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Most of the people don’t know that Hinduism is not a religion, its a way of life. Hinduism is a science contributed by various saints as a scientist. There are few customs or rules which we follow in our day to day life but we spend our time thinking about why these customs are important or why it is necessary to be followed.

This post will share some scientific reasons behind the Hindu customs which we follow commonly.

      1. Taking a parikrama around the idol

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

Ever wondered why we visit temples? yeah to worship the lord but why there is a place called temple why we need to visit the temple, what changes does it bring on us?

The temple itself is a powerhouse of positive energy where magnetic and electric wave distributes north/south pole thrust. The idol is placed in the core center of the temple, known as Garbhagriha or Moolasthanam. This is where earth’s magnetic waves are found to be maximum. This positive energy is important for the human body scientifically.

      2. Taking a parikrama around the idol

Lord shiva meditating defines purushastha
Lord shiva meditating defines purushastha

There are copper plates buried beneath the idol, these plates absorb earth’s magnetic waves and then radiate to the surrounding. This magnetic wave contains positive energy which is essential for the human body which helps the human body to make vise and positive thinking and decisions.

      3. Chewing the tulsi leaves

According to the shastra, Tusli is considered as Lord Vishnu’s wife and chewing tulsi leaves is a mark of disrespect. But according to science chewing tulsi leaves can decay your death and will discoloration of the tooth. The tulsi leaves contain loads of mercury and iron which is not good for the tooth.

     4. Usage of Panchamrit

Panchamrit contains 5 ingredients i.e milk, curd, ghee, honey, and mishri. These ingredients when mixed acts like a skin cleanser, improves the health of hair, acts as an immunity booster, brain vitalizer and best for pregnancy.

     5. Fasting

Fasting is good according to Ayurveda. A human body consumes various toxins and other unwanted stuff every day, to cleanse it fasting is necessary. Fasting allows the stomach to get the digestive system to rest and then automatic body cleaning starts which is necessary.

Source: The Speaking Tree

Four stages of life in hinduism - The Hindu FAQS

There are 4 Stages of Life in Hinduism. These are called “ashramas” and every man should ideally go through each of these stages:

1. Brahmacharya – Bachelor, student phase of life
2. Grihastha – Married life phase and duties of maintaining a Household
3. Vanaprastha – Retirement phase and handing over responsibilities to next generation.
4. Sannyasa – Phasee of giving up material desires and prejudices. Wandering Ascetic Stage

Four stages of life in hinduism - The Hindu FAQS
Four stages of life in Hinduism – The Hindu FAQS

Brahmacharya – Student Phase:

This is a period of taking formal education from guru about art, warfare, science, philosophy, scriptures etc. Previously, the average lifespan was considered as 100 years so this phase is the first quarter or 25 years. At this phase, young young male leaves home to stay in gurukul with a guru and attain both spiritual and practical knowledge. During this period, he is called a Brahmachari and is prepared for his future profession.

Grihastha – The Married Family Man:

This stage is the second quarter of one’s life (25-50 years of age) begins when a man gets married, and undertakes the responsibility for earning a living raising kids and supporting his family. At this stage, Hinduism supports the pursuit of wealth (artha) as a necessity, and indulgence in sexual pleasure (kama), under certain defined social and cosmic norms. At this stage, the children of this man are in Brahmacharya phase.

Vanaprastha – Retirement stage:

This stage of a man begins when his duty as a householder comes to an end. This is a third phase of life (51-75 approximately). In this stage, the person handover the responsibilities to next generation. He has become a grandfather, his children are grown up, and have established lives of their own. At this age, he give up his wealth, security, sexual pleasures. At this time, the previous generation enters Grihasta phase.

He is allowed to take his wife along but is supposed to maintain little contact with the family. This kind of life is indeed very harsh and cruel for an aged person. No wonder, this third ashrama is now nearly obsolete.

Sanyasa – The Wandering Recluse:

At this stage, the man give up every material desires and detaches himself from all the material relationships. He supposed to be totally devoted to God. He is a sanyasi, he has no home, no other attachment; he has renounced all desires, fears, hopes, duties and responsibilities. He is virtually merged with God, all his worldly ties are broken, and his sole concern becomes attaining moksha or release from the circle of birth and death. At this stage, the previous generation is entering Vanaprastha stage where as the generation before them are entering Grihastha stage. And the cycle goes on.

sarvesham swastir bhavatu - The Hindu FAQs

Om Sarvesham Swastir bhavatu – in sanskrit with meaning

Sarvesham swastir bhavatu mantra is a peace shloka which generally says that may there be peace and happiness in everybody’s life. It prays for well being and auspiciousness for all. The detailed line by line explaination is given below.

sarvesham swastir bhavatu - The Hindu FAQs
sarvesham swastir bhavatu – The Hindu FAQs

Sanskrit:

ॐ सर्वेशां स्वस्तिर्भवतु ।
सर्वेशां शान्तिर्भवतु ।
सर्वेशां पुर्णंभवतु ।
सर्वेशां मङ्गलंभवतु ।

English Translation

Om sarveshaam swastir bhavatu |
Sarveshaam shaantir bhavatu |
Sarveshaam purnam bhavatu |
Sarveshaam mangalam bhavatu |

Meaning:
1: May there be Well-Being in All,
2: May there be Peace in All,
3: May there be Fulfilment in All,
4: May there be Auspiciousness in All.

sarve bhavantu sukhinah - Hindu FAQs
sarve bhavantu sukhinah – Hindu FAQs

Sanskrit

ॐ सर्वे भवन्तु सुखिनः
सर्वे सन्तु निरामयाः ।
सर्वे भद्राणि पश्यन्तु
मा कश्चिद्दुःखभाग्भवेत् ।
ॐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ॥

English Translation

Om sarve bhavantu Sukhinah
Sarve santu Niramayaah |
Sarve bhadraani pashyantu
Maa kashcid duhkha Bhaagbhavet |
Om Shaantih Shaantih Shaantih ||

Meaning:
1: May All become Happy,
2: May All be Free from Illness.
3: May All See what is Auspicious,
4: May no one Suffer.
5: Om Peace, Peace, Peace.

Also read: Om Asato maa Sadgamaya in sanskrit with meaning

Om asato maa - The Hindu FAQs
Om asato maa - The Hindu FAQs
Mantra from Upanishad – Om asato maa

Sanskrit

ॐ असतो मा सद्गमय ।
तमसो मा ज्योतिर्गमय ।
मृत्योर्मा अमृतं गमय ।
ॐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ॥

English Translation

Om asato maa Sadgamaya |
Tamaso maa jyotirgamaya |
Mrityor maa amrtam gamaya |
Om shaanti shaanti shaanti ||

Meaning:
1: Om (Lord), take me from unreality of the bondage of the material world, towards the reality of the eternal self,
2: Take me from darkness of Ignorance towards the Light of Spiritual Knowledge,
3: Take away my fear of death due to the bondage of the mortal world, and lead me towards knowledge of the Immortal self beyond death,
4: Om, Peace, Peace, Peace…

The three times of Peace is for the three miseries called as tapatraya which are Adidaivika, Adibhautika and Adhyatmika.

Adhibhautika means related to bhuta or living being
Adhidaivika means related to daiva or deva, unseen force like fate.
Adhyatmika means related to atma or the mind

Also read: Om Sarvesham Swastir bhavatu with meaning

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Ravana - Hindu FAQs

Ravana (रावण) is the main antagonist in Ramayana. He was a Rakshasa, King of Lanka and the greatest devotee of lord Shiva. He was a great schoar, capable ruler, mastero of Veena. He was described to have ten heads, Which represents his knowledge of four vedas and six shastras. His main ambition was to defeat and dominate all the devas. He kept Lord Shani as his prisoner. He kidnapped Lord Rama’s wife Sita as a revenge for having cut of his sisters Shurpanakha’s nose by Lakshmana.

Ravana - Hindu FAQs
Ravana Photo Credits: To the Owner

Ravana was a son of Vishrava (son of Pulastya) and Kaikesi (daughter of Sumali and Thataka).
He had six brothers and two sisters.

1. Lord Kubera – Vaishravana or Kuber was an older half brother of Ravana. He got a boon from Lord brahma to be a Guardian of Heavenly Wealth. He was the ruler of lanka before he was overthrown by Ravana.

2. Vibhishana – He was a younger brother of Ravana, and a noble character, spoe without fear and kind hearted brother who adviced Ravana to return Sita to Lord Rama uphold Dharma or get ready to bare the consequences. When his brother did not listen to his advice, Vibhishana joined Rama’s army. Later, when Rama defeated Ravana, Rama crowned Vibhishana as the king of Lanka. A great follower of Lord Ram and one of the most important characters in the Ramayana.

3. Kumbhakarna – He was a younger brother of Ravana, He was considered so pious, jovial, intelligent and unchallenged warrior in battle that Indra, the king of gods, was jealous of him and his strength. When he was asking for a from Lord Brahma, his tongue was tied by goddess Saraswati, who was acting on Indra’s request; because of which, he intended to ask for Nirdevatvam(annihilation of Devas) and instead asked for Nidravatvam(sleep). His request was granted. However, his brother Ravana asked Brahma to undo this boon as it was in reality a curse. Lord Brahma mitigated the power of the boon by making Kumbhakarna sleep for six months and being awake for rest six months of a year. During the war with Lord Ram, Kumbhakarna was untimely awakened from his sleep. He tried to persuade Lord Ravana to open negotiations with Lord Ram and return Sita to him. But he too failed to mend the ways of Lord Ravana. However, bound by a brother’s duty, he fought on the side of Lord Ravana and was killed in the battlefield.

kumbhakaran - HinduFAQs
Kumbhakaran, Photo Credits: To the owner

4. King Khara – Khara was a king of Janasthan, the northern kingdom of Lanka in the mainland. He had a son, Makaraksha, fought on his uncle, Ravana’s side, and was killed by Rama.

5. Dushana Who was killed by Rama.

6. King Ahiravan – King of the Underworld ruled by the rakshasas, Ahiravana was the son of sage Vishrava whi kidnapped Rama and Lakshmana to scarifice them to goddess Mahamaya. But Hanuman saved their life by killing Mahiravana and his army.

7. Kumbhini – Sister of Lord Ravana and the wife of the demon Madhu, King of Mathura, she was the mother of Lavanasura (an Asura who was killed by Shatrughna, the youngest brother of Lord Ram).

8. Surpanakha – Rishi Vishrava and his second wife, Kaikesi was the sister of Lord Ravana. She was beautiful as her mother and she also secretly married the Danava prince Vidyutjihva.

 

Ravana Had 7 sons from his 3 wives.
He had seven sons from his three wives:

1. Meghnaad who was also known as Indrajit because he defeated Lord Indra, He was the most powerful son of Ravana.

Indrajeet - Hindu FAQs
Indrajeet – Son of Ravana was a Atimaharati Credits : jubjubjedi.deviantart.com

2. Atikaya who was the younger brother of Indrajit and was extremely powerful. Once upon a time when he infuriated Lord Shiva atop Mount Kailasha, the deity hurled his Trishul at Atikaya, but Atikaya caught the Trishul in mid air and folded his hands before the lord in a humble manner. Lord Shiva was pleased at seeing this, and benevolently blessed Atikaya with the secrets of archery and divine weapons. Due to his extraordinary skills and superiority, he had to be slain by Lakshmana.

3. Akshayakumara the youngest son of Lord Ravana whofought valiantly with Lord Hanuman. Though highly impressed by the young Akshaykumara’s valor and skills, Lord Hanuman had to kill him in the war against adharma.

4. Devantaka who was killed by Lord Hanuman during the war.

5. Narantaka who as in charge of an army consisting of 720 million rakshas (demons). He with his army were eventually killed by the monkey prince Angada, Son of Bali.

6. Trishira He engaged Lord Ram in a fight and hit him with a number of arrows. At this Lord Ram told him that the arrows were nothing but like flowers being showered on his body. Thereafter, a duel ensued, in which Lord Ram killed Trishira.

7. Prahasta Chief Commander of Lord Ravana’s army in Lanka. He was killed by Lakshamana. Prahastha was reborn as Purochana in the Mahabharata as Duryodhana’s trusted aide and who was responsible for the Lakshagraha incident.

 

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Yoga - Hindu FAQs

What is Yoga?

On the occasion of International Yoga day which is on 21 July, we are happy to share some basic faq’s about yoga and the types of yoga. The word ‘yoga’ is taken from the Sanskrit root ‘yug’ which means union. The ultimate goal of yoga is to achieve union between the individual consciousness (atma) and the universal divine (paramatma).

Yoga is an ancient spiritual science that seeks to bring the mind, body and spirit in harmony or balance. You can find a parallels for this in many different philosophies: Buddha’s ‘middle path’ – too much or too little of anything is bad; or the Chinese yin-yang balance where seemingly opposite forces are interconnected and interdependent. Yoga is a science whereby we bring unity to duality.

Yoga - Hindu FAQs
Yoga – Hindu FAQs

Yoga is commonly viewed in our everyday  encounters as “excercising flexibility”. These two words have a profound  meaning although most people that state it are referring to the  physical realm. The meaning of these words grow on the practitioner with  experience. Yoga is the science of awareness.
What are Vedic Texts?
There are several thousand vedic texts, but here below is a quick synopsis of the parent/primary texts.

Vedas:
Rig :  Defines the concepts of the 5 element theory
Yajur : Defines the methods to harness the 5 elements
Sama : Defines the frequencies associated with the 5 elements and their harmonics
Atharva : Defines the methods to deploy the 5 elements

Vedanga:
A collection of doctrines of grammar, phonetics, etymology and the science of language use to write the Vedas and UpaVedas

Upavedas:
Refers  to specific subset extentions of the vedas. More of a practitioners  manual. Here below are the most important to our discussion.

Ayurveda:
Medical science

Dhanurveda:
Martial Science

Upanishads:
Refers to a collection of texts that may be viewed as the final chapters of the vedas

Sutras:
Refers to a practitioner’s manual extracted from the Vedas. Identical to the Upavedas. The one of greatest interest to us being

Patanjali Yoga Sutra:
The ultimate doctrine of Yoga

Paths of Yoga:
There are 9 paths of Yoga, or 9 ways that union can be achieved:
Yoga  paths refer to the actual method of practice to experience the state of  yoga. Here below are the most common paths and their significance.

(1) Bhakta Yoga: Yoga via devotion
(2) Karma Yoga:  Yoga via service
(3) Hatha Yoga: Yoga via balance of Sun and Moon energies
(4) Kundalini Yoga: Yoga via harnessing the power of creative latent energy in all of us
(5) Raja Yoga: Yoga via breathing
(6) Tantra Yoga: Yoga via balancing the male/female polarities
(7) Gyana Yoga: Yoga via intellect
(8) Nad Yoga: Yoga via vibration
(9) Laya Yoga: Yoga via music

Yoga - Hindu FAQs
Yoga – Hindu FAQs

The sage Patanjali defines yoga as “Chitta vritti nirodha” or cessasation of mental fluctuation (simply put – control over the wandering mind). In the Yoga Sutra, he divided Raja Yoga into Ashta Anga or Eight Limbs. The 8 limbs of yoga are:

1. Yama:
These are ‘ethical rules’ which should be observed to live a good and pure life. The yamas focus on our behavior and conduct. They bring out our true underlying nature of compassion, integrity and kindness. Consist of 5 ‘abstinences’:
(a) Ahimsa (Non-violence and non-injury) :
This includes being considerate in all actions, and not thinking ill of others or wishing them harm. Do not cause pain to any living creature in thought, deed or action.

(b) Satya (Truthfulness or non-lying) :
Speak the truth, but with consideration and love. Also, be truthful to yourself about your thoughts and motivations.

(c) Brahmacharya (Celibacy or control over sexuality) :
Though some schools interpret this as celibacy or total abstinence from sexual activity, it actually refers to restraint and responsible sexual behavior including faithfulness to your spouse.

(d) Asteya (Non-stealing, non-covetousness) : This includes not taking anything that has not been freely given, including someone’s time or energy.

(e) Aparigraha (Non-possessiveness) : Do not hoard or collect material goods. Take only that which you have earned.

2. Niyama:
These are ‘laws’ which we need to follow to ‘cleanse’ ourselves internally. The 5 observances are:
(a) Suacha (Cleanliness) :
This refers to both external cleanliness (baths) and internal cleanliness (achieved through shatkarma, pranayama and asanas). It also includes cleansing the mind of negative emotions such as anger, hatred, lust, greed etc.

(b) Santosha (Contentment) :
Be content and fulfilled with what you have instead of constantly comparing yourself to others or wishing for more.

(c) Tapas (Heat or fire) :
This means the fire of determination to do the right thing. It helps us ‘burn up’ desire and negative energies in the heat of effort and austerity.

(d) Svadhyaya (Self study) :
Examine yourself – your thoughts, your actions, your deeds. Truly understand your own motivations, and do everything with complete self-awareness and mindfulness. This includes accepting our limitations and working on our shortcomings.

(e) Isvar Pranidhana (Surrender to God) :
Recognize that the divine is omnipresent and dedicate all your actions to this divine force. Do not try to control everything – have faith in a greater force and simply accept what is.

3. Asana:
Postures. These are typically drawn from nature and animals (e.g. Downward Dog, Eagle, Fish Pose etc). Asanas have 2 characteristics:Sukham (comfort) and Stirtha (steadiness). Practicing yoga postures (asanas): increases flexibility and strength, massages the internal organs, improves posture, calms the mind and detoxifies the body. It is necessary to make the body limber, strong and disease-free through regular practice of asanas in order to free the mind for the ultimate goal of meditation. It is believed that there are 84 lakh asanas, of which about 200 are used in regular practice today.

4. Pranayama:
Prana (vital energy or life force) is intrinsically linked to the breath. Pranayama aims to regulate the breath in order to control the mind so the practitioner can attain a higher state of psychic energy. By controlling the breath, one can gain mastery over the 5 senses and, eventually, over the mind.
The 4 stages of pranayama are: inhalation (pooraka), exhalation (rechaka), internal retention (antar kumbhaka) and external retention (bahar kumbhaka).

5. Pratyahara:
Withdrawal of the senses from attachment to external objects. Most of our problems – emotional, physical, health-related – are a result of our own mind. It is only by gaining control over desire that one can gain inner peace.

6. Dharana:
Stilling the mind by dedicated concentration on a single point. A good point of concentration is the symbol Aum or Om.

7. Dhyana:
Meditation. Focussing on concentrating on the divine. By meditating on divinity, the practitioner hopes to imbibe the pure qualities of the divine force into him/herself.

8. Samadhi:
Bliss. This is truly ‘yoga’ or the ultimate union with the divine.

Happy Yoga day to all!

Disclaimer: All images, designs or videos in this page are copyright of their respective owners. We don’t own have these images/designs/videos. We collect them from search engine and other sources to be used as ideas for you. No copyright infringement is intended. If you have reason to believe that one of our content is violating your copyrights, please do not take any legal action as we are trying to spread the knowledge. You can contact us directly to be credited or have the item removed from the site.

Shiva and Parvati as Ardhanarisvara

There is a concept of prakriti and purush in Hinduism. Its a bit tough to explain but let me try to explain you in short. (I will write a big post of prakriti and purush explaining each and every small details later)

Samkhya:  Samkhya or Sankhya is one of the six orthodox schools of Hindu philosophy. Samkhya is strongly dualist.
It regards the universe as consisting of two realities, Pursha (consciousness) and Prakriti (matter).
a living being or Jiva is that state in which purusha is bonded to prakriti in some form. This fusion, state the Samkhya scholars, led to the emergence of buddhi (“spiritual awareness”) and ahankara (individualized ego consciousness).

The universe is described by this school as one created by Purusha-Prakriti entities infused with various permutations and combinations of variously enumerated elements, senses, feelings, activity and mind.

During the state of imbalance, one of more constituents overwhelm the others, creating a form of bondage, particularly of the mind. The end of this imbalance, bondage is called liberation, or moksha by Samkhya school of Hinduism.

Simplify:
Its a big topic, so i’ll just simplify it for you. Just learn this,
Prakriti = material reality and Purusha = spiritual reality

Material reality is to please our five senses.  Sight, Hearing, Taste, Smell and touch are the five senses that we have. We work and do everything to please them. Every little and big thing you do in your life is to please one or all of these. From cleaning your house to visiting romantic places and to taste exotic foods.
Apart from this, material reality contains Art, Music, Sex, Pleasure, Prosperity, etc.

You will work hard, earn lot of money, your needs will increase, to keep up with them, you will work harder. It’s a loop. Human needs are unlimited, but the resources he have are always limited.
Material reality is impermanent; Sooner or later it withers away. Today you are eating the best food, tomorrow you may have a great financial loss and you won’t be able to afford what you can afford now. With this there comes a stage where you become restless, frustrated, pain, anxiety, stress, fear and all sorts of emotions.

So Now, Prakriti = material reality = Unstable

Purusha or spiritual growth is the ability to overpower these emotions so that one has the wisdom to appreciate and enjoy all things material without getting needy or clingy. One is happy when the material world favours us and not unhappy when it does not. This can only happen when material growth is accompanied by intellectual growth. Only intellectual growth can control emotional turmoil caused by dependence on material things.

So Now, Purusha = Spiritual reality = Stable

Prakriti Vs Purusha
Prakriti Vs Purusha

Ok i think you got the basic idea of Prakriti and Purusha. Now, Think of our human body. The heart is on the left side, so the side is unstable. and so that side i.e. the left side of a body is considered as Prakriti Side.
So eventually, the right side, being stable is Purusha Side.

Moving on, When any person wants to go to a temple, he want to go there to calm himself. Technically, to exit the material world and enter the Spiritual world.  So sit there, calm himself, to meditate, to pray. So if an individual wants to enter the spirituality i.e. the purusha, then why not to start from spiritual side of the body i.e. the purusha, the stable side, i.e the Right side..

Hope you got the answer.

Further info:

You can stop reading here. But if you are intrested in further understanding prakriti and purusha side, here is the small explaination.

Visit an temple or see any Hindu GOD’s photo. If the GOD’s right leg is on the ground, He or she represents the Purusha side.

Shiva and shakti are perfect blend of Purusha and Prakriti. SHIVA symbolises consciousness, the masculine principle.
SHAKTI symbolises the feminine principle, the activating power and energy.

Nataraja defines Purusha
Nataraja defines Purusha
Lord shiva meditating defines purushastha
Lord shiva meditating defines purushastha

In Ganesha’s Idol, even the tusk can tell you that that particular idol represents purusha side or Prakriti side.

This Idol of lord Ganesh signifies Purushartha
This Idol of lord Ganesh signifies Purushartha, as the tusk is on the right hand side of the idol’s body.

Likewise Saraswati and Lakshmi shows material reality which is Prakriti

Saraswati and Lakshmi shows material reality which is Prakriti
Saraswati and Lakshmi shows material reality which is Prakriti.

Vishnu shows perfect blend of Prakriti and Purusha…

Vishnu shows perfect blend of Prakriti and Purusha
Vishnu shows perfect blend of Prakriti and Purusha.

and last but not the least, our Trinity, which shows Lord Brahma as Prakriti, Vishnu as master of both prakriti and Purusha and Shiva as Purusha.

Hindu Trinity, which shows Lord Brahma as Prakriti, Vishnu as master of both prakriti and Purusha and Shiva as Purusha.
Hindu Trinity, which shows Lord Brahma as Prakriti, Vishnu as master of both prakriti and Purusha and Shiva as Purusha.

Credits: Image credits to the real owners, Photographers, Artists, Pinterest and Google Images. The Hindu FAQs doesnot own any images.

Sushrut

Hinduism had many scholar and brilliant sages who gave much knowledge of science, Mathematics, Astronomy, cosmoogy, Medicines etc from their work. Here is the list of 11 Hindu sages who did remarkable work in the field of Science, in no perticular order.

1) Aryabhatta

Aryabhatta
Aryabhatta

Aryabhata was the first in the line of great mathematician-astronomers from the classical age of Indian mathematics and Indian astronomy. He is the author of several treatises on mathematics and astronomy.
His major work, Aryabhatiya, a compendium of mathematics and astronomy, was extensively referred to in the Indian mathematical literature and has survived to modern times. The mathematical part of the Aryabhatiya covers arithmetic, algebra, plane trigonometry, and spherical trigonometry. It also contains continued fractions, quadratic equations, sums-of-power series, and a table of sines.
He formulated the process of calculating the motion of planets and the time of eclipses.
2) Bharadwaj

Rishi Bharadwaj
Rishi Bharadwaj

Acharya Bharadwaj is the writer and founder Ayurveda and mechanical sciences. He authored the ” Yantra Sarvasva ” which includes astonishing and outstanding discoveries in aviation science, space science and flying machines.

Also read:
Was first discovered by Hindus Ep IV : Time dilation

3) Baudhayana

Rishi Baudhayana
Rishi Baudhayana

Baudhayana was the author of the Baudhayana sutras, which cover dharma, daily ritual, mathematics, etc.

He was the author of the earliest Sulba Sutra—appendices to the Vedas giving rules for the construction of altars—called the Baudhayana Sulbasutra. These are notable from the point of view of mathematics, for containing several important mathematical results, including giving a value of pi to some degree of precision, and stating a version of what is now known as the Pythagorean theorem.

Sequences associated with primitive Pythagorean triples have been named Baudhayana sequences. These sequences have been used in cryptography as random sequences and for the generation of keys.

Also read:
Was first discovered by Hindus Ep I : Pythagoras theorem

4) Bhaskaracharya

Rishi Bhaskaracharya
Rishi Bhaskaracharya

Bhaskaracharya was an Indian mathematician and astronomer. his works represent a significant contribution to mathematical and astronomical knowledge in the 12th century.  His main work Siddhanta Shiromani deal with arithmetic, algebra, mathematics of the planets, and spheres respectively.
Bhaskaracharya’s work on calculus predates Newton and Leibniz by over half a millennium. He is particularly known in the discovery of the principles of differential calculus and its application to astronomical problems and computations. While Newton and Leibniz have been credited with differential and integral calculus, there is strong evidence to suggest that Bhaskaracharya was a pioneer in some of the principles of differential calculus. He was perhaps the first to conceive the differential coefficient and differential calculus.

Also read:
Was first discovered by Hindus Ep III : Value of Pi

5) Charak

Rishi Charak
Rishi Charak

Acharya Charak has been crowned as the Father of Medicine. His renowned work, the ” Charak Samhita “, is considered as an encyclopedia of Ayurveda. His principles, diagoneses, and cures retain their potency and truth even after a couple of millennia. When the science of anatomy was confused with different theories in Europe , Acharya Charak revealed through his innate genius and enquiries the facts on human anatomy, embryology, pharmacology, blood circulation and diseases like diabetes, tuberculosis, heart disease, etc. In the ” Charak Samhita ” he has described the medicinal qualities and functions of 100,000 herbal plants. He has emphasized the influence of diet and activity on mind and body. He has proved the correlation of spirituality and physical health contributed greatly to diagnostic and curative sciences. He has also prescribed and ethical charter for medical practitioners two centuries prior to the Hippocratic oath. Through his genius and intuition, Acharya Charak made landmark contributions to Ayurvedal. He forever remains etched in the annals of history as one of the greatest and noblest of rishi-scientists.
6) Kanad

Rishi Kanada
Rishi Kanada

Kanada was a Hindu sage and philosopher who founded the philosophical school of Vaisheshika and authored the text Vaisheshika Sutra.

His primary area of study was Rasavadam, considered to be a type of alchemy. He is said to have believed that all living beings are composed of five elements: water, fire, earth, air, Aether (classical element). Vegetables have only water, insects have water and fire, birds have water, fire, earth and air, and Humans, the top of the creation, have ether—the sense of discrimination (time, space, mind) are one.

He says, “Every object of creation is made of atoms which in turn connect with each other to form molecules.” His statement ushered in the Atomic Theory for the first time ever in the world. Kanad has also described the dimension and motion of atoms and their chemical reactions with each other.
7) Kapil

Rishi Kapil
Rishi Kapil

He gifted the world with the Sankhya School of Thought. His pioneering work threw light on the nature and principles of the ultimate Soul (Purusha), primal matter (Prakruti) and creation. His concept of transformation of energy and profound commentaries on atma, non-atma and the subtle elements of the cosmos places him in an elite class of master achievers – incomparable to the discoveries of other cosmologists. On his assertion that Prakruti, with the inspiration of Purusha, is the mother of cosmic creation and all energies, he contributed a new chapter in the science of cosmology.
8) Nagarjuna

Rishi Nagarjuna
Rishi Nagarjuna

Nagarjna’s dedicated research for twelve years produced maiden discoveries and inventions in the faculties of chemistry and metallurgy. Textual masterpieces like ” Ras Ratnakar ,” “Rashrudaya” and “Rasendramangal” are his renowned contributions to the science of chemistry. Nagarjuna had also said to have discovered the alchemy of transmuting base metals into gold.
9) Patanjali  

Patanjali
Patanjali

patanjali prescribed the control of prana (life breath) as the means to control the body, mind and soul. This subsequently rewards one with good health and inner happiness. Acharya Patanjali ‘s 84 yogic postures effectively enhance the efficiency of the respiratory, circulatory, nervous, digestive and endocrine systems and many other organs of the body. Yoga has eight limbs where Acharya Patanjali shows the attainment of the ultimate bliss of God in samadhi through the disciplines of: yam, niyam, asan, pranayam, pratyahar, dhyan and dharna.
10) Sushrut

Sushrut
Sushrut

Sushruta is an ancient Indian surgeon commonly attributed to as the author of the treatise Sushruta Samhita. He is dubbed as the “founding father of surgery” and the Sushrut Samhita is identified as one of the best and outstanding commentary on Medical Science of Surgery.

Sushruta in his book Sushruta Samhita discusses surgical techniques of making incisions, probing, extraction of foreign bodies, alkali and thermal cauterization, tooth extraction, excisions, and trocars for draining abscess, draining hydrocele and ascitic fluid, the removal of the prostate gland, urethral stricture dilatation, vesiculolithotomy, hernia surgery, caesarian section, management of haemorrhoids, fistulae, laparotomy and management of intestinal obstruction, perforated intestines, and accidental perforation of the abdomen with protrusion of omentum and the principles of fracture management, viz., traction, manipulation, appositions and stabilization including some measures of rehabilitation and fitting of prosthetics. It enumerates six types of dislocations, twelve varieties of fractures, and classification of the bones and their reaction to the injuries, and gives a classification of eye diseases including cataract surgery.
11) Varahmihir

Varahmihir
Varahmihir

Varamihir is a renowned astrologer and astronomer who was honored with a special decoration and status as one of the nine gems in the court of King Vikramaditya in Avanti ( Ujjain ). Varahamihir’ s book “panchsiddhant” holds a prominent place in the realm of astronomy. He notes that the moon and planets are lustrous not because of their own light but due to sunlight. In the ” Bruhad Samhita ” and ” Bruhad Jatak ,” he has revealed his discoveries in the domains of geography, constellation, science, botany and animal science. In his treatise on botanical science, Varamihir presents cures for various diseases afflicting plants and trees.

Also read:
Was first discovered by Hindus Ep II : Sphericity of Earth

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Khajuraho Temple's erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings

The Khajuraho Group of Monuments is a group of Hindu and Jain temples in Madhya Pradesh, India. They are one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in India. The temples are famous for their Nagara-style architectural symbolism and their erotic sculptures.

Most Khajuraho temples were built between 950 and 1050 CE by the Chandela dynasty. Historical records note that Khajuraho temple site had 85 temples by 12th century, spread over 20 square kilometers. Of these, only about 20 temples have survived, spread over 6 square kilometers. Of the various surviving temples, the Kandariya temple is decorated with a profusion of sculptures with intricate details, symbolism and expressiveness of ancient Indian art.

1) Khajuraho Temple

Khajuraho Temple Madhya Pradesh
Khajuraho Temple Madhya Pradesh

2)  Erotic carvings on a wall of Khajuraho temple

Khajuraho Temple's erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings
Khajuraho Temple’s erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings

3) More beautiful carvings

Khajuraho Temple's erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings
Khajuraho Temple’s erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings

4) Detaile carvings showing body postures

Khajuraho Temple's erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings
Khajuraho Temple’s erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings

5) Incredible detailed carvings on one of the wall

Khajuraho Temple's erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings
Khajuraho Temple’s erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings

6) Some carvings are damaged with time

Khajuraho Temple's erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings
Khajuraho Temple’s erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings

7) Carvings showing various position of intimacy

Khajuraho Temple's erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings
Khajuraho Temple’s erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings

8) A visitor admiring the carvings

Khajuraho Temple's erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings
Khajuraho Temple’s erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings

9) Carving showing love relation in a couple

Khajuraho Temple's erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings
Khajuraho Temple’s erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings

10) Carving also shows some animals

Khajuraho Temple's erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings
Khajuraho Temple’s erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings

11) one of the Kamasutra position

Khajuraho Temple's erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings
Khajuraho Temple’s erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings

12) Beauty……

Khajuraho Temple's erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings
Khajuraho Temple’s erotic sculptures and Beautiful carvings

Credits:
Image credits to the Original Photographers and Google Images. The hindu FAQs does not own any Images.

The 10 Mahavidyas in Hinduism

The 10 Mahavidyas are Wisdom Goddesses, who represent a spectrum of  feminine divinity, from horrific goddesses at one end, to the gentle at  the other.

The name Mahavidyas comes from the Sanskrit roots, with maha meaning ‘great’ and vidya meaning, ‘revelation, manifestation, knowledge, or wisdom

Mahavidyas (Great Wisdoms) or Dasha-Mahavidyas are a group of ten aspects of the Divine Mother Durga or Kali herself or Devi in Hinduism. The 10 Mahavidyas are Wisdom Goddesses, who represent a spectrum of feminine divinity, from horrific goddesses at one end, to the gentle at the other.

Shaktas believe, “the one Truth is sensed in ten different facets; the Divine Mother is adored and approached as ten cosmic personalities,” the Dasa-Mahavidya (“ten-Mahavidyas”). The Mahavidyas are considered Tantric in nature, and are usually identified as:

Kali:

Kali is the Hindu goddess associated with empowerment
Kali is the Hindu goddess associated with empowerment

The ultimate form of Brahman, “Devourer of Time” (Supreme Deity of Kalikula systems)
kali is the Hindu goddess associated with empowerment, shakti. She is the fierce aspect of the goddess Durga (Parvati). The name Kali comes from kāla, which means black, time, death, lord of death

Tara: The Protector

Tara The Protector
Tara The Protector

The Goddess as Guide and Protector, or Who Saves.Who offers the ultimate knowledge which gives salvation (also known as Neel Saraswati).
tara meaning “star”. As the star is seen as a beautiful but perpetually self-combusting thing, so Tara is perceived at core as the absolute, unquenchable hunger that propels all life.

Tripura Sundari (Shodashi):

Tripura Sundari
Tripura Sundari

The Goddess Who is “Beautiful in the Three Worlds” (Supreme Deity of Srikula systems) or Beautiful Goddess of the Three Cities; the “Tantric Parvati” or the “Moksha Mukta”.
As Shodashi, Tripurasundari is represented as a sixteen-year-old girl, and is believed to embody sixteen types of desire. Shodashi also refers to the sixteen syllable mantra, which consists of the fifteen syllable (panchadasakshari) mantra plus a final seed syllable.
Bhuvaneshvari: The Goddess Whose Body is the Cosmos

Bhuvaneshvari
Bhuvaneshvari

The Goddess as World Mother, or Whose Body is the Cosmos.
The Queen of the Universe. Bhuvaneshwari means the Queen or ruler of the Universe. She is the Divine Mother as the Queen of all the worlds. All the Universe is her body and all beings are ornaments on her infinite being. She carries all the worlds as a flowering of her own Self-nature. She is thus related to Sundari and to Rajarajeshwari, the supreme Lady of the Universe. She is capable of turning situations according to her wish. It is considered that even the navagrahas and Trimurti cannot stop her from doing anything.
Bhairavi: The Fierce Goddess

Bhairavi The Fierce Goddess
Bhairavi The Fierce Goddess

She is also called Shubhamkari, good mother to good people and terrible to bad ones. She is seen holding book, rosary, and making fear-dispelling and boon-conferring gestures. She is also known as Baala or Tripurabhairavi. It is believed that when Bhairavi entered the battle field, her horrible appearance made the demons become weak and very feeble, and it is also believed that most of the demons started panicking as soon as they saw her. Bhairavi is seen mainly as the Chandi in the Durga Saptashati version of slaying Shumbha and Nishumbha. However, she kills and drinks the blood of Chanda and Munda the Chieftains of asuras, so the Goddess Parvati gives her a boon that she would be called Chamundeshwari.
Chhinnamasta: The self-decapitated Goddess.

Chhinnamasta The self-decapitated Goddess.
Chhinnamasta The self-decapitated Goddess.

Chhinnamasta can be easily identified by her fearsome iconography. The self-decapitated goddess holds her own severed head in one hand, a scimitar in another. Three jets of blood spurt out of her bleeding neck and are drunk by her severed head and two attendants. Chhinnamasta is usually depicted standing on a copulating couple.
Chhinnamasta is associated with the concept of self-sacrifice as well as the awakening of the kundalini – spiritual energy. She is considered both as a symbol of self-control on sexual desire as well as an embodiment of sexual energy, depending upon interpretation. She symbolizes both aspects of Devi: a life-giver and a life-taker. Her legends emphasize her sacrifice – sometimes with a maternal element, her sexual dominance and her self-destructive fury.
Dhumavati: The Widow Goddess,or the Goddess of death.

Dhumavati The Widow Goddess
Dhumavati The Widow Goddess

She is often portrayed as an old, ugly widow, and is associated with things considered inauspicious and unattractive in Hinduism, such as the crow and the Chaturmas period. The goddess is often depicted on a horseless chariot or riding a crow, usually in a cremation ground.
Dhumavati is said to manifest herself at the time of cosmic dissolution (pralaya) and is “the Void” that exists before creation and after dissolution. She is often called tender-hearted and a bestower of boons. Dhumavati is described as a great teacher, one who reveals ultimate knowledge of the universe, which is beyond the illusory divisions, like auspicious and inauspicious. Her ugly form teaches the devotee to look beyond the superficial, to look inwards and seek the inner truths of life.
Dhumavati is described as a giver of siddhis (supernatural powers), a rescuer from all troubles, and a granter of all desires and rewards, including ultimate knowledge and moksha (salvation).
Bagalamukhi: The Goddess Who Paralyzes Enemies

Bagalamukhi
Bagalamukhi

Bagalamukhi Devi smashes the devotee’s misconceptions and delusions (or the devotee’s enemies) with her cudgel.
Matangi: – the Prime Minister of Lalita (in Srikula systems)

Matangi
Matangi

She is considered to be the Tantric form of Sarasvati, the goddess of music and learning. Like Sarasvati, Matangi governs speech, music, knowledge and the arts. Her worship is prescribed to acquire supernatural powers, especially gaining control over enemies, attracting people to oneself, acquiring mastery over the arts and gaining supreme knowledge.
Kamalatmika: The Lotus Goddess; the “Tantric Lakshmi”

Kamalatmika
Kamalatmika

Kamalatmika has a golden complexion. She is being bathed by four large elephants, who pour kalashas (jars) of amrita (nectar) over her. She has four hands. In two hands, she holds two lotuses and her other two hands are in abhayamudra (gesture of giving assurance) and varamudra (gesture of conferring boons) respectively. She is shown as seated in padmasana (lotus posture) on a lotus,[1] symbol of purity.
The name Kamala means “she of the lotus” and is a common epithet of Goddess Lakshmi. Lakshmi is linked with three important and interrelated themes: prosperity and wealth, fertility and crops, and good luck during the coming year.

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Tridevi - the three supreme Goddess in Hinduism

The Tridevi (त्रिदेवी) is a concept in Hinduism conjoining the three consorts of the Trimurti (Great Trinity), that are personified by the forms of Hindu Goddesses: Saraswati, Lakshmi and Parvati or Durga. They are the manifestations of the Adi Parashakti, the Supreme Being and Divine Mother in Shaktism.

Saraswati:

Saraswati is the Hindu goddess of knowledge
Saraswati is the Hindu goddess of knowledge

Saraswati is the goddess of learning and arts, cultural fulfillment (consort of Brahma the creator). She is the cosmic intelligence, cosmic consciousness,and cosmic knowledge.

Lakshmi:

Lakshmi is the Hindu goddess of wealth
Lakshmi is the Hindu goddess of wealth

Lakshmi is the goddess of wealth and fertility, material fulfillment (consort of Vishnu the maintainer or preserver). However, she does not signify mere material wealth like gold, cattle, etc. All kinds of prosperity, glory, magnificence, joy, exaltation, or greatness come under Lakshmi.

Parvati or Durga:

Durga
Durga

Parvati/ Mahakali (or in her demon-fighting aspect Durga) the goddess of power and love, spiritual fulfillment (consort of Shiva the destroyer or transformer). She also depicts the transformational power of divinity, the power that dissolves multiplicity in unity.

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Goddesses in Hinduism

Here is the list of 10 prime Goddesses in hinduism (no particular order)

Lakshmi:
Lakshmi (लक्ष्मी) is the Hindu goddess of wealth, love, prosperity (both material and spiritual), fortune, and the embodiment of beauty. She is the wife and active energy of Vishnu.

Lakshmi is the Hindu goddess of wealth
Lakshmi is the Hindu goddess of wealth

Saraswati :
Saraswati (सरस्वती) is the Hindu goddess of knowledge, music, arts, wisdom and learning. She is a part of the trinity of Saraswati, Lakshmi and Parvati. All the three forms help the trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva to create, maintain and regenerate-recycle the Universe respectively

Saraswati is the Hindu goddess of knowledge
Saraswati is the Hindu goddess of knowledge

Durga:
Durga (दुर्गा), meaning “the inaccessible” or “the invincible”, is the most popular incarnation of Devi and one of the main forms of the Goddess Shakti in the Hindu pantheon.

Durga
Durga

Parvati:
Parvati (पार्वती) is the Hindu goddess of love, fertility and devotion. She is the gentle and nurturing aspect of Hindu goddess Shakti. She is the mother goddess in Hinduism and has many attributes and aspects.

Parvati is the Hindu goddess of love, fertility and devotion.
Parvati is the Hindu goddess of love, fertility and devotion.

Kali:
Kali also known as Kalika, is the Hindu goddess associated with empowerment, shakti. She is the fierce aspect of the goddess Durga (Parvati).

Kali is the Hindu goddess associated with empowerment
Kali is the Hindu goddess associated with empowerment

Sita:
Sita (सीता) is the consort of the Hindu god Rama  and is an avatar of Lakshmi, goddess of wealth and wife of Vishnu. She is esteemed as a paragon of spousal and feminine virtues for all Hindu women. Sita is known for her dedication, self-sacrifice, courage and purity.

Sita is known for her dedication, self-sacrifice, courage and purity.
Sita is known for her dedication, self-sacrifice, courage and purity.

Radha:
Radha, which means prosperity and success, is one of the Gopis of Vrindavan, and is a central figure of Vaishnava theology.

Radha
Radha

Rati:
Rati  is the Hindu goddess of love, carnal desire, lust, passion and sexual pleasure. Usually described as the daughter of Prajapati Daksha, Rati is the female counterpart, the chief consort and the assistant of Kama (Kamadeva), the god of love.

Rati  is the Hindu goddess of love, carnal desire, lust, passion and sexual pleasure.
Rati is the Hindu goddess of love, carnal desire, lust, passion and sexual pleasure.

Ganga:
the river Ganges is considered sacred and is personified as a goddess known as Ganga. It is worshipped by Hindus who believe that bathing in the river causes the remission of sins and facilitates Moksha.

Goddess Ganga
Goddess Ganga

Annapurna :
Annapurna or Annapoorna is the Hindu goddess of nourishment. Anna means “food” or “grains”. Purna means “ful l, complete and perfect”. She is an avatar (form) of Parvati, the wife of Shiva.

Annapoorna is the Hindu goddess of nourishment.
Annapoorna is the Hindu goddess of nourishment

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Guru Shisha

An Ashrama in Hinduism is one of four age-based life stages discussed in ancient and medieval era Indian texts. The four ashramas are: Brahmacharya (student), Grihastha (householder), Vanaprastha (retired) and Sannyasa (renunciation).

Guru Shisha
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The Ashramas system is one facet of the Dharma concept in Hinduism. It is also a component of the ethical theories in Indian philosophy, where it is combined with four proper goals of human life (Purusartha), for fulfillment, happiness and spiritual liberation.

Brahamacharya ashrama
Brahmacharya (ब्रह्मचर्य) literally means “going after Brahman (Supreme Reality, Self, God)”. In Indian religions, it is also a concept with various context-driven meanings.

In one context, Brahmacharya is the first of four Ashrama (age-based stages) of a human life, with Grihastha (householder), Vanaprastha (forest dweller) and Sannyasa (renunciation) being the other three Asramas. Brahmacharya (bachelor student) stage of one’s life, up to about 20 years of age, was focused on education and included the practice of celibacy. In Indian traditions, it connotes chastity during student stage of life for the purposes of learning from a guru (teacher), and during later stages of life for the purposes of attaining spiritual liberation (moksha).

In another context, Brahmacharya is a virtue, where it means celibacy when unmarried, and fidelity when married. It represents a virtuous lifestyle that also includes simple living, meditation and other behaviors.

Brahamacharya ashrama occupied the first 20–25 years of life roughly corresponding to adolescence.Upon the child’s Upanayanam, the young person would begin a life of study in the Gurukula (the household of the Guru) dedicated to learning all aspects of dharma that is the “principles of righteous living”. Dharma comprised personal responsibilities towards himself, family, society, humanity and God which included the environment, earth and nature. This educational period started when the child was five to eight years old and lasted until the age of 14 to 20 years. During this stage of life, the traditional vedic sciences and various sastras were studied along with the religious texts contained within the Vedas and Upanishads. This stage of life was characterized by the practice of celibacy.

Naradaparivrajaka Upanishad suggests that Brahmacharya (student) stage of life should extend from the age a child is ready to receive teachings from a guru, and continue for a period of twelve years.
The graduation from Brahmacharya stage of life was marked by the Samavartanam ceremony.
Grihastha ashrama:
Grihastha (गृहस्थ) literally means “being in and occupied with home, family” or “householder”.It refers to the second phase of an individual’s life. It follows Brahmacharya (bachelor student) life stage, and embodies a married life, with the duties of maintaining a home, raising a family, educating one’s children, and leading a family-centred and a dharmic social life.
Ancient and medieval era texts of Hinduism consider Grihastha stage as the most important of all stages in sociological context, as human beings in this stage not only pursue a virtuous life, they produce food and wealth that sustains people in other stages of life, as well as the offsprings that continues mankind. The householder stage is also considered in Indian philosophy as one where the most intense physical, sexual, emotional, occupational, social and material attachments exist in a human being’s life.

Vanaprastha ashrama:
Vanaprastha (Sanskrit: वनप्रस्थ) literally means “retiring into a forest”.It is also a concept in Hindu traditions, representing the third of four ashrama (stages) of human life.Vanaprastha is part of the Vedic ashram system, which starts when a person hands over household responsibilities to the next generation, takes an advisory role, and gradually withdraws from the world. Vanaprastha stage is considered as a transition phase from a householder’s life with greater emphasis on Artha and Kama (wealth, security, pleasure and sexual pursuits) to one with greater emphasis on Moksha (spiritual liberation).  Vanaprastha represented the third stage and typically marked with birth of grand children, gradual transition of householder responsibilities to the next generation, increasingly hermit-like lifestyle, and greater emphasis on community services and spiritual pursuit.

Vanaprastha, according to Vedic ashram system, lasted between the ages of 50 and 74.
It encouraged gradual transition of social responsibility, economic roles, personal focus towards spirituality, from being center of the action to a more advisory peripheral role, without actually requiring someone to actually moving into a forest with or without one’s partner. While some literally gave up their property and possessions to move into distant lands, most stayed with their families and communities but assumed a transitioning role and gracefully accept an evolving role with age. Dhavamony identifies Vanaprastha stage as one of “detachment and increasing seclusion” but usually serving as a counselor, peace-maker, judge, teacher to young and advisor to the middle aged.

Sanyasa ashrama:
Sanyasa (संन्यास) is the life stage of renunciation within the Hindu philosophy of four age-based life stages. Sannyasa is a form of asceticism, is marked by renunciation of material desires and prejudices, represented by a state of disinterest and detachment from material life, and has the purpose of spending one’s life in peaceful, love-inspired, simple spiritual life. An individual in Sanyasa is known as a Sannyasi (male) or Sannyasini (female) in Hinduism.

Hinduism has no formal demands nor requirements on the lifestyle or spiritual discipline, method or deity a Sanyasin or Sanyasini must pursue – it is left to the choice and preferences of the individual.This freedom has led to diversity and significant differences in the lifestyle and goals of those who adopt Sannyasa. There are, however, some common themes. A person in Sannyasa lives a simple life, typically detached, itinerant, drifting from place to place, with no material possessions or emotional attachments. They may have a walking stick, a book, a container or vessel for food and drink, often wearing yellow, saffron, orange, ochre or soil colored clothes. They may have long hairs and appear disheveled, and are usually vegetarians.Some minor Upanishads as well as monastic orders consider women, child, students, fallen men (criminal record) and others as not qualified for Sannyasa; while other texts place no restrictions.

Those who enter Sannyasa may choose whether they join a group (mendicant order). Some are anchorites, homeless mendicants preferring solitude and seclusion in remote parts, without affiliation. Others are cenobites, living and traveling with kindred fellow-Sannyasi in the pursuit of their spiritual journey, sometimes in Ashramas or Matha/Sangha (hermitages, monastic order).

Panchamukhi Hanuman

Sri Hanuman assumed Panchamukhi or five-faced form to kill Ahiravana, a powerful rakshasa black-magician and practitioner of the dark arts during the Ramayana war.

Panchamukhi Hanuman
Panchamukhi Hanuman

In the Ramayana, during the battle between Rama and Ravana, when Ravana’s son Indrajit is killed, Ravana calls his brother Ahiravana for help. Ahiravana, the king of Patala (the Underworld), promises to help. Vibhishana somehow manages to hear about the plot and warns Rama about it. Hanuman is put on guard and told not to let anyone into the room where Rama and Lakshmana are. Ahiravana makes many attempts at entering the room but all of them are thwarted by Hanuman. Finally, Ahiravana takes the form of Vibhishana and Hanuman lets him enter. Ahiravana quickly enters and takes the “sleeping Rama and Lakshmana” away.

Makardhwaja, Hanuman's Son
Makardhwaja, Hanuman’s Son

When Hanuman realizes what has happened, he goes to Vibhishana. Vibhishana says, “Alas! They have been abducted by Ahiravana. If Hanuman does not rescue them fairly quickly, Ahiravana will sacrifice both Rama and Lakshman to Chandi.” Hanuman goes to Patala, the door to which is guarded by a creature, who is half Vanara and half reptile. Hanuman asks who he is and the creature says, “I am Makardhwaja, your son!” Hanuman is confused since he did not have any child, being an adept Brahmachari. The creature explains, “While you were jumping over the ocean, a drop of your semen(veeriya) fell to the ocean and into the mouth of a mighty crocodile. This is the origin of my birth.”

After defeating his son, Hanuman enters Patala and encounters Ahiravana and Mahiravana. They have a strong army and Hanuman is told by Chandrasena that the only way to vanquish them is by blowing out five different candles located in five different directions, all at the same time in return for a promise to be Lord Rama’s consort. Hanuman assumes his five-headed form (Panchmukhi Hanuman) and he quickly blows out the 5 different candles and thus kills Ahiravana and Mahiravana. Throughout the saga, both Rama and Lakshmana are rendered unconscious by a spell by the demons.

Bajrangbali Hanuman slaying Ahiravana
Bajrangbali Hanuman slaying Ahiravana

The five faces with their directions are

  • Sri Hanuman  – (Facing East)
    The significance of this face is this face removes all blemishes of sin and confers purity of mind.
  • Narsimha (Facing South)
    The significance of this face is this face removes fear of enemies and confers victory. Narasimha is the Lion-Man avatar of Lord Vishnu, who took the form to protect his devotee Prahlad from his evil father, Hiranyakashipu.
  • Garuda (Facing West)
    The significance of this face is this face drives away evil spells, black magic influences, negative spirits and removes all poisonous effects in one’s body. Garuda is Lord Vishnu’s vehcile, this bird knows the secrets of death and the beyond. The Garuda Purana is a Hindu text based on this knowledge.
  • Varaha (Facing North)
    The significance of this face is this face wards off the troubles caused by bad influences of the planets and confers all eight types prosperity (Ashta Aishwarya). Varaha is another Lord Vishnu avatar, he took this form and dug up land.
  • Hayagriva – (Facing Upwards)
    The significance of this face is this face confers knowledge, victory, good wife and progeny.
Panchamukhi Hanuman
Panchamukhi Hanuman

This form of Sri Hanuman is very popular, and is also known as Panchamukha Anjaneya and Panchamukhi Anjaneya. (Anjaneya, which means “son of Anjana”, is another name of Sri Hanuman). These faces show there is nothing in the world which does not come under any the influence of any of the five faces, symbolic of his all around security to all devotees. This also signifies vigilance and control over the five directions – north, south, east, west and the upward direction/zenith.

Sitting panchamukhi hanuman
Sitting panchamukhi hanuman

There are five ways of prayer, Naman, Smaran, Keerthanam, Yachanam and Arpanam. The five faces depict these five forms. Lord Sri Hanuman always used to Naman, Smaran and Keerthanam of Lord Sri Rama. He totally surrendered (Arpanam) to his Master Sri Rama. He also begged (yachanam) Sri Rama to bless him the undivided love.

The weapons are a parashu, a Khanda, a chakra, a dhaalam, a gada, a trishula, a kumbha, a Katar, a plate filled with blood and again a big Gada.

Kids dressed as Shiva on Maha Shivratri

Maha Shivaratri is a Hindu festival celebrated annually in reverence of the god Shiva. It is the day Shiva was married to the goddess Parvati. The Maha Shivaratri festival, also popularly known as ‘Shivaratri’ (spelt as Sivaratri, Shivaratri, Sivarathri, and Shivarathri) or ‘Great Night of Shiva’, marks the convergence of Shiva and Shakti. Chaturdashi Tithi during Krishna Paksha in month of Magha is known as Maha Shivaratri according to South Indian calendar. However according to North Indian calendar Masik Shivaratri in month of Phalguna is known as Maha Shivaratri. In both calendars it is naming convention of lunar month which differs. However both, North Indians and South Indians, celebrate Maha Shivaratri on same day.  Of the twelve Shivaratris in the year, the Maha Shivarathri is the most holy.

shankar Mahadev | Maha Shiv Ratri
shankar Mahadev

The legends signify that this day is the favorite of Lord Shiva and also throws light on his greatness and the supremacy of Lord Shiva over all other Hindu Gods and Goddesses.
Maha Shivaratri also celebrates the night when Lord Shiva performed the ‘Tandava’, the cosmic dance.

In honour of Siva, one of the Hindu Trinity, representing the destructive aspect in the universe.Though generally, the night time is considered sacred and suitable for the worship of the feminine aspect of’ the deity and the day time for that of’ the masculine, yet on this particular occasion Siva is worshipped during the night time, and as a matter of fact, it is specially enjoined to be observed then. The observance of the Vratha is believed to secure for the devotee immunity from the eftects of sin committed either wittingly or unwittingly. The night is divided into four quarters, each quarter going by the name of a Jama called also Yama and pious people keep awake during every one of it , worshipping Iswara.

The festival is principally celebrated by offerings of Bael leaves to Shiva, all-day fasting and an all-night-vigil (jagaran). All through the day, devotees chant “Om Namah Shivaya”, the sacred mantra of Shiva. Penances are performed in order to gain boons in the practice of Yoga and meditation, in order to reach life’s highest good steadily and swiftly. On this day, the planetary positions in the Northern hemisphere act as potent catalysts to help a person raise his or her spiritual energy more easily. The benefits of powerful ancient Sanskrit mantras such as Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra increase greatly on this night.

Stories:
There are many incidents told about the greatness of this day. Once a hunter in a jungle after searching throughout the jungle, was quite tired and could not get any animal. In the nightfall a tiger started chasing him. to escape from that he climbed a tree. That was a Bilva tree. The tiger sat under the tree waiting for him to come down. The hunter who sat on a branch of the tree was quite tense and didn’t want to sleep. He was plucking the leaves and putting down as he was not able to be idle. Below the tree there was a Shiva lingam. The whole night went on like this. God was pleased with the Upavasa (hunger) and the Pooja the hunter and the tiger did even without knowledge. He is the peak of the grace. He gave the hunter and the tiger “Moksha”. The drenching rain constituted a bath and his action of throwing the bael leaves on the Shiva Lingam, the worship of Shiva on the Shivaratri night. Though his actions were not intentional to worship Shiva, yet he is said to have gained heaven as he had observed the Shivaratri Vratha unwittingly.

              Also read : Most Badass Hindu Gods : Shiva

Once Parvati asked Lord Shiva which devotees and rituals pleased him the most. The Lord replied that the 14th night of the new moon, in the dark fortnight during the month of Phalgun, is his favorite day. Parvati repeated these words to Her friends, from whom the word spread to all creation.

Kids dressed as Shiva on Maha Shivratri
Kids dressed as Shiva on Maha Shivratri
Credits: theguardian.com

How is Maha Shivaratri celebrated

According to the Shiva Puran, six items are regarded precious to worship and offer Lord Shiva in Maha Shivaratri.
The six Items are Beal fruit, Vermilion Paste (Chandan), Food Items (Prasad), Incense, Lamp (Diyo), Betel Leaves.

1) Beal Leaf (Marmelos leaf) – offering of Beal Leaf represents purification of the soul.

2) Vermilion paste (Chandan) – Applying chandan on Shiva Linga after washing the Linga represents good feature. Chandan is inseparable part of Worshipping Lord Shiva.

3) Food items – Food items such as rice and fruits are offered to the Lord to ensure a long life and fulfillment of desires.

4) Incense (Dhoop batti) – Incense sticks are lit before Lord Shiva to be blessed with wealth and prosperity.

5) Lamp (Diyo) – The lighting of Cotton handmade batti , lamp or diyo is believed to be helpful to gain knowledge.

6) Betel leaves (Paan ko patta) – Beatle leaves or Pan ko pat represents satisfaction with maturity.

Also read: Why Shiva was always high on marijuana being a GOD?

Shiva Puran states, the beat of Damaru revealed the first seven letters of music. Those notes are source of language too. Shiva is inventor of notes of music Sa, Re, Ga, Ma Pa, Dha, Ni. He is worshiped as inventor of language on his birthday too.

The Shiva linga is washed with Pancha kavya (mixture of five products of cow) and Panchamatrit (mixture of five sweet things). Pancha kavya includes cow dung, cow urine, milk, Curd and Ghee. Panchamrit includes Cow milk, Yogurt, Honey, Sugar and Ghee.

In front of the Shiva Linga Kalash (Medium size vessel with small neck) filled with mixed water and milk is set. The neck of the Kalash is tied with white and red piece of cloth. Flower, mango leaves, peeple leaves, beal leaves are kept inside the kalash. Mantras are chanted to worship Lord Shiva.

Shiva idol | Maha Shivratri
Shiva idol

In Nepal, millions of Hindus attend Shivaratri together from different part of the world at the famous Pashupatinath Temple. Thousands of devotees also attend Mahasivaratri at the famous Shiva Shakti Peetham of Nepal.

The indian devotee visits many big and small shiva temples to do their offerings and pray. The 12 Jyotirlingas are the famous of them all.

In Trinidad and Tobago, thousands of Hindus spend the auspicious night in over 400 temples across the country, offering special jhalls to Lord Shiva.

Credits: Photo credits to the Original Photographer.

What is the Story Behind Kumbh Mela - hindufaqs.com

History: It is described that while Durvasa Muni was passing on the road, he saw Indra on the back of his elephant and was pleased to offer Indra a garland from his own neck. Indra, however, being too puffed up, took the garland, and without respect for Durvasa Muni, he placed it on the trunk of his carrier elephant. The elephant, being an animal, could not understand the value of the garland, and thus the elephant threw the garland between its legs and smashed it. Seeing this insulting behavior, Durvasa Muni immediately cursed Indra to be poverty-stricken, bereft of all material opulence. Thus the demigods, afflicted on one side by the fighting demons and on the other by the curse of Durvasa Muni, lost all the material opulence’s in the three worlds.

kumbh Mela, Worlds biggest peaceful gathering | Hindu FAQs
kumbh Mela, Worlds biggest peaceful gathering

Lord Indra, Varuna and the other demigods, seeing their lives in such a state, consulted among themselves, but they could not find any solution. Then all the demigods assembled and went together to the peak of Sumeru Mountain. There, in the assembly of Lord Brahma, they fell down to offer Lord Brahma their obeisances, and then they informed him of all the incidents that had taken place.

Upon seeing that the demigods were bereft of all influence and strength and that the three worlds were consequently devoid of auspiciousness, and upon seeing that the demigods were in an awkward position whereas all the demons were flourishing, Lord Brahma, who is above all the demigods and who is most powerful, concentrated his mind on the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Thus being encouraged, he became bright-faced and spoke to the demigods as follows.
Lord Brahma said: I, Lord Siva, all of you demigods, the demons, the living entities born of perspiration, the living beings born of eggs, the trees and plants sprouting from the earth, and the living entities born from embryos—all come from the Supreme Lord, from His incarnation of rajo-guna [Lord Brahma, the guna-avatara] and from the great sages [rishs] who are part of me. Let us therefore go to the Supreme Lord and take shelter of His lotus feet.

Brahma | Hindu FAQs
Brahma

For the Supreme Personality of Godhead there is no one to be killed, no one to be protected, no one to be neglected and no one to be worshiped. Nonetheless, for the sake of creation, maintenance and annihilation according to time, He accepts different forms as incarnations either in the mode of goodness, the mode of passion or the mode of ignorance.

after Lord Brahma finished speaking to the demigods, he took them with him to the abode of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, which is beyond this material world. The Lord’s abode is on an island called Svetadvipa, which is situated in the ocean of milk.

The Supreme Personality of Godhead directly and indirectly knows how everything, including the living force, mind and intelligence, is working under His control. He is the illuminator of everything and has no ignorance. He does not have a material body subject to the reactions of previous activities, and He is free from the ignorance of partiality and materialistic education. I therefore take shelter of the lotus feet of the Supreme Lord, who is eternal, all-pervading and as great as the sky and who appears with six opulence’s in three yugas [Satya, Tretä and Dväpara].

When offered prayers by Lord Shiva and Lord Brahma, the Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Vishnu was pleased. Thus He gave appropriate instructions to all the demigods. The Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is known as Ajita, unconquerable, advised the demigods to make a peace proposal to the demons, so that after formulating a truce, the demigods and demons could churn the ocean of milk. The rope would be the biggest serpent, known as Vasuki, and the churning rod would be Mandara Mountain. Poison would also be produced from the churning, but it would be taken by Lord Siva, and so there would be no need to fear it. Many other attractive things would be generated by the churning, but the Lord warned the demigods not to be captivated by such things. Nor should the demigods be angry if there were some disturbances. After advising the demigods in this way, the Lord disappeared from the scene.

churning of ocean of milk, Samudra manthan | Hindu FAQs
churning of ocean of milk, Samudra manthan

One of the item come from the churning of ocean of milk  was nectar which will give strength to demigods (Amrit). For twelve days and twelve nights (equivalent to twelve human years) the gods and demons fought in the sky for possession of this pot of Amrita. From this nectar some drops spills at Allahabad, Haridwar, Ujjain and Nashik while they were fighting for nectar . So on earth we celebrate this festival to get the pious credits and meet the purpose of life that is going to back to godhead  our eternal home where our father is waiting for us. This is opportunity we get after associating with saints or holy man who follow scriptures.

Mahadev drinking Halahala poison | Hindu FAQs
Mahadev drinking Halahala poison

Kumbh mela provides us this great opportunity to purify our soul by bathing in holy river and serving saints.

Credits: MahaKumbhaFestival.com