Karthigai Deepam

Karthigai Deepam is the oldest festival of South India in Tiruvannamalai as Arunachala opens the heart

We come now to the oldest festival of South India which is also the most important and elaborate Karthigai Deepam. This festival happens in the Tamil month of Karthigai when the star Krithika is ascending and a full moon day. The festival of Deepam is not confined to the temple, but involves the entire city. Tiruvannamalai, once a small village, has become a big town, however, the charm and the beauty of the festival, remain the same for hundreds of years ago. On the day of Deepam the city is preparing to receive an indescribable multitude of visitors.

The copper cauldron in which the sacred fire is lit, is taken out and cleaned. In the days following the sacred flame will be fueled by ghee and camphor, offered by the devotees and carried on the shoulders up to the top of the hill. The road is well lit pradakshina purpose. The true meaning of all religious festivals is that the Supreme Being makes its presence felt during that period. During the celebration of the festival of Mahashivaratri and Deepam, Arunachala opens the heart of his beloved, and is revealed as the Supreme Being.

In the first three days of the 16 day's event, you propitiate various deities, while the last three days form a sort of epilogue power of the sacred fire on the top of the Hill. The image of the Lord adorned with garlands of flowers, it is taken out of the temple and placed in front of the flagpole, where he can observe the unfolding of the ceremony. At the preset time, the flag is hoisted to the chanting of the Vedas Brahmins, accompanied by drums, cymbals, shells and so on. The priests then, with special rites and invite all the sacred rivers, all the gods and all the rishis, to come to witness this event.

On the eighth day of the feast is the day of Maha Ratham, in which the Lord of Arunachala and the goddess Unnamalai, are taken around the main streets, along with other deities, each in his chariot. On the tenth day of the festival marks the culmination of devotion, the day of the big DEEPAM. As the winter sun sinks below the horizon, a dumbfounded silence slowly permeates the entire atmosphere, inside and outside the temple; people peering closely at the top of the sacred hill, holding my breath waiting for the big moment.

At 6 o'clock, in the temple, takes place arati offered to the Lord, and a burst of loud firecrackers reports, the men on the hill top, to light the fire in the cauldron. The fire that burns bright, the air resounds the heartfelt cry of the devotees and the full moon that spreads its rays on the hill, all create a magical charm and vibrant presence of the Lord is heard in the depths of the hearts of his devotees.

After that the sacred fire was lit, the devotees enter the great temple for darshan of the Lord Arunachaleswarar, and get ready for the pradakshina. A crowd indescribable spins, with devotion, around Arunachala, with focused mind and repeating the sacred mantra of Lord Shiva.

It's really exciting to be in the midst of this multitude of people moving together forming a ring of love and devotion. There are holy souls, serene and magnanimous that, similar to spring, make outpourings a beneficial influence for the good of humanity. They, having transcended the ocean of birth and death, an act of love to help their fellow man to transcend themselves.

Guru Purnima is a spiritual feast that is celebrated in the month of Ashadha (June-July) by the disciples who follow a spiritual path under the guidance of a teacher. This day is celebrated for sage Vyasa, the legendary master who passed the sacred knowledge of the Vedas to his disciples for the good of humanity. On the banks of the Yamuna River, a fisherman carrying passengers from one bank of the river. One day, after a good catch, gutting a huge fish, he found two infants: a male and a female. The fisherman went to the king to ask for an explanation, and he answered that it was the result of a particular birth intrigues among the gods.

The boy lived with the king until he became king of fish. The girl, who was brought up by the fisherman, because of his birth, he smelled of fish. Called Kali (dark skin) or Matsyagandhi (one who smells like fish), later he received the name of Satyavati. She grew up with many beautiful and moral qualities, sometimes helped his father to ferry passengers on the raft. One day while his father was resting, came a rishi, Parasara, who had to cross the river and saw Satyavati just fell in love. Satyavati accompanied him on the other side.

During the trip, the rishi was overwhelmed by the sudden passion for the girl who, fearing a curse of the rishi, offered no resistance. He created an artificial island in the river surrounded by dense fog, from which, kidnapped drunkenness of love, were wrapped. The rishis, the great joy of the girl, thanks to his powers, replaced the smell of fish that she gave off a delicate scent of musk and exclaimed: Now you can go back to your world, but here bear a son who will be a great rishi. She bore a son who immediately became adult, with a strong appearance, vigorous. Speaking to the mother, she said soothingly: Go, do not worry about me. When you need think of me and I shall come straight to your aid. Vyasa went off in the forest and so began his long life of tapas, meditations and offers.

The day of full moon of the month of Ashada is the sacred and auspicious day Guru purnima, sacred to the memory of Guru Brahma Vidya and Vyasa who composed the Vedas, 18 Puranas, the Mahabharata and the Bhagavata. With these works was made ​​a great service to humanity. In the age of Kali Yuga, the memory is short, the spiritual faculties are weak, why Vyasa, the compiler, compassionately, has drawn up, with his enlightened mind, a cultural heritage of inestimable value to regenerate the man of the kali yuga leading him to the evolution and implementation .

From this day begins Chaturmasya, withdrawal period, during the rainy season, for the study of the scriptures. The constant study of these scriptures, live and principles to regenerate humanity is the gesture of deepest gratitude that you might have to Vyasa. On this day, all the mahatma, sadhu, Masters honor the Vyasa puja, devotees and honor their Guru dakshina or acts of charity, made ​​with deep faith and sincerity. Fruit and milk symbolize purity and simplicity.

To the disciple this is a really happy day, because it can make a sincere tribute to his beloved Guru showing the best part of himself, through the actions that his devotion suggests. The love and devotion to the Master must always be shown, in fact, according to the Scriptures, a student is not qualified to sadhana and can not be accepted by a Master, if not demonstrate with actions devotion in his heart.

On this occasion through the homage to the Guru, the disciple deepens her love and devotion . Start a spiritual practice on this day is very auspicious. Generated fresh waves of spiritual, all that you hear, you see, you learn, it says, in this auspicious day to be transformed into sadhana and selfless service, awakening unwavering faith and love for the Supreme within themselves.

Homage and prostration to You, or Vyasa Bhagavan, You who are free from ignorance, you have created the sweet nectar called Bharata, which can be drunk with both hands whenever it is heard.