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Diwaali> Diwali Pooja 

Diwali  Pooja - Worship of Goddess Laxmi & Ganesh

(Diwali is on October 23, 2014 )

| When is Diwali in 2014 | Diwali Legend |Diwali - Five days Celebration | Diwali Significance |

| Dhanteras | Chhoti Diwali | Diwali Pooja | Govardhan Pooja | Bhaiduj | Laxmi Pooja | Ganesh Pooja |

| Diwali in Sikhism | Diwali in Jainism | Special Significance of Diwali |Diwali Pooja Process |
 

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Black Kaudi | Kaali Kowdi

Black kaudi imageBlack Kaudi or Kaalili Kowdi or Black Cowrie shell is of great significance in the worship of Goddess Maha Kaali ji and Lord Bhairav ji.

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Diwali or Deepawali (rows of light), is one of the major Indian festivals celebrated by people of almost all faiths. It is celebrated all over the country with equal enthusiasm. This festival of LIGHTS, is celebrated to commemorate the returning of Rama and Sita to their kingdom Ayodhya after fourteen years of exile.

Deepawali symbolises the victory of righteousness and the lifting of darkness through Spirituality. It is the celebration of victory of good over evil - and the glory of light. Though, Diwali is mainly a five- day festival but we can see people preparing Diwali weeks ahead by cleaning and decorating their households. The main festival day falls on the no-moon day of the dark half of Kartik, according to the Hindu lunar calendar.

The third day of the festival of Diwali is the most important day of Lakshmi-pooja and is entirely devoted to the propitiation of Goddess Lakshmi. On this very day sun enters his second course and passes Libra which is represented by the balance or scale. Hence, this design of Libra is believed to have suggested the balancing of account books and their closing. Despite the fact that this day falls on an amavasya day it is regarded as the most auspicious.

The day of Lakshmi-Pooja falls on the dark night of Amavasya. The strains of joyous sounds of bells and drums float from the temples as man is invoking Goddess Laxmi in a wondrous holy "pouring-in" of his heart. All of a sudden that impenetrable darkness is pierced by innumerable rays of light for just a moment and the next moment a blaze of light descends down to earth from heaven as golden-footed Deep-Lakshmi alights on earth in all her celestial glory amidst chantings of Vedic hymns.

A sublime light of knowledge dawns upon humanity and this self enlightenment is expressed through the twinkling lamps that illuminate the palaces of thewealthy as well as the lowly abodes of the poor. It is believed that on this day Lakshmi walks through the green fields and loiters through the bye-lanes and showers her blessings on man for plenty and prosperity.

Lakshmi , or the worship of the goddess of wealth, is the main event on Diwali in North and West India. It is extremely important to keep the house spotlessly clean and pure on Diwali. Goddess Lakshmi likes cleanliness, and she will visit the cleanest house first. This is also the reason why the broom is worshiped on this day with offerings of haldi and kumkum (turmeric and vermilion). Lamps are lit in the evening to welcome the goddess. They are believed to light up Her path.

Lakshmi Pooja consists of a combined pooja of five deities: Ganesha is worshiped at the beginning of every auspicious act as Vighnaharta; Goddess Lakshmi is worshiped in her three forms - Mahalakshmi (the goddess of wealth and money), Mahasaraswati (the goddess of books and learning), and Mahakali; Kuber (the treasurer of the gods) is also worshiped.
 

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Diwali

A Diwali  is worship to the Deities of the Hindu Religion in the form of prayer, offerings and sacrifices. The day of Diwali is important since it signifies the worship and praise of devotees to the various deities; but most importantly, it is a day of praise to Goddess Lakshmi and by extension the divine mother of the entire universe and the earthly (physical) mother. Most devout Hindus perform the Dipavali  in a fixed, ritualistic pattern, by celebrating in praise and offerings to Lord Ganesh, Lord Shiva, The Nine Planets, Kalsa (representing the Universe) and Mother Lakshmi.

During the Dipavali n, offerings are made to the fire (Agni devta), which is viewed as the mouth of the Divine- it is the actual feeding of the God. During Diwali , sixteen prescribed steps occur (symbolic of the sixteen ceremonies to be completed in the life span of a Hindu) including the welcoming of the Deity, giving the Deity a place to sit, the washing of the feet, decorating the Deity, and the offering of food items, clothing or money to seek blessings.

Fresh, sweet-scented flowers along with specific herbs and plants are used, as well as Jhal/Phaag (a combination of milk, ghee, honey and spices). The planting of flags with significant colors associated with the deities is used to symbolize the offerings. In addition, this particular  not only celebrates happiness with light, but with song, chanting, tasting of food, ringing of bells, and the blowing of Conch shells as blessings are bestowed among family members.

Tiny lamps of clay are lighted to drive away the shadows of evil spirits and Self-enlightenment is expressed. It is believed that on this day Lakshmi visits each household and showers her blessings on man for plenty and prosperity. Once the ceremonial worship is finished in the evening, sweets are offered to the goddess as "Naivedya" and distributed as "Prasad". Feasts are arranged and gifts are exchanged on this day. Gaily dressed men, women and children go to temples and fairs, visit friends and relatives.

One of the most curious customs, which characterizes this festival of Dipavali, is the indulgence of gambling, especially on a large scale in North India. It is believed that Goddess Parvati played dice with her husband, Lord Shiva on this day and she decreed that whosoever gambled on Diwali night would prosper throughout the ensuring year. This tradition of playing cards- flush and rummy with stakes on this particular day continues even to day.

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Diwali  Process

Diwali is the festival of Laxmi, the Goddess of prosperity and wealth. It is believed that Goddess Laxmi visit everyone during Diwali and brings peace and prosperity to all. On the night of Diwali "Lakshmi-n" is performed in the evenings. A traditional Poojan is performed after sunset in all the homes.

Five pieces of ghee diyas (lamps) are lit in front of the deities, naivedya of traditional sweets is offered to the Goddess and devotional songs are sung in praise of Goddess Laxmi. After Deepawali Pooja people light diyas (lamps) in their homes to usher in light and clear the darkness from the world.

In villages cattle are adorned and worshipped by farmers as they form the main source of their income. In south, cows are offered special veneration as they are supposed to be the incarnation of Goddess Lakshmi and therefore they are adorned and worshipped on this day.



Step By Step Diwali Poojan -  Diwali n vidhi - Diwali  Process

  • Clean the Pooja room and then Bathe each Deity (Lakshmi & Ganesh) first with water, then with panchamitra /or rose water, followed by water once more

  • Put Deepak (Lamp) in front of the Deities - as the tiny diyas of clay are lighted to drive away the shadows of evil spirits

  • Make a Panchamitra with 5 ingredients of milk, curd, ghee (clarified butter), sugar & Honey.

  • Place Few sweets, mithais, snacks & fruits as a prashad.

  • Make offerings of flowers, Abir (red colour), Sindoor (vermillion) and Haldi (turmeric). Light the Agarbatti (incense sticks) and lamps filled with Ghee.

  • Now make offerings of Fruit, Sweet dishes (mithai), Salty snacks (Mathis, Ghathia, Namakpare) and offer Dakshina (token money), which could be given to the poor. In the end offer paan (betel leaves), cloves. Now pray to the deities to seek their blessings.

  • Ganesh  : Ganesh Pooja is a must for Diwali Pooja. (Lord Ganesha is to be worshipped in all poojas before any other God or Goddess.) (Ganesh Aarti is sung)

  • Laxmi  : Place Lotus and other flowers at her feet as an offering. A silver coin is placed in front of the Goddess during the pooja. Now perform Aarti with flowers in hand (Lakshmi Aarti is sung). After Deepawali Poojan have the Prasad and go out to burst Diwali Crackers.

 

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Lakshmi Pooja

Lakshmi was the daughter of the sage Bhrigu and took refuge in the ocean of milk when the gods were sent into exile. Lakshmi was reborn during the Churning of the Ocean. As soon as the gods saw Lakshmi, they all fell in love with her beauty. Shiva claimed Lakshmi as his wife, but since he had already taken the Moon, her hand was given to Vishnu, whom Lakshmi herself preferred.

Lakshmi Pooja is performed on the third day of Diwali and is a way to commemorate the splendor of Goddess Lakshmi who signifies money and good luck. According to the belief, Goddess Lakshmi is the goddess of wealth & prosperity and Lakshmi Pooja on Diwali day is considered the best way of pleasing her. Lakshmi Pooja falls on the dark night of Amavasya. On this particular day sun enters its second course and passesby Libra, which is represented by the sign of balance. That’s why, the design of Libra has been suggested to be the sign for the balancing of the account books. An important tradition associated with Lakshmi Pooja is that of gambling. It is believed that Goddess Parvati while playing dice with her husband, Lord Shiva said that whoever would play dice on the eve of Lakshmi Pooja would be granted with prosperity for the entire year.

Steps of Lakshmi Pooja - Laxmi Pooja process

Spread a new cloth on a raised platform: Place a handful of grains in the center and, on this, place a kalash (pitcher) made of gold, silver, copper, or terracotta. Fill three-fourth of the kalash with water and place a betel nut, a flower, a coin, and some rice grains in it. Arrange five kinds of leaves or mango leaves in the kalash . Place a small dish on the kalash and fill it with rice grains. Draw a lotus with turmeric powder ( haldi ) over the rice grains and place the idol of goddess Lakshmi over it, along with coins.

Place the idol of Ganesha: In front of the kalash, on the right (South-West direction), place the idol of Ganesha. Also place ink and books related to your business or occupation on the platform. Light a lamp and begin the pooja by offering haldi, kumkum, and flowers to the platform on which the kalash is placed. Then offer haldi, kumkum, and flowers to the water that is to be used for the pooja. Invoke the river goddesses to be part of this water.

Invoke goddess: Lakshmi by reciting the Vedic mantras addressed to her. One can also recite the mantras mentioned in the Puranas or simply take some flowers in your hands, close your eyes, and think of goddess Lakshmi being showered with gold coins by two elephants standing on either side of Her and chant Her name. Then offer the flowers to the idol.

 Place the idol of Lakshmi: Place the idol of Lakshmi in a plate and bathe it with water, panchamrit (a mixture of milk, curd, ghee or clarified butter, honey, and sugar) and then with water containing some gold ornament or a pearl. Wipe the idol clean and place it back on the kalash. Alternately, you can just sprinkle water and panchamrit on the idol with a flower.

Offerings: Offer sandal paste, saffron paste, perfume ( itr ), haldi, kumkum, abeer, and gulal to the goddess. Offer a garland of cotton beads to the goddess. Offer flowers, especially the marigold flowers and leaves of Bel (wood apple tree). Light an incense stick and dhoop. Make an offering of sweets, coconut, fruits, and tambul. Make an offering of puffed rice and batasha. Pour some puffed rice, batasha, coriander seeds, and cumin seeds over the idol. Safe where you keep money and jewelry; Worship this safe as a symbol of Lord Kuber.

 Aarti: Finally, perform the aarti for goddess Lakshmi. Always remember that She abhors loud noise. So the aarti should be accompanied only by a small bell. Do not clap hands, as is the practice when performing aarti for other gods. A peaceful and sublime atmosphere should prevail during the poojan. Do not light crackers while the pooja is on or immediately after it.

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Ganesh Pooja

Ganeshji is a must for Diwali  as he is to be worshiped in all poojas before any other god or goddess. Traditionally on Diwali night, Ganesh shares the altar with Lakshmi. Shree Ganesh is the god of good beginnings and the fabled remover of obstacles. In the Hindu pantheon, the two are unrelated, Ganesh being the son of Shiva and Parvati. However, when placed side by side, Lakshmi Ganesh hold out promise of a year of fulfillment, free from wants.

During the Ganesh pooja, the idol of goddess Lakshmi is placed on the left and Lord Ganesha, the elephant headed god is kept on the right. Lakshmi is the goddess of wealth and prosperity and also personifies beauty, grace, and charm. She is normally depicted seated on a lotus with gold coins. Lord Ganesh has many functions in the Hindu pantheon. He is the Lord of Wisdom and the remover of obstacles.

Hindus believe that he must be kept happy to ensure smooth passage on the road to accomplishments. For this reason, he is worshiped together with Lakshmi during Diwali, the Festival of Lights. Then, Lakshmi is worshiped for wealth and prosperity, while Ganesh is worshiped first to ensure that any obstacles to obtaining wealth and prosperity are removed.

Shri Laxmi-Ganesh Pooja takes place on Diwali by placing their idol on a platform, making various offerings of sandal paste, saffron paste, perfume(itr), haldi, kumkum, abeer, gulal, garland of cotton beads, flowers, especially the marigold flowers and leaves of Bel (wood apple tree). Incense stick and dhoop is lit and offering of sweets, coconut, fruits, and tambul are made. At the end of , aarti dedicated to Lord Ganesh is sung by the devotees.

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Goddess Maha Kali Pooja


Maa Maha Kali is the fearful and ferocious form of the mother goddess Durga.On one hand she punishes the guilty while on the other she blesses her devotees with virtues of all kind. As the legend goes, in the battle, Kali was so much involved in the killing spree that she got carried away and began destroying everything in sight. To stop her, Lord Shiva threw himself under her feet. Shocked at this sight, Kali stuck out her tongue in astonishment, and put an end to her homicidal rampage. Hence the common image of Kali shows her in her mêlée mood, standing with one foot on Shiva's chest, with her enormous tongue stuck out.

Kali Pooja is done to diminish the ego and all negative tendencies that hinder spiritual progress and material prosperity. Performed on the night of Kartik Amavasya, which falls in October/November, Kali Pooja is an intense invocation to the fearsome goddess. The main purpose of the pooja is to seek the help of the goddess in destroying evil - both in the outside world and within us.

The legend goes that long ago the demons, Shumbha and Nishumbha, disturbed the peace of Indra, the king of gods, and his empire (heaven). After extensive and endless battles, the gods lost all hope and the demons became stronger.

The gods took refuge in the Himalayas, the holy mountains, the home of Lord Shiva and Parvati. The shaken gods sought protection from Mahamaya Durga, the goddess of Shakti. Kali was born from Durga's forehead as Kal Bhoi Nashini, created to save heaven and earth from the growing cruelty of the demons. Along with Dakini and Jogini, her two escorts, she set on her way to end the war and kill the devils.

There was chaos all around. After slaughtering the demons, Kali made a garland of their heads and wore it around her neck. In the bloodbath, she lost control and started killing anyone who came her way. The gods started running for their lives. The only source of protection seemed Lord Shiva, Durga's consort.

Seeing the endless slaughter, Shiva devised a plan to save the world. He lay down in the path of the rampaging Kali. When the goddess unknowingly stepped on him, she regained her senses. The well-known picture of Ma Kali, with her tongue hanging out, actually depicts the moment when she steps on the Lord and repents.

That momentous day is celebrated ever since. Kali, also called Shyama Kali, is the first of the 10 avatars (incarnations) of Durga. Kali Pooja is performed essentially to seek protection against drought and war, for general happiness, health, wealth, and peace. It is a tantrik pooja and performed only at midnight on Amavasya (new moon night) in November.

 

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