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Ganesh Chaturthi : The Birth Anniversary of the Mighty “Vighnaharta”

This day is celebrated as the birthday of lord Ganesha and it is celebrated with great pomp and show all across the nation, especially in the state of Maharashtra.

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Ganesh Chaturthi
Celebration of Ganesha Chaturthi. Wikipedia
  • “Chaturthi Tithi” or 4th day of every Shukla Paksha belongs to Lord Ganesha
  • It is a 10-day festival and begins with the installation of Ganesha clay idols at homes
  • Vedic hymns are chanted and the worship concludes with the singing of an aarti

June 11, 2017: Lord Ganesha, popularly known as Ganpati Bappa is a prominent god in Hindu mythology, Every ritual in Hinduism begins with his pooja. He is worded as “Vighnaharta”, the one who will end all the obstacles in the ceremony. He is the god of good beginnings and prosperity.

According to Hindu mythology, the “Chaturthi Tithi” or 4th day of every Shukla Paksha belongs to Lord Ganesha and it is known as Vinayaka Chaturthi. However, the Vinayaka Chaturthi of Bhadrapada month is known as Ganesh Chaturthi. This day is celebrated as the birthday of Lord Ganesha and it is celebrated with great pomp and show all across the nation, especially in the state of Maharashtra.

Here is how the celebration of Ganesh Chaturthi takes place:

• It is a 10-day festival and begins with the installation of Ganesha clay idols privately in homes, or publicly on elaborate pandals with elaborate decorations and lighting.

• Devotees worship the idol in the morning and evening with offerings of flowers, durva (strands of young grass), Karanji and modaks (jaggery and coconut flakes wrapped in rice flour dumplings)

• Vedic hymns are chanted and the worship concludes with the singing of an aarti in honor of Ganesha, other gods, and saints

• The idol is kept in the homes for a minimum period of one and a half days. This period can vary from 5, 7 or 11 days

Also read:  Know why ‘elephant-headed’ God is one of the most loved Deities among Hindus

• Absolute piousness is observed in the homes. After 1 and ½ days or so, the idol is immersed in a water body. The event is huge and the crowd chants Ganpati mantras all along the way

• In Goa, Ganesh Chaturthi is known as Chavath parab. On the 3rd day of Shukla Paksha of Bhadrapada month, Goddess Parvati and Lord Shiva are worshiped

• Instruments such as ghumots, Crash cymbals and pakhavaj (an Indian barrel-shaped, two-headed drum) are played during the ceremonies

• Navyachi Pancham, the harvest festival is celebrated the next day. Freshly harvested paddy is brought home from the fields (or temples) and a puja is conducted

• The festival features cultural activities such as singing, theater and orchestral performances and community activities such as free medical checkups, blood-donation sites and donations to the poor

• Ganesh Chaturthi is an important economic activity as well in Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Bangalore, and Chennai. Many artists, industries, and businesses earn a significant amount of their living from the festival, which is a stage for budding artists. Members of other religions also participate in the celebration

Ganesh Chaturthi is a huge event in India and it transcends over religious or caste-based differences. People from all races of life come together in this festival.

– prepared by Nikita Tayal of NewsGram. Twitter: @NikitaTayal6 

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Saphala Ekadashi: Significance, Celebrations, Rituals, Festival Timings and Dates

Saphala Ekadashi is celebrated on Krishna Paksha in the month of Paush

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Saphala Ekadashi: Significance, Celebration, Rituals, Important Dates and Time
Saphala Ekadashi: Significance, Celebration, Rituals, Important Dates and Time, Image Source: wikimedia commons
  • Saphala Ekadasi is one of the most popular festivals observed in India
  • Saphala Ekadasi is a propitious fasting day celebrated on the 11th day of the waning phase of moon also known as “Krishna Paksha”
  • Saphala Ekadashi is celebrated during the month of ‘Paush’ as per the Hindu calendar
  • According to the Gregorian calendar, Saphala Ekadashi is celebrated between the months of December to January
  •  Upcoming Saphala Ekadashi Date and Day: 13th December 2017, Wednesday

About Saphala Ekadashi: The word ‘Saphala’ in Hindi signifies ‘to thrive’ and hence this Ekadashi ought to be seen by any individual who wants achievement and satisfaction in every one of the fields of life. Saphala Ekadashi is along these lines a way to open the entryways of copious, achievement, thriving and fortune. It is praised with incredible energy and eagerness in every one of the edges of the nation. Enormous occasions are sorted out on this day in Lord Krishna sanctuaries as; He is a symbol of Lord Vishnu.

 Significance of Saphala Ekadashi: The significance of Saphala Ekadashi is said as a discussion between Dharamraja Yudhisthira and Lord Krishna in the ‘Brahmanda Purana’. As indicated by the Hindu sacred texts, it is said that even 100 Rajasuya Yagas and 1000 Ashvamedha Yagas are not as advantageous as watching a holy quick upon the arrival of Saphala Ekadashi. The day of Saphala Ekadashi is sacrosanct to Hindus as it is trusted that by fasting earnestly on this day, the fans can wash away their wrongdoings and furthermore appreciate an ecstatic life. Ekadashi is a loved day that happens twice in each lunar Hindu month and is a day committed to worshipping the preserver of this Universe, who is none other than Lord Vishnu.

Saphala Ekadashi celebrations and rituals: Lord Vishnu is the primary idol of the Saphala Ekadashi. Vaishnavas love Lord Vishnu with dedicated hearts to summon His adoration and love. Offering Tulsi leaves to Lord Vishnu on this day is accepted to expel everyone of the wrongdoings of a person. Enthusiasts please Lord Vishnu by offering incense sticks, coconut, betel nut and other fragrant articles. Lighting of diyas amid the night will make it additionally fulfilling.

On Saphala Ekadashi, the devotees who maintain fast, ought not to rest the entire night. They share in different bhajans and kirtan programs in the respect of Lord Vishnu. Aficionados tune in to the popular stories of Lord Vishnu. Toward the end ‘aarti’ is done and later Prasad is circulated among relatives. On Saphala Ekadashi one must give cash, sustenance and different basics to the Brahmins and poor. While keeping the Saphala Ekadashi Vrat, just ‘Saatvik’ sustenance is eaten by the lovers. For individuals who are not proficient to keep the entire quick, can even quick watch halfway quick or quick for simply half day.

Important Timings of Saphala Ekadashi

  • Sunrise: Dec, 07:09 AM
  • Sunset: Dec, 17:43 PM
  • Dwadashi End Moment: Dec, 06:06 AM
  • Ekadashi Tithi Begins: Dec, 00:54 AM
  • Ekadashi Tithi Ends: Dec, 03:32 AM
  • Hari Vasara End Moment: Dec,10:10 AM
  • Parana Time: Dec, 13:30 PM – 15:37 PM

Saphala Ekadashi festival dates between 2019 to 2024

  • 2019: Sunday, 22nd of December
  • 2021: Thursday, 30th of December
  • 2022: Monday, 19th of December
  • 2024: Thursday, 26th of December

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Diwali Puja 2017: Everything You Need To Know About Timings, Muhurat

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Ganesh-Lakshmi are worshipped
Ganesh-Lakshmi are worshipped by devotees on the day of Diwali. Pixabay

New Delhi, October 18, 2017: Diwali is around the corner and everyone is busy with the preparations. On the eve of Diwali, the most important ritual is to perform Ganesh-Lakshmi Puja during the right muhurat (time) and with the right rituals(vidhi).

Here are some of the things you must take care of:

Ganesh-Lakshmi Puja Rituals

It is important that on the day of Diwali, you wake up early in the morning and pay homage to your ancestors and worship gods of your family. It is advised to observe a day-long-fast until the Ganesh-Lakshmi puja is performed in the evening.

Kalash pujan
Ganesh-Lakshmi Puja kalash. Wikimedia

Preparations For Ganesh-Lakshmi Puja

Families can embellish their home and office with Asoka and Marigold flowers, banana and mango leave on the day of the puja. Mangal Kalash covered with unpeeled coconut should be placed at both side of the main entrance of your house.

For puja preparation, place at the right hand side a red cloth on a hoisted platform and put in idols of Goddess Lakshmi and Lord Ganesh on it after gracing them with jewellery and clothes. Once this is done, Navgraha gods must be placed on the left hand side on a hoisted platform under white cloth. Prepare carefully nine slots of Akshata (unbroken rice) for placing Navgraha on white cloth and sixteen slots of wheat must prepared for the red cloth. You should perform puja with all the important rituals.

Idols of Ganesh-lakshmi are being worshipped on the eve of Diwali. Wikimedia

Timings (Muhurat) for Lakshmi Puja

Pradosh Kaal muhurat is the time during which puja needs to be performed. It starts after sunset and lasts for about 2 hours and 24 minutes. Goddess Lakshmi will stay in your home if you perform Lakshmi puja in the Pradosh Kaal when it is Sthir Lagna time. Sthir refers to ‘immovable.’  Before you do the puja, make sure you find out Pradosh Kaal (time) for your city or area. It is important that you know the right time to perform the puja.

– prepared by Siddheshwar Sharma. Twitter: @MancSiddheshwar

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Diwali 2017: Significance of the Diwali, Celebrations & Rituals, Date & Diwali Recipes

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Diwali
Deepawali 2017: 19th october'2017
  • Deepawali or Diwali is the biggest and the brightest of all Hindu festivals.
  • Diwali or Deepawali is the festival of lights: “Deep+awali”: deep means “light” and awali “a row,” so, deepawali means “a row of lights”.
  • Diwali is marked by four days of celebration, which literally illuminates the country with its brilliance and dazzles all with its joy.
  • The Diwali festival occurs in late October or early November. It falls on the 15th day of the Hindu month, Kartik, so it varies every year.

About Diwali:

Diwali (Deepawali) is considered to be the most significant festival in India. It symbolizes the victory of good over evil and the power of  light over darkness. The preparations of Diwali starts days before in which people clean their houses and offices and decorate them with lights and Diyas ( oil lamps) .

When is Diwali? – Diwali 2017 falls on 19th October 2017

Significance of Diwali

Diwali marks the homecoming of Lord Rama with his wife Sita after killing the evil king Ravana. He was sent to 14 – year – exile by his father, King Dushrath during which he was wandering in forests and villages of India. On this special occasion of his return to ayodhaya, the capital of Lord Rama, people decorated the whole kingdom with oil lamps and busted crackers with joy.

Diwali Celebrations and Rituals

On this auspicious occasion of diwali people welcome goddess Laxmi in their houses by lighting traditional earthen Diyas ( oil lamps) , making colorful rangoli , decorating house with flowers  and placing paduka (footsteps of goddess Laxmi)  at the entrance. Also there is a tradition of exchanging gifts and sweets with friends and family and donating food and goods to the needy. People wear new clothes and prepare tasty sweets and food delicacies at their home. At night Laxmi Puja takes place for the wealth and prosperity in the house after which people go outside to fire crackers and enjoy the festival.

Special Recipe to Serve on Diwali

With the joy of festival and stress free work schedules we often forget to keep check on our weight and calorie intake. And thanks to the goodies we receive and sweets which we make at home containing loads of sugar. To avoid the unnecessary weight gain and calories , here is a mouthwatering yet low calorie recipe of Oats Laddu which you can easily prepare at home this Diwali.

Ingredients:

  • Dates – ½ Cup
  • Oats – ¼ Cup
  • Cashew nuts – ¼ Cup
  • Almonds – ¼ Cup
  • Dry Coconut – ¼ Cup (shredded)
  • Powdered Sugar as per taste
  • Green Cardamom Powder – ½ tsp
  • Ghee as required

Preparation:

  1. Remove seeds from dates and chop them.
  2. Dry roast oats, cashew nuts and almonds, shredded coconut separately.
  3. Coarsely grind dates, oats, cashew nuts and almonds separately.
  4. Heat pan and add 1 tbsp ghee.
  5. Now add ground oats, cashew nuts, almonds, shredded coconut, green cardamom powder. Mix well and cook for 2-3 minutes on slow flame. Stir continuously.
  6. When the mixture starts to come together switch off the flame.
  7. Transfer the mixture into the large mouth bowl and add powdered sugar and some ghee (if required for binding). Mix well and allow this mixture to cool down.
  8. Shape the mixture into small balls like laddu and serve.

 

Gift Ideas for Diwali

There is an old tradition of exchanging gifts on Diwali with our family and friends as it adds to the happiness of our loved ones. Here are some of the unique gift items which you can gift to your close ones:

Personalized gift items: Colorful earthen pots, diyas, mugs and cushions designed with your choice of painting and colors can be a cool gift for your friends and family.

 Diwali cupcakes: Sweet with a message can be a unique gift for your loved ones. You can gift a box of cupcakes with Diwali theme running through them to your friends.

Online gift vouchers: You can gift your friends online shopping gift vouchers of leading online shopping portals like Amazon , Flipkart , Snapdeal , Jabong and many others to treat them with gift products of their own choice.

Prepared by Pragya Mittal | Twitter @PragyaMittal05