Category: Religious

Akshar Dham Temple, Gandhi Nagar, Ahmedabad.


Akshar Dham Temple, Gandhi Nagar, Ahmedabad

Swaminarayan Akshardham in Gandhinagar, Gujarat is a large Hindu temple complex inspired by Pramukh Swami, the former spiritual head of BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha. Located in the capital of Gujarat, the complex was built over 13 years and is a tribute to Swaminarayan and his life and teachings. At the center of the 23-acre complex is the Akshardham mandir, which is built from 6,000 metric tons of pink sandstone from Rajasthan. The complex’s name refers to the divine abode of Swaminarayan in the BAPS philosophy; followers of Swaminarayan believe that the jiva or soul goes to Akshardham after attaining moksha, or liberation. BAPS followers worship Swaminarayan as God almighty.


Akshardham Mandir

The focal point of the complex is the Akshardham Mandir, which measures 108 feet high, 131 feet wide and 240 feet long and features 97 carved pillars, 17 domes, 8 balconies, 220 stone beams and 264 sculpted figures.In accordance with Vedic architectural principles, no steel or iron has been used anywhere in the mandir. 20 foot-long stone beams, each weighing five tons, have been used as load-bearing support throughout the mandir.[1] The mandir’s central chamber houses a seven-foot-tall, gold-leafed murti, or sacred image, of Swaminarayan, who is worshipped by followers as God. The murti rests upon a three-foot pedestal and weighs 1.2 tons. It is flanked by the murtis of the ideal devotee, Aksharbrahma Gunatitanand Swami and Aksharmukta Goplanand Swami, both in postures of loving devotion toward Swaminarayan. In each of the four corners of the mandir sits a life-sized marble murti of the lineages of gurus or successors of Swaminarayan revered by BAPS.[3] The first floor of the mandir is known as the Vibhuti Mandapam and features lotus-shaped displays describing the spiritual character of Swaminarayan, while the basement of the mandir, called the Prasadi Mandapam, houses a historical display of various sacred relics from Swaminarayan’s life.

Exhibition Halls

The complex’s five exhibition halls use audio-visual presentations and life-sized dioramas to explore various themes in Hinduism. The Neelkanth and Sahajanand Halls depict Swaminarayan’s life, work and teachings. The Mystic India Hall features an IMAX theater which screens a 40-minute film portraying the country-spanning pilgrimage Swaminarayan had embarked on at the age of eleven, when he assumed the name Neelkanth Varni. The film, directed by Keith Melton and narrated by Peter O’Toole, was shot at 108 locations across India and boasts a cast of over 45,000 people. It has received numerous plaudits including the Audience’s Choice Award at the 10th International Large Format Film Festival at La Geode in Paris, France and the “Most Popular Film” at the San Jose IMAX Film Festival. The Premanand Hall is divided into three sub-sections, the first is dedicated to the Hindu scriptural texts, the Upanishads, the Ramayan, and the Mahabharat; the second explores religions more generally and features photographic displays of the symbols, scriptures, sacred sites, moral codes and prayers of the world’s major faiths; and the third section serves as a tribute to some of India’s most famous poets. The fifth exhibition hall, Sant Param Hitakari, houses an audio-animatronics show conveying a message of everlasting happiness.

Sat-Chit-Anand Water Show

The Sat-Chit-Anand Water Show is an interpretative performance of the parable of Nachiketa, as told in the Kathopanishad. The show’s title translates to Truth-Knowledge-Bliss and is an appellation of the Hindu ontological reality Aksharbrahma or Akshardham. The show was inaugurated on 3 April 2010 by Pramukh Swami. The vibrant show employs fire, fountain animations, laser, water screen projections, music and live characters in a 45-minute retelling of Nachiketa’s choice. Nachiketa was the son of a rishi named Udalak, who organized a yagna in which he gifted sickly, barren cattle to Brahmin attendees. Nachiketa was troubled by his father’s deception and asked to whom he himself would be offered to in charity. Angered by this question, Udalak banished Nachiketa to the realm of Yamapuri, the underworld. Nachiketa stood at King Yama’s doorstep for three days waiting for Yama’s arrival; Yama was impressed by Nachiketa’s resoluteness, and offered him three boons. Firstly, Nachiketa requested that his father may welcome him lovingly upon his return home; next that he be granted the knowledge by which he can be worthy of living in the heavens; and lastly he may attain knowledge of the eternal soul, the Atma, which transcends death. The story of Nachiketa offers lessons in realizing one’s true Self, living by one’s principles, perseverance in the face of difficulties, and keeping spiritual perspective in any circumstance.

(source :

Akshar Dham temple, Jaipur.


Akshar Dham Temple, Jaipur


Swaminarayan Mandir Akshardham Temple is one of the well-known tourist attractions of Jaipur. The temple is known for its beautiful architecture, magnificent idols, sculptures, and carvings. and is dedicated to the Hindu God, Narayan. Akshardham temple provides the real glimpse of Indian architecture, cultural heritage and sculptures of Hindu gods to the visitors. It is located in the Vaishali Nagar, Jaipur.

History of Akshardham Temple Jaipur

Akshardham Temple in Jaipur has not such legendary history since it is a modern temple which was built recently in between 19th and 20th century. But it still depicts the architectural wonders of Indian temples and is one of the most visited temple in Jaipur city. The temple is located in vaishali nagar and is visited by millions of devotee all round the year. The idol and the temple buildings offers a place fo serenity and peace.

Architecture of Temple

The temple is surrounded bu lush green gardens and fountains. It’s unique architecture is what attracts most of the tourists here. The walls of the temple is beautifully decorated with number of sculptures and carvings which feels amazing to watch. The main idol of the temple which is Lord Vishnu, is decorated with the gold and silver ornaments.


(source :


Chhath Puja.


 Chhath Puja

Performing of evening & morning Pray to Sun around the holy River in Mithila region of Nepal




Also called Chhathi
Chhath Parv
Chhath Puja
Dala Chhath
Dala Puja
Surya Shashthi
Observed by
  • Bihari Indians and Madheshi Nepalese
    • Magahi people
    • Maithils
    • Bhojpuri people
  • Awadhi people
Liturgical Color Colors related to Hinduism Saffron (or Bhagwa)
Type Cultural, Historical, Religious
Significance To thank Sun for bestowing the bounties of life on earth and fulfilling particular wishes
2017 date October 24 to October 27

Chhath Puja 2017 Dates

Chhath puja is on 26th & 27th of October 2017. The four day festival will start on 24th of October and end on 27th of October. It is also celebrated in the summer (March–April), on Chaitra Shashthi, some days after Holi; this event is called Chaiti Chhath.[18] The former is more popular because winter is the usual festive season in Nepal and also in Bihar of North India. Chhath is an arduous observance, requiring the worshipers to fast without water for around 36 hours continuously.




It is believed that the ritual of Chhath puja may even predate the ancient Vedas texts, as the Rigveda

contains hymns worshiping the Sun god and describes similar rituals. The rituals also find reference in

the Sanskrit epic poem Mahābhārata in which Draupadi is depicted as observing similar rites.


In the poem, Draupadi and the Pandavas, rulers of Indraprastha (modern Delhi), performed the Chhath

ritual on the advice of noble sage Dhaumya. Through her worship of the Sun God, Draupadi was not

only able to solve her immediate problems, but also helped the Pandavas later regain their lost



Its yogic / scientific history dates back to the Vedic times. The rishis of yore used this method to remain

without any external intake of food as they were able to obtain energy directly from the sun’s rays. This

was done through the Chhath method.


Another history behind celebrating the Chhath puja is the story of Lord Rama. It is considered that

Lord Rama of Ayodhya and Sita of Mithila had kept fast and offer puja to the Lord Sun in the month

of Kartika in Shukla Paksh during their coronation after returning to the Ayodhya after 14 years of exile.

From that time, chhath puja became the significant and traditional festival in the Hindu religion and

started celebrating every year at the same date in Sita’s homeland janakpur and adjoining Indian states

of Bihar,



Chhathi Maiya


The Goddess who is worshipped during the famous Chhath Puja is known as Chhathi Maiya. Chhathi

Maiya is known as Usha in the Vedas. She is believed to be the beloved younger wife of Surya, the Sun

God. In mithilanchal region she is also worshiped as name of “RANA MAI “.


This is the only parva which signifies rising sun as well as setting sun both.

(छठ पूजा एक ऐसा श्रेष्ठतम पर्व हैं जहाँ डूबते हुए सूर्य से प्रार्थना करते हुए व्रत का प्रारंभ होता है एवं सूर्योदय कि पूजा के

पश्चात व्रत सम्पूर्ण होता हैं “जैसे कि जीवन के संचालन के लिए रात्रि का उतना ही महत्व है जितना दिन का”).




Chhath 2017: Date And Timings Of The Chhath Puja.


 Chhath 2017: Date And Timings Of The Chhath Puja


NEW DELHI:  Diwali celebrations may be coming to an end but the festive season in Northern India is still carrying on with the beginning of Chhath Puja or Chhath Parva. Chhath Puja is celebrated in devotion to the Sun God Surya Shashti, or Dala Chhath, and his wife Usha, who is also known as Chhath Maiya. The Puja is observed to thank the Sun God for his protection and seek his blessings along with good health and happiness. It is celebrated on the sixth day in the month of Kartik of the Hindu calendar.

This year, Chhath Puja begins on October 24 and will continue till October 27. The main puja will be observed on October 26.

The Shashthi Tithi will begin at 9:37 am on October 25 and finish at 12:15 pm on October 26. On the day of the main puja, the sun is expected to rise at 6:41 am, while sunset will likely happen at 6:05 pm.

The history of Chhath Puja has its roots in the two epics Mahabharat and Ramayan. It is believed that Draupadi along with the Pandavas, upon advice from the noble sage Dhaumya, performed Chhath Puja.

As she worshipped the Sun God, Draupadi saw all her problems disappear and the Pandavas were able to win back their lost kingdom. Another belief is that as Sita was returning to Aodhya with Lord Ram, she observed a fast and prayed to the Sun God in the month of Kartik. Chhath Puja has become a significant festival for Hindus ever since.

Chhath Puja is celebrated mainly in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, but with many people from those states moving to Delhi, it has become an important festival in the national capital as well.




(source: on 24.10.2017)


नहाय खाय के साथ शुरू हुई छठ पूजा, जानिए इसका महत्व और शुभ मुहूर्त


छठ पूजा

दिवाली के बाद सूर्य भगवान के उपासना का सबसे बड़ा त्योहार छठ आता है। आज से चार दिनों तक चलने वाला छठ पर्व नहाय खाय के साथ शुरू हो चुका है। 25 अक्टूबर 2017 को खरना, 26 अक्टूबर 2017 को सांझ का अर्ध्य और 27 अक्टूबर 2017 को सूर्य को सुबह का अर्ध्य के साथ ये त्योहार संपन्न होगा।



(source: Amar Ujala 24.10.2017)


Relationship between all Shiva Temples


 “Relationship between all Shiva Temple”

Very interesting –  Can you guess what is common between all these prominent temples.

1. Kedarnath
2. Kalahashti
3. Ekambaranatha- Kanchi
4. Thiruvanamalai
5. Thiruvanaikaval
6. Chidambaram Nataraja
7. Rameshwaram
8. Kaleshwaram N-India

If your answer is they all are Shiva temples,  you are only partially correct.

It is actually the longitude in which these temples are located.

They all are located in 79° longitude.
What is surprising and awesome is that how the architects of these temples many hundreds

of kilometers apart came up with these precise locations without GPS or any such gizmo like that.

1. Kedarnath 79.0669°
2. Kalahashti 79.7037°
3. Ekambaranatha- Kanchi 79.7036°
4. Thiruvanamalai 79.0747°
5. Thiruvanaikaval 78.7108
6. Chidambaram Nataraja 79.6954°
7. Rameshwaram 79.3129°
8. Kaleshwaram N-India 79.9067°

See the picture — all are in a straight line.

(source: user kapilbamba on 09.02.2017)



History of Navaratri

Navratri is a very important Hindu festival celebrated in India, which is devoted to Goddess Durga. The festival is celebrated with great reverence and faith across the country. It stretches over a period of nine days, with each of the nine days being dedicated to one of the nine forms of the Goddess. Talking about the history of Navratri festival, it can be explained through the stories mentioned in the Hindu scriptures. In case you want to know more about them, explore the information given below

History & Origin Of Navratri

In different parts of India, different legends describe the history of Navratri:

North India
The legend in North India goes that Mahishasura, the mighty demon, worshipped Lord Shiva and obtained the power of eternity. Soon, he started killing and harassing innocent people and set out to win all the three lokas. The gods in swargaloka appealed to Lord Shiva, to find a way to get rid of the demon. To protect the world from the atrocities of Mahishasura, the Trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva united their powers and created a divine female warrior, known as Goddess Durga. Mahishasura, when he saw the divine beauty of Goddess Durga, got mesmerized.

So fascinated was Mahishasura by Goddess Durga’s beauty that he approached her with the intention of marriage. The goddess agreed to marry him, but put forth a condition – Mahishasura would have to win over her in a battle. Mahishasura, proud as he was, agreed immediately! The battle continued for 9 nights and at the end of the ninth night, Goddess Durga beheaded Mahishasura. The nine nights came to be known as Navratri, while the tenth day was called Vijayadashmi, the tenth day that brought the triumph of good over evil.

Eastern Belief
As per the legend prevalent in East India, Daksha, the king of the Himalayas, had a beautiful and virtuous daughter called Uma. She wished to marry Lord Shiva, since her childhood. In order to win over the Lord, she worshipped him and managed to please him as well. When Shiva finally came to marry her, the tiger-skin clad groom displeased Daksha and he broke off all the relationships with his daughter and son-in-law. One fine day, Daksha organized a yagna, but did not invite Lord Shiva for the same.

Uma got so angry at her father’s rude behavior, towards her husband, that she decided to end her life by jumping into the agnikund of the yagna, where she was united with eternity (since then, she came to be known as Sati). However, she took re-birth and again won Shiva as her groom and peace was restored. It is believed that since then, Uma comes every year with Ganesh, Kartik, Saraswati and Laxmi and two of her best friends or ‘sakhis’, called Jaya and Bijaya, to visit her parent’s home during Navratri.

Another Legend – Ram and Ravana
Yet another legend of Navratri relates to the Hindu epic Ramayana. It goes that Lord Rama worshipped Goddess Durga in nine aspects, for nine days, in order to gather the strength and power to kill Ravana. He wanted to release Sita from the clutches of powerful demon king Ravana, who had abducted her. Those nine nights became to be known as Navratri and the tenth day, on which Lord Rama killed Ravana, came to be called Vijayadashmi or Dusshera, signifying Rama’s (good) triumph over Ravana (evil).

How Navratri is Celebrated in Different Regions……

The Navratri commences on the first day (pratipada) of the bright fortnight of the lunar month of Ashwin. The festival is celebrated for nine nights once every year during the beginning of October, although as the dates of the festival are determined according to the lunar calendar, the festival may be held for a day more or a day less.

Navaratri is celebrated in different ways throughout India. In North India, all three Navratris are celebrated with much fervor by fasting on all nine days and worshipping the Mother Goddess in her different forms. The Chaitra Navratriculmintes in Ram Navami and the Sharad Navratri culminates in Durga Puja and Dussehra. The Dussehra of Kulu in Himachal Pradesh is particularly famous in the North.

The last four days of Sharad Navratri take on a particularly dramatic form in the state of West Bengal in East India where they are celebrated as Durga Puja. This is the biggest festival of the year in this state. Exquisitely crafted and decorated life-size clay idols of the Goddess Durga depicting her slaying the demon Mahisasura are set up in temples and other places. These idols are then worshipped for five days and immersed in the river on the fifth day.

In Western India, particularly in the state of Gujarat, Navratri is celebrated with the famous Garba dance. It is also popular throughout India and among Indian communities around the world including UK and USA.

In south India, people set up steps and place idols on them.This is known as golu.
Navratri is divided into sets of three days to adore three different aspects of the supreme goddess or goddesses.

First three days
The goddess is invoked as a spiritual force called Durga also known as kali in order to destroy all our impurities.

Second three days
The Mother is adored as a giver of spiritual wealth, Lakshmi, who is considered to have the power of bestowing on her devotees inexhaustible wealth, as she is the goddess of wealth.

Final three days
The final set of three days is spent in worshipping the goddess of wisdom, Sarasvati. In order to have all-round success in life, believers seek the blessings of all three aspects of the divine femininity, hence the nine nights of worship.

In South India, Sarasvati pooja is performed on the 7th day. Eight day is traditionally Durgashtami which is big in Bengal. The 9th day is Ayudha Pooja when everyone gives their tools of the trade — pens, machinery, books, automobiles, school work, etc. a rest and ritually worships them. They start a fresh from the next day, the 10th day which is considered as ‘Vijaya Dashami’. Many teachers/Schools in south India start teaching Kindergarten children from that day onwards. Students also pay homage to their respective teachers as they are considered the third god (Maathaa, Pitha, Guru, Daivam – Mother, Father, Teacher & God). On this tenth day of Navratri in October – the holiday of Dussehra or Dasara, an effigy of Ravana is burnt to celebrate the victory of good (Rama) over evil.

During Navratri, some devotees of Durga observe a fast and prayers are offered for the protection of health and prosperity. A period of introspection and purification, Navratri is traditionally an auspicious and religious time for starting new ventures.

During this vowed religious observance, a pot is installed (ghatasthapana) at a sanctified place at home. A lamp is kept lit in the pot for nine days. The pot symbolizes the universe. The uninterrupted lit lamp is the medium through which we worship the effulgent Adishakti, i.e. Sree Durgadevi. During Navratri, the principle of Sree Durgadevi is more active in the atmosphere.

Navratri is celebrated in a large number of Indian communities. The mother goddess is said to appear in 9 forms, and each one is worshipped for a day. These nine forms signify various traits that the goddess influences us with. The Devi Mahatmya and other texts invoking the Goddess who vanquished demons are cited.

During the eight or ninth day, Kanya Poojan, where virgin girls who have not attained puberty are worshipped, occurs.


Mount Kailash


“Mount Kailash”


Profound Mysteries: What Makes Mount Kailash mou Intriguing? (From


Mount Kailash North Face Sunrise From Dirapuk On Mount Kailash Outer Kora

You must have known the fact that beautiful Mount Kailash in Tibet has never been climbed by any mountaineer. It is heard in stories that a mystic Tibetan Seer and poet named Milarepa is the only human being who has been able to climb the peak of Mount Kailash. It was over 900 years ago, and since then we have just heard the stories of how nobody has been able to reach the summit of this unclimbable peak.

Do you ever wonder what makes this peak so difficult to be climbed? Is it the physical infeasibility, the difficulty because of altitude, or some other mystic and inexplicable reason which are beyond human control and understanding? Here are some facts about the most mysterious mountain, and a small attempt to understand what the mystery behind this unclimbed peak could possibly be which allows no one to complete the summit of Mount Kailash. We don’t guarantee to clarify it, or to challenge the peak’s unclimbability, we just wish to seek an explanation to it.

Mount Everest is 8848 metre (29029 ft) in height and its summit has been scaled by over 4,000 people, while Mount Kailash is 6638 metre (21778 ft) and its summit is unclimbed.

Jainism, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Bon are the 4 major religions that believe Mount Kailash to be a sacred place.

At the height of 14,950 feet on the foothills of Mount Kailash, are Lake Mansarovar and Lake Rakshastal.

Lake Mansarovar is known to be the highest fresh water body in the world, while Lake Rakshastal has salt-water in it.

Rakshastal is believed to be the lake of Raavana or the demon, where he performed his penance to please Lord Shiva.

The shape of Mansarovar is that of the Sun, and Rakshastal has the shape of the crescent Moon!

Both the lakes are located close to each other divided by a thin isthmus and still while Rakshastal is constantly stormy, lake Mansarovar remains calm throughout all weather conditions.

It is said that Mount Kailash is the heavenly abode of Gods and that’s the reason why no mortal has ever been able to climb it.

According to ancient Tibetan legends and writings, “No mortal ever be allowed to walk atop Mount Kailash, where, among the clouds, is the abode of the gods. He who dares to start the top of Mount holy and see the faces of the gods will be put to death!”

Colonel Wilson, one of the many mountaineers who tried to climb the summit of Mount Kailash explained, “Just when I discovered an easy walk to the summit of the mountain, heavy snow began to fall, making the ascent impossible.”

Sergei Cistiakov, a Russian climber gives an explanation to not being able to finish the summit which will stun you – “When we approached the foot of the mountain, my heart was pounding. I was in front of the sacred mountain, Mount which says it cannot be beaten. I felt extremely emaciated and suddenly I became captivated by the thought that I do not belong on this mountain, it must necessarily come back! As soon as we started the descent, I felt liberated.”

Those who visit the area around the mountain have seen their nails and hair grow to a length in 12 hours, which in normal conditions would happen in 2 weeks! The mountain has an air that causes rapid ageing.

Some Russian scientists have studied the mountain to a great extent and have put forward an idea that Mount Kailash could be a man-made pyramid, and might be the ultimate paranormal phenomenon that connects all the other such monuments in the world where similar things have been observed. It is believed to be the centre of this world-wide system.

Mt. Kailash is believed to be the Axis Mundi, literally the ‘Axis’ of the world that provides a connection between the earth and heaven, between the physical world and the spiritual worlds, the celestial centre of the world where heaven meets earth.

Legend says that the Mt. Kailash is the earthly manifestation of Mount Meru/Sumeru which is the spiritual centre of the universe according to Buddhist, Jains, and Hindu cosmology.

Every year thousands of Buddhist, Jain, Hindu and Bönpo pilgrims circumambulate the foot of Mount Kailash, which is 52 km long.

Even with so many studies and many theories, it is believed that no one has ever understood the real reason why Mount Kailash cannot be climbed, why thousands attempted and failed despite of it being a mountain with a height of 6638 metres which mountaineers should be able to do. But some things are fine if they remain the mysteries that they are, no matter how much intimidating they seem, or how long their history has been.



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