Skip to main content

Featured Post

Book Review: On Philosophising, Philosophers, Philosophy and New Vistas in Applied Philosophy, by Dr. Sharmila Jayant Virkar

A little bit of context before you begin reading this book review. I have recently enrolled for an MA in Philosophy at the University of Mumbai. Philosophy is something I have been getting interested in, over the past few years, as those of you who have been reading my blogs and Instagram posts would know. During the pandemic, I thought long and hard about what I wanted to do next, and this is what I eventually came up with. It has been a challenge, getting back into academics as a student at this age, especially in a subject I have no academic background in. However, it has also been very exciting, especially thanks to my wonderful classmates (who, surprisingly, are of all age-groups, including some quite near my own) and my teachers, who have been very supportive and understanding. How well I will do is something that remains to be seen, but so far, I am enjoying this new journey and look forward to where it leads. Now that you know the background , you probably get an idea of how

Navaratri Experiences – 6 and 7

Weekends during Navaratri are busy, for these are the days of hectic socializing – these are the days we have more visitors at home, and we have to go to others’ houses as well. At least, Samhith was happy as he got to see a lovely golu at one of our friends’ houses. They also have a young son, and he had enthusiastically exhibited a cricket team as well an airport.

From Miscellaneous

From Miscellaneous

From Miscellaneous




Navaratri is a time we pay obeisance to the Devi in her each and every form. It was one such form that was depicted in the temple on Saturday, the fifth day of Navaratri – SAKHAMBARI.


From Miscellaneous


In the Devi Mahatmyam, Durga prophesies that when the earth has been dry for a hundred years, the wise ones who continuously meditate upon her will cause her to be born in a superhuman fashion and she will bring forth from her body; fruits, flowers, vegetables and herbs to take away our hunger and thirst and our fear of death. She calls herself SHAKAMBARI. We pray to her for abundance of fruits and vegetables.

From Miscellaneous


She is depicted as being covered with fruits and vegetables, and as you can see from the photograph, apart from the face, every inch of the Devi is made up of vegetables, including the decoration around her.



Sunday, the 6th day, which signifies the completion of the phase celebrating Lakshmi, had a decoration that pleased Samhith very much – GANDAKI Devi of Muktinath.

From Miscellaneous


The Gandaki Devi temple is at Muktinath in Nepal, and is one of the 51 Shakti Peethams. It is believed that Sati’s nose fell at this place.

The Devi has been depicted as holding in her hands, two heads, one of a male, and the other a female, and standing on another figure.

From Miscellaneous

Samhith got all excited, and shouted out “Mamma look! The Devi has killed three asuras!” (He notices only asuras these days, not the gods). The temple priest hastened to correct him, saying that the Devi was not holding the auras’ heads, but the bad thoughts and bad habits of normal people like us, which is what we should pray to her for – an explanation which he accepted for the moment, though not full satisfied yet. He wants me to find out who those asuras are, and I must say, till now I have been unsuccessful. Even the internet, which provides most of the answers to my son’s questions, has let me down. If any of you reading this has any more information about this form of the goddess, please do let me know.



That’s all I have for the moment. Looking forward to sharing more news with all of you tomorrow….

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Havelis of Bikaner - A Photo Post

The lanes are narrow , twisting and turning amidst buildings old and new. Crumbling old structures with intricate workmanship stand side by side with art deco buildings, and more modern constructions, which follow no particular style. Autos, bicycles, motorcycles and vans rush past, blowing their horns as loudly as possible, while cows saunter past peacefully, completely unaffected by the noise. In the midst of all this chaos, children play by the side, and women go about their chores, as we explore these by-lanes of Bikaner, and its beautiful Havelis. Facade of one of the Rampuria Havelis

Gokarna Part II – The Five Lingams

We continued our Gokarna trip by visiting four other Shiva temples in the vicinity, all connected to the same story of Gokarna. The story of Gokarna mentions the Mahabaleshwara Lingam as the one brought from Kailas by Ravana, and kept at this place on the ground by Ganesha. (See my earlier post- Gokarna – Pilgrimage and Pleasure). However, the story does not end here. It is believed that, in his anger, Ravana flung aside the materials which covered the lingam- the casket, its lid, the string around the lingam, and the cloth covering it. All these items became lingams as soon as they touched the ground. These four lingams, along with the main Mahabaleshwara lingam are collectively called the ‘ Panchalingams’ . These are: Mahabaleshwara – the main lingam Sajjeshwar – the casket carrying the lingam. This temple is about 35 Kms from Karwar, and is a 2 hour drive from Gokarna. Dhareshwar – the string covering the lingam. This temple is on NH17, about 45 Kms south of Gokarna. Gunavantesh

The Elephanta Caves

The Elephanta Caves , located on Elephanta Island, or Gharapuri, about 11 Km off the coast of the Gateway of India, Mumbai, are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. A visit to these caves, excavated probably in the 6 th century CE, is awe-inspiring, and also thought-provoking. Over the years, I have visited the caves a number of times, and also attended a number of talks by experts in the fields of art, history and archaeology on the caves. Together, they help me understand these caves, their art, and the people they were created for, just a little bit better. Every new visit, every new talk, every new article I read about the caves, fleshes out the image of what the island and the caves would have been like, at their peak. I last wrote about the caves on this blog, in 2011, almost exactly 11 years ago. Since then, my understanding of the caves has, I would like to think, marginally improved. Hence this attempt to write a new and updated post, trying to bring to life, the caves of Elephan