Friday, January 27, 2012

Happy Saraswati Pooja

Saraswati Jayanti (or) Saraswati Pooja

Saraswati Puja 2012 Date is Saturday 28th of January. This festival is primarily celebrated in Bihar, West Bengal, Orissa.

Saraswati Puja is performed on Vasant Panchami every year. The festival celebration takes place on the fifth day of brighter fortnight of the month of Magha based on the Indian calendar. It is understood that Goddess Saraswati was born on this particular day. On this day the devotees offer prayers to Goddess Saraswati, who symbolizes knowledge as well as learning.

Who is Goddess Saraswati
Goddess Saraswati happens to be the consort of Lord Brahma and is known to be the Goddess of Knowledge and Wisdom. She personifies knowledge, science, arts and crafts. She also represents Shakti, inspiration, creativity and presents herself at a time when Nature is in all its splendor and the weather is very pleasant. Her presence is indicative of inspiration as well as passion. In Buddhism Goddess Saraswati is considered as guardian deity that protects and assists Buddhist practitioners and upholds Gautama Buddha’s teachings.

Saraswati is the daughter of Lord Shiva and Goddess Durga. She is dressed in white, which represents purity and rides the white swan.
Legend of Saraswati Puja

Goddess Saraswati is considered to be the Goddess of learning as well as speech. She represents the union of power and intelligence from where organized creation emanates. She possess the knowledge of all the scriptures, Vedas, musical power, dances and poetry. She is the person who has revealed knowledge and learning to mankind.

Goddess Saraswati originates from the Vedic river that has disappeared. This link indicates her sense of fluidity in all walks of life. She is the embodiment of wisdom, intelligence, fortune, brilliance, nourishment, splendor, contentment as well devotion.

The belief held is that Goddess Saraswati endows people with powers of wisdom, speech and learning. She has four hands which represent four aspects of the personality of human beings in learning process, mind, learning, intellect, ego and alertness.

About Goddess Saraswati Picture

Saraswati is the Goddess of leaming, knowledge, and wisdom. The Sanskrit word sara means "essence" and swa means "self." Thus Saraswati means "the essence of the self." Saraswati is represented in Hindu mythology as the divine consort of Lord Brahma, the Creator of the universe. Since knowledge is necessary for creation, Saraswati symbolizes the creative power of Brahma. Goddess Saraswati is worshipped by all persons interested in knowledge, especially students, teachers, scholars, and scientists.

In Her popular images and pictures, Goddess Saraswati is generally depicted with four arms (some pictures may show only two arms), wearing a white sari and seated on a white lotus. She holds a book and a rosary in Her rear two hands, while the front two hands are engaged in the playing of a lute (veena). Her right leg is shown slightly pushing against Her left leg. She uses a swan as Her vehicle. There is a peacock by Her side gazing at Her. This symbolism illustrates the following spiritual ideas:

  • The lotus is a symbol of the Supreme Reality, and a white lotus also denotes supreme knowledge. By sitting on a lotus, Saraswati signifies that She is Herself rooted in the Supreme Reality, and symbolizes supreme knowledge. The white color symbolizes purity and knowledge. The white sari that the Goddess is wearing denotes that She is the embodiment of pure knowledge.
  • The four arms denote Her omnipresence and omnipotence. The two front amms indicate Her activity in the physical world and the two back arms signify Her presence in the spiritual world. The four hands represent the four elements of the inner personality. The mind (manas) is represented by the front right hand, the intellect (buddhi) by the front left hand, the conditioned consciousness (chitta) by the rear left hand, and the ego (ahankara) by the rear right hand.
  • The left side of the body symbolizes the qualities of the heart and the right side symbolizes activities of the mind and intellect. A book in the rear left hand signifies that knowledge acquired must be used with love and kindness to promote prosperity of mankind.
  • The rosary signifies concentration, meditation, and contemplation, leading to samadhi, or union with God. A rosary in the rear right hand representing ego conveys that true knowledge acquired with love and devotion melts the ego and results in liberation (moksha) of the seeker from the bondage to the physical world.
  • The Goddess is shown playing a musical instrument that is held in Her front hands, which denote mind and intellect. This symbol conveys that the seeker must tune his mind and intellect in order to live in perfect harmony with the world. Such harmonious living enables the individual to utilize acquired knowledge for the welfare of all mankind.
  • Two swans are depicted on the left side of the Goddess. A swan is said to have a sensitive beak that enables it to distinguish pure milk from a mixture of milk and water. A swan, therefore, symbolizes the power of discrimination, or the ability to discriminate between right and wrong or good and bad. Saraswati uses the swan as Her carrier. This indicates that one must acquire and apply knowledge with discrimination for the good of mankind. Knowledge that is dominated by ego can destroy the world.
  • A peacock is sitting next to Saraswati and is anxiously waiting to serve as Her vehicle. A peacock depicts unpredictable behavior as its moods can be influenced by the changes in the weather. Saraswati is using a swan as a vehicle and not the peacock. This signifies that one should overcome fear, indecision, and fickleness in order to acquire true knowledge.
Celebration of Saraswati Puja

The arrival of springtime is celebrated. Nature decorates the tree and plants with new blossoms. Families dress up in bright yellow and gather around the idol of Goddess Saraswati and pray that they are blessed with knowledge.

Kites are flown high on this day, making the sky look colorful.

Mantra For Goddess Saraswati
yaa kundendu tushhaar haara dhavalaa
yaa shubhravastraavR^itaa .
yA vINaavarada.nDa ma.nDitakaraa

yaa shvetapadmaasanaa

Rituals of Saraswati Puja
Devotees dress up in yellow and gather around the idol to pray for knowledge. Flower as well as wild berries are offered to the Goddess. Students keep their books near her idol and seek her blessings. On that day the students do not do any writing or reading. Then puja is performed with sandalwood, joss sticks, ghee, and incense. Slokas are read and conch shells are blown and drums are beaten. Devotees eat only vegetarian food. Children are initiated into learning by writing the word “Om”.
Some people perform the pitri-tarpan( homage paid to dead ancestors).
Saraswati Puja is an auspicious occasion for those interested in enhancing their knowledge and learning. It is a day for the family to get-together and pray that they are a success in every walk of life.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Happy India Republic Day Wishes

In triumph & in tragedy
One Nation, under God 
And pledge allegiance to the flag of our Motherland.
And to the republic for which it stands,
With liberty and justice for all,
United we stand.

India is proud to Celebrate its 63rd Republic Day.

Divya's Cooking Journey Wishes the Nation & all the Indians with a Very Happy Republic Day.

Enjoy this great day remembering our National Heroes & the Leaders who fought for this day & struggled for the Constitution and turned India in to a Republican Country.

I remember my Celebrations in India When I was a Child.Me as a Child enjoyed this great day by Participating in the Cultural Programs like Singing Songs & performing the dance which explains about our Nation & our freedom fighters.Those Songs are very famous .Hope Indians may know those songs well .They are "Nee Dharmam Nee Sangam Nee Desam Nuvvu Maravaddhu" , "Nenu Naa Desam Pavithra Bharata Desam".These two songs are always highlighted the Celebration which explains all the Freedom fighters Struggling for our Country.Students disguise them well as the National leaders and perform their Characters to the Song in the Dance when the song plays. 

I remember two Characters Katta Brahmana was always performed by one Student Hemanth as he was tall and fat.Gandhiji was Performed by Savith as he uised to cut his hair to look as Gandhi.Those days are really Golden days. I post those pictures when I am back to my home place.I wish my kids also to enjoy all these.

So Indians,be proud to be an Indian & Never forget our Motherland & Respect ; try to Share your past memories with your kids as a parent and kids will enjoy .

Here is a  National Anthem video and don't forget to stand and salute to our "MATHRUBHOOMI" when you play it.

Happy India Republic Day Celebration With The Tri_Color Idly's

Happy Republic Day Wishes
 To the Nation & all the Indians those who visit my blog From India & Abroad Indians.

This is a variety of Idli for the kids to attract them and making a habbit to eat Idli's for those kids who doesn't like.I tried this for my boy in two methods & and he liked both variety of Idli.So soon posting this for all as a "Republic Day" Special.Hope you all will enjoy these Tri-Color Idly's.

Ingredients:(For Variety-I)
  • Idli batter
  • Salt to Taste
  • Grated Carrot-little
  • Frozen Peas- few
  • Idli Mould
  • Ghee/Oil -little
Preparation Of Idli Batter:
  • Urad dal- 1cup
  • Idli Ravva-3 cups.(Actually we take 1:2 ratio;I use more ravva)
  • Steel vessel with Lid.
  • Soak the dal & the ravva separately in a vessel with the water for atleast 3hrs.
  • Remove all the water.
  • Now grind the dal using a mixy jar by adding very little water to get very smooth.
  • Now squeeze the ravva from the water and add to ground urad dal batter vessel and mix well with hands.
  • Cover it and allow to ferment for 8to 10 hours.
  • You can see the raise in the level of the batter after it ferments.
  • Idli batter is ready to make the Idli's.

  • Grease the Idli Plates with the Ghee/Oil.
  • In each mould add little carrot & peas.

  • Then fill it with the Idli batter.
  • Now pour water in a big vessel or Idli Cooker .
  • Insert these stacks & close the lid.
  • Steam Cook this for 15 mins.
  • Till the Idli's are cooked and the batter should not stick.
  • Remove the Cooked Idli's &  serve to the Lovely Kids.
  • Enjoy!!

Ingredients For Variety-II
  • Idli batter-1cup
  • Salt to taste
  • Tomato Chutney (Orange Idly)
  • Mint Chutney (Green Idly)
  • Water little
  • Take little  amount of batter in to three equal portions.
  • One part of the batter leave it by mixing little water & salt (White Idly)
  • Remaining two portions of batter,in one bowl add tomato chutney & mix well.
  • In the other batter add the mint Chutney and mix well.
  • Now take Idly plates,Grease them with Ghee/Oil.
  • Place little amount of Tomato chutney mixed batter,next White batter (Normal Idly Batter),Next Mint chutney mixed Idly Batter in to the Idly Moulds.
  • Steam cook the Idly's for 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Turn off the flame .
  • Enjoy the Tri-Color Idly's

India Republic Day 2012

Source & Image From Internet.

January 26 is a day yearly which all Indian heart loads with devoted passion and immense worship for homeland. There are several important memoirs since it was this moment when initially the Indian Tricolor developed at Lahore in January 1930 thrJanuary 26 is a day yearly which all Indian heart loads with devoted passion and immense worship for homeland. There are several important memoirs since it was this moment when initially the Indian Tricolor developed at Lahore in January 1930 through Pt Jawaharlal Nehru plus the affirmation of a self-governing Indian National Congress was accomplished.

India Republic Day 2012

When is India Republic Day 2012?
 India Republic Day 2012 will be celebrated on Thursday, 26 January 2012.

India Republic Day 2012 Celebrations 

Annually, the Republic Day in India is celebrated with much passion on the whole state and to spot the significance of this event, an impressive procession is held in the New Delhi capital from Raisina Hill next to (President’s House) Rashtrapati Bhavan, beside the Rajpath, before India entrance and on to the notable Red Fort. The parade starts with the India’s ruler laying a headdress at the Indian Gate at the Amar Jawan Jyoti, honoring all the militaries who gave up their breathes for the nation.

Shortly, a twenty one gun salute is tendered, the National Anthem is played and the leader unfurls the National Flag. This indicates the opening of the procession. The leader is escorted by a famous foreign Prime Minister who’s the requested Chief Visitors at the festivity. The parade starts with champions of gallantry prizes passing the leader in open jeeps. Leader or the President of India, who’s the Indian Armed Forces Commander-in-Chief, takes the salutation at the impressive parade.

Also, the Indian soldier showcases its recent acquisition like missiles, radars, tanks and so on. After that, medals and award of gallantry are provided by the leader to the citizen from the military for their outstanding courage in their field and furthermore to those residents who have determined themselves through their diverse acts of bravery in different positions. Hereafter, helicopter from the military take off past the show area showering petals of rose on the viewers.

After that, it is followed by a brilliant cultural procession. India’s affluent cultural legacy is described in the type of montages from several states. Each states describes it innovative festivals, art and historical locations. This demonstration of diversity and prosperity of the custom of India provides a joyful air to the event. Montages from numerous ministries of India and government department are also tendered showing their involvement towards the movement of the state.

The most joyful part of the show is when the kids who have prevailed National Bravery Awards travel past the stage on elephants. School-kids around the country also join in the procession demonstrating singing and folk dances to the sounds of nationalistic songs. Moreover, the show comprises displays of skillful motorcycle rides through the military personnel. The most excitedly awaited portion of the show is the wing past, positioned on by the Indian military.

The wind or fly past spots the end of the show, when fighter jets of the India air forces call past the stage, saluting the President symbolically. Moreover, the Government of India, Ministry of Culture in cooperation with 7 Zonal Cultural Centers organizes “Lok Tarang”, a National Folk Dance Festival annually starting from January 24 to 29. This festival gives a unique chance for individual to see vibrant, colorful and unique folk dance from several places of the nation.

Happy India Republic Day 2012 !

Friday, January 13, 2012

Wish You Happy Pongal.

Happy Pongal wishes to all my Family members ,Friends, Relatives & all the blog members readers ,each & everyone from Divya's Cooking Journey.

Pongal 2012

Pongal Festiaval is the celebration of Thanksgiving to the nature.Pongal is Celebrated for 4days in Tamilnadu as Bhogi Pongal,Surya pongal,Mattu Pongal and the Kaanuma Pongal.

In 2012,Pongal date is January 15th as it starts on 14th January with the Bhogi Pongal .January 17th  kaanuma Pongal marks the end of Pongal in Tamilnadu .

Pongal is celebrated as Makara Sankranti in other parts of South India & many parts of North India.It is known as "Lohri" festival in Haryana ,Punjab,Delhi,Himachal Pradesh and some other North Indian regions.

Pongal marks the Makara Sankramana of sun (Sun's transition in to Makara rashi or Capricorn). Makara Sankramana  Punya Snana (holy bath) are performed in holy rivers like kaveri,Pampa,& Vagai in Tamilnadu.Rameshwaram Temple & Madhurai Meenakshi temple are decked with luminous lamps to mark the beginning of holy Thai month.palani Subramanya Temple also decks up for Thai Maasam special Pujas &Thaipusam arrangements during Pongal.


Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Happy Vaikunta Ekadasi Wishes!!

Santhakaram Bujaga sayanam Padmanabham suresam| 
Viswadhaaram Gagana sadrusam Megha varnam shubangam ||
 Lakshmi kantham kamala nayanam Yogi hrid dyana gamyam |
 Vande Vishnum Bhava bhayaharam sarva lokaika natham || 

I bow before the God Vishnu, Who is personification of peace, Who sleeps on his folded arms, Who has a lotus on his belly, Who is the God of gods, Who is the basis of earth, Who is similar to the sky, Who is of the colour of the cloud, Who has beautiful limbs, Who is the consort of Lakshmi, Who has lotus like eyes, Who is seen by saints through thought, Who kills all worries and fears, And who is the lord of all the worlds.

Divya's Cooking Journey wishes all my family members,friends,blog readers & the blog followers each and everyone with a very Happy Vaikunta Ekadasi & have the blessings from the Lord Vishnu.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Mukkoti Ekadashi ~ Vaikunta Ekadashi 2012

Vaikunta Ekadashi Vrata is observed on Dhanur Masa Shukla Paksha Ekadasi or on the 11th day of bright fortnight during Dhanur Masam.Vaikunta Ekadashi 2012 date is on January falls on Pushya or Poush Shukla Ekadasi day as per Telugu and Kannada Calendars.In North India,this Ekadashi is observed as Putrada Ekadasi.

Vaikunta Ekadashi is a grand festival in Lord Vishnu temples.This festival is celebrated with lot of gusto in Tirumala Tirupati Shri Venkateshwara Devasthanam,Sri Rangam Ranganatha Swamy temple,Badrachalam Sri Rama Devasthanam,and many more vishnu temples in South India.

Vaikunta Ekadashi is the major festival celebrated in Dhanur Masam in South Indian states like
Tamilnadu,Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh.

On this day,Vishnu temples,Vaikunta Dwar or Vaikunta Dwaram or Vaiukunta Vaasal (entrance to heaven) is opened for darshan of Lord Vishnu.Vaikunta Dwara lies in North side to the temple.This gate is open only on Vaikunta Ekadasi day in the whole year.Vaikunta Ekadasi is also observed as Mukkoti Ekadasi.

  • Click here ,for how to observe the fasting and prayers.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year 2012

Happy New Year Wishes to Every one......