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Stotras of Suryadeva is chanted by Hindus in the wee hours of the morning. Surya is worshipped by people, saints, and even asuras or demons. Certain groups of Rakshasas, called the Yatudhanas, were staunch followers of the Sun God.

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Sanskrit:

ततो युद्धपरिश्रान्तं समरे चिन्तया स्थितम् ।
रावणं चाग्रतो दृष्ट्वा युद्धाय समुपस्थितम् ॥१॥

Translation:

Tato Yuddha Parishraantam Samare Chintayaa Sthitam |
Raavanam Chaagrato Drshtvaa Yuddhaaya Samupasthitam ||1||

Meaning:

1.1: (Salutations to the Sun God) Then, (Rama) being tired in the battle was worried in the battle-field …
1.2: … (by) seeing Ravana in-front of Him, having appeared to fight (energetically)

Sanskrit:

दैवतैश्च समागम्य द्रष्टुमभ्यागतो रणम् ।
उपागम्याब्रवीद्राममगस्त्यो भगवानृषिः ॥२॥

Translation:

Daivataish-cha Samaagamya Drashtuma Bhyaagato Ranam |
Upaagamyaa Bravidraa Mama Gastyo Bhagavaanrshi ||2||

Meaning:

2.1: (Salutations to the Sun God) Having arrived along with the Devas to see the impending battle (between Rama and Ravana) …
2.2: … sage Agastya, the great Rishi filled with divine splendor, came near Rama and said…

Sanskrit:

राम राम महाबाहो शृणु गुह्यं सनातनम् ।
येन सर्वानरीन्वत्स समरे विजयिष्यसि ॥३॥

Translation:

Raama Raama Mahaa Baaho Shrunu Guhyam Sanaatanam |
Yena Sarvaa narinvatsa Samare Vijayishyasi ||3||

Meaning:

3.1: (Salutations to the Sun God) O RamaO Rama, one with mighty Arms (i.e. who is a great warrior); Listen to this eternal secret,
3.2: By whichMy Son, you will be victorious against all enemies in the battle.

Sanskrit:

आदित्यहृदयं पुण्यं सर्वशत्रुविनाशनम् ।
जयावहं जपेन्नित्यमक्षय्यं परमं शिवम् ॥४॥

Translation:

Aditya Hrdayam Punyam Sarva Shatru Vinaashanam |
Jayaa Vaham Japennityam Kshayyam Paramam Shivam ||4||

Meaning:

4.1: (Salutations to the Sun God) (Listen to the) Aditya Hridayam (Hymns of the Sun God), which is Sacred and Destroyer of all Enemies,
4.2: Which brings Victory if recited daily, and imparts Undecaying Auspiciousness of the highest kind.

Sanskrit:

सर्वमङ्गलमाङ्गल्यं सर्वपापप्रणाशनम् ।
चिन्ताशोकप्रशमनमायुर्वर्धनमुत्तमम् ॥५॥

Translation:

Sarva Mangala Maangalyam Sarva Paapa Pranaashanam |
Chintaa Shoka Prashamanamaa Yurvardhana muttamam ||5||

Meaning:

5.1: (Salutations to the Sun God) He is the bestower of all-around Welfare (Sarva Mangala Mangalyam), and the remover of all Sins (Sarva Papa Pranashanam),
5.2: He heals the worries and griefs (which gets implanted in the mind due to adverse life experiences) (Chinta Shoka Prashamanam) and (imbues one with the excellent splendor of the Sun which) increases the Life Span (Ayur Vardhanam Uttamam)

Sanskrit:

रश्मिमन्तं समुद्यन्तं देवासुरनमस्कृतम् ।
पूजयस्व विवस्वन्तं भास्करं भुवनेश्वरम् ॥६॥

Translation:

Rashmimantam Samudyantam Devaa Sura Namaskrtam |
Pujayasva Vivasvantam Bhaaskaram Bhuvaneshvaram ||6||

Meaning:

6.1: (Salutations to the Sun God) The Sun is filled with Rays (Rashmimanta) and rises equally for all, spreading His illumination (Samanta); He is reverentially saluted by both the Devas and the Asuras (Deva Asura Namaskritam),
6.2: The Sun is to be worshipped who shines forth (Vivasvanta) creating His own Light (Bhaskara), and who is the Lord of the Universe (Bhubaneshwar)

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Stotras of Devi Saraswati

Here are a few stotras of Aparajita Stuti of Goddess Saraswati with their translations.We’ve also added the meanings of the following stotras.

Sanskrit:

नमस्ते शारदे देवी काश्मीरपुरवासिनि
त्वामहं प्रार्थये नित्यं विद्यादानं  देहि मे ॥

Translation:

Namaste Shaarade Devii Kaashmira Puravaasini
Tvaamaham Praarthaye Nityam Vidyaa Daanam Cha Dehi Me ||

Meaning:

1: Salutations to Devi Sharada, Who abides in the abode of Kashmira,
2: To You, O Devi, I always pray (for Knowledge); Please bestow on me the gift of that Knowledge (which illumines everything from within).

Stotras of Devi Saraswati
Stotras of Devi Saraswati

Sanskrit:

नमो देव्यै महादेव्यै शिवायै सततं नमः ।
नमः प्रकृत्यै भद्रायै नियताः प्रणताः स्म ताम् ॥१॥

Translation:

Namo Devyai Mahaa Devyai Shivaayai Satatam Namah |
Namah Prakrtyai Bhadraayai Niyataah Prannataah Sma Taam ||1||

Meaning:

1.1: Salutations to the Devi, to the MahadeviSalutations Always to Her Who is One with Shiva (the Auspicious One).
1.2: Salutations to Her Who is the Auspicious (being One with Shiva) Primordial Source of Creation and Controller of Everything; We Bow Always to Her.

Sanskrit:

रौद्रायै नमो नित्यायै गौर्यै धात्र्यै नमो नमः ।
ज्योत्स्नायै चेन्दुरूपिण्यै सुखायै सततं नमः ॥२॥

Translation:

Raudraayai Namo Nityaayai Gauryai Dhaatryai Namo Namah |
Jyotsnaayai Chendu Rupinyai Sukhaayai Satatam Namah ||2||

Meaning:

2.1: Salutations to the TerribleSalutations to the Eternal, the Shining One and the Supporter of the Universe.
2.2: Salutations Always to Her, Who has a Cool Brightness like the Moonlit NightAnd the Radiant Form of the Moon, and Who is Joy Herself.

Stotras of Devi Saraswati
Stotras of Devi Saraswati

Sanskrit:

कल्याण्यै प्रणता वृद्धयै सिद्धयै कुर्मो नमो नमः ।
नैर्ऋत्यै भूभृतां लक्ष्म्यै शर्वाण्यै ते नमो नमः ॥३॥

Translation:

Kalyaanyai Pranataa Vrddhayai Siddhayai Kurmo Namo Namah |
Nairrtyai Bhubhrtaam Lakshmyai Sharvaanyai Te Namo Namah ||3||

Meaning:

3.1: We Bow to Her Who is the Source of Welfare, Who is GreatFulfilled and Abides as the Universe,
3.2: Salutations to Her Who is the Destroyer as well as the Prosperity which Supports the Earth and Who is the Consort of Shiva(in the Divine Plan of Creation, Sustenance, and Destruction).

Sanskrit:

दुर्गायै दुर्गपारायै सारायै सर्वकारिण्यै ।
ख्यात्यै तथैव कृष्णायै धूम्रायै सततं नमः ॥४॥

Translation:

Durgaayai Durga Paaraayai Saaraayai Sarva Kaarinyai |
Khyaatyai Tathaiva Krshnaayai Dhumraayai Satatam Namah ||4||

Meaning:

4.1: (Salutations to) Durga, Who helps us in Crossing over the Difficulties and Dangers of Life and Who is the Essence of All Causes.
4.2: Salutations Always to Her, Who is Renowned and Widely Known Outside (in Creation) Just As She is Dark and Smoky and Difficult to Know Inside (in Meditation).

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Rathi Maharathi - Hindu FAQs

According to Hindu mythology there are 5 classes of warrior excellence.

  1. Rathi: A warrior capable of attacking 5,000 warriors simultaneously.
  2. Atirathi: A warrior capable of contending with 12 Rathi class warriors or 60,000
  3. Maharathi’s: A warrior capable of fighting 12 Atirathi class warriors or 720,000
  4. Atimaharathi’s: A warrior capable of fighting 12 Maharathi warriors simultaneously
  5. Mahamaharathi’s: A warrior capable of fighting 24 Atimaharathi’s simultaneously

Famous Rathis in hindu mythology are

1. Somadatta – Father of Bhurishrava

2. Shakuni – Kaurava’s maternal uncle and a master mind behind Kurukshetra war.

shakuni - Hindu FAQs
Credits: www.nynjbengali.com

3. Shishupala – Shri Krishna’s cousin

4. Vrishasena – Son of Karna

Famous Atirathis in Hindu mythology are

1. ShalyaThe fourth commander-in-chief of the Kaurava alliance

2. Kripacharya – Teacher and family priest of Kuru dynasty.

3. Yuyutsu – The only son of Dhritarashtra who survived the Kurukshetra war.

4. Drishtadyumna – Commander of the Pandava army during the Kurukshetra War

5. Ghatotkacha – Son of Bhima

6. Angada – Most feared warrior in Ramayana, He was son of Bali and Tara and nephew of Sugriva.

angad - Son of Bali - Hindu FAQs
Angada – Son of Bali was an Atirathi

7. Duryodhana, Jayadhradha, Dusassana, Vikarna, all 97 brothers of Duryodhana, Yudhishtir, Bhima, Nakula, Sahadeva

Bhima - The Hindu FAQs
Bhima – 2nd brother of pandavas was a Atirathi. Pic Credits : Molee arts

Famous Maharathis from Hindu mythology are:

1. Parshurama – Sixth incarnation of Lord vishnu.

2. Lord Rama – King of Ayodhya

3. Kumbhakarna -Brother of Ravana

4. Lakshmana – Brother of Lord Rama

5. Ravana – King of Lanka

6. ArjunaHe is the third of the five Pandava brothers

Arjuna - Hindu FAQs
Arjuna – 3rd brother of pandavas was a Maharathi PicCredits: Molee Art

7. Lava & Kusha – Sons of lord Rama

8. Hanuman, Sugriva, Jambavan, Vali, Bhishma, Drona, Ashwatthama, Abhimanyu, Lord Krishna, Balrama, Lord Narasimha.

Bhishma - Hindu FAQs
Bhishma was a Maharathi PicCredits: Molee Art

Famous Atimaharathis from Hindu mythology are:

1. Indrajeet – Son of Ravana

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

Famous Mahamaharathis from Hindu mythology are:

1. Lord Brahma – The creator

Brahma - The creator | Hindu FAQs
Brahma – The creator

2. Vishnu – The preserver

3. Shiva – The destroyer

Shiva the Destroyer | Hindu FAQs
Shiva the Destroyer

4. Durga – The warrior goddess

Durga - Hindu FAQs
Durga

5. Ganesha & kartikeya – Sons of Shiva and Parvati

 

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Tallest shiva statues in the world

1. Kailashnath Mahadev Statue, Nepal. (144 Feet)

Kailashnath Mahadev Statue
Kailashnath Mahadev Statue

Kailashnath Mahadev Statue is the world’s tallest Shiva statue. It is situated in Kavrepalanchwok districts in Nepal.
The height of this statue is 144 feet (44 meters). The statue is made using copper, zinc, concrete and steel.

2. Shiva of Murudeshwar. (123 Feet)

Shiva of Murudeshwar
Shiva of Murudeshwar

Murudeshwar is another name of the Hindu god Shiva. The statue of Murudeshwar Shiva is the world’s second-tallest Shiva statue which is at Murudeshwar town in Karnataka, India. The statue is 123 feet (37 m) tall. It took about two years to build this statue and financed by businessman and philanthropist R.N. Shetty. The cost of building this statue is approximately 5 Crore Rs.

3. Mangal Mahadev statue Mauritius. (108 Feet)

Mangal Mahadev statue
Mangal Mahadev statue

Mangal Mahadev statue is situated in the district of Savanne, in Mauritius. It is the 3rd tallest Shiva statue in the world. The construction of the statue started in 2007 and inaugurated during the Maha Shivratri period of 2008. It is considered the most sacred Hindu place in Mauritius. The height of this statue is 108 feet (33 meter).

4. Shiva of the Har Ki Pauri (100 Feet)

Shiva of the Har Ki Pauri
Shiva of the Har Ki Pauri

Fourth Largest Statue of Lord Shiva is Shiva of Har ki Pauri located at the banks of river Ganga in the auspicious city of Haridwar. This beautiful statue of Shiva is a 100 feet tall (30.5 meter).

5. Shiva at Kemp Fort, Bangalore (65 feet)

Shiva at Kemp Fort
Shiva at Kemp Fort

Shiva at Kemp fort is the fifth tallest Shiva statue in the world. The 65 feet tall statue of Lord Shiva seated in Lotus position, with a backdrop of Himalayas and surrounded by a pond.

 

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Shri Sankat Mochan hanuman | Hindu FAQs

Hanuman, renowned for his courage, strength, and the greatest devotee Rama. India is a land of temples and statues, so here is the list of top 5 tallest Lord Hanuman statues in India.

1. Hanuman statue at Madapam, Srikakulam district.

Hanuman statue at Madapam | The Hindu FAQs
Hanuman statue at Madapam

Height: 176 feet.

Number one in our list is Hanuman statue at Madapam, Srikakulam district. This statue is 176 feet tall and the budget of this constructios was around 10 million Rupees. This statue is under its final stage of construction.


2. Veera Abhaya Anjaneya Hanuman Swami, Andhra Pradesh.

Veera Abhaya Anjaneya Hanuman Swami | Hindu FAQs
Veera Abhaya Anjaneya Hanuman Swami

Height : 135 Feet.

Veera Abhaya Anjaneya Hanuman Swami is second largest and tallest statue of lord Hanuman . It is situated near Vijayawada in Andhra Pradesh .
The statue is constructed with pure white marble ans is 135 feet tall. The statue was established in 2003 .

3. Jhaku hill Hanuman statue, Shimla.

Jhaku hill Hanuman statue | Hindu FAQs
Jhaku hill Hanuman statue

Height: 108 feet.

The third tallest lord hanuman statue at Jakhu Hills in Shimla Himachal Pradesh. The beautiful red colour statue is 108 feet long. The budget of this statue was 1.5 crore rupee and the statue was inaugurated on 4th Day of November, 2010 on Hanuman Jayanti
It is said that lord hanuman stayed there once when he was search of sanjeevni booti.

4. Shri Sankat Mochan hanuman, Delhi .

Shri Sankat Mochan hanuman | Hindu FAQs
Shri Sankat Mochan hanuman

Height: 108 feet.

108 feet Shri Sankat Mochan hanuman statue is beauty of delhi and one of the major public attraction.  It is on New Link Road, Karol Bagh. . This statue is an iconic symbol of Delhi. The statue not only shows us art but the use of engineering and technology is incredible. The hands of the statue moves, making the devotees feel that Lord is tearing his chest and there are small idols of Lord Rama and Mother Sita inside the chest.


5. Hanuman Statue, Nandura

Hanuman Statue, Nandura | Hindu FAQs
Hanuman Statue, Nandura

Height: 105 Feet

The fifth tallest lord Hanuman idol is around 105 feet . It is situated at Nandura Buldhana in maharasthtra state. This idol is the major attraction on NH6.  This is built with white marble but used different colors at right places

Also Read
How did Hanuman end up on Arjuna’s chariot in Mahabharata?

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.

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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Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

1) The Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple or Thiruvarangam is a Hindu temple dedicated to Ranganatha, a reclining form Shri Vishnu.

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

 

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

2) The temple is located in Srirangam, Tiruchirapalli, Tamil Nadu, India .

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

3) Constructed in the Dravidian style of architecture, and It is one of the most illustrious Vaishnava temples in South India rich in legend and history.

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

 

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

 

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

 

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

4) Its location, on an island in Cauvery river, has rendered it vulnerable to natural disasters as well as the rampaging of invading armies – Muslim and European – which repeatedly commandeered the site for military encampment

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

5) The main entrance, known as the Rajagopuram (the royal temple tower), rises from the base area of around 5720 and goes up to 237 feet (72 m), moving up in eleven progressively smaller tiers.

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

6) The annual 21 day festival conducted during the Tamil month of Margazhi (December–January) attracts 1 million visitors.

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

7) Srirangam temple is often listed as the largest functioning Hindu temple in the world.

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

8) The temple occupies an area of 156 acres (631,000 m²) with a perimeter of 4,116m (10,710 feet) making it the largest temple in India and one of the largest religious complexes in the world.

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

9) The temple is enclosed by 7 concentric walls (termed prakarams (outer courtyard) or mathil suvar) with a total length of 32,592 feet or over six miles.

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

10) These temple has 21 gopurams (towers), 39 pavilions, fifty shrines, Ayiram kaal mandapam (a hall of 1000 pillars) and several small water bodies inside. The space within the outer two prakarams (outer courtyard) is occupied by several shops, restaurants and flower stalls.

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple

11) The Hall of 1000 pillars (actually 953) is a fine example of a planned theatre-like structure and opposite to it, “Sesha Mandap”, with its intricacy in sculpture, is a delight.The 1000-pillared hall made of granite was constructed in the Vijayanagara period (1336–1565) on the site of the old temple.

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple The Hall of 1000 pillars
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple The Hall of 1000 pillars

12) The pillars consists of sculptures of wildly rearing horses bearing riders on their backs and trampling with their hoofs upon the heads of rampant tigers, seem only natural and congruous among such weird surroundings.

 

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple The Hall of 1000 pillars
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple The Hall of 1000 pillars

Also read : 14 Biggest Hindu temples in the world

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

Throwing colour on the crowd

Holi ( होली) is a spring festival also known as the festival of colours or the festival of love. It is an ancient Hindu religious festival which has become popular with non-Hindus in many parts of South Asia, as well as people of other communities outside Asia.
As discussed in previous article (Significance of bonfire for Holi and Story of Holika) , Holi is spread out over two days. On the first day, bonfire is created and on the second day, holi is played with colors and water. In some places, it is played for five days, the fifth day is called Ranga Panchami.
Playing Colurs on holi The second day, Holi, also known as Dhuli in Sanskrit, or Dhulheti, Dhulandi or Dhulendi, is celebrated. Children and youth spray coloured powder solutions (Gulal) at each other, laugh and celebrate, while elders tend to smear dry coloured powder (Abir) on each other’s face. Visitors to homes are first teased with colours, then served with Holi delicacies, desserts and drinks. After playing with colours, and cleaning up, people bathe, put on clean clothes, visit friends and family.

Like Holika Dahan, Kama Dahanam is celebrated in some parts of India. The festival of colours in these parts is called Rangapanchami, and occurs on fifth day after Poornima (full moon).

It is primarily observed in India, Nepal, and other regions of the world with significant populations of Hindus or people of Indian origin. The festival has, in recent times, spread to parts of Europe and North America as a spring celebration of love, frolic, and colours.

Holi celebrations start with a Holika bonfire on the night before Holi where people gather, sing and dance. The next morning is a free-for-all carnival of colours, where participants play, chase and colour each other with dry powder and coloured water, with some carrying water guns and coloured water-filled balloons for their water fight. Anyone and everyone is fair game, friend or stranger, rich or poor, man or woman, children and elders. The frolic and fight with colours occurs in the open streets, open parks, outside temples and buildings. Groups carry drums and musical instruments, go from place to place, sing and dance. People visit family, friends and foes to throw colours on each other, laugh and chit-chat, then share Holi delicacies, food and drinks. Some drinks are intoxicating. For example, Bhang, an intoxicating ingredient made from cannabis leaves, is mixed into drinks and sweets and consumed by many. In the evening, after sobering up, people dress up, visit friends and family.

Holi is celebrated at the approach of vernal equinox, on the Phalguna Purnima (Full Moon). The festival date varies every year, per the Hindu calendar, and typically comes in March, sometimes February in the Gregorian Calendar. The festival signifies the victory of good over evil, the arrival of spring, end of winter, and for many a festive day to meet others, play and laugh, forget and forgive, and repair ruptured relationships.

Kids Playing Colurs on holi
Kids Playing Colurs on holi

Holi frolic and celebrations begin the morning after Holika bonfire. There is no tradition of holding puja (prayer), and the day is for partying and pure enjoyment. Children and youth groups form armed with dry colours, coloured solution, means to fill and spray others with coloured solution (pichkaris), balloons that can hold coloured water, and other creative means to colour their targets.

Traditionally, washable natural plant-derived colours such as turmeric, neem, dhak, kumkum were used; but water-based commercial pigments are increasingly used. All colours are used. Everyone in open areas such as streets and parks are game. Inside homes or at doorways though, only dry powder is used to smear each other’s face. People throw colours, and get their targets completely coloured up. It is like a water fight, but where the water is coloured. People take delight in spraying coloured water on each other. By late morning, everyone looks like a canvas of colours. This is why Holi is given the name “Festival of Colours.”

colours in Holi
colours in Holi

Groups sing and dance, some playing drums and dholak. After each stop of fun and play with colours, people offer gujiya, mathri, malpuas and other traditional delicacies.Chilled drinks, including adult drinks based on local intoxicating herbs, is also part of the Holi festivity.

In Braj region around Mathura, in north India, the festivities may last more than week. The rituals go beyond playing with colours, and include a day where men go around with shields and women have the right to playfully beat them on their shields with sticks.

In south India, some worship and make offerings to Kaamadeva, the love god of Indian mythology, on Holi.

Throwing colour on the crowd
Playing Colour on Holi

After a day of play with colours, people clean up, wash and bathe, sober and dress up in the evening and greet friends and relatives by visiting them and exchange sweets. Holi is also a festival of forgiveness and new starts, which ritually aims to generate harmony in the society.

Credits:
Image credits to the owners of the images and the original photographers. Images are use for article purpose and are not owned by Hindu FAQs

Mahaganpati, Ranjangaon - Ashtavinayaka

Here is the third Part of our series “Ashtavinayaka: The eight abodes of Lord Ganesha” Where we will discuss the final three Ganesha which are Girijatmak , Vighneshwar and Mahaganpati . So lets start…

6) Girijatmaj (गिरिजत्मज)

It is believed that Parvati (Shiva’s wife) performed penance to beget Ganesha at this point. Girija’s (Parvati’s) Atmaj (son) is Girijatmaj. This temple stands amidst a cave complex of 18 caves of Buddhist origin. This temple is the 8th cave. These are called Ganesh-leni as well. The temple is carved out of a single stone hill, which has 307 steps. The temple features a wide hall with no supporting pillars. The temple hall is 53feet long, 51feet wide and 7feet in height.

Girijatmaj Lenyadri  Ashtavinayaka
Girijatmaj Lenyadri Ashtavinayaka

The idol faces north with its trunk to the left, and has to be worshipped from the rear of the temple. The temple faces south. This idol seems to be little different from the rest of the Ashtavinayak idols in a sense that it appears to be not very well designed or carved like the other idols. This idol can be worshipped by anyone. There is no electric bulb in the temple. The temple is constructed such that during the day it is always lighted up by the sun-rays!

Girijatmaj Lenyadri  Ashtavinayaka
Girijatmaj Lenyadri Ashtavinayaka

7) Vighneshwar (विघ्नेश्वर):

The history encompassing this idol states that Vighnasur, a demon was created by the King of Gods, Indra to destroy the prayer organized by King Abhinandan. However, the demon went a step further and destroyed all vedic, religious acts and to answer the people’s prayers for protection, Ganesh defeated him. The story goes on to say that on being conquered, the demon begged and pleaded with Ganesha to show a mercy. Ganesha then granted in his plea, but on the condition that demon should not go to the place where Ganesha worshipping is going on. In return the demon asked a favour that his name should be taken before Ganesha’s name, thus the name of Ganesha became Vighnahar or Vighneshwar (Vighna in Sanskrit means a sudden interruption in the ongoing work due to some unforeseen, unwarranted event or cause). The Ganesha here is called Shri Vighneshwar Vinayak.

Vighneshwar, ozhar - Ashtavinayaka
Vighneshwar, ozhar – Ashtavinayaka

The temple faces east and is surrounded by a thick stone wall. One can walk on the wall. The main hall of the temple is 20feet long and the inner hall is 10feet long. This idol, facing the east, has its trunk towards the left and rubies in its eyes. There is a diamond on the forehead and some jewel in the navel. Idols of Riddhi and Siddhi are placed on the two sides of the Ganesha idol. The temple top is Golden and is possibly built by Chimaji Appa after defeating the Portuguese rulers of Vasai and Sashti. The temple is probably built around 1785AD.

Vighneshwar, ozhar - Ashtavinayaka
Vighneshwar, ozhar – Ashtavinayaka

8) Mahaganpati (महागणपति)
Shiva is believed to have worshipped Ganesha before fighting the demon Tripurasura here. The temple was built by Shiva where he worshipped Ganesha, and the town he set up was called Manipur which is now known as Ranjangaon.

The idol faces the east, is seated in a cross-legged position with a broad forehead, with its trunk pointing to the left. It is said that the original idol is hidden in the basement, having 10 trunks and 20 hands and is called Mahotkat, however, the temple authorities deny existence of any such idol.

Mahaganpati, Ranjangaon - Ashtavinayaka
Mahaganpati, Ranjangaon – Ashtavinayaka

Constructed so that the rays of the sun fall directly on the idol (during the Southward movement of the sun), the temple bears a distinct resemblance to the architecture reminiscent of the 9th and 10th Centuries and faces the east. Shrimant Madhavrao Peshwa used to visit this temple very often and built the stone sanctum around the idol and in 1790AD Mr. Anyaba Dev was authorised to worship the idol.

Ranjangaoncha Mahaganapati is considered to be one of the Ashta Vinayak shrines of Maharashtra, celebrating eight instances of legends related to Ganesha.

Legend has it that when a sage had once sneezed he gave out a child; since being with the sage the child learnt many good stuff about lord ganesha, however had inherited many evil thoughts within; when he grew he developed in to a demon by name Tripurasura; thereafter he prayed to Lord Shiva and got three powerful citadels (the evil Tripuram forts) of Gold, Silver and Bronze with a boon of invincibility until all the three are in linear; with the boon to his side he caused suffering to all beings in the heavens and on earth. Upon hearing the fervent appeals of the Gods, Shiva intervened, and realized that he could not defeat the demon. It was upon hearing Narada Muni’s advice that Shiva saluted Ganesha and then shot a single arrow that pierced through the citadels, bringing an end to the demon.

Shiva, the slayer of the Tripura citadels is enshrined at Bhimashankaram nearby.
A variation of this legend is commonly known in South India. Ganesha is said to have caused the axle in Shiva’s chariot to break, as the latter headed to battle the demon without saluting Ganesha before he set out. Upon realizing his act of omission, Shiva saluted his son Ganesha, and then proceeded victoriously to a short battle against the powerful demon.

Mahaganapati is portrayed, seated on a lotus, flanked by his consorts Siddhi and Ridhi. The temple dates back to the period of Peshwa Madhav Rao. The temple was erected during the rule of the Peshwas. Peshwa Madhavrao had constructed the Garbhagriha, the sanctum to house the swayambhoo statue.

The temple faces east. It has an imposing main gate which is guarded by two statues of Jay and Vijay. The temple is designed in such away that during Dakshinayan[ the apparent movement of the sun to the south] the rays of the sun fall directly on the deity.

The deity is seated and flanked on both sides by Riddhi and Siddhi. The trunk of the deity turns to the left. There is a local belief that the real statue of Mahaganpati is hidden in some vault and this statue has ten trunks and twenty arms. But there is nothing to substantiate this belief.

Credits: To the original photos and the photographers!

Varad Vinayak - Ashtavinayaka

Here is the second Part of our series “Ashtavinayaka: The eight abodes of Lord Ganesha” Where we will discuss the next three Ganesha which are Ballaleshwar, Varadavinayak and Chintamani. So lets start…

3) Ballaleshwar (बल्लाळेश्वर) :

Like a few other murtis, this one has diamonds embedded in the eyes and navel, and with His trunk pointing to the left. One speciality of this temple is that the prasad offered to this Ganapati at Pali is Besan Laadu instead of Modak that is normally offered to other Ganapatis. The shape of the idol itself bears a striking remblance with the mountain which forms the backdrop of this temple. This is more prominently felt if one views the photograph of the mountain and then sees the idol.

Ballaleshwar, pali - Ashtavinayaka
Ballaleshwar, pali – Ashtavinayaka

The original wooden temple was reconstructed in to a stone temple by Nana Phadanavis in 1760. There are two small lakes constructed on two sides of the temple. One of them is reserved for the puja (worship) of the Deity. This Temple faces the east and has two sanctums. The inner one houses the murti and has a Mushika (Ganesha’s mouse vahana) with modaka in his forepaws in front of it. The hall, supported by eight exquisitely carved pillars demands as much attention as the idol, sitting on throne carved like a Cyprus tree. The eight pillars depict the eight directions. Inner sanctum is 15 feet tall and outer one is 12 feet tall. The temple is constructed in such a way that after the winter (dakshinayan : southward movement of the sun) solstice, the sun rays fall on the Ganesha murti at sunrise. The temple is built with stones which are stuck together very tight using melted lead.

History of Temple
The legendary story of Shri Ballaleshwar is covered in Upasana Khand Section -22 occurred in Pali the old name Pallipur.

Kalyansheth was a merchant in Pallipur and was married to Indumati. The couple was childless for quite some time but later was blessed with a son known as Ballal. As Ballal grew, he spent much of his time in worshiping and praying. He was devotee of Lord Ganesha and used to worship stone idol of Shri Ganesha in the forest along with his friends and companions. As it used to take time, the friends would reach home late. Regular delay in returning house used to irritate the parents of the friends of Ballal who complained to his father saying that Ballal was responsible for spoiling the kids. Already unhappy with Ballal for not concentrating on his studies, Kalyansheth was boiling with anger when he heard the complaint. Immediately he reached the place of worship in the forest and devastated Pooja arrangements organized by Ballal and his friends. He threw away the Stone Idol of Shri Ganesh and broke the pandal. All the kids got frightened but Ballal who was engrossed in Pooja and japa, did not even know what was happening around. Kalayan beat Ballal mercilessly and tied him to the tree saying to get fed and freed by Shri Ganesha. He left for home thereafter.

Ballaleshwar, pali - Ashtavinayaka
Ballaleshwar, pali – Ashtavinayaka

Ballal semiconscious and tied to the tree in the forest was lying as that with severe pain all over, started calling his beloved God, Shri Ganesha. “O Lord, Shri Ganesha, I was busy in praying you, I was right and humble but my cruel father has spoiled my act of devotion and hence I am unable to perform Pooja.” Shri Ganesha was pleased and responded quickly. Ballal was freed. He blessed Ballal to be superior devotee with larger lifespan. Shri Ganesha hugged Ballal and said that his father would suffer for his wrongdoings.

Ballal insisted that Lord Ganesha should continue to stay there at Pali. Nodding His head Shri Ganesha made his permanent stay at Pali as Ballal Vinayak and disappeared in a large stone. This is famous as Shri Ballaleshwar.

Shri Dhundi Vinayak
In the above mentioned story the stone idol which Ballal used to worship and which was thrown away by Kalyan Sheth is known as Dhundi Vinayak. The idol is facing west. The birth celebration of Dhundi Vinayak takes place from Jeshtha Pratipada to Panchami. From ancient time, it is a practice to take darshan of Dhundi Vinayak before proceeding to main idol Shree Ballaleshwar.

4) Varad Vinayak (वरदविनायक)

Ganesha is said to reside here in the form of Varada Vinayaka, the giver of bounty and success. The idol was found in the adjoining lake (to Mr. Dhondu Paudkar in 1690AD), in an immersed position and hence its weathered look. In 1725AD the then Kalyan subhedar, Mr. Ramji Mahadev Biwalkar built the Varadavinayak temple and the village of Mahad.

Varad Vinayak - Ashtavinayaka
Varad Vinayak – Ashtavinayaka

Mahad is a pretty village set in the hilly region of Konkan in the Raigarh district and the Khalapur Taluka of Maharastra.Lord Ganesha as Varad Vinayak fulfills all desires and grants all boons. This region was known as Bhadrak or Madhak in ancient times. The Original Idol of Varad Vinayak can be seen outside the sanctum. Both Idols are located in two corners- the Idol on the left is smeared in vermillion with its trunk turned left, and the idol on the right is made of white marble with its trunk turned to the right . The sanctum is made of stone and is surronded by beautiful stone elephant carving which house the idol. There are 4 elephant idols on 4 sides of the temple. Two stone idols of Riddhi & Siddhi can also be seen in the sanctum.

This is the only temple where devotees are allowed to personally pay their homage and respects to the idol. They are allowed in the immediate vicinity of this idol to perform their prayers.

5) Chintamani (चिंतामणि)

Ganesha is believed to have got back the precious Chinatamani jewel from the greedy Guna for sage Kapila at this spot. However, after bringing back the jewel, sage Kapila put it in Vinayaka’s (Ganesha’s) neck. Thus the name Chintamani Vinayak. This happened under the Kadamb tree, therefore Theur is known as Kadambanagar in old times.

Known to be one of the larger and more famous of the eight revered shrines, the temple is situated in the village of Theur, 25 km from Pune. The hall has a black stone water fountain in it.  Beside the central shrine dedicated to Ganesha, there are three smaller shrines in the temple complex dedicated to Shiva, Vishnu-Lakshmi and Hanuman. Lord Ganesha is worshipped by the name ‘Chintamani’ in this temple as it is believed he provides deliverance from worries.

Chintamani - Ashtavinayaka
Chintamani – Ashtavinayaka

The lake behind the temple is called Kadambteertha. The temple entrance is North facing. The outer wooden hall was built by Peshwas. The main temple is supposed to have been built by Dharanidhar Maharaj Dev from the family-lineage of Shri Moraya Gosavi. He must have built this around 100 years before Senior Shrimant Madhavrao Peshwa built the outer wooden hall.

This idol also has a left trunk, with carbuncle and diamonds as its eyes. The idol faces the East side.

Theur’s Chintamani was the family deity of Shrimant Madhavrao I Peshwa. He suffered from tuberculosis and died at a very young age (27years). He is supposed to have died in this temple. His wife, Ramabai committed Sati with him on 18 November 1772.

Credits:
Photo credits to Original photos and the respective photographers
ashtavinayaktemples.com

A decor showing all Ashtavinayaka

Ashtavinayaka , also pronounced as Asthavinayaka, Ashthavinayaka (अष्टविनायक) literally means “eight Ganeshas” in Sanskrit. Ganesh is the Hindu deity of unity, prosperity & learning and removes obstacles. The term Ashtavinayaka refers to eight Ganeshas. Ashtavinayaka yatra trip refers to a pilgrimage to the eight Hindu temples in Maharashtra state of India that house eight distinct idols of Ganesha, in a pre-ascertained sequence.

A decor showing all Ashtavinayaka
A decor showing all Ashtavinayaka

The Ashtavinayaka yatra or pilgrimage covers the eight ancient holy temples of Ganesha which are situated around Maharashtra, A state of India. Each of these temples has its own individual legend and history, as distinct from each other as the murtis (Idos) in each temple. The form of each murti of Ganesha and His trunk are distinct from one another. All the Eight  Ashtavinayak Temples are Swayambhu (self-originated) and Jagrut.
The eight names of Ashtavinayaka are:
1. Moreshwar (मोरेश्वर) from Morgaon
2. Mahaganpati (महागणपति) from Ranjangaon
3. Chintamani (चिंतामणि) from Theur
4. Girijatmak (गिरिजत्मज) from Lenyadri
5. Vighneshwar (विघ्नेश्वर) from Ojhar
6. Siddhivinayak (सिद्धिविनायक ) from Siddhatek
7. Ballaleshwar (बल्लाळेश्वर) from Pali
8. Varad Vinayak (वरदविनायक) from Mahad

1) Moreshwara (मोरेश्वर):
This is the most important temple on this tour. The temple, built from black-stone during the Bahamani reign, has four gates (It is supposed to have been built by one of the knights named Mr. Gole, from the court of Bidar’s Sultan). The temple is situated in the centre of the village. The temple is covered from all sides by four minarets and gives feeling of a mosque if seen from a distance. This was done to prevent attacks on the temple during Mughal periods. The temple has 50 feet tall wall around it.

Morgaon temple - Ashtavinayaka
Morgaon temple – Ashtavinayaka

There is a Nandi (Shiva’s bull mount) sitting in front of this temple entrance, which is unique, as Nandi is normally in front of only Shiva temples. However, the story says that this statue was being carried to some Shivamandir during which the vehicle carrying it broke down and the Nandi statue could not be removed from its current place.

The murti of Lord Ganesha  is three eyed, seated, and his trunk is turned towards the left, riding a peacock, in the form of Mayureshwara is believed to have slain the demon Sindhu at this spot. The idol, with its trunk turned to the left, has a cobra (Nagaraja) poised over it protecting it. This form of Ganesha also has two other murtis of Siddhi (Capability) and Riddhi (Intelligence).

Morgaon Ganpati - Ashtavinayaka
Morgaon Ganpati – Ashtavinayaka

However, this is not the original murti -which is said to have been consecrated twice by Brahma, once before and once after being destroyed by the asura Sindhurasur. The original murti, smaller in size and made of atoms of sand, iron, and diamonds, was supposedly enclosed in a copper sheet by the Pandavas and placed behind the one that is currently worshiped.

2) Siddhivinayak (सिद्धिविनायक ):

Siddhatek is a remote little village along the river Bhima in the Ahmednagar district and Karjat tehsil in Maharashtra. The Siddhivinayak Ashtavinayak Temple at Siddhtek is considered an especially powerful deity. God Vishnu is supposed to have vanquished the asuras Madhu and Kaitabh after propitiating Ganesha here. This is the only murti of these eight with the trunk positioned to the right. It is believed that the two saints Shri Morya Gosavi and Shri Narayan Maharaj of Kedgaon received their enlightenment here.

Siddhivinayak Siddhatek temple - Ashtavinayak
Siddhivinayak Siddhatek temple – Ashtavinayak

The Mudgala Purana narrates that at the beginning of Creation, the creator-god Brahma emerges from a lotus, that rises the god Vishnu’s navel as Vishnu sleeps in his yoganidra. While Brahma starts creating the universe, two demons Madhu and Kaitabha rise from the dirt in Vishnu’s ear. The demons disturb Brahma’s process of creation, thereby compelling Vishnu to awake. Vishnu battles the battle, but cannot defeat them. He asks the god Shiva the reason for this. Shiva informs Vishnu that he cannot succeed as he had forgotten to invoke Ganesha – the god of beginning and obstacle removal – before the fight. Therefore Vishnu performs penance at Siddhatek, invoking Ganesha with his mantra  “Om Sri Ganeshaya Namah”. Pleased, Ganesha bestows his blessings and various siddhis (“powers”) on Vishnu, returns to his fight and slays the demons. The place where Vishnu acquired siddhis was thereafter known as Siddhatek.

Siddhivinayak, Siddhatek Ganpati - Ashtavinayaka
Siddhivinayak, Siddhatek Ganpati – Ashtavinayaka

The temple is North-facing and is on a small hillock. The main road towards the temple was believed to be built by Peshwa’s general Haripant Phadake. The inner sanctum, 15 feet high and 10 feet wide is built by Punyashloka Ahilyabai Holkar. The idol is 3feet tall and 2.5feet wide. The idol faces North-direction. The stomach of the murti is not wide, but Riddhi and Siddhi murtis are sitting on one thigh. This murti’s trunk is turning to the right. The right-sided-trunk Ganesha is supposed to be very strict for the devotees. To make one round (pradakshina) around the temple one has to make the round trip of the hillock. This takes about 30 minutes with moderate speed.

Peshwa general Haripant Phadake lost his General’s position and did 21 Pradakshina around the temple. On the 21st day Peshwa’s court-man came and took him to the court with royal honor. Haripant promised the God that he will bring the stones of the castle which he will win from the first war he will fight as the general. The stone pathway is built from the Badami-Castle which was attacked by Haripant soon after he became the general.

Credits:
Photo credits to the original uploaders and Photographers

jagannath puri rath yatra - hindufaqs.com - 25 Amazing Facts about hinduism

Here are 25 Amazing facts about hinduism

1. Hinduism is the world’s 3rd largest religion closely following Christianity and Islam. However, unlike the top 2 religions, 95% of Hindus live in a single nation! Source

2. If you ask a religious Hindu, when did Krishna or Rama live – they will give an answer like 50 million years ago or some other random big number. Actually, it doesn’t matter. Because, Hindus believe in a circular time (rather than the linear time concept in the Western world).

3. Each of our time cycles has 4 main periods – the Satya yuga (golden age of innocence), Tretha Yuga, Dwapara yuga and Kali Yuga. In the last stage, people get so filthy that whole thing is cleaned up and the cycle starts all over again.

kalchakra in Hinduism | Hindu FAQs
kalchakra in Hinduism

4. Hinduism is the oldest of the major extant religions. Its fundamental book – Rig Veda was written over 3800 years ago.

5. Rig Veda was orally passed for 3500+ years in parallel. And yet, its current form has no major discrepancies. It is indeed a stupendous achievement that a major body of work can be orally passed between people in such a large nation with no loss in quality/content.

6. Unlike other major religions, Hinduism doesn’t consider the pursuit of wealth as a sin. In fact, we celebrate wealth in the form of many gods such as Lakshmi, Kubera and Vishnu. Hinduism has a 4 level hierarchy – Kama (pursuit of pleasures including sexual/sensual) – Artha (pursuit of livelihood , wealth and power), Dharma (pursuit of philosophy, religion and doing duties to society) and Moksha (liberation) and we progress from the top to bottom. This is very close to Maslow’s hierarchy and thus Hindus are natural capitalists.

GSB Seva Ganesh Ganpati near King Circle Mumbai is one of richest Mandals | Hindu FAQs
GSB Seva Ganesh Ganpati near King Circle Mumbai is one of Richest Mandals

7. Hinduism is the parent religion for 2 of the other major religions of South Asia – Buddhism and Sikhism. It is also closely associated with its sister religion – Jainism.

8. The holiest number for Hindus is 108. This is the ratio of Sun’s distance (from earth)/Sun’s diameter or Moon’s distance (from earth)/Moon’s diameter. Thus, most of our prayer beads have 108 beads.

9. Beyond India, Hinduism is the dominant religion of many exotic regions such as Nepal, Mauritius, Bali, second biggest religion of Fiji & Sri Lanka and at one point covered most of South east Asia – including Indonesia, Cambodia and Malaysia. Source

10. The Hindu epic of Mahabharatha – that is often used to teach the principles of Hinduism – is written in 1.8 million words long poem (10X the combined length of the Illiad and Odyssey)

11. Unlike all other major religions, we don’t have a founder or a prophet (like Moses, Abraham, Jesus, Mohammad or Buddha). According to Hindus, the religion has no origin (again coming back to the circular concept).

12. Unlike the popular Western conception, Yoga in Hinduism is not merely an exercise routine. It is one of the founding blocks of the religion.

13. The 4 most holiest animals for Hindus are the cow, elephant, snake and peacock (India’s national bird and a wagon of many Hindu gods) – 4 main animals of India.

14. The largest religious structures in the world – Angkor Vat in Cambodia were built by the Hindu kings of South East Asia.

Ankor Vat in Cambodia | Hindu FAQs
Angkor Vat in Cambodia

15. Hinduism has no formal Institution – no Pope, no Bible and no central body.

16. Unlike Christians or Muslims, we go to the temple at any time, any day. There are no special Sabbath, Sunday congregations or Friday prayers.

17. Hindu scriptures are organized into Vedas (poems that written in multiple levels from abstract rural level and going deeper into cosmic universe), Upanishads (scientific discourses and arguments about the world), Brahmanas (manuals for ritual performances), Aranyakas (experiments done on human mind and nature in the forests), Puranas (mythologies about Hindu gods) and Itihasas (notebooks on “historical” events”).

18. Hindus don’t mourn for anything and believe that happiness is the highest form of religious achievement. Thus, unlike most other religions there is no sad festivals for us where we are supposed to mourn.

19. Fire & Light are among the holiest of offerings for Hindus. The concept of Yajna – offering things to fire – is considered one of the highest forms of worships in Hinduism. It symbolizes the idea that everything meets its end.

Hindus Performing Yagna | Hindu FAQs
Hindus Performing Yagna

20. Hinduism’s holiest body of works – Rig Veda – talks of 33 main gods. Although most Hindus consider the Vedas as the holiest, none of those 33 gods are in mainstream worship now.  Also READ: 330Million Hindu Gods

21. Unlike other major religions, Hindu scriptures ask a number of philosophical questions and is ok with “don’t know” answer for some of them. One of the critical body of these questions is the Prashna Upanishad. unfortunately most of us cannot understand the answer to the fundamental questions posted there.

22. Hindus strongly believe in rebirth and karma. That means my next birth will be determined by my actions of this birth.

23. Hindus hold big chariot processions to carry their gods during special occasions. Some of these chariots can be huge and marauding – sometimes killing people in their path when they lose control. The biggest one of all – Jagannath – gave the English dictionary term Juggernaut -meaning the unstoppable one.

Jagannath Rath Yatra | Hindu FAQs
Jagannath Rath Yatra

24. Hindus hold Ganga as the purest of all waters and believe that bathing in it can purify them of their sins.

Holy River Ganga or Ganges | Hindu FAQs
Holy River Ganga or Ganges

25. Kumbh Mela. It is considered to be largest peaceful gathering in the world with over 100 million people visiting during the Maha Kumbh Mela in 2013. Most of the sadhus and saints are said to be in samadhi and appear only to kumbh mela.

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

The holiest number for Hindus is 108. This is the ratio of Sun’s distance (from earth)/Sun’s diameter or Moon’s distance (from earth)/Moon’s diameter. Thus, most of our prayer beads have 108 beads.

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Egypt had 8 levels pyramid organization

It didn’t develop in one shot and evolved over time by merging many different social groups. The caste system is not a well-defined entity, but an amorphous grouping of people with different origins that all got mixed over time.

Humans, like many other mammals, live in various social groups. We often build a web of relationship known as the Kinship. Initially we were all in small bands or tribes & we were not in close contact with other groups. As we kept coming together to form more complex societies, some wanted to organize & formalize the group.

Band – Bands are the smallest units. It is an informal group of a few dozen people who work together. It might not have a leader.

Clan
– This is a slightly more matured group with a belief in a common origin & descent. In India, this roughly translates to Gotra. For instance, my family believes that we are descent of the 3 saints of Viswamitra-Ahamarshana-Koushika. Such clans were in most ancient human societies. The clans formed a strong kinship & bonding among themselves. Also, most clans thought of others in the clan as brothers/sisters & thus would not marry within the clan. The Khaps in Haryana take to this the extreme & can even give death sentences to those who marry within the clan.

Tribe – Mulitiple clans can come together to form a tribe & tribes can often be quite well structured. They can have their own leaders & build common cultural practices. In many ancient societies, people married within the same tribe. In short, you marry out of a clan and within a tribe. In India, this roughly corresponds to Jati.

Nations – Tribes formed even bigger groups named the nation. For instance, in the Battle of the Ten Kings the tribal groups formed the nation of Bhāratas that won over the confederation of 10 tribes in north India. Thus, we call our nation Bharat.

Division of labour – As we started forming civilizations, we also found it quite useful to divide work. Thus, some would produce milk, some would farm, others would weave etc. Like in other civilizations, India had this division of labor too. These divisions then got superimposed over the much older clan & tribal divisions.

Some of the tribes/jatis are as big as most nations. For instance, the peasant caste of Jats numbers about 83 million people – a little bigger than Germany & Mongolia combined. Other castes like Yadavs, Minas and Rajputs also have millions of people have built a formidable political force.

Building Social Hierarchies
Almost all societies eventually turned into building hierarchies in a pyramid system. The tribes had no ranking system before this & somehow people felt that there needs to be a rank. Such rankings are somewhat present in our mind always.

For instance, if you ask a kid to rank the professions of plumber, soldier, doctor and shopkeeper in terms of attractiveness/usefulness, he/she might instinctively say doctor > soldier > shopkeeper > plumber. We have some universal notions of the relative worth of different professions & this bias reflected in the social hierarchy.

Around 3500 years ago, the various tribes that were creating the Rig Veda was grappling with a way to organize all the different systems – since there were 100s of tribal groups & occupation groups. Rig Veda did it this way.

Brahmins (with all the different clans who were in priest related occupations)
Kshatriyas (the warriors)
Vaishyas (merchants)
Shudras (workers)

Such a pyramid organization was not unique to the Rig Vedis. Plenty of societies around the world had stratified their society. Europe had Estates of the realm.

Egypt had 8 levels with more fine grained.

Egypt had 8 levels pyramid organization
Egypt had 8 levels pyramid organization

Japan also had 8.

Japanese had 8 levels pyramid organization
Japanese had 8 levels pyramid organization

Mesopotamia had 6.

Mesopotamia had 6 levels pyramid organization
Mesopotamia had 6 levels pyramid organization

While north India had a more formalized social stratification systems, south India didn’t get as formalized. It turned out to be quite binary – brahmins and non-brahmins. Only recently many jatis like Reddys, Thevars and Lingayats started grappling with where they fit into the varna system.

In short, there was no single system and people often made up the rules on the go. Many also used obscure texts like a 2000 year old Manu Smriti to define their position in the outdated hierarchy.

There are two major elements which were used for caste classifications

1. Varna – the mental state of an individual
2. Jati – the social segregation of an individual based on profession.

Jati is a derivative of Varna but the reverse is not true. Varna is supreme, Jati is just an indicator of the profession of a family branch, it has nothing to do with Karma. Varna is Karma, Jati is just a social classification which evolved later. Varna is more of a state of mind.

What is Varna?
Varna is simply the mental state of a subject. Varna is the “Why?”

Varna - mental state of a subject
Varna – mental state of a subject

Shudra – Unconditional Follower.
Vaishya – Conditional Follower
Kshatriya – Conditional Leader
Brahmana – Unconditional Leader.

A person of Shudra Varna always follows whatever is given. He never questions, he never argues, he never thinks on his own, he just “obeys” the master (Karta). He doesn’t see the big picture and is always keen on following.

Hanuman is of Shudra varna. He never questions Ram. He just does whatever is said. That is it. He can kill the whole Lanka army alone but he never does it. When his mother asked “Why?” he said – Because nobody told me to do so.

A person of Vaishya varna is a conditional follower which means, he will follow his master only on a given condition. He will not take initiative, but when ordered to do something, he will evaluate the orders and carry out actions only if it fits the condition.

Sugriva is of Vaishya varna. He agrees to help Ram only if Ram helps him first. If Ram did not kill Vali, Sugriva would’t have given his army to Ram.

Kshatriya Varna is someone who leads but again has conditions attached to why he is leading. He leads just for the sake of leading, not upholding the cause of leadership. He carries out action because he is more into the “Power” and “Glory” and not for the action alone.

Ravana and Duryodhana, both belong to Kshatriya varna. They are conditional leaders. Ravana leads just for the sake of preserving his ego and avenging the insult of Surpnakha. Duryodhana leads just for the sake of his personal enmity and abandons the greater cause of the kingdom. They are both “Conditional leaders”.

Brahmana varna is someone who lives for the greater objective and his leadership or action is focussed on “Dharma” and not personal goals. Rama and Krishna are both Unconditional leaders, who go above and beyond the call of duty to accomplish Dharma and attain the bigger goal. Rama abandons his Kingdom for his father, abandons his wife for the kingdom. Krishna is sharp focussed on establishing his goal and introduces “Adharmik principles” to restore Dharma. This is unconditional leadership, do whatever it takes to meet the end result and establish Dharma.

How Varna Shifts in One’s Life

When a man grows up, he is mostly of Shudra varna, unconditionally following whatever is told by parents, teachers and others.

Then he graduates to Vaishya varna wherein, he follows only when a condition is met (I want to do enginerring only if …..).

Then he graduates to Khastriya Varna wherein he takes up Karma just for the sake of Karma alone, without knowing what he is doing (a job or some trade to make ends meet).
Finally he is able to realize his true worth and do things he really wants to do in life (Brahmana varna).

Is Varna related to Birth?

No. Not at all.
A person of lowerly caste may very well be of “Brahmana” varna while a person of “higher” caste may be of Shudra varna.

Example – Consider a person from shudra Jati, who cleans people’s toilets. He is extremely devoted to his duty and performs every task with utmost perfection. He is an unconditional leader and his mission in life is to clean every single toilet in his area. So although he is “Shudra” by Jati, he is of “Brahmana” varna.

Example – Consider a person who is from “Brahmana” jati. He is a professor in a reputed institute but never performs his duty well. He just comes, gives lectures and notes, takes exams and passes every student. He is not concerned about the knowledge his students are getting, he is just following some “System”.

So despite being from the “Brahmana” jati, he is of “Shudra varna” – unconditional follower. He will simply do whatever is told to him, without caring about the consequences.

How Jati Comes from Varna?  >> Behavior of the mind

Jati was introduced so that a person of specific Varna gets the profession he is most suited for. It is not the other way around.

A person of “Brahmana” varna was given a “Jati” of “Brahmana” so that society benefits from his behavior. An unconditional leader is best suited in institutes, so that people can learn from someone who knows the bigger objective and is determined to achieve it.

A person of “Khastriya” varna was given a “Jati” of “Khatriya” so that society benefits from that behavior. A conditional leader is better suited for administrative tasks, kingship, ruler..who can lead and protect the nation from foreigners and be advised by unconditional leaders (“brahmanas”)

A person of “Vaishya” varna was given a “Jati” of “Vaishya” so that societry benefits from the behavior. A conditional follower is better suited for trade and commerce and can help build the economy faster and provide goods and services, since he is more keen on “Following” the system.

A person of “Shudra” varna was given a “Jati” of “Shudra” so that society benefits from the behavior. An unconditional follower is better suited in the service of others and hence the person of “Shudra” varna is better utilized as clerks, officers and other day to day “Jobs”.

Alas, for the human race tweaked this concept and started abusing it. They abused it to that extent that now it is the exact opposite. A person with great thought and vision but born into a lower caste family is mostly neglected while a person born into a “Brahmin” family but no character or vision is given respect.

This is what Kaliyug has done to the vedic system of segregating talent in the society.

The oldest “Secret Society” on earth, The NINE UNKNOWN MEN also known as NUM, founded by King Ashoka the Greatest of all Emperors, an old Indian ruler ca. 269 BCE to 232 BCE..

The Nine Unknown Men
The Nine Unknown Men

Unknown Men of King Ashoka a secret society of India dating back to two millennium is the greatest Mystery in India which is believed to be the Indian version of Atlantis dating back to 273 BC to the regime of the King Ashoka indian emperor the grandson of Chandragupta who was the first person attempted to unify India..

Emperor Ashoka
Emperor Ashoka

King Ashoka was hindu by birth and converted to Buddhism after the battle of kalinga which claimed around one lakh (hundred thousand) men…..when war was over King Ashoka ventured out to roam the eastern city and all he could see were burnt houses and scattered corpses. This sight made him sick and he cried the famous quotation, “What have I done?” Upon his return to Pataliputra, he could get no sleep and was constantly haunted by his deeds in Kalinga. The brutality of the conquest led him to adopt Buddhism under the guidance of the Brahmin Buddhist sages Radhaswami and Manjushri and he used his position to propagate the relatively new philosophy to new heights, as far as ancient Rome and Egypt.

battle of kalinga
Battle of kalinga

According to the legend, upon his conversion to Buddhism after a massacre during one of his wars, the Emperor founded he society of the Nine to preserve and develop knowledge that would be dangerous to humanity if it fell into the wrong hands. Some versions of the story include an additional motivation for the Emperor to conceal scientific knowledge: remnants of the Rama Empire, an Indian version of Atlantis, which according to Hindu scripture was destroyed by
advanced weaponry 15,000 years ago.
King Asoka founded the most powerful secret society on earth: that of the Nine Unknown Men. It is still thought that the great men responsible for the destiny of modern India, and scientists like Bose and Ram believe in the existence of the Nine, and even receive advice and messages from them. One can imagine the extraordinary importance of secret knowledge in the hands of nine men benefiting directly from experiments, studies and documents accumulated over a period of more than 2,000 years. What can have been the aim of these men? Not to allow methods of destruction to fall into the hands of unqualified persons and to pursue knowledge which would benefit mankind. Their numbers would be renewed by co-option, so as to preserve the secrecy of techniques handed down from ancient times.

One of the palm leaf manuscripts they intend to decipher is the Amsu Bodhini, which, according to an anonymous text of 1931, contains information about the planets; the different kinds of light, heat, color, and electromagnetic fields; the methods used to construct machines capable of attracting solar rays and, in turn, of analysing and separating their energy components; the possibility of conversing with people in remote places and sending messages by cable; and the manufacture of machines to transport people to other planets!

Examples of the Nine Unknown Men making contact with the outer world are rare. There was, however, the extraordinary case of one of the most mysterious figures in Western history: the Pope Sylvester II, known also by the name of Gerbert d’Aurillac. Born in the Auvergne in 920 (d. 1003) Gerbert was a Benedictine monk, professor at the University of Rheims, Archbishop of Ravenna and Pope by the grace of Ortho III. He is supposed to have spent some time in Spain, after which a mysterious voyage brought him to India where he is reputed to have acquired various kinds of skills which stupefied his entourage. For example, he possessed in his palace a bronze head which answered YES or NO to questions put to it on politics or the general position of Christianity. According to Sylvester II this was a perfectly simple operation corresponding to a two-figure calculation, and was performed by an automaton similar to our modern binary machines. This “magic” head was destroyed when Sylvester died, and all the information it imparted carefully concealed. No doubt an authorized research worker would come across some interesting things in the Vatican Library. In the cybernetics journal, _Computers and Automation_ of October 1954, the following comment appeared: “We must suppose that he (Sylvester) was possessed of extraordinary knowledge and the most remarkable mechanical skill and inventiveness. This speaking head must have been fashioned ‘under a certain conjunction of stars occurring at the exact moment when all the planets were starting on their courses.’ Neither the past, nor the present nor the future entered into it, since this invention apparently far exceeded in its scope its rival, the perverse ‘mirror on the wall’ of the Queen, the precursor of our modern electronic brain. Naturally it was widely asserted that Gerbert was only able to produce such a machine head because he was in league with the Devil and had sworn eternal allegiance to him.” Had other Europeans any contact with the society of the Nine Unknown Men? It was not until the nineteenth century that this mystery was referred to again in the works of the French writer Jacolliot. Jacolliot was French Consul at Calcutta under the Second Empire. He wrote some quite important prophetic works, comparable, if not superior to those of Jules Verne. He also left several books dealing with the great secrets of the human race. A great many occult writers, prophets and miracle-workers have borrowed from his writings which, completely neglected in France, are well known in Russia.

Jacolliot states categorically that the Society of Nine did actually exist. And, to make it all the more intriguing, he refers in this connection to certain techniques, unimaginable in 1860, such as, for example, the liberation of energy, sterilization by radiation and psychological warfare. Yersin, one of Pasteur and de Roux’s closest collaborators, was entrusted, it seems, with certain biological secrets when he visited Madras in 1890, and following the instructions he received was able to prepare a serum against cholera and the plague. The story of the Nine Unknown Men was popularized for the first time in 1927 in a book by Talbot Mundy who for twenty-five years was a member of the British police force in India. His book is half-fiction, half scientific inquiry. The Nine apparently employed a synthetic language, and each of them was in possession of a book that was constantly being rewritten and containing a detailed account of some science.

Each of the Nine is supposedly responsible for guarding and improving a single book. These books each deal with a different branch of potentially hazardous knowledge. Traditionally, the books are said to cover the following subjects:

Propaganda and Psychological warfare: is a concerted set of messages aimed at influencing the opinions or behaviour of large numbers of people. Instead of impartially providing information, propaganda in its most basic sense presents information in order to influence its audience. It is the most dangerous of all sciences, as it is capable of moulding mass opinion. It would enable anyone to govern the whole world.
Physiology: Including study of the mechanical, physical, and biochemical functions of living organisms. Also included instructions on how to perform the “touch of death (death being caused by a reversal of the nerve-impulse).” One account has Judo being a product of material leaked from this book.
Microbiology: According to more recent speculation, Biotechnology. In some versions of the myth, the waters of the Ganges are purified with special microbes designed by the Nine and released into the river at a secret base in the Himalayas.
Alchemy: Including the transmutation of metals. In India, there is a persistent rumour that during times of drought or other natural disasters temples and religious organizations receive large quantities of gold from an unknown source. The mystery is further deepened with the fact that the sheer quantity of gold throughout the country in temples and with kings cannot be properly accounted for, seeing that India has few gold mines.
Communication: Including communication with extraterrestrials.
Gravitation: Contain the instructions necessary to build a Vimana, sometimes referred to as the “ancient UFOs of India.”
Cosmology: The capacity to travel at enormous speeds through spacetime fabric, and time-travel; including intra- and inter-universal trips.
Light: The capacity to increase and decrease the speed of light, to use it as a weapon by concentrating it in a certain direction etc.
Sociology: Including rules concerning the evolution of societies and how to predict their downfall.

Well I would like to add a quote here.

A perfect myth is one which has just enough historical context to make it credible but takes care to be vague enough to become unfalsifiable. Most of it is filled with grandiose ideas to make it awe-inspiring. Many myths are but exaggeration of facts, lost in labyrinths of ancient times. (e.g.Opus Dei, Templars, Atlantis)

So its upto you to decide whether this is just a myth or reality.

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