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पूज्य बापूजी के मंगलमय दर्शन व मीडिया के साथ बातचीत के अंश – 6 जनवरी 2015

 
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Posted by on January 6, 2015 in DARSHAN

 

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DIVINE VALENTINE DAY (मातृ-पितृ पूजन दिवस)

DIVINE VALENTINE DAY (मातृ-पितृ पूजन दिवस) 1607081_1430096507227599_1770054482_n 1546364_1430097943894122_488374987_n 1545753_1430097950560788_1964298459_n 1545108_1429934940577089_1486448706_n 1535714_1430104730560110_1232226596_n 1509924_1430104740560109_1740908183_n 1422454_1430104737226776_853411363_n  935120_1429935023910414_202336986_n 923433_1430104783893438_155815351_n 545990_1430104773893439_1737504698_n 3(1) 2(1) 1(1) 1621854_1430104713893445_2138128474_n 1607081_1430096507227599_1770054482_n  1545753_1430097950560788_1964298459_n 1545108_1429934940577089_1486448706_n 1535714_1430104730560110_1232226596_n 1509924_1430104740560109_1740908183_n 1422454_1430104737226776_853411363_n 998738_1430097967227453_952436431_n  923433_1430104783893438_155815351_n

मातृ-पितृ पूजन दिवस – 14 फरवरी

 

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Vijayadashami (Dussehra) – A major Hindu Festival

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Friends, we celebrate many festivals and we are able to learn many life values through them. If we put into practice these moral values then our life turns into an ideal and happy one. Each of our festivals is a lesson for living an ideal life. Dasara is celebrated on Ashwin Shukla paksha Dashami. In a year there are 3 and a half auspicious muhurts, out of which Dasara happens to be one. Let us learn the importance of this festival.

1. Dasara is a day to decide firmly to eradicate 10 personality defects

Dasara is also known as Dashahara. ‘Dash’ means 10 and ‘Hara’ means ‘defeated’. Shri Durgadevi fought a battle for 9 days, that is till the previous day of Dasara and gained control over all the ten Directions (Disha).

Friends, that is the day of Dasara. As Durgadevi slew the asuras, destroyed the evil, we too should make a firm decision on this day to eradicate any 10 personality defects present in us. That is like defeating 10 durgun (bad qualities) in us. That will be Dasara for us in the real sense. Dear friends, are you ready to do it?

2. Historical importance of Dasara

The day on which ShriRam defeated Ravan and Pandavas retrieved their weapons after completing their adnyatvas is the day of Dasara ! : In Tretayug (the second in the cycle of four Eras since the origin of the universe), Shri Ramchandra won against Ravan, that is the day of victory hence, the day is also known as Vijayadashami. In Dwaparyug (The third Era in the cycle of four Eras since the origin of the universe), after completing their adnyatvas (living in exile), Pandavas worshipped ‘Shakti’ and reclaimed their weapons which they had hidden on a shami tree.

One day Kautsa, on completion of his studies, wanted to give Guru-dakshina to his Guru, although the Guru had not asked for it. As Kautsa was poor the Guru declined. But Kautsa was very keen to give Guru-dakshina and repeatedly insisted. The Guru was so annoyed that He told Kautsa to give him 14 crores of gold coins. So Kautsa came to King Raghu and asked for 14 crores of gold coins. King Raghu (ShriRam’s ancestor) who was the king of Ayodhya then, had just performed the ‘Vishwajit’ yadnya. He had donated all his wealth and started living in a hut. King Raghu was himself penniless, but he did not want to send Kautsa empty handed. Raghu, reknowned for his generosity, decided to declare war on Kuber (the Deity of wealth) to get gold. Before that Kuber Himself showered Gold coins on the Shami and Apta trees under which King Raghu was camping. The following morning when Kautsa came King Raghu told him to take away all the gold coins that Kuber had showered on the trees. But Kautsa took only 14 crores from king Raghu and went away. The remaining gold coins were then distributed among King Raghu’s subjects.

3. Distributing leaves of an apta tree among the relatives and friends on Dasara day

In earlier times, maratha soldiers returning from conquests would bring the spoils of war which would consist of gold ornaments among other things. All these things that the soldier brought home would be offered to God and then distributed among the elders of the house, relatives and friends. We follow this tradition by distributing leaves of apta as a symbol of gold.

4. Worshipping weapons and other means (Upakaran)

4 A. King : Kings worship their weapons on this day. Weapons have to be worshipped with a bhav (Spiritual emotion) that each of them contains God’s element.

4 B. Farmers : Farmers also worship the tools which help them to till their farmland.

4 C. Students : Students worship their texts and note-books. Friends, we should worship our books, note-books, pencil etc. because they are our ‘weapons’. We should also learn to perceive God’s element in each of them. If these weapons are not there then we will not be able to do anything (i.e. study, gain knowledge). Hence, we should pay gratitude to them on the day of Dasara, as we can study, only because of these tools. Friends, these tools are symbols of Shri Saraswati Devi. On this day of Dasara, let us worship all the tools which help us to gain knowledge.

5. Asking pardon from the tools used in school-life

Some children are seen throwing their note-books, playing ‘pen-fights’, troubling others and also throwing their school-bags etc. This is very wrong. Friends, let us ask for pardon from all these implements on this day and pray to God to give us wisdom to refrain from insulting them. You will do this, wont you? Doing so would be celebrating Dasara in the true sense !

The Evening of the Dussehra is called “Vijay Kaal” (Period of Victory).
On this evening, instead of wandering around one should do Jap & Dhyan ( chanting & meditation). 
During this period do one round of chanting of the folloing Mantra by remembering Shri Hanuman Ji:

 “पवन तनय बल पवन समाना, बुद्धि विवेक विज्ञान निधाना ।

कवन सो काज कठिन जग माहि, जो नहीं होत तात तुम पाहि ॥”

Also by remembering Goddesses Durga, one should do the Jap (Chanting) of following Mantra:

“ॐ अपराजितायै नमः”

 

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Shree Ram and Squirrel- Importance of Satseva

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ShriRam decided to wage war with Ravan to release Sita who was captured by Ravan. ShriRam started his travel to Lanka. He was accompanied by his brother Lakshman, and a large army of Vanars. On the way they came across a vast ocean which had to be crossed in order to reach Lanka. Rama attempted to calm the raging ocean by shooting his arrows into the waves. But the King of the Sea rose up and said, “The sea can not be overcome by force, but only by building a strong bridge.” So, Rama told his monkey soldiers to construct a stone bridge that could hold the weight of his entire army.

First few attempts failed as the rocks started slipping from ocean floor. Deity Hanuman then inscribed the words ShriRam on each stone. The stones started to float .

All the monkey-soldiers were carrying huge stones and enormous boulders with ShriRam written on them to the seaside. Thousands of monkeys worked ceaselessly and ShriRam was pleased. Then the ShriRam noticed that a small brown squirrel rushed up and down the hills to the shore carrying little pebbles in her mouth. The monkeys also saw the squirrel and they got angry. “Get out of our way,” they said “You are too small. Your efforts are not needed.”

The little squirrel looked up and said, “I am helping to build the bridge that will carry all of you and save Sita.” All the monkeys began to laugh and mock the little squirrel.

The squirrel answered, “I can not carry rocks or stones. But I can lift only small pebbles. This is what I can do to help. My heart weeps for Sita and I want to be of assistance.”

ShriRam picked up little squirrel in his fingers and stroked it’s back thus marking its skin with his fingers. “What truly matters is not the strength one has, but how large is one’s love and devotion.” In that moment, the monkeys realized that little pebbles were needed to be placed between the larger stones to keep the bridge from collapsing.

 
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Posted by on October 10, 2013 in Faith & Devotion, INDIAN RITUALS

 

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Foreigners too realise the importance of Sanskrut language and gain advantage from it !

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A.  On 26th April  2007, Dr. Abdul Kalam, the then President of Bharat, visited Greece. During the welcome ceremony, the President of Greece, Mr. Karolos Papoulias, started his speech with the Sanskrit sentence ‘Rashtrapati Mahabhag ! Susvagatam Yavandeshe !’. In his speech, he mentioned that  Sanskrit is an ancient language of India and that Greek language is related to this ancient language.

B. In July 2007 the ‘American Senate’ began its session by recital of Vedic prayer. This was the first time when such a thing had happened in the last 218 years of American history. The session  began with the Sanskrut prayer ‘Om Shanti Shanti Shanti’. This was like a slap in the face to the Nehru-Gandhi family who says that Sanskrut is a ‘Dead language’.

C. Sanskrut is studied and taught in various American Universities for several years. In the California University, Sanskrut has been  taught since  1897.

D. The California Senate session which began on 27th August 2007 started with the reciting of Sanskrut mantras.

E. Some students from Maryland University in America have formed a group named ‘Sanskrut-Bharati’ and they have even launched a website called ‘www.speaksanskrit.org’.

F. On 11th April 2010,  the American Senate began its session with the recital of Sanskrut sholkas.

The origin of all noble thoughts in the world has been Sanskrut language. Sanskrut is the only language which is complete, scientifically correct and  which is alive in its original form even after the passage of thousands of years !

 – Western academicians and University Scholars.

The need for learning Sanskrut

A Professor of Cambridge University was sitting in his cabin engrossed in some work. Suddenly, an annoyed and depressed soldier entered his room and openly blamed him, saying that he is not bothered about hundreds of soldiers like him who are depressed because of the hardships they had to face while fighting in the war against Germany.

The Professor asked him politely, “Why are you fighting?”

The soldier spontaneously replied, “Obviously, for the protection of our Nation!”

The Professor further asked him, “What is so important in it that you have to spill your own blood for that?”

“My Motherland and its Citizens.”

On further questioning, the soldier finally replied, “I am fighting for the protection of my culture.”

The Professor smiled and politely said, “Even I have contributed in the enrichment of this culture.”

The soldier calmed down. He bowed in respect before the Professor and vowed to fight with more vigour for the preservation of the Nation’s culture.

This incident took place when the British soldiers were fighting during the final phase of the 2nd world war. This shows that even the Westerners have intense love towards their culture. We Bharatiyas (Indians) too have deep respect for our ancient culture and heritage of our Nation. To sum up, it is essential to learn Sanskrut in order to preserve this rich culture of our Nation.

Even the Supreme Court has acknowledged that learning Sanskrut is essential for preserving the cultural identity of our Nation. There is no other option than learning Sanskrut if we want to understand the principles on which our culture is based upon. On the basis of the report of the Sanskrut Commission, the Supreme Court gave the verdict that, inspite of the vast diversity in the thinking of our citizens, there is one thing where there is no difference of opinions, all of them share the same view. That one thing is, a sense of pride for our Nation’s culture and tradition. Sanskrut is a reflection of this culture.

Greatness and Importance of Sanskrut

My little friends, do you know how great our ancient Devbhasha (Divine language) Sanskrut is? Sanskrut language has been created by God Himself. It is the mother of all languages in the world. Most of the languages all over the world have their roots in sanskrut. Even the Westerners have acknowledged the importance and greatness of this Divine language. Computer scientists around the world were in search of a language for use in computer programming that could be converted into 8 major languages of the world. They found out that only ‘Sanskrut’ could fulfil this criterion. The computer scientists have also said that Sanskrut is the most convenient language for computer software programming. All of our Holy scriptures, that is, the Vedas, the Upanishads, the Bhagwatgita, etc. are written in Sanskrut.

The great poets like Kalidas, Bhavbhuti, etc. wrote their poems in Sanskrut. Sanskrut language contains Chaitanya (Divine Consciousness). Even if one is unable to understand the meaning of a verse written in Sanskrut, one benefits from the Divine consciousness and purity present in the language. Since Sanskrut contains Divine consciousness, one might be troubled by distressing energies on chanting Sanskrut mantras. Sanskrut purifies the speech, mind and body.

So my friends, you must have realised how great and Divine our Sanskrut language is. Learn Sanskrut in order to preserve the Divinity of our rich Hindu culture. Request your school to include Sanskrit language in the curriculum.

 
 

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God Realization (Know the Self)

self realized saints of india

Self-Realization becomes very easy for those who consider God To be the Supreme Reality and endeavour to attain Him.

‘Shri Yoga Vashishtha Maharamayana’ propounds that God is not far from us, there is no
distinction between Him and us and it is not difficult to realize Him either.
Indeed it is not difficult to realize God and yet it seems difficult, because we do not listen to or
contemplate on divine knowledge and hence we fail to develop love for Him. Just as one who is
illiterate and has not practised reading and writing thinks that it is difficult, so too one who has not
practised spiritual discipline thinks that it is difficult to attain God. However if he practises spiritual
contemplation, it is not difficult at all. During the formative years in school, learning the alphabets
appeared quite cumbersome, but today you can write them with ease; so is the case with respect to
God. Practice alone brings perfection and is the key to success!
‘My Beloved dwells in my heart. I can meet Him at will by just delving within.’
‘My brother slapped me” the memory causes pain. Find out who feels the pain. Pain is felt in the
mind. Be a witness to your mind and the pain will disappear. Your body is sick and is paining. Be a
witness to the aching body and you will laugh at it. Once this (my) body suffered from a malarial fever
and an adverse reaction of anti-malarial drugs. A severe pain left me groaning. I would ask my body,
‘Hey! What is this nonsense’ Why do you groan” ‘and laugh out at its condition. Then I would tell my
mind, ‘Keep groaning. I am watching you.’ ‘and it would stop groaning. Those who saw me were
extremely pained and would secretly shed tears, ‘What a painful state!’ But I did not feel that way. The
body suffered the pain and I watched it like a detached observer. Once this practice is developed, one
can see oneself as a separate entity from the body, even in deep slumber. Like we observe another
person, we can observe our own body. Sustained practice increases the subtlety of the intellect and
one can develop such witness attitude towards the world.
Similarly, we can become a witness to even pleasures and pains. If one practises being a detached
witness, it becomes easy. An actor in a play claims, ‘I am king Vikramaditya’ I will not allow this to
happen in my kingdom” but in his heart he knows what he is. In the very next scene he dons the garb
of a beggar and evokes a sense of profound sympathy among the audience. Only a while ago he was
acting the part of an emperor and now he is playing the role of a beggar. But he knows fully well that
he is only playing a role. Similarly, he who practises detachment from the body, transcends pleasures
and pains.
The deceitful, dishonest and cunning people cannot succeed in this endeavour. The more
innocent and honest one becomes, the quicker progress he achieves on this path. Identifying oneself
with the body and trying to seek happiness in this illusory world, assuming it to be real, is at the root
of all cunning and deceitful acts. Howsoever dishonest one may be, if he starts believing in the truth
of his own Divine Self and comes to realize the futility of this world, his deceitfulness and vices will
disappear and he will soon attain greatness.
So long as one is ignorant about the glory and greatness of Self-realization, one suffers all types
of misery. Treachery, deceit and other vices exist only so long as people do not realize the importance
of Self-realization and appreciate that God alone is the Absolute Reality. Once one realizes the
importance of satsang and of Self-realisation, gradually one’s mind becomes pure; deceit and
treachery begin to wither away and all complaints disappear. Then one will admit to have committed
mistakes and will be ready to rectify them as well, rather than making excuses for the same. One, not
inclined towards Self-realization, tries to give excuses when a mistake is pointed out to him; thus
unwittingly he only strengthens his own faults, little realising that he is hurting nothing but his own
interests.
Those, who have become used to giving excuses and practising deceit and dishonesty, impede
their road to real progress in life. Those trying to cheat others are badly cheated by some greater
cheat. A fraud is bound to suffer the consequences of his evil deeds and dishonesty engages one in
evil pursuits with their root cause lying in the erroneous notion of taking the body and this world to
be real. When the world is taken for real and one remains engrossed in the thoughts of this world, having no love or devotion towards the Supreme Self, it becomes the root of all misery.
Self-realization becomes very easy for those who consider God to be the Supreme Reality and
endeavour to attain Him. Self-realization becomes easier still when the aspirant renders sincere and
selfless service only for the sake of attaining Divine love, Divine grace and Divine knowledge. Such an
aspirant realizes God very soon and is also delivered from all his troubles forever. He experiences
Self-love and an everlasting contentment in the unity of his True Self with the Bliss-personified
Supreme Self.

Know the Self
Bliss-personified God is your True origin. You are sustained by That and you will finally
merge into That itself. And if you do not take out time to establish yourself in That, then you are
but your own greatest enemy.
You have been provided with both time and energy to attain Eternal Self-Bliss. You have been
blessed with an intellect to realize the Divine Being. If you waste these divine gifts in the pursuit of
worldly comforts and pleasures, then even if you acquire a lot of wealth it will not bring an end to
your sorrows. Irrespective of how much a man is wealthy or powerful he can never be fully
relieved from miseries.
No doubt it is a sin to kill a horse, donkey, dog or man; but to deny your own divinity is a
graver sin. It is tantamount to committing suicide, and such a person is his own greatest enemy.
External enemies are simply dwarfed in comparison.
You have been bestowed with a human life, a good intellect; rather than employing them in
the right pursuit if you waste them for transient worldly pleasures, then you are bound to repent in
the end.
The human life is not meant for sense-enjoyments. It is meant to attain the bliss of samadhi,
to attain the majestic state of equanimity. In ancient times people would undertake pilgrimages,
experiencing happiness and sorrow, praise and insults and various other difficulties en route with
a view to having the realization, T he body is born and will die, I am its witness.
O ne who has conquered his mind, senses and body, is his own friend while one who fails to
conquer his mind, senses and body is his own enemy. (Srimad
Bhagwad Gita: 6.6)
Therefore, one should nurture elevating thoughts of realizing the Supreme Self; for salvation
is unattainable without first acquiring Knowledge of the True Self. One should make a firm resolve
to attain the Knowledge of the True Self alone in order to repose in the Supreme Being, the
Eternal, the Immutable and the One that is always free from sorrow.
O happiness -love -and bliss-personified soul! Why are you toiling for happiness, love and
bliss; being kicked, wearied and tormented in the process? Wait stop here and now. Learn the
art of experiencing your True Self from an Enlightened Saint so that you can realize, how sweet,
how loveable, how blissful and truly great you are!

The Ten Guidelines for God-realization

One, who seeks to realize God, should assimilate these five rules in his day to day life.

1. One should cleanse one’s mind of the filth of bias and try to remain impartial. If one has to judge, one should be a little liberal towards others while being just towards one’s kin. This will safeguard the purity of one’s heart. Favouring one’s own kin makes the task of God-realization more difficult. In order to maintain peace and harmony in the family, one should avoid partiality and be fair towards all. This is the way to properly manage the affairs of the day to day life. Such impartial and affectionate conduct helps one attain success both in the material as well as in the spiritual world.

2. Keep your heart pure and innocent like that of a child. The truth is innate; falsehood is artificial and requires so many devious means to conceal it, and still it finally comes out in the open. Therefore, try to keep your heart like that of an innocent child. Don’t be too clever.  Avoid artificiality. When guests arrive, offer them with affection even if it is only a glass of water. They will appreciate your straightforwardness. If you try to impress them with pomp and ostentation, your honesty and spontaneity will thereby be suppressed. You should neither try to impress anyone nor should you be unduly impressed by others. Deal with others knowing that both you and him are but manifestations of God. Your conduct then will become innocent like that of a child.

3. One should not entertain feelings of superiority or inferiority towards others on the basis of Varna, Ashram, caste or creed.

4. One should not waste one’s time and energy in futile disputes. Speak as little as possible in words full of pith and substance and keep away from controversial debates.

5. Steer clear of all activities, thoughts, detractors, friends and company, which hinder you from devotion to the Lord and from attaining divine enjoyment, divine bliss, divine capabilities and repose in the true Self.

If one observes these five rules of conduct in life, one can make good progress on the path to God-realization. So, these are the rules of worldly conduct. Then, there are 5 rules of spiritual conduct also, which an aspirant ought to observe for God-realization. These rules are:

1) Be compassionate towards all beings. In your heart of hearts, you should have a feeling of compassion for all, including a criminal. When the magistrate pronounces a punishment but with the well-being of the criminal in his mind, he not only attains the merits of carrying out his duty in right earnest but also gets his heart sanctified by the feelings of compassion and kindness towards the criminal.

2) Do not find faults with Saints, nor should you ever lend an ear to their detractors.

3) Maintain piety of your body as well as mind. Keep your body clean through bathing, etc. and purify the mind through japa and pranayama.

4) Don’t overstrain yourself, nor should you be  slothful.

5) Don’t hanker after the transient and trifling sense objects. Even your spiritual and devotional practices should always be free from desires. Don’t pray to the Lord for fulfilment of your temporal desires; rather devote yourself to the Lord for the very sake of His love alone.

One who sincerely and diligently observes these rules of worldly and spiritual conduct, has his heart purified and a pure heart realises the Supreme Self readily.

 
 

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Navratri(A Festival of India)

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In our Hindu culture there are many Holy and religious festival. Celebration of festivals is an easy way of leading a happy and blissful life by showing our devotion towards God. Festivals are created by God to make everyone realise the power and existence of God and make all of us happy. Similarly, it enables us to lead an ideal life. However, presently we are unaware as to how to celebrate all these festivals in a scientific and appropriate manner as prescribed by the scriptures. Therefore, many inappropriate practices are witnessed during these festivals. Today, we will learn through this article how to celebrate the festival of Navratri in the appropriate manner and earn the blessings of the Goddess.

1. Science underlying the celebration of Navratri  

During the 9 days of Navratri, we worship the Goddesses Mahakali, Mahalakshmi and Mahasaraswati. Mahakali devi is worshipped for the first 3 days, Mahalakshmi devi for next 3 days, and Mahasaraswati devi for the last 3 days. Let us now see the science behind worshipping different Goddesses.

 

2. Science behind worshipping
the Goddesses during Navratri

2 A . Science behind worshipping Mahakalidevi during the first 3 days

2 A 1. Personal defects and bad qualities are our enemies which make our life unhappy and full of tension : Mahakalidevi is worshipped with an aim to protect us from dangers in life and to destroy our enemies. Friends, do you know who are our enemies in student life, who make our life unhappy and stressful ? Our personality defects and bad qualities are our enemies. The children who possess many personality defects cannot remain happy. The examples are given ahead.

2A 1A. Quarrelsome nature : If a child is quarrelsome, he will have very few friends and many enemies. Will such a child remain happy ? This means his main enemy is his quarrelsome behaviour. Friends, our personality defects are only our enemies. Let us pray to Mahakalidevi for the elimination of these defects.

2A 1B.  Laziness : Suppose a child has the personality defect of laziness. Such a child will not be able to complete his studies in time. Hence, his mind will be under constant tension and fear. The enemy of such a child is ‘laziness’.

2A 2. Pray to Mahakalidevi for elimination of personality defects : Friends, our personality defects are our only enemies which take us away from a happy life. Hence, let us worship Mahakalidevi during the first 3 days of Navratri and say the following prayer, ‘O Mahakali Mata, let me realise that my personality defects are my only enemies which take me away from a happy life. Help me to make constant and sincere efforts for elimination of these personal defects. This is my prayer unto your Holy feet.’

Friends, let us promise the Goddess that we shall make honest and sincere efforts to eliminate our personality defects.

2 B. Science behind worshipping Shri Mahalakshmidevi during the next 3 days : Friends, Mahalakshmidevi endows us with happiness, peace, and satisfaction. Hence, She is worshipped during the next 3 days, that is, from 4th to 6th day of Navratri.

2 C. Science behind worshipping Shri Saraswatidevi during the last 3 days

2 C 1. Saraswatidevi, the Deity of knowledge : During the last 3 days of Navratri, the Energy of Shri Saraswatidevi is active in a greater proportion; hence we should worship Her during that period. Shri Saraswatidevi is the Deity of knowledge and art, that is, She is one who endows upon us knowledge and art. During these 3 days, we should try to increase our virtues, as without increase in virtues we will not be able to acquire the grace of Saraswatidevi and thus be unable to grasp the knowledge and art bestowed upon us. Hence, let us pledge to make efforts to develop our virtues. Since this Goddess is most important in our life as students, we should say Her prayer everyday. The student is a worshipper of knowledge and art. Thus, since the energy of Saraswatidevi, the Deity of knowledge and art is active in a greater proportion during the last 3 days of Navratri, as a student it is very important to worship Her during that period.

2 C 2. Virtues essential for acquiring blessings of Shri Saraswatidevi : In order to receive blessings of Saraswatidevi we should posses the following virtues.

2 C 2A. Learning attitude : Friends, Saraswatidevi showers Her blessings on those who are constantly in a state of learning. We do not possess knowledge of all subjects. If we have an attitude to learn, we can learn different things from various persons, as every person possesses different virtues, knowledge, and arts. In your class, somebody knows how to draw and paint nicely, someone can sing better, somebody is expert in mathematics. If we have a learning attitude, we can learn different things from different students in our class.

2 C 2B. Intense yearning : We must have intense yearning to acquire knowledge and art. Let us pray to Saraswatidevi that, ‘Provide me with such intense yearning for knowledge, that in spite of facing several obstacles I shall be successful in acquiring knowledge.’

2 C 2C. Take guidance : To acquire knowledge about any subject, we should always take guidance from experts in that subject.

2 C 2D. Perseverance : Perseverance means taking constant efforts to acquire particular knowledge. Some children abandon the efforts to learn something, if they cannot understand it easily. Let us vow to imbibe the virtue of perseverance this Navratri.

2 C 2E. Behave as per Dharma : Some students copy answers written by other students in order to score more marks. This is a sort of theft and is against Dharma (Righteousness). Shri Saraswatidevi will never bless such a student. She showers Her blessings only on those who behave according to Dharma. Let us pray to Saraswatidevi, “Help me to always behave according to Dharma.”

2 C 2F. Humility : Without possessing the quality of humility, we cannot acquire knowledge and art. The knowledge appears suitable only to him who is humble. Saraswatidevi also loves the student who is humble. Friends, don’t you want to be liked by Saraswatidevi ? Then, let us resolve to acquire this virtue and pledge to behave with humility from today.

2 C 2G. Sharing knowledge with others : Friends, when we acquire some knowledge or art, the real pleasure lies in sharing it with others. Samarth Ramadas Swami has said that whatever knowledge you acquire, must be shared with others. Some students who do not follow this are called selfish. Saraswatidevi does not like such students.

Friends, let us try to possess all above virtues, only then it will mean celebrating Navratri festival in its real sense.

2 C 3. Features of the idol of Shri Saraswatidevi

2 C 3A. Four arms of the idol : The four arms represent four directions and indicate that the Goddess is all-encompassing.

2 C 3B. Holy books in Her hands : Goddess is a medium of acquiring knowledge. We can acquire knowledge by worshipping Her.

2 C 3C. Japmala (Chanting beads) in Her hand : This is a symbol of concentration. When you concentrate, you are able to acquire knowledge faster.

2 C 3D. Veena : Veena is a musical instrument. When we listen to music, we feel blissful and peaceful. When we acquire knowledge, we can actually experience bliss.

2 C 3E. Various ornaments of the Goddess : Ornaments are a symbol of prosperity. We can become prosperous by worshipping the Goddess.

Friends, today we have studied the essential virtues required for worshipping Shri Saraswatidevi and acquiring Her grace. We have also understood the significance of the various substances held in Her hand. So today, we will share this information with others.

3. Goddesses and their functions

A. Shri Mahasaraswati – Creation of the Universe

B. Shri Mahalakshmi – Maintenance

C. Shri Mahakali – Overcoming obstacles and destruction of enemies

4. Worshipping the Goddess

4 A. Tilak : Apply tilak (vermillion) to the Goddess using forefinger.

4 B. Flowers that attract the Goddess and Her Principle

 Shri Durgadevi  Mogara (Arabian jasmine)
 Shri Lakshmi   Rose
 Shri Saraswati  Ratarani (Night-blooming Cestrum)
 Shri Bhavani  Bhui Kamal (Lotus)
 Shri Ambamata  Parijat

1. The flowers to should be offered to the Goddess in proportion of one or nine and in a circular fashion.

2. Jasmine scent should be applied to Goddess.

3. The circumambulation pradakshina (circumambulation) around the Goddess should be performed in proportion of one or nine.

4 C. Goddesses and colours attracting them

Shri Durgadevi Red
Shri Lakshmi Yellow
Shri Saraswati White
Shri Kalika Purple

4 D. Why does the Goddess have 8 arms ? : The Goddess with 8 arms has weapons in her hands. The Goddess with 8 arms is called as Ashtabhujadevi, and is the destroyer form of Goddess.

4 E. Asking for Jogava with Goddess : Jogava (Alms asked by devotees of Goddess) is a kind of Dasya-bhakti (Devotion unto God as a servitor). In this, one has to surrender to the Goddess and forget one’s existence, and thus the ego becomes minimum. A bhav (spiritual emotion) of ‘I am the servant of the Goddess’ is developed.

4 F. The importance of ornaments of the Goddess : Friends, as per our Bharatiya culture every woman is a form of Goddess. Goddess has adorned all the ornaments. Goddess has bestowed women with a protection sheath in the form of ornaments in order to endow them with Her Divine energy.

So dear friends, if we ensure that every thought and action of ours is as per the wish of the Goddess, then not only will we be celebrating a fruitful Navratri, our qualities will increase and help us lead a blissful life ahead, is it not?

How to celebrate a pollution-free Navratri ?

Avoid the following acts during Navratri

1. Avoid use of thermocol : Many people use thermocol in the decoration of the Goddess. Thermocol does not dissolve in water. If burnt, it causes air pollution. Hence, its use should be avoided.

2. Do not burst fire crackers : It is inappropriate to burst fire crackers while carrying the idol home. The Goddess does not like sound pollution. By bursting fire crackers the Principle of Goddess gets destroyed and environment gets polluted.

3. Do not play film songs : It is inappropriate to play film songs before the idol of Goddess. Devotion and bhav (spiritual emotion) towards the Goddess will never develop through the music of film songs. Hence, we should oppose this.

4. Avoid dancing with unpleasant gestures : To perform Garba to the tune of film songs is wrong. It will not develop bhav and devotion towards the Goddess. Few individuals dance making ugly gestures while performing Garba. Friends, we should educate people against these wrong acts.

Celebrate Navratri in the following manner

1. Pollution-free decoration : Friends, use paper products while decorating the place where the idol is to be installed. Use festoons of flowers and leaves. These easily degrade in nature and do not cause any pollution.

2. Appropriate way to carry the idol to the place of installation : While carrying the idol, chant “Shri Durgadevyai Namah !”. Say chants hailing the Goddess.

3. Play devotional songs : When people listen to devotional songs, their bhav and devotion unto the Goddess is awakened and they experience Bliss.

4. Perform Garba on the tunes of devotional songs : While performing Garba, play devotional songs praising the Goddess in a ‘trital’ manner. While performing Garba, we should forget our own existence and get absorbed in the devotional songs of the Goddess.

         Friends, let us stop the inappropriate practices taking place during Navratri. Let us, and acquire knowledge and art by acquiring the blessings of Saraswatidevi. Let us obtain spiritual benefit by celebrating Navratri festival in the appropriate way as prescribed in the scriptures.

 

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