Friday, May 1, 2015

Spiritual Calendar: May, 2015

1st May,2015:Pradosh Vrata

Lord Shiva

 Pradosh means dusk and this fast is kept on the 13th day of each lunar fortnight for propitiating Lord Shiva.

With His blessings all desires are fulfilled and one attains spiritual enlightenment.It is said that on this day all gods and goddesses assemble on Mount Kailash to worship Lord Shiva.

3rd May, 2015: Shri Narsingh Jayanti

Shri Narsingh Bhagwan

 Lord Vishnu became Narsingh Bhagwan to kill Hiranyakashipu and save Bhakta Prahlad. One of the ten famous incarnations of Lord Vishnu, Narsingh Bhagwan appeared on earth to kill Hiranyakashipu, the king of asuras. If Lord Rama and Krishna are hailed as Purnavtars or full incarnations, the rest eight of them are, Narsingh Avataras.

Sri Narsingh Bhagwan was the family deity or ishtdev of Sri Manohar Baba who used to keep a fast in celebration of His Deity's appearance day on Narsingh Jayanti. He along with all his devotees used to visit Sri Narsingh Temple in Vrindavan. Its location is near the temples of Sri Banke Bihariji and Radharamanji. In this honour, a book of letters written by Sri Manohar Baba may be launched in celestial Vrindavan.

4th May, 2015: Shri Radharaman Dev Prakatutsav

Thakur Radharamanji

In the Chaitanya Mahaprabhu tradition, Shri Radharamanji's lotus face is like Shri Govindaji's, His chest is like Shri Gopinath's and His lotus feet are like Shri Madanmohanji's. On beholding Thakur Radharaman one simultaneously receives the darshan of these three primary deities. The deity of Sri Radharaman manifested from one of Gopal Bhatta Goswami's salagram-silas on a full moon day of Vaisakha (April/May) in 1542.

This event is celebrated every year by bathing the Deity with 100 litres of milk and other auspicious items. Gopal Bhatta Goswami's other salagram-shilas are also worshiped on the altar.

4th May, 2015: Shri Kurma Jayanti

Kurma Avatara

Kurma, the second avatara of Vishnu belongs to the Satya Yuga like the Matsya avatara. Vishnu manifested in the form of a half-man half-tortoise, the lower half being a tortoise. He was normally resplendent with four arms and sat on the bottom of the ocean after the Great Flood. A mountain was placed on His back by the other gods so that they could churn the ocean and find ancient treasures of the Vedic people.

4th May, 201: Vesak (Buddha Purnima/ Buddha Jayanti)

Siddharth Gautam Becomes Lord Buddha

It is a Buddhist festival that marks Gautama Buddha's birth, enlightenment and death. Siddhartha Gautama was a spiritual teacher who founded Buddhism. In most Buddhist traditions, He is regarded as the Supreme Buddha.

5th May, 2015: Shri Narada Jayanti

Sage Narada

Shri Narada Muni, a great devotee of Sri Radha, is a disciple of Sri Sanatkumara (four Kumaras) and the guru of Sri Nimbarkacharya. He is known to play the veena while he sings. Narada is a divine sage from the Vaisnava tradition, who plays a prominent role in a number of Puranic texts, especially the Bhagavata Purana, and Ramayana. Narada is the author of the Pāñcarātra, a standard text for Vaisnava's priests. The sage is portrayed as a travelling monk with the ability to visit distant planets or lokas. He carries a taapura or musical instrument, which he uses for singing of hymns, prayers and mantras in devotion to Lord Vishnu.

5th May, 2015: Van-Vihar

Van Vihar & Parikrama of Vrindavan

A visit to the forest groves and parikrama or circumambulation of Sridham Vrindavan at night with Temple Musicians (Samaj) plus singing devotional songs in attendance, is performed with great serenity on the day Van Vihar.

7th May, 2015: Sri Ganesh Chaturthi Fast

Ganesha, Foremost God of the Hindu Pantheon

Ganesha, the foremost god of the Hindu pantheon is beheld as the most auspicious God of new beginnings and widely worshipped as the supreme god of wisdom, prosperity and good fortune. Devotees of Lord Ganesha, who intend to observe a fast on Ganesha Chaturthi, wake up early in the morning and take a bath. After wearing laundered clothes, they head towards the nearest temple or perform a small puja at home, to offer prayers to the deity.

14th May, 2015: Achala Ekadashi

Lord Vishnu

Achala Ekadashi falls in the month of Jyestha (May-June) and is also known as 'Jyestha Krishna Ekadashi'. Achla Ekadashi is the giver of good deeds, destroyer of sins and one who observes the vrata with a full fast on this day attains great esteem in this world.

15th May,2015: Shiva Pradosh Vrata

Lord Shiva 

Pradosh means dusk and this fast is kept on the 13th day of each lunar fortnight for propitiating Lord Shiva.

With His blessings all desires are fulfilled and one attains spiritual enlightenment.It is said that on this day all gods and goddesses assemble on Mount Kailash to worship Lord Shiva. The Pradosh which falls on a Monday is of special significance.

18th May,2015: Vat Savitri Vrat Pujan

The Legend of Savitri & Satyavant
Associated with Sati Savitri and Satyavant, the legend reveals how Satyavant got rid of death and regained his kingdom with the dedicated devotion of his wife Savitri. The Puranas propagate that the story of Savitri is an inspiration for every married woman.

Women Worshipping the Vat (Bargad) Tree

The Vat Savitri Vrat falls on the full moon day of the month of Jyeshtha, around May-June. Married Women observe this fast with the intention of preserving their husbands good fortune.On this day, women fast and worship the Vat (Bargad) tree to pray for the growth and strength of their husdand and families.All Hindu women observe this festival worshiping and propitiating Savitri as a Devi. On this day, early morning the women take bath and wear new clothes, new bangles and apply vermilion on their forehead and hair-parting line. Then Ma Savitri is worshipped.

18th May, 2015: Somvati Amavasya

People Bathing in Ganges on Somvati Amavasya

The day of conjunction of the sun and moon, on the fifteenth day of the dark half of a lunar month is known as Amavasya, the last day of the waning moon. Though Amavasya occurs every month, Hindus believe it to be most auspicious when it falls on a Monday. Amavasya is important for performing rituals for departed ancestors. Somvati Amavasya is associated with the new moon which occurs on a Monday.

The significance of Somvati Amavasya was narrated to Yudhishtra by Bhisma in the Mahabharata . It is said that whoever takes a bath in sacred rivers on this day becomes prosperous, free of diseases and grief. There is a belief that souls of ancestors will rest in peace if children and relatives take a dip in the sacred river Ganges at Haridwar, Triveni and other places.

Women worship the peepul tree and tie a thread round the trunk of this tree, 108 times. Peepul is the most sacred tree in India and is regarded as the dwelling site of the Hindu Trinity-Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh. Women circumambulate around the tree,108 times, with their hands folded. They pour water and milk on its roots and offer sandal paste, vermillion, wet rice and flowers.

24th May, 2015: Bal Krishan Dasji Maharaj's Gaulok Gaman

Shri Bal Krishan Dasji Maharaj

Maharaj Bal Krishna Dasji was a saint who lived in Vrindavan and experienced the highest ideal of religious rapture by relishing Shri Radha-Krishna's madhurya or sweet romance. He propagated the Mahamantra and experienced various stages of religious rapture because of his love for the Divine. His biography 'Charit Vaibhav' is worth reading.

28th May, 2015: Ganga Dussehra

Goddess Ganga Descends on Earth

Ganga Dussehra is dedicated to goddess Ganga and it falls on Dashami or tenth day of the bright half of the moon in the month of Jyestha. It took Rishi Bhagirath many years of meditaton for convincing Ganga to come on earth. This is the day on which the sacred river Ganga descended from heaven. So this festival is also known as Gangavataran which means the descent of the Ganga.

29th May, 2015: Nirjala Ekadashi Vrata

Lord Vishnu

 This Ekadashi falls in the month of Jyestha, during the Shukla paksha (June). Amongst the 24 Ekadashi's , the vrata on Jyeshtha Shukla Ekadashi is considered most beneficial and said to give the fruits of 24 Ekadashis observed throughout the year. A complete fast is kept on this day with not a drop of water to drink. People worship Lord Vishnu to ensure happiness and prosperity, and forgiveness of transgressions and sins. On the preceding day that is on the 10th lunar day, Sandhya (evening prayer) is performed and only one meal is taken.

31st May, 2015: Pradosh Vrata

Lord Shiva

 Pradosh means the dusk of an early night or evening tide. This fast is observed in the evening twilight, and is called Pradosh Vrat. The fast is observed on the 13th day of each lunar fortnight. It is to propitiate Lord Shiva, in order to obtain his blessings and for spiritual evolvement.Those who practice it with implicit faith are bound to possess wealth, health and happiness.

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