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Purnima: The Positive Effects of Purnamasi & it’s Significance in Hinduism- Dr. Bharti Raizada

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Purnima
Full Moon, Pixabay

May 21, 2017:

P

urnima or Puranmasi is the full moon day of each month. It divides the lunar month into two fortnights, or paksh. The days before Purnima are shukla paksh, and the days after are krishn paksh. Sri Satyanarayan pooja and fast is done on Purnima Day. The fast begins at sunrise and ends after seeing the moon. Salt is avoided by people who observe the fast.

Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra  and Gayatri Mantra are chanted

Om Tryambakam Yajamahe |
Sugandhim Pushti-Vardhanam ||
Urvarukamiva Bandhanan |
Mrityor Moksheeya Maamritat ||

 

Om bhur bhuvah swah, tat savitur varenyam |
Bhargo devasya dheemahi, dhiyo yo nah prachodayat ||

 

The dates of Purnima are different every year. My Maasi told me that there is usually a festival or Jayanti on Purnima Days. Following are the 2017 dates for Purnima:

January 11:    Paush Purnima or Shakambhari Purnima

February 10:   Magh Purnima. Sant Ravidas Jayanti is celebrated on this day.

March 12:   Phalgun Purnima or Vasant Purnima or Dol Purnima. Holi and Laxmi Jayanti are celebrated on this day. This is the also birthday of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.

April 10:   Chaitra Purnima. On this day prayers are offered to Chandra Devta and rice is given in daan. Hanuman Jayanti is celebrated on this day.

May 10:   Vaishakha Purnima or Buddha Purnima. This is the day of Birth, Enlightenment and Nirvan attainment of Gautam Buddha. He was born in Lumbini in Nepal and attained Nirvan under Mahabodhi tree in Bodh Gaya. Sri Kurma Jayanti is also celebrated on this day of Vaishakh Shukl.  Kurma was second avatar of Bhagwan Vishnu.

June 9:   Jayestha Purnima or Vat Purnima. On this day women tie a thread around a Banyan vat and listen to Savitri story. Yam devta is worshipped on this day.

July 8:   Ashadh Purnima or Vyas Purnima or Guru Purnima. Gu is darkness or ignorance and ru is the remover.

August 7:   Sharavan Purnima or Narali Purnima. Raksha Bandhan and Hayagriva Jayanti are celebrated on this day. Rigved and Yajurved Upakarm are done on this day. There is Pakshik Chandragrahan also on this day.

September 5:  Bhadrapad Purnima or Madhu Purnima or Sharaddh Purnima. Prayers are offered to Indra Devta on this day. Honey and fruits are an integral part of celebration in Buddh religion.

October 5:  Ashvin Purnima or Sharad Purnima or Kojagari Purnima or Kuanr Purnima or Raas Purnima. It is the day of Kaumudi celebration and prayers are offered to Lakshmi Devi and Indra Devta.

November 3:  Kartik Purnima or Tripuri or Tripurari Purnima. Dev Deepavali is celebrated on this day. This is the day of appearance of Matsya avatar or first avatar of Bhagwan Vishnu. Bhagwan Kartikey was born on this day. Prabodhini Ekadashi and Pushkar mela end on this day. This is the last day to perform Tulsi vivah. People do Kartik snan on this day by taking a dip in Ganga or Pushkar lake. Annakut is observed on this day. Guru Nanak Jayanti or Guru Purab or Prakash Parv is also celebrated on this day.

December 3:  Margashirsha Purnima. Dattatreya Jayanti is celebrated on this day.

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Mahalaya: Beginning of “Devipaksha” in Bengali Celebration of ‘Durga Puja’

“Mahalaya” is the auspicious occasion that marks the beginning of “Devipaksha” and the ending of “Pitripaksha” and heralds the celebration of Durga Puja

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Mahalaya morning in Kolkata. Flickr
  • Mahalaya 2017 Date: 19th september.
  • On Mahalaya, people throng to the holy river Ganges in order to pay homage to their ancestors and forefathers; which is called ‘Torpon’
  • Mahalaya remains incomplete without the magical chanting of the scriptural verses from the ‘Chandi Kavya’ that is broadcasted in All India Radio
  • The magic is induced by the popular Birendra Krishna Bhadra whose voice makes the recitation of the “Chandi Kavya” even more magnificent

Sept 19, 2017: Autumn is the season of the year that sees the Hindus, all geared up to celebrate some of the biggest festivals of India. The festive spirit in the Bengalis all enthused to prepare for the greatest of the festivals, the ‘Durga Puja’.

About Mahalaya:

Mahalaya is the auspicious occasion that marks the beginning of “Devipaksha” and the ending of “Pitripaksha,” and this year it is celebrated on September 19.

Observed exactly a week before the ‘Durga Puja’, Mahalaya is the harbinger of the arrival of Goddess Durga. It is celebrated to invoke the goddess possessing supreme power! The goddess is invited to descend on earth and she is welcomed with devotional songs and holy chants of mantras. On this day, the eye is drawn in the idols of the Goddess by the artisans marking the initiation of “Devipaksha”. Mahalaya arrives and the countdown to the Durga Puja begins!

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The day of Mahalaya bears supreme significance to the Bengalis. The day is immensely important because on this day people throng to the holy river Ganges in order to pay homage to their ancestors and forefathers. Clad in white dhotis, people offer prayers and take dips in the river while praying for their demised dear ones. The ritual is popular as “Torpon”.

Mahalaya
An idol-maker in progress of drawing the eye in the idol of the Goddess. Wikipedia

As per Hindu myth, on “Devipaksha”, the Gods and the Goddesses began their preparations to celebrate “Mahamaya” or Goddess Durga, who was brought upon by the trinity- Brahma, Vishnu, and Maheshwara; to annihilate the fierce demon king named Mahishasura. The captivating story of the Goddess defeating the demon got popularized with the goddess being revered as “Durgatinashini” or the one who banishes all the evils and miseries of the world. The victory of the Goddess is celebrated as ‘Durga Puja’.

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Mahalaya remains incomplete without the magical chanting of the scriptural verses from the ‘Chandi Kavya’ that is broadcasted at dawn in All India Radio in the form of a marvelous audio montage enthralling the souls of the Bengalis. Presented with wonderful devotional music, acoustic drama, and classical songs- the program is also translated to Hindi and played for the whole pan-Indian listeners.

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Mahalaya
Birendra Krishna Bhadra (1905-1991). Wikipedia

The program is inseparable from Mahalaya and has been going on for over six decades till date. The magic is induced by the popular Birendra Krishna Bhadra whose voice makes the recitation of the “Chandi Kavya” even more magnificent! He has been a legend and the dawn of Mahalaya turns insipid without the reverberating and enchanting voice of the legendary man.

Mahalaya will keep spreading the magic and setting the vigor of the greatest festival of the Bengalis- the Durga Puja, to worship the supreme Goddess, eternally.

                 “Yaa Devi Sarbabhuteshu, Shakti Rupena Sanhsthita,

                     Namastaswai Namastaswai Namastaswai Namo Namaha.”

– by Antara Kumar of NewsGram. Twitter: @ElaanaC

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Raja Chari: Indian American Astronaut chosen by NASA

Raja Chari, an American of Indian descent, has been chosen by NASA as one of the 12 astronauts for a new space mission.

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Raja Chari. Twitter.
  • Raja Chari is an American of Indian descent chosen by NASA for the new batch of astronauts
  • Currently, he is a Lieutenant Colonel in the US Air Force
  • Chari will have to go through two years of astronaut training which begins in August

June 06, 2017: NASA has chosen 12 astronauts out of a record-breaking 18,300 applications for upcoming space missions. An American of Indian descent, Raja Chari, has successfully earned his spot in the top 12.

The astronauts were selected on the basis of expertise, education, and physical tests. This batch of 12 astronauts is the largest group selected by NASA since two decades. The group consisting of 7 men and 5 women surpassed the minimum requirements of NASA.

Born in Waterloo, Iowa, Chari graduated from Air Force Academy in 1999 with a bachelor’s degree in Astronautical Engineering and Engineering Science. He went on to complete his master’s in Aeronautics and Astronautics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The astronaut is also a graduate of US Naval Test Pilot School.

Currently, Raja Chari is a Lieutenant Colonel in the US Air Force. He is the commander of 461st Flight Test Squadron and director of the F-35 Integrated Test Force at Edwards Air Force Base in California.

After Late Kalpana Chawla, Lt. Col. Raja Chari is the second Indian American astronaut chosen by NASA.

The 12 astronauts will have to go through two years of training. Upon completion, they will be assigned their missions ranging from research at the International Space Station, launching from American soil on spacecraft by private companies, to flying on deep space missions on NASA’s Orion Spacecraft.

The US Vice-President Mike Pence visited the Johnson Space Centre in Houston to announce and congratulate the new batch. Pence also said that President Trump is “fully committed” to NASA’s missions in space.

by Saksham Narula of NewsGram. Twitter: @Saksham2393

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Over 5,000 Plant Varieties in Last 3 Years sent in by Tribal Farmers to protect the species : Minister

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Tribal Farmers
tribal farmers submitted more than 5,000 plant varieties in last three years (representational Image). Wikimedia

New Delhi, June 8, 2017: Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh on Wednesday said tribal farmers submitted more than 5,000 plant varieties in last three years through Krishi Vigyan Kendras for registration at the Protection of Plant Variety and Farmers Rights Authority.

It will play an important role in the development of climate resilient and sustainable varieties in future, he said at the National Workshop on Empowerment of Farmers of Tribal Areas here.

“New technological innovations in agriculture must reach to the fields of tribal areas but before taking such steps we must keep in mind the unique conditions of these areas, which are the gift of nature and therefore, we should promote natural farming in those areas,” he said, as per an official release. (IANS)

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