portion of the rock into the sea so that nobody could read the Ramayana written by Him. Thereupon, Maharishi Valmiki promised to take birth in next Yuga as Goswami Tulsidas and write comprehensive Ramayana which is read by all of us now.

Relation of Lord Hanuman Ji with the following Deities:-

RELATION BETWEEN LORD SHIVA AND LORD HANUMAN JI

Lord Hanuman Ji is the incarnation of Lord Shiva hence one who worships Lord Hanuman ji gets graces from Lord Shiva and vice versa too.

RELATION OF LORD HANUMAN JI WITH LORD SHANI DEV JI

Lord Hanuman Ji while on the sojourn to Lanka to locate Sita Maa happened to meet Lord Shani Dev Ji (Saturn) (the son of Sun also and Chhaya Putra) in the prison of Demon King Ravana. Lord Hanuman Ji freed Lord Shani Devi Ji therefore there developed friendship between the two. Even Shani Dev Ji cast his spell (sight) on Lord Hanuman Ji which helped Him to speedily burn Golden Lanka of Ravana. If we pray lord hanuman ji, the graces of Lord Shani Devi Ji too remain with us.

RELATION OF LORD RAM JI WITH LORD HANUMAN JI

As has been depicted in the great epic Ramayana, Lord Hanuman Ji is considered as the prime Bhakta of Lord Rama therefore one who worships Lord Rama, indirectly gets the graces of Lord Haman Ji in equal measure or even more.   

Not only the above, all the Deities have close relationships. If we worship one sincerely, we get the graces of all Deities. It is based on ONE IN ALL & ALL IN ONE.

GOOD FRIDAY – A DAY OF RECKONING


GOOD FRIDAY

Good Friday is a day to reminisce

For those who’ve  firm belief

In the preaching of Lord Jesus Christ

The preaching which enriches the human race

And  makes our life sublime.

It is the  holiest of all days put together

A day which we recollect every year

When our beloved one offered himself on the cross

Without even a slightest emotional upsurge.

We term this day as Good Friday

A day of huge reckoning for the humanity

Whence our heart aches limitlessly

With sadness writ large on the faces of gentry

The ones who knowth about this Friday.

This solemn day is observed as an anniversary

Whence  Jesus Christ – the most revered one

Left his corporal body from this earth

To the abode of the Supreme Spirit

Prayers with fasting is observed on this day

On this particular day we reminisce this Friday

While purity of this day remains etched in hearts

Of all those who know that he died for us all.

In His lifetime this Messenger of Holy Spirit

Was most virtuous and compassionate for all

And overly serene whilst meeting his own end in flesh and blood

At the hands of those who did not know what they were up to

Underwent crucification and final surrender to the Lord

On this day – a solemn one.

Even then sought forgiveness for his perpetrators – the heartless ones

And the sinful ones at the helm responsible for his crucification!

With final and eternal utterance, he forgave them for their ignorance

‘Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do’

Such words surcharged with compassion are rarest of rare

Which could only be from the heart of one who is the dearest son  

Of the Omnipotent and Omniscient One

A lesson to us humans, a most credible one

So merciful he was even to the irreligious ungodly lots

Drunk they were with power and pelf

A temporary phenomenon for us earthlings

Such empathy is a key to Christ Consciousness

Suffering for us – relentless pain with a lot of humiliation

A death so holy – indeed for our redemption

Such supreme sacrifice is an instrument of compensation

Strikes at the tender chords of our heart, so palpable realization

That the Messengers of God cannot remain in void for so long

Therefore end followed resurrection

Thus stunning the general masses at large by his revivification

Methods may different in observation

Yet the sacredness of Good Friday for ever remains

The devout kneel with utmost reference

Before the Wooden Cross kept in Churches, so holy on this day.

Thence  last words of Lord Christ are also repeated.

‘Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do’

So that those solemn words may remain imprinted in our recollection

Thence a symbolic burial of the Lord is undertaken

For which difference could be in method

But the inner most emotions are obviously very touching.

For our beloved Jesus Christ

Who for Truth sake gave His own life form

So that we humans are absolved of our sins.

Which a true son of God can only make it happen.

Factually dark spot on the anal of history is the crucification

Thence Easter is the bright spot in the form of resurrection

Whence the Star shined with a greater vigor and manifestation

Opening new pathways for our association

WITH LORD JESUS CHRIST IN HIS RESURRECTION…

GOOD FRIDAY

Essentially, history is reveals us of several examples and  witness to the fact that various incarnations of our Creator had to endure trials and tribulations in their real life time while living on this earth. People who opposed their ideas and ideals always opposed them tooth and nail because these God’s Incarnations were the messengers of peace and their mission was to spread the ETERNAL TRUTH and remove the spectre of ignorance from our midst. The Messengers of our God also helped in removal of evil that prevailed in the society. They preached ‘Bless them that curse you.’ They presented a living example for us humans to see how best they withstood onslaughts of those who opposed the very ideals which has divergent viewpoints – departure from their pseudo and outdated beliefs.

While reforming the masses and showing them the true path, the messenger of our God Jesus Christ faced several hurdles  from those who opposed his idea. The other incarnations like  Lord Krishna, Lord Rama, Prophet Mohammad faced many hurdles at every step but with their foresight and fortitude these Apostles of Peace challenged the old and hackneyed mores of behavior and came out unscathed ultimately. Surprisingly, after their earthy sojourns they were accepted as the Messengers of God by the very people who opposed them in the first instance and remain giving their respectful place even now. This is the tragedy of humans that we do not recognize our God’s Messengers/Incarnations while they were on this planet but when they are no longer with us then we take them as their revered ones and worship them for their preaching! This is a travesty of fact with our humans.

Lord Jesus Christ is one such example amongst others like Prophet Mohammad, Lord Krishna, Lord Rama who gave new meaning and content to the philosophy of living. These Messengers of Peace fought for the common people and were able to rid the society of the evil doers and challenged the very philosophies of people at the helm of affairs during the periods on this earth. In that process these Sons of God had to face opposition. People who mattered suspected these God’s messengers because their ideals were counter to their (powerful opponents) own and in upholding these they (Sons of God) had to face trials and tribulations. During the life time Jesus Christ did everything to rid the then society of the evils prevalent and wanted to change the outlook of the people.

Although Jesus  Christ suffered humiliation and immense pain at the hands of his  tormentors yet he felt sympathy even for his tormentors while he agonized on the cross for us all. We should never forget that He suffered so that we are redeemed of our sins that we as humans do commit. There were disturbances and upheavals after he gave up his spirit.

Crucification of Jesus Christ gave a new meaning of life to us humans to follow. His ideals and preaching are held dear by us all and will remain so till eternity. May this Day remain etched in our memory as the day of redemption of humanity and He remains a beacon of light for all of us on this earth.

It is well said, there is always a light after the darkness. Jesus used to heal the physical ills of masses, he wanted their highest good while he was in flesh and blood like us. But the insensitive people just crucified him! This is also a fact that he had the power to escape being crucified but he did not do so. And  even in agony he said: ‘Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.’ That is why He had to come back again for our happiness and for our purification. This purification is attained only when we’ve conquered our weaknesses in the form of our ego etc.

If crufication was a dark blot on those who crucified Jesus, the Easter is commemorated as a symbol of resurrection. Easter celebration has a historic perspective. It also symbolizes rebirth; a pious day that is why devotees decorate their houses, rejoice, mass prayers are conducted in Churches. It is a celebration in connection with the rising of Christ – the Son of God. Easter also opens doors for a holy association with God through Jesus Christ.

MAHAVIRA – AN APOSTLE OF NON-VIOLENCE


MAHAVIRA – AN APOSTLE OF NON-VIOLENCE

LORD MAHAVIRA

(HAPPY MAHAVIR JYANTI ON 17th APRIL 2019)

Mahavira also known as Vardhamana

Was the 24th Tirthankara

Meaning a  savior and a Spiritual Preacher

Who made stellar efforts in reviving Jainism

With his spiritual and ethical teachings of tirthankaras

The base of which was laid in Pre-Vedic era

Born in the early part of 5th century BC

Into a family of Kshtriya

In present day Bihar

It is said he was born on 599 BC & died in 510 BC

Kalpa Sutra mentions his birth (1375 – 1400 CE)

Vira Nirvana Samvat era began in 527 BC

With Nirvana of Mahavira at Pavapuri in Bihar

Which is considered a holi place of Jains

Opinion may differ

But his preaching are second to none

He left his home while he was 30 years old or thereabouts

And became ascetic

Followed severest Bhakti Marga

For his spiritual awakening

Due which he attained Omniscience – Kevala Jnana

Finally attained Nirvana or Moksha

At the age of seventy two.

His teaching included non-violence – ahemsa

Truth, what is right and what is wrong – satya & Astya

Then the importance of non-attachment – Aparigraha

Taught about chastity – Brahmacharya

Thence numerous realities – Anekantavda

All his teachings are codified – Jain Agamas

His earliest known historical signs at Mathura

His birth is celebrated at Mahavir Jayanti

And his Nirvana is observed by Jains as Diwali

Mahavira is known variously

Such as Samana, Nayaputta, Brahmham, Bhagwan and Muni

Mahavira’s childhood name was Vardhamana

As per text Digambara Uttarapuranna

Mahavira was born in Kundgrama

In the Kingdom of the Videhas

The one who grows in stature and worth

And helps others too to grow all around.

In the Kalpasutras in Bihar

Lived as severest ascetic life for 12 years

Then preached Jain philosophy for 30 years

He is termed as the great hero – Mahavira

He faced all the ups and downs of his life with unmatched stamina

In the traditions of Svetambara

In the early Budhist Suttas

He is called as worthy one – Araha

In Vedas he is known as devoid of love and hate Sramana

But truth stands out that he preached Jainism philosophy

Tirthankara means savior or spiritual preacher

Svetambara texts mention his birth on 13th Day of 599 BC

At Kundagrama as his place of birth

In the month of Chaitra

In the Vira Nirvana Samvat calendar era

Which falls in the month of March-April

Lets adopt his noble teachings in our life

For making it sublime and purposeful

With love flowing for everybody

And hate none

With non-use of force

While living a life suffusing with truthfulness

Not overly attached to the worldly possessions

Or not stealing what is not ours.

The five vows (Vrtas) which Mahavira Preached are enumerated as under:-

Ahimsa (Non-violence). Mahavira preached to maintain sanctity and dignity of all in the spirit of Ahimsa – without force or intimidation. It should be in action, speech and thought.

Satya (Truthfulness). He stressed about being truthful in thoughts and actions.

Asteya (Non-stealing). Nobody should steal what is not ours.

Brahmacharya (Chastity).He taught abstinence from sex and sensual pleasures for monks and faithfulness to one’s partner for householders.

Aparigaha (Non-attachment). An attitude of non-attachment to property or worldly possessions should not be given much credence by the mendicants.

SLEEP – AN ESSENTIAL REQUIREMENT OF OUR BODY


SLEEP – AN ESSENTIAL REQUIREMENT OF OUR BODY

Sleep is natural requirement of our body. When our body gets tired or when our mind is overburdened, it requires some rest. Our body works on the principle of a machine – with only difference that we as humans have the power of discrimination. Both require rest after reaching an endurance limit.  This rest is attained when we take a restful sleep by us humans. In fact all the living beings animals, birds, even reptile’s etc. sleep but their sleep pattern differs.

Sleep rejuvenates our body and makes us fit to take on challenges of life with vigor. The challenges of life require consumption of energy. This needed energy could be invigorated by a sound sleep. The partial sleep or sound sleep, nap, snooze, doze or  light sleep can provide us soothing balm to our frayed nerves or tempers. The frayed temper could give us respite or needed comfort. This solace or consolation could best be attained by keeping our nerves with some sleep when it is hugely needed. When our body’s biological need is fulfilled to its optimum then we also attain self-confidence and self-assurance to take on life as it comes.

WHAT SLEEPLESSNESS OR NO SLEEP COULD DO TO OUR BODY

Less or partial sleep or avoidance of sleep by a person can lead to dissipation of energy.  The dissipation of energy means less productivity in our work  because all productive work require the consumption of our latent energy. Less energy means less contribution, as a consequence of which we shall not be able to get positive productivity.

OVER-SLEEP AND ITS ILL-EFFECTS

It is good to sleep for assuaging our frayed nerves but when we over-sleep, it causes laziness, weariness, body weakness etc. All these things take place due to our ignorance – not knowing what over-sleep or over-indulgence could result. Over-indulgence to sleep leads to wastage of time – the time which we could have utilized for self-realization is wasted without rhyme or reason thus frittering our chances of becoming a Karma Yogi in true sense of terms. That is performing something productive; proving our self-worth besides guiding others too for following a right course.

Literal meaning of Sleep

Sleep is a state of body when we are in relaxed state. There are various kinds of sleeps, deep sleep,  light sleep, catnap sleep etc. All these kinds of sleeps provide us relaxation to our nerves. A person who is having disturbance in his sleep truly knows the meaning of sleep to that person.

WHY SLEEP IS ESSEENTIAL?

BHAGWAD GITA proclaims: And that happiness which is blind to self-realization which is delusion from beginning to end and which arises from sleep, laziness and illusion is said to be of the nature of ignorance.

PURPOSE OF SLEEP

The people, who follow spiritually oriented existence, follow Dharma oriented path and become Bhakti Yogi. For achieving this, a Yogi orients his thoughts and Karma accordingly. Such people do or do not do things which transform their lives toward goal achievement positively. Karma Yogi sleeps for a limited period of time as a requirement of the body and not as an indulgence which may lead to lethargy and inaptitude – an escapist pursuit.

They are the people who sleep to fulfill the body need and thereafter do some substantive/ constructive job after getting rejuvenation of their body. They can then not only do purposeful jobs but also pursue religious and follow spiritual oriented lifestyle and remove ignorance. It works as a repairing the frayed nerves.

LORD VISHNU FOUR MONTHS’ SLEEP AND ITS IMPLICATION ON CLIMATES

Lord Vishnu (who is responsible for evolution that which is created by Lord Barhma) this sleep lasts for four month in Chautur-mass. There is some specific purpose for this sleep. Due to this, there is onset of rainy season, the dampness has all round effects on buildings, environs and even the food we eat gets affected. Thereafter, the world gets a renewal of trends in climate. Owing to this sleep by Lord Vishnu, the ancient Rishis divided the year into two parts – first from January to June (when the sun edges towards pole star) and the second is from July to December (When the sun retreats southwards). All these changes are due to Lord Vishnu’s sleep. He becomes instrument of change of climates/seasons. The devotee offer prayers to Lord Vishnu and pray for sufficient rain for the crops.

TYPES OF SLEEP AND AFFECT ON OUR BODY

The things which affects our sleep are the medical condition of our body, our daily stress or pressures, the environment in which we sleep (noisy environments prevents regular sleep). The diet we take and the exercise we do also influences our sleep. Then exposure to polluted environs can influence our sleep. Besides this, maximum light or no light at all too influences our sleep. It has also been seen that those office goers who work at night, they do not get a sound sleep during day time due to which their work suffers. Their sleep-awake gets disrupted but after sometimes some adjustment takes place and it becomes a matter of routine.

HOW MUCH SLEEP  IS NECESSARY FOR OUR BODY

The sleep pattern depends on our age and also about the health we maintain even in our oldage. In the childhood, babies sleep more (more than 26 hours) which helps in their overall growth and development. Then at school age the sleep duration gets reduced to 10 hours and subsequently adults sleep for 7-8 hours. In old people sleep pattern gets disturbed and intake of medicines etc during this age period too affects the sleep. It alternates between sleep and wakefulness.

SLEEP AND OUR POSITIVE CONTRIBUTION

It has been observed that the quality of work we perform depends on the quality of sleep we have. What a sort of relaxation we received after we take a nap of sleep after our drudgery and focused work only a concerned individual can truly relate? On the other hand, if we do not get sound sleep, all our connections get disturbed, freshness will evaporate besides our concentration on our work will evaporate or lose its sheen. Peace and joy can only be attained through a good night’s sleep.


DREAM STATE AND SLEEP

Then we have dream state in which we are half sleep and half awake after which we may not be able to get ourselves involved in the job in job we are undertaking.

Even when we are sleeping with closed eyes, we tend to have external influences. Whatever we tend to do or not do, remains in our memory and we have sometimes dreams about these events. We may or may not remember these dreams. These dreams are felt between sleep and wakeful state. When we fall into deep sleep, we do not get dreams.

MEDITATION AND SLEEP

During focused meditation, a Karma Yogi reaches a state of emptiness, a detached state. A person who meditates with focus, one element in that particular person remains awake even in deep sleep. Such a person enters sleep in awakened sleep. In this state, meditation and sleep become one. He enters sleep in full consciousness or wakefulness. This is possible only through meditation. Such a Yogi does not become unconscious even in his sleep.

ETERNAL SLEEP

Now finally, after we’ve completed the journey of our life, experiencing ups and downs in our lives – a life of Karma Yogi, we leave this temporary abode of ours thus attain our eternal sleep of our body to be consigned to flames or for burial after some rituals. E

After our earthy sojourn,

We mortals traverse to a world unknown,

Where to – guesswork abounds,

Some think, few are welcomed to enchanting Heaven,

And the others to burning ‘ghats’ of hell are thrown,

Depending solely on earthy deeds or misdeeds,

Ledger of which are assiduously maintained and screened.

Death is inevitable, then why gets afraid?

Death  is a stark-reality, then why get sad?

When parting with our kins so dear, finally,

During life too, we experience death in small ways routinely,

The one who has seen the dawn of the day,

Will surely see the dusk of the day.

A mistaken sense of pride,

Egged on by mistaken sense of permanence of life,

Spurs us to cling to this life so tight,

That sometimes, we forget the imminence of our end.

Which is so near but seemingly so far away from sight.

Earthy inning is quite alluring,

Parting with worldly possessions so paining,

Yet, in life, we ought to adopt righteous course,

Why fear, accept the change of garb with courage and without remorse,

A life filled with inner freedom is helpful,

Engrave this idea, eternal sleep is sacred and peaceful

Welcome the eternal sleep when it comes naturally with

open hands,

For this end is not the end of cycle of life and earth,

But a continuity of a play played by earthlings,

And supervised from His Heavenly abode by Supreme-being;

The One and the only One by whatever name you call Him

ETERNAL SLEEP thus serves the purpose of our life ultimately.

THE BAISAKHI – A SEASONAL FESTIVAL (ON 14TH APRIL 2019)


THE BAISAKHI- A SEASONAL FESTIVAL (ON 14TH APRIL 2019)

FOLD DANCE – GIDDA

Baisakhi is one of the favorite festivals 

Of the inhabitants of North India and beyond

Seasonal based one

A festival so very popular

Amongst farmers and farm-laborers

The former ploughs his land

And the latter helps cut the crops

Whereas both feel on the Seventh Heaven

Because both feel extremely contented

After having collected the crop so produced

Putting in their best in all the situations

Be it storm or blizzard or dry spell which may sometimes happen

All want to celebrate this momentous occasion together

The men-folks perform traditional ‘Bhangra’ 

While women-folks present customary ‘Gidda’

To the tune of drums

Along with songs so melodious

The children in their best attire

Enjoy sweets in the Baisakhi fair

As a child in my village

I vividly remember each moment

Enjoyed on this much awaited day.

After having toiled in the fields for days together

From morning till the late evening

Sometimes forgetting to take their meals even

Put their efforts to the maximum

Tilling their land constantly

Sow seeds and water their crops for their bumper crops

Then they take care of their growing crops

Like a mother looks after her offspring

Gives the crops water and right dose of manure

To ensure the best yield that could be had

Then the ripe crop is harvested

Account his entire produce

Keeps some of his own need

And takes the other part of the marketplace for extra money

Having finished all his farming commitments

Joins in merrymaking with huge delight

What a sight is for the audience!

There is competition between various groups

The judges adjust the best teams

And distribute the prizes

Followed by the distribution of sweets along with good wishes.

It marks the ushering in of joyous New Year

Of  Vikrami Samvat  – Calendar

A lunar Calendar based on ancient Vedic timekeeping traditions

Coming on 13th April every year or else!

But this falls on 14th April

On this day people make new resolutions being the start of New Year

After having experienced the year passed

Then take into account the lessons so learned

As is the practice on first day of everything that starts.

This festival is known variously in various regions of the land

Baisakhi in Punjab, Polia Baishakh/Naba Barsha in West Bengal

Bohag Bihu in Assam, Puthandu in Tamil Nadu

Vishu in Kerala, Maha Vishauba Sankranti in Odisha

And then Vaishakha in Bihar

Though termed differently in different parts of India

Yet the spirit behind the celebration remains the same everywhere.

At the Holy Mazars (Monuments) of Pirs and fakirs

Known for their piousness and sea of wisdom

The devout offer Chadhars and offer prayers

For peace and prosperity for all

And wish that their crops may still be more the next season

There is a blanket of greenery all around

The fragrance of flowers really mesmerizes the environs

Soothing both the mind and the eyes of all and sundry

Everybody gets enchanted by the surcharged surroundings.

This day has a historical significance

Sri Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Guru

A most revered one

Who established Khalsa Panth on this day

To bestow security to the unfortunate ones

Devout gather in various Gurdwaras to offer prayers

Sri Golden Temple is specially decorated on this day

And emits its splendor of highest order

The devotees take a dip in the holy Sarovar

Then pray for their well-being of their nears and dears

My prayer to the Akalpurakh – our Creator

Pray bestow thou bountiful graces upon us all

Not merely on this most auspicious day

But also for all the days to come on this Mother Earth.

THE BAISAKHI  –  A FESTIVAL KNOWN FOR ITS CULTURAL RICHNESS AND RELIGIOUS FERVOR (ON 14th APRIL 2019) – WISHING YOU ALL HAPPY BAISAKHI

Festivals in India are celebrated due to some special reasons. Reason may be any but the spirit for its celebration remains prime one. It may be due to change in season, in the memory of certain historical events, cultural and religious events or celebrated to commemorate on the name of some renowned personage, traditionally based principles, fairs at the holy places of peers and saints etc. The well-known amongst several ones are Dussehra, Diwali, Eids, Christmas Day, Gurpurbhs, Lohri, Holi and others having regional and national connotations. In all these festivals, people of different hues celebrate with jovially and religious fervor.

DIFFERENT NAMES IN DIFFERENT REGIONS 

It is celebrated with different names in various parts of India but fervor and enthusiasm remain the same. It is celebrated as Baisakhi in Punjab, Polia Baishakh/Naba Barshai in West Bengal, Bohag Bihu in Assam, Puthandu in Tamil Nadu, Vishu in Kerala, Maha Vishauba Sankranti in Odisha and Vaishakha in Bihar.

OCCASION OF CELEBRATION OF BAISAKHI

Baisakhi is generally celebrated in Northern India on 13th  April but this year it is being celebrated on 14th April 2019. It is also a starting of New Year of Vikrami Samvat Calendar.  It also is celebrated in other parts of India with other names.  This is a cultural harvest festival which takes place annually and all people celebrate this day with full enthusiasm. The farmers, after putting in their best in their fields get fruits of their labor when they reap a bumper crop which makes the lives of their kith and kin prosperous.

In the childhood, our classmate friends used to wait with huge eagerness for this Baisakhi fair for which we used to get extra money to spend for various sorts of eatables and fruits available in the fair. The Baisakhi was the meeting place for other relatives and friends.

People start from their houses in the form of the congregation from the early hours itself, singing group songs and dancing to the tunes of drums in colorful / holiday finery. A designated holy place of some Peer or Saint or Temple or Gurdwara is well chosen by the populace for this occasion.

CELEBRATION OF BAISAKHI

Competitions of Gidda or folk dances by women in their colorful and attractive attire and Bhangra by the men-folks also in their best outfits are a major attraction. Besides wrestling bouts (dangal) by the famous wrestlers of the area are also organized. Prizes are distributed to the winners of these events. People get together and meet their friends. This fair affords the participants an opportunity to expand their friend’s circle too.

DATE OF BAISAKHI CELEBRATION

New meaning to this festival was given on 13th April 1699 when Khalsa Panth was established by Guru Gobind Singh – the 10th Guru of Sikhs at Anandpur Sahib – a place most venerated by one and all. Khalsa means PURE without any negativity and leading a perfect life besides having the courage to lay down their lives for a noble cause.


The festival holds special significance to Sikhs. Many Sikhs choose to be baptized on the holy day of Baisakhi. People also come out from their houses in huge congregations called Nagar Kirtans singing hymns from Sri Guru Granth Sahib. What a day to remember – this Baisakhi festival! 

 BAISAKHI is celebrated due to the following reasons:- 

It is celebrated on the occasion of 1stday of Baisakh month of Bikrami Calendar (Samat). People chalk out the different plan of actions for the coming year as per Bikrami Calendar and pray that their sincere thought out plans get fructified.

BAISAKHI is a seasonal festival and it is especially celebrated in Punjab region and in Jammu province; especially after finishing the activities related to crops wheat harvesting and selling their produce in the marketplace giving the people cause to celebrate with gusto.

After harvesting the wheat crop and plowing their fields for sowing new crops including some cash crops, the farmers feel joyous and to express their joy they celebrate it by staging Bhangra in different groups, Bhangra competitions have also held an award presented to the one who wins this competition.

BAISAKHI FAIR

This is in the form of the fair (mela) wherein people gather in the majority and make merry. Different stalls selling wooden crafts and other household earthen-wares are sold there at reasonable prices. Then there are the stalls selling the seasonal fruits like watermelon and muskmelon make brisk sales. All age group people including children enjoy Baisakhi fair.

Baisakhi also affords an opportunity or an occasion to thank God for bestowing the farmers with bountiful crops besides praying for more crops in future too.

SPECIAL SIGNIFICANCE OF BAISAKHI FOR SIKHS

Baisakhi has special significance for the Sikhs since on this day, Khalsa Panth was established by 10th Sikh Guru Gobind Singh Ji in 1699. On this day Sadh Sangat takes organize religious congregations and sing prayers and rhymes from Sri Granth Sahib. It is relevant to know about the 10th Guru. He is true messenger of God, a warrior par excellence, most merciful, a poet and a philosopher and wanted to spread purity (Khalsa) amongst the community (Panth Khalsa – the Order of Pure ones). Before his death in 1708, he declared the GURU GRANTH SAHIB JI as the eternal GURU OF THE SIKHS.

Hindus and Buddhists too celebrate Baisakhi with zeal and enthusiasm. Hindus take the sacred bath in River Ganges and other rivers. They pray to God for His grace. Even in parts of South India this day is celebrated but with a different name.

As this is a seasonal festival connected with the harvesting of crops, it is in fact celebrated in all regions and by all people and has special significance for farmers and laborers besides the children who enjoy sweets in the baisakhi fair.

NAVRATRI – A NINE DAYS’ SPIRITUAL WONDER


NAVRATRI – A NINE DAYS’ SPIRITUAL WONDER

Nav means lasting for days nine

Ratri stands for night

Navratri is the festival so very well-known

Wherein the devotees so much devoted

Of all hues celebrate this event, so very sacred

Held twice in a calendar year

First, it is in the March – April, as Chaitra Navratri

As is being celebrated from 6th April 1920 onwards

Thence October – November as the Shradha Navratri

This festival has Durga Maa connect

The embodiment of power ‘Shakti’  

Who exterminates  the demons so ferocious

Demons that slay the hapless (Sadhus) hermits

Even while performing their sacred Yajunas

They defiled the sacredness of Yajna fires

By throwing besmirching agents

Like meat and filth of all kinds.

Goddess Durga in her red attires

Mounted on the lion so vicious

With all the weapons of destruction

In her possession

Which could do countless damage to the challenger

Legends abound about Navratri

Demon king Maheshasura worshiped Lord Shiva

The penance was so very severest

That Lord Shiv Shanvu who could be pleased

With the  sincerest Bhakti of the Bhakta

With simplest items like vel patra etc

Was constrained to grant him a boon of invincibility

That nobody, not even the Gods could exterminate him

Thence thereafter he starts killing innocents without fear of anyone

Then this demon with his prowess so huge

Conquered the Seven Lokas

Including the renowned throne of Indra

The king of Heaven (Svarga) & Gods (Devas)

Termed as the Good of Heavens

Responsible for war, storms and rains.

Then there was confabulation between the Trinity

Along with others Gods too in the company

To defeat and kill this demon turned killer and usurper

Created Maa Shakti

The Mother with a boundless energy

The Durga, the Warrior Goddess  

Bestowing her with boundless power

The war between Maheshasur and Mother Divine

Which lasted for Nine Days

On day 9th  she killed this evil demon.

Navratri symbolizes the victory of good over wickedness

On day ninth which is termed as Mahanavami

Nine young girls are worshipped

Personifying and signifying Nine Forms of Durga Goddess

These venerated young girls’ feet are ritually washed

With fresh water and given clothes and food

Navratri too is linked with fertility of land

On these days, the fold observe the fitness of the earth

By testing seed germination in the earthen pots

Devotees observe the fast for nine with rigidity

Keeping oneself chaste in thoughts and actions

During these days considered most holy

Which keep their mind and body full of purity.

There is another legend attached

King Daksha – the kind of Himalayan Kingdom

Was blessed with a daughter named Uma

A most beautiful one

With all the traits of a princess she possessed

She worshiped Lord Shiva most reverently

So that He may accept her in marriage so willingly

Having pleased Lord Shiva

She married Uma

But against the wishes of King Dhaksha.

One day King Dhaksha held a grant Yagna

With no invitation to Lord Shiva

Uma wanted to join the Yagna

And all accompanying celebrations

While Lord Shiva had his own reservations

She came to attend the Yagna

Being attended by Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu

The Lords of Creation and Evolution

Besides all the deities were in the list of invitation

King Dhaksha did not like her daughter’s presence

She felt slighted at the treatment

Meted out to her in presence of all deities

In utter anger so severest

 She jumps into Agni Kund (Fire grate) and thus got perished

A plausible reason why we call her Sati also

Lord Mahadeva (As Virbadhara) punished

King Dhaksha for this injustice meted out.

ON REBIRTH (As Parvati) she marries Lord Shiva again

She comes to her parents’ house to stay for NINE DAYS

That is why we celebrate these Nine Days as Navratri.

Legend also it that Lord Rama

Worshiped Goddess Durega’s Nine Forms

For Nine Days with deep reverence

On day 10th Lord Rama could kill demon king Ravana

This way, 10th day is celebrated as Vijaydashami.

First three days are dedicated to Goddess Durga

In the form of child, young girl and mature woman

Representing three forms of womanhood

Symbolizing victory of evil over falsehood

Next three are dedicated to Goddess of Wealth and Prosperity

Her name is Goddess Lakshimi

Last three days are commemorated in the name of Goddess Saraswati

The Goddess of knowledge and wisdom which we acquire thru Bhakti

She is in dress, white snowy

Mounted on a white swan

The Navratri is a sign of purity in all its manifestation

Let these Nine Days be observed with great admiration

For gaining blessings from Goddess Durga

Let this Nine Days wonder

Be for us the game-changer

And engenders peace and prosperity

And enough Wellness for all and sundry

This is the most sincerest prayer to Thee

My Mother Divine.

MEANING OF NAVRATRI

The word NAVRATRI is composed of two syllabuses; NAVwhich means NINE and RATRI mean NIGHTS. Meditation/prayers and fasting are observed by devout during these nine days. A lighter refreshment of milk made products besides fruits, if taken at all, to keep light and pure in body and mind thus helping an individual to keep the body and mind pure. This also provides the devotees’ freedom from adulteration and contamination both in body and mind besides purifying still more the eternal soul along with keeping it taint-free.

Navratri is one of the most sacred festivals that the devout celebrate. It is not merely celebrated by observing some particular rituals but the devotees live a spiritually oriented life in all manifestations. The purpose is to follow the way of life which puts more stress on the subjective experience of sacred dimension. We undertake those karmic deeds during Navratri which transform some of the debit-karmic-deeds to credit-karmic-deeds which helps in personal growth and development individually and also collectively who celebrate it with religious fervor and enthusiasm. Moral and ethical values when followed sincerely could be imbibed as permanent habits to be followed in future too thus Navratri could prove to be a life-changer.

A lighter refreshment consisting of milk made product, fruits, and nuts, keeps the body light and the digestive system gets improved thus there is a spread of fragrance of Satoguna and alleviation of Tamoguna and Rajoguna traits. Freedom from contaminated thoughts purifies our mind. Thus observance of fast or vrat (also means resolve) continuously for nine days brings about the stability of our mind and helps in enhancement of our concentration. Besides these, we exercise maximum restraints in our thoughts and deeds and behave in a dignified manner by remaining within confines of decency. All these facilitate generation of the feeling of love and affection for others, enhances peace and tranquility, a feeling of compassion for others and above all a Godly feeling.

OBSERVANCE OF FASTS

The devotees observe strict fasts during the duration of Narratri. All these traits enhance the credibility of an individual devotee who observes the fasts and also offers sincere prayers during these  days with utmost devotion. The fasts help us to purify our mind, provides lightness to our body provides us an opportunity to devotees for prayers to Goddess Durga Maa – an embodiment of SHAKTI or reservoir of energy.

MENTION OF GODDESS DURGA

Mention of Goddess Durga has been found in Vedas and Puranas. Durg was a ferocious demon and Durga, the invincible warrior who killed Durg with her immense prowess. She is the warrior Goddess since she fought evil and forces which spread death and destruction. She works for demolishing demonic forces who want to establish their writ and establish the reign of terror and mayhem amongst the society besides spreading prosperity and goodwill in general masses. She defeats mythical buffalo demon – Meheshasura who had obtained a boon of invincibility from Lord Maheshwara. She is Goddess Parvati, also termed as Durga Saptashati – the consort of Lord Shiva. With her prowess, she proved herself to be unbeatable with limitless mystical powers.

Besides observing fasts, devotees organize congregations in the form of fairs and also enact programs and cultural functions in the form of group dances and devotional songs in praise of Goddess Durga and beseech her blessings and she being such a benevolent Mother comes to their succor.

NINE DAYS WONDER – THE NAVRATRI

First Day. On the first day, Mata Durga is termed as Shailputri – the daughter of Himalaya and the consort of Lord Shiva.

Second Day. Mata Durga on the second day is called as Brahmacharini which represents worship. She is the embodiment of huge reserve of power – Shakti.

Third Day. On the third day, the Goddess is venerated as Chandraghanta. She is the embodiment of power and beauty.

Fourth Day. On the fourth day, Maan Durga is worshipped in the form of Kushmanda – the creator of the whole universe by the power of her laughter.

Fifth Day. Here on this day, Skandha – the main warrior of Gods’ army.

Sixth Day. On the sixth day, Mataji takes the form of Katyayani with three eyes and four hands – all powerful and with immense grace.

Seventh Day. On this day, Maan Durga takes the form of Kalratri – she is shown as black as dark night with four hands and makes the evil doers fearless.

Eighth Day. On the eighth day, the Mata Durga takes the form of Maha Gauri – with beauty besides having calmness and exhibits immense wisdom.

Ninth Day. On a ninth day, Maan Durga is worshipped as Siddidatri – with all the eight siddhis. In this form, she is worshiped by all.

LESSONS FROM NAVRATRI

Different festivals provide the devotees different lessons while the underlying message of all these festivals is to enlighten us humans to follow a path which helps us to have connectivity with Higher Self/Higher Intelligence, by following a spiritual oriented path through meditation, contemplation and prayers. The main purpose of celebration and observance of certain modes of behavior in such festivals is to keep ourselves chaste with our mind focused on God. The purpose is to focus on the special prayers and chants is to seek connectivity with God and dispel the thought of anxiety or disillusionment that pervades in our system. As there is purity of thoughts and actions during these festivals, there is every possibility for transformation and help in unfolding of spiritual life naturally.  

PURPOSE OF NAVRATRI CELEBRATION

The main purpose of celebrating the religious festivals is to seek balance in our life at the altar of God while observing all immutable laws of nature and aspire for transformation and enlightenment – journeying from one festival to another one helps the devotees to learn social etiquettes, social adaptability and finally God’s connectivity.

Different states celebrate Navratri differently but the spirit of all the celebrations is similar in nature. For example, famous ‘garva dance’ is organized in the state of Gujarat and devotional songs and dance competitions are organized in West Bengal besides prayers in the specially erected and decorated pandals is a usual phone. People visit the famous temples of Vaishno Devi in Katra (in Jammu province) besides all the temples of Goddess Durga in its different forms/manifestations attract devotees in these nine days.

The main driving force of the Navratri is to purify our thoughts and deeds thereof. In these nine days devout observe strict fasts; remain chaste and desist from telling lies. Wish that people always behave like this all the days!

The first three days are celebrated on the name of Durga Mata – Goddess with immense power. For next three days she is worshipped as spiritual wealth – Mata Lakshmi.

Subsequently, for next three days, she is Goddess of wisdom – the Goddess Saraswati. It bestows spiritual enlightenment besides showering an individual with all-around success.

It is useful for our benefit to know the importance of each day.

Benefits of Navratri

JAI MATA JI DI
  • Strict observance of fasts keep our digestive system in order and helps maintain our body healthy.
  • Fasts help in purifying our mind because we pray Goddess continuously for nine days/nights. It also enhances our focus on the subject we contemplate for completion.
  • Purification of body and mind means spiritually directed conscious mind thus a shift from negativity to positivity
  • Congregations in melas and group processions help the people to people contacts thus animosity, if any, gets obliterated and a feeling of fellow feeling and cooperation sprouts. Contact with each other enhances our outreach in the society.
  • Group dances and spiritual song competitions enhance competitive spirits in the youth and also help them direct their latent energies to productive use.
  • Devotees, in their zeal to show earnest desire to have total connectivity with Goddess Durgaji, offer singular devotion to Her during these auspicious days, reap the harvest of getting their problems solved and get ETERNAL PEACE  in their lives as a reward of this worship.

My earnest prayer to Durga Maa, the Mother Divine, a powerhouse of immense power (Shakti), to grant all the humankind peace and prosperity, thereby,  a feeling of cooperation and brotherhood.