Tuesday, September 27, 2016

An evening in Chennai: Temples to visit.

After Rameshwaram, Chennai it was and I couldn't wait to get out and get exploring! After spending a quiet morning relaxing in the Chennai ISKCON temple, it felt nice to finally have an opportunity to move around in this southern part of the world after a gap of many long years. It refreshed memories from my earlier trip which had also covered cities like Ooty and Mysore, but that might have been around like maybe 15 years back or so.

Anyway, back to now - we had around 3 hours with us and were pretty flexible on what we had to do and see except that we had to be at one of those lovely beaches around the sunset.

So, we hired an auto and relied on this local gentleman to see us through on our evening date in Chennai. Here are the places and temples we visited:

1. THE DIVINE SEAT OF THE CREATOR SUPREME: KAPALEESHWAR TEMPLE, MYLAPORE.

We started our tryst with a visit to the ancient Kapaleeshwar Temple in the Mylapore region of Chennai. Originally built in the 7th century by the Pallavas, the temple was destroyed by the Portuguese only to be rebuilt later during the 16th century by the Vijaynagar Kings using remnants of the once damaged temple.


Kapaleeshwar Temple, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Kapaleeshwarar Temple, Mylapore in Chennai.

Situated in the midst of a busy and chaotic marketplace of Chennai, you are greeted by flower sellers making and selling flower garlands, flowers and diyas as offerings for the Lord inside. The significance of the temple can be gauged from the fact that it is sometimes also equated to Mount Kailash, the abode of Lord Shiva.


Flowers at the Kapaleeshwar Temple, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Offerings for the Lord.

The feeling of antiquity was palpable even before I entered the temple premises. The elaborate 120 ft. gopuram (multi tiered entrance seen especially in South Indian temples) was partially covered owing to renovation work being undertaken by the authorities but I could still catch a glimpse of the marvellous stuccos and artistic figurines resembling the Dravidian style of architecture peeping from behind when the cloths fluttered in the wind. I wondered of all the stories and legends these figurines held within them, mostly from the Puranas and ancient Hindu texts glorifying its rich enlightening history. They – the Gods, Goddesses, angels, demons in their various forms - seemed to represent the whole range of emotions that we humans are capable of. It was overwhelming to just stand and stare at the larger than life sculptures that seemed to stare down right back at me.


Decorative stuccos at the gopuram of Kapaleeshwar Temple, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Marvellous stuccos on the gopuram staring down at me.

Inside the temple compound, the precincts were spiritually charged with the devotion and prayers of hundreds of devouts who come down to bow their head in the humble reverence of their ‘Lord who wears skulls’ Kapaleeshwara every day.


Lord Shiva as Kapaleeshwar, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Lord Shiva as Kapaleshwar, The Lord of the Skulls.

As I entered the main sanctum which was reverberating with chants and hymns, I felt blessed by the effervescent energy lingering all over… from this moment now and then… when great saints sang hymns in praise for Lord Shiva in His self manifested form of a lingam sitting with His consort Uma Parvati as Karpagavalli.


Goddess Parvati shrine in the Kapaleeshwar Temple, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Uma Parvati shrine as Karpagavalli seated on a peacock.

A few quiet moments here… and I felt enriched. Besides the main temple, the courtyard consists of temples of Lord Vinayaka, the son of Lord Shiva and His consort Parvati.

How to get there?

Vadakku Maada Veethi, Mylapore, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600004.

Temple Timings:

5 am to 12 in the afternoon.
4 pm to 9 pm at night.

Festival:

10 day Panguni Peruvizha is observed in March-April including celebrations for 63 Shaivite saints drawing a huge crowd of devotees. The devotee crowd in the temple is usually huge on New Moon and Full Moon days and Pradosha days. Some Shiva related festivals are observed in the temple each month.

2. SIX PLACES OF PILGRIMAGE: ARUPADAI VEEDU TEMPLE, BESANT NAGAR.

A short 20 minute ride from the Kapaleeshwar Temple brought us to our next, more modernistic temple in granite, Arupadai Veedu Temple dedicated to Lord Murugan – primarily a Tamil deity also known as Karthikeya, the son of Lord Shiva. Located on the beach side in Besant Nagar, the temple is close to the Eliot beach in Besant Nagar and yet maintains an insulated distance by tucking itself away in a peaceful lane off the main road.


Arupadai Veedu Murugan Temple compound, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Arupadai Veedu Murugan Temple

What makes the temple so special is the divine presence of Lord Murugan in six different forms as He is seen in Palani, Thiruthani, Thiruchendur, Thiruparankundram, Swamimalai and Pazhamudircholai in His six exclusive temples spread across the state of Tamil Nadu. I find this idea especially charming where the Lord Himself comes to meet His favourite people as He knows there are those people who cannot travel to all His different abodes separately. Such a thoughtful gesture! So, this is THE place where Lord Murugan comes to bless us with ALL His power and might of six places of pilgrimage.


Arupadai Veedu Murugan Temple compound, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
The complex of the temple.

It was around dusk when we entered the premises. Lamps were being lit at the shrines giving a blissful ethereal setting to the surroundings. Additional deities in the temple included Lord Vinayaka right in the center and the nine planets in the navgraha temple.


Lord Murugan in the Arupadai Veedu Murugan Temple, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Murugan Temple where six forms of the Lord reside.

The courtyard is spacious and when we went there, it wasn’t very crowded. We completed our darshan of all 6 forms of Lord Murugan within 20 minutes.

How to get there:

Besant Nagar, Bay of Bengal shore, Near Ashtalaksmi temple, Chennai – 600090.

Temple Timings:

7 a.m. to 11 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 8.30 p.m. (Timings are subject to change according to festival days and seasons)

Festivals:

Apart from the regular poojas & daily rituals, there are special poojas on Thai Pusam, Panguni Uttiram, Aadi Krittikai, Skanda Shashti.

3. EIGHT FORMS OF MOTHER LAKSHMI: ASHTALAKSHMI KOVIL TEMPLE

Moving a further 10 minutes from Arupadai Veedu Temple, we halted next at Ashtalakshmi Kovil (AshtaLakshmi means 8 forms of Laksmi and Kovil means temple), one of the very few shore temples in India, situated right on the shoreline near the Elliot beach.


View of Elliot Beach from the terrace of Ashtalaksmi Kovil Temple in Chennai
View of the sea from the Ashtakovil Mahalakshmi Temple.

Walking past the red and white striped walls enclosing the deities, I stepped into the complex dedicated to Goddess Mahalakshmi, Goddess of wealth and her eight forms (Santhana Lakshmi, Vijaya Lakshmi, Vidhya Lakshmi, Gajha Lakshmi, Dhaanya Lakshmi, Aadhi Lakshmi, Dhana Lakshmi, Dhairya Lakshmi) who bestow different forms of material, emotional and spiritual affluence to the earnest devotee.


Ashtalaksmi Kovil Temple in Chennai
AshtaLakshmi Kovil Mahalakshmi Temple of the Goddess.

The Chief Goddess of the temple, MahaLakshmi resided with The Great One, Lord Vishnu and together they seemed to radiate peace and prosperity to anyone who asked for it. A slight cool breeze blew from the beach afar as I beheld the glimmer of Her smiling beaming face in my ordinary eyes.

After the darshan of all Her sister shrines housing the eight roopas (manifestations), I sat in silence in the promenade, cross-legged for a few minutes.  A slight breeze billowed from across the shrine buildings as I sunk in the tranquillity that flowed from the shrines all around me. Suddenly, I felt richer… richer with the promise of good luck and riches that came from The Mother herself.

How to get there?

Odaimanagar Beach Rd | Besant Nagar, Chennai 600090, India.

Phone Number: 04424466777.

Temple Timings:

Mornings 6.30 a.m to 12 Noon 
Evenings 4.00 p.m to 9.00 p.m

4. A PEACEFUL STROLL: ELLIOT BEACH

I never quite came to know when the boundary of the Ashtalakshmi temple ended and the hazy waters of the Elliot beach began. Under the enormous canopy of the twilight sky, I watched the waves rising and breaking and then rising again with each passing minute. The sea waters, just a stone’s throw away from the temple, offered a serene peacefulness like no other.


Elliot beach, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Beachy time: Peaceful and serene!

Not only to me but to the many others who watched intently the roaring sea in awe and wonder. Like the boatman who had relaxed his paddles for the day.


A boatman relaxing at Elliot beach, Chennai in Tamil Nadu
Time to spend some time with oneself.

The night sky kept getting darker but for some of us… time stood still; the rolling waves, the swelling sea and the whispering winds reminded us of the rolling life and how precious it was, how unique - with its whispering highs and lows, challenges, opportunities and the anticipation of what lies next.

5. THE LORD OF THE MEDICINES: MARUNDEESWARAR TEMPLE.

Next and last stop for our evening was the Marundeeeswarar Temple, a 11th century Chola temple, another one of the oldest temples in Chennai dedicated to The Lord of the Medicines, Lord Shiva! 


Marundeeeswarar Temple in Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Marundeeswarar temple patio.

Doctor literally, because it was here that Lord Shiva taught sage Agastya about the mysteries of herbal medicines for the betterment of mankind. It was also here that poet-saint Mahirishi Valmiki, the writer of Hindu holy book Ramayan, came here to seek Lord Shiva’s blessings. Since then till date, the temple is revered for its healing and curative properties and the deity as the healer of diseases.


Ceiling of Marundeeeswarar Temple in Chennai, Tamil Nadu
The ceiling depicting puranic legends.

Situated in Thiruvanmiyur, Chennai adjacent to the beach of Bay of Bengal at the point where East Coast Road starts, the temple is one of the 275 Paadal Petra Sthalams, where saint poets Tirugnanasambandar and Tirunavukarasar have sung songs on the greatness of deities in the temple. Images of Lord Shiva and His legends adorn the ceiling of the patio that leads to the main courtyard of the temple. The imposing temple is spread in a vast area, approximately 1 acre and has shrines dedicated to Lord Ganesha, Lord Murugan, Lord Marundeeswarar and His consort Tripurasundari, who is actually Goddess Parvati.


Carvings at Marundeeeswarar Temple in Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Intriguing craftsmanship adorning the walls.

The mandapam (hall) housing Lord Shiva has 36 massive pillars adorned with rich carvings and mythical inscriptions from the past. Even amid the chatter of the people in the hall, it had that dreamy calming vibe to itself. Perhaps that is what; I felt, is the most healing of all medicines required for the times we are breathing today. It was comforting and reassuring of His protection on me.

How to get there:

Thiruvanmiyur, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600041.

Contact number: 044 2441 0477.

Temple Timings: 9 a.m. - 8 p.m.

Festivals:

Panguni Brahmmotsavam in March- April, Shivrathri in February-March, Vinayaka Chaturti, Skanda Sashti in October-November, full moon days Kruthika star days.


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We headed back to Mumbai from Chennai the next morning but for those who have a day to spare or two, there are many amazing options that the city offers to explore, loosen up and relax. Given below are a few of Chennai getaways, my favourite picks, that I have either already covered in my diary or wish to cover one day, so you can also check on these while making your itinerary depending on the time that you have and your interests:

Mahabaliuram, Kanchipuram, Tirupati, Mysore, Ooty packages, Pondicherry, Rameshwaram, Munnar, Coorg, etc.

I wish we had more time to get away and explore some more of the wonderful treasures tucked away in the southern part of India. But the journey continues and yes, God willing – some day!


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Have you been to Chennai?
What are the other great places that you could recommend visiting?

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Colors I Captured With My New Smartphone - ZenFone 3!

Sure, I am no techno geek or nerd. I have a mobile phone which I rarely use or bother of keeping it at arm’s length; mostly use it just for clicking and updating pictures on social media (twitter, instagram, Facebook). But that’s not to say that I don’t love these gadgets and gizmos that make my life simpler and my work more enjoyable. I love them even though, I confess, I barely understand much about them anyway. That’s because I love learning and exploring and anything new gets me all excited and curious. Even if that means taking up weeks or sometimes even months to understand all the new features that these new smart cellphones come packed with nowadays.

ASUS Zenfone 3

So in the past week when ASUS sent me a brand new shimmering cellphone, not for keeps, but for my opinion on its camera and other features, I was thrilled to get my hands working on it.

Hello ASUS Zenfone 3!

ASUS Zenfone 3’s shimmering glass & metallic scratch free design called for love at first sight. Once I delved deeper and started playing with it, the phone didn’t disappoint either which was a wonderful thing for a person like me. To my delight, it was really simple and hassle free to work my way around the navigation. It was loaded with so many features but everything was easy to find and use, even for me.

For the more detail-oriented and technology enthusiasts, this is what the brand has to say about its 16MP Rear & 8MP Front Camera:

Zenfone 3 comes with PixelMaster camera which has incredible features like 4K Video recording, Optical Image Stabilisation, 4 Axis OIS for Steady photographs even in the objects are moving or if you take the images from a car/train, 3 Axis EIS for steady videos. 0.03 TriTech Auto Focus enables taking photos even if the object moves far or fast .e.g : Imagine capturing your pet while it tries to move around. The camera also have a Super Resolution mode than can take pictures at 64MP resolution giving a DSLR like experience

Didn’t get it, don’t worry; I don’t understand all this jargon either. Stay with me, let’s take the phone out and have some fun with the camera!!

One of the things I love about cellphone photography is quickly and easily capturing candid moments and sharing them on instagram. When I’m on the move I often see something so beautiful and extraordinary and fascinating that I know I have to take a photo. My digicam is great too but there are moments that till the time I put it on and snap something, chances are the moment is gone and all I am left with is a sullen face.

This is where I love my phone. Thankfully, the ASUS Zenfone 3 is really quick. Because of the slim size it’s easy to keep in my pocket so as soon as I see something Instagram worthy I can whip it out and take a quick snap on the go.

What’s good with Zenfone 3 is that its camera is packed with diverse photography functions which are really really painless to use and that makes the capturing even more fun. Open the camera, select the mode, tap and click!

I experimented with the camera at various settings and with a few of these modes that the phone came loaded with at various times of the day, in different light conditions.

I discovered that the camera has a stunning auto focus which means you get a really clear picture in a matter of seconds no matter what the conditions - which is impressive as I don’t have to miss any moments now! This has been possible thanks to the work by their engineers who have combined three focusing technologies for the first time in the smartphone world — laser, phase detection and continuous auto-focus — into one harmonious system. Resulting a clear focus in just 0.03 seconds in varying conditions, for all scenarios — and at up to ten times (10x) faster than the blink of your eye! Isn’t that fabulous?

Let’s take a look at the captured pictures:


MOVING SHOT IN NIGHT MODE:


TESTING the camera of ASUS ZENFONE 3 mobile photography.


AUTO MODE:


TESTING the camera of ASUS ZENFONE 3 mobile photography.

HDR:

TESTING the camera of ASUS ZENFONE 3 mobile photography.



64 MP SUPER RESOLUTION:


TESTING the camera of ASUS ZENFONE 3 mobile photography.



LOW LIGHT:


TESTING the camera of ASUS ZENFONE 3 mobile photography.
Chasing Ganesha woth ASUS Zenfone 3



DEPTH OF FIELD:



TESTING the camera of ASUS ZENFONE 3 mobile photography.


FINAL VERDICT:

For Rs 21,999, this is one smartphone camera that combines elegance, style, technology and simplicity together with ease of use. The phone came fully charged when I received it and I used it for about 3 days clicking pictures and exploring its other features. For all the days it was with me, I never had to charge it even once which speaks volumes about its battery life. Which is a great bonus for when you are travelling too. The biggest highlight of course, for me, remains its camera - pocket friendly, hassle free, great quality and simple to use - what else would you need?

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Disclaimer: I was provided with this phone for the purpose of a review but all thoughts and opinions are, as always, my own.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Ganesh Visarjan Special: Ganpati Bappa Morya, Pudchya Varshi Lavkarya!




Of all goodbyes,
the kind that hurt the most
was the one your ears never heard of,
yet your heart knew it's already been said.
~ Unknown

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15th September, 2016: A Photo Story from the streets of Mumbai, Ananth Chaturdashi:

After being worshipped and adored for the past 10 days, the D day is finally here. Seems just like yesterday when our cute and benevolent God had descended from the heavens to enrich our life with happiness, smiles and joy, isn't it? But it's been 10 days since His arrival; and today is the final day of the Ganesh Chaturthi festival when He will make His way towards the sea for immersion.

It’s time to bid our beloved Bappa goodbye.

Large Ganesha Ananth Chaturdashi, Ganesh Visarjan, Mumbai
On His way home!

He being the elegant atithi of all, knows that it's time to leave. Even if it is against our wishes. That's how he likes it to be.

Gnpati Bappa Morya, Ananth Chaturdashi, Ganesh Visarjan, Mumbai
Take that last selfie!

Eyes are wet with tears, so are the hearts. The rain Gods seem to be weeping too. But Bappa radiates positivity and good cheer even today. A thousand suns glitter in his lovely smile even as the sky is dark with rain and hearts are gloomy with cries - that's how magnanimous His persona is. He is God after all, this parting must not be so tough for Him?

Rainy day Ananth Chaturdashi, Ganesh Visarjan, Mumbai
Bappa always likes to smile!

All His children whisper in His ears and He whispers back: Keep doing what you must do. Joy shall fill your hearts, no evil shall enter your mind. I must go now, but remember my blessings are always with you.

A little girl whispers into Bappa's ears - Ananth Chaturdashi, Ganesh Visarjan, Mumbai
Whisper and He whispers back.

In moments like these is reflected life... both the ugliness and prettiness of it. What comes has to go. Amid chants of Ganpati Bappa Morya and Ganpati Gele Gavala, Chain Pade na Aamhala (All glories to Lord Ganesha) our precious guest is taken to the lake for visarjan.

Ganpati Gele Gavala!

He loves His mother - Mother nature. He comes in the form of clay and goes back into the lap of His Ma, Mother Earth. From there, He shall return to us in another form, as mud again. Mud... once moistened with our worship and prayers will bloom forth His blessings as soft and delicate flowers tendered with patience and care.

Clay Ganesha, Ananth Chaturdashi, Ganesh Visarjan, Mumbai
What comes, goes. And then returns again.
Why grieve?

Loving someone doesn't always mean keeping them...
sometimes it also means you have to
let them go.

Ganpati gele Gavala, Ananth Chaturdashi, Ganesh Visarjan, Mumbai
See you soon!

|| Ganpati Bappa Morya
Pudchya Varshi Lavkarya ||

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Ganesh Chaturthi Pandal Hopping: Day 11 || Ganesha in The City of Saints - Pandharpur!

Built in the thirteenth century, the holy town of Pandharpur is settled in a semi circular cushion by the imposing banks of River Chandrabhaga which from a distance looks like a crescent of a moon. Revered as a major pilgrimage in the state of Maharashtra, the town attracts millions of pilgrims (particularly of the warkari sect) who perfom yatra (wari pilgrimage) to its highly revered temple of Pandurang Vithal Rukhmini (embodiments of Lord Vishnu or Krishna and His consort Rakhumai).

One of the most striking aspects of a yatra to Pandharpur is the worshipping of poet-saints like Eknath, Namdeo and Tukaram – highly visionary people who became immortal through their devotion to God and society. All through the pilgrimage the followers and believers sing bhajans (hymns) and songs (Marathi abhanga poetry) thus bringing the essence and energy of devotion of these great saints along with them.

I have never been to Pandharpur but I find this idea of singing and travelling with the saints extremely fascinating and exciting! What a joy it must be to travel with saints like Tukaram and Jyandeo who are immortal through their words - a treasure - which they left in the world for all of us to cherish for generations to come.

Today’s Ganesha of ours is shown to be seated in the Pandharpur Temple of Vithoba surrounded by the love, bhakti and devotion of one such saint who worshipped Lord Vitthala Panduranga with His divine words. Presenting below the pictures of the Ganesha Pandal from Mumbai coupled with one such beautiful poem by saint Tukaram towards the end.


Ganpati Pandal Hopping: Day 11 || Ganesha in The City of Saints - Pandharpur!

Lord Ganesha in a thematic pandal of saint Tukaram, Ganesh Chaturthi Pandal Hopping, Mumbai
Lord Ganesha in a thematic pandal set in Pandarpur, Ganesh Chaturthi Pandal Hopping, Mumbai
Ganesha as Vithoba, Ganesh Chaturthi Pandal Hopping, Mumbai
Baby Lord Ganesha in a thematic pandal, Ganesh Chaturthi Pandal Hopping, Mumbai
Lord Ganesha in a thematic pandal, Ganesh Chaturthi Pandal Hopping - Mumbai
Lord Ganesha in a thematic pandal, Ganesh Chaturthi Pandal Hopping in Mumbai


How Could a Lover Fall?
By Sant Tukaram.

What could have caused your grip to weaken
that allowed creation to be?

How could a lover fall to his death
from the arms of infinite 
strength?

How active you are in the mind sustaining such a great wall
that the sun can cast a frightening shadow
the world believes.

No one has ever really known sadness. No real God 
would ever allow pain.

How then can a heart feel it is broken and in need 
If we are held in the arms of infinite
compassion and 
strength?

The mirror you (God) stand before -
we need to gaze into it also.

That name you called Beloved
as I fell from your lips –

I suffer
because I did not quite 
hear it;

so tell me again dear One
so clear:

I am 
you.

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P.S.: This year, come along with me for meeting our very own neighbourhood friendly Ganesha on My Yatra Diary... peeping into one pandal each day.

You can also visit 2015's posts here --> Ganesh Pandal hopping from Mumbai.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Ganesh Chaturthi Pandal Hopping: Day 10 || Ganesha in the Kedarnath Temple of Uttarakhand!

After visiting Ganesha as Andhericha Raja in Kunkeshwar Temple, Devgad, are you ready to travel over to Kedarnath Temple in the land of the Lords, Uttarakhand?

Ganesh Chaturthi Pandal Hopping: Day 10 || Ganesha in the Kedarnath temple of Dev Bhoomi Uttarakhand!

Amongst one of the chaar dhams in India (besides Badrinath, Gangotri and Yamunotri) and one of the most revered holy shrines of the Hindus is Kedarnath. Situated at the base of the snow clad majestic Garhwal Himalayan range and facing the fascinating Mandakini valley, the temple is one of the twelve jyotirlingams dedicated to Lord Shiva built in the 14th century.

This year, as part of my Ganpati pandal darshan, it was a delight to find Lord Ganesha seated at the holy shrine of Kedarnath bang in the middle of a busy and chaotic western suburb of Mumbai.

The exterior is black in colour and though there is nothing ornate about it but one glance at the structure and the resemblance to Kedarnath Temple strikes you - if you can tune your mind out of the honking of all the traffic and the heat outside, you may as well be led to believe that you are in devbhoomi Uttarakhand!

Thematic Uttarakhand Kedarnath temple Ganesha, Ganesh Pandal Hopping Mumbai
Gatekeeper at Uttarakhand Kedarnath temple theme, Ganesh Pandal Hopping Mumbai

The temple is believed to have been built by the Pandava brothers to atone for their sins after the battle of Mahabharata. Devotees are required to trek the last 15 kms. to reach the shrine from Gaurikund onwards. But here, you can come walking, or in rickshaw or by train. Bappa makes it easy and accessible for everyone who wishes to see the temple.

Nandi bull in Uttarakhand Kedarnath temple theme, Ganesh Pandal Hopping Mumbai


You step in and you step in awe! There is a Nandi bull just at the entrance which leads to the main pandal where Lord Ganesha sits with His Father, Lord Shiva. The interiors of the main pandal are dimly lit adorned with spectacular sculptures and figurines all around. And all this is made in paper, cardboard and thermocol - it's hard to believe! Deepmalas hanging from the ceiling accentuate the divine aura that permeates the entire precincts.

Deepmalas in Uttarakhand temple theme, Ganesh Pandal Hopping Mumbai

The atmosphere is charged with devotional fervour today: A group of around 10 women sit right in front of Bappa singing songs and glories to the Lord. As my camera works overtime, their music makes Ganesha - the deity of arts and culture, come alive! There is intensity and depth in their expression of love, the ecstatic mood raptures my soul and soothes my senses.

Dimly lit Uttarakhand Kedarnath temple theme, Ganesh Pandal Hopping Mumbai

In the garbha griha is our beloved Lord, Ganesha sits with a lovely smile beaming on his face. As if in appreciation of all the love that is showered on him, as if in a trance.

Big life size Ganesha in Uttarakhand temple theme, Ganesh Pandal Hopping Mumbai
Lord Ganesha in Uttarakhand temple theme, Ganesh Pandal Hopping Mumbai
Human like Ganesha in Uttarakhand temple theme, Ganesh Pandal Hopping Mumbai

He sits happy flanked by His Father on one side - the Jyotirlingham – an irregular shaped conical rock worshipped here as Lord Kedareshwar.

Lord Shiva Jyotirlingam in Uttarakhand Kedarnath temple theme, Ganesh Pandal Hopping Mumbai

And on the other side by the baby Ganpati, haloed and enlightened like a truly celestial being.

Angelic Ganehsa in Uttarakhand temple theme, Ganesh Pandal Hopping Mumbai

The bhajan mandali disperses in a few moments and so do we...

Lighted diyas in Uttarakhand temple theme, Ganesh Pandal Hopping Mumbai

but the light of His blessings continues to dazzle
for all the days to come!

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P.S.: This year, come along with me for meeting our very own neighbourhood friendly Ganesha on My Yatra Diary... peeping into one pandal each day.

You can also visit 2015's posts here --> Ganesh Pandal hopping from Mumbai.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Ganesh Chaturthi Pandal Hopping: Day 9 || Meet Ganapati - Lord of the Ganas!

Aum Gan Ganpataye Namah

~ Atharva Rishi.


Ganesh Chaturthi Pandal Hopping in Mumbai: Day 9 || Meet Ganapati - Lord of the Ganas!

Let's travel to Mount Kailash today,
from where our Father,
Lord Shiva presides over the Universe.

Ganapati in Shiva's cave - Lord of the Ganas, Ganesh Chaturthi Festival Pandal, Mumbai
Enter Kailash!
Dwelling comfortably in the lap of our Father is His Son;
the leader of the friends of Shiva -
Nandi, Bhringi, Virabhadra and Chandesvara
the ruler of the Ganas.

Ganapati and Shiva - Lord of the Ganas, Ganesh Chaturthi Festival Pandal, Mumbai

He is Ganapati -
The King of the humble sevaks (attendents) of Father himself.

Ganapati - Lord of the Ganas, Ganesh Chaturthi Festival Pandal hopping, Mumbai

The entire universe revolves around His command;

Ganapati - Lord of the Ganas, Ganesh Chaturthi Festival Pandal, Mumbai

Around That Man who's tender heart
revolves around our sincere devotion and affection.

Beautiful Ganapati - Lord of the Ganas, Ganesh Chaturthi Festival Pandal, Mumbai

O My friend Ganesha ~
The ganas prostate and bow in your feet,
And so do I.

Ganapati - Lord of the Ganas, Ganesh Chaturthi Festival Pandal Hopping, Mumbai

Tame my fickle mind,
And help me dissolve ~

Lord of the Ganas, Ganapati in Ganesh Chaturthi Festival Pandal, Mumbai

In the brilliance of your beauty
that sparkles deep within my heart ~

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P.S.: This year, come along with me for meeting our very own neighbourhood friendly Ganesha on My Yatra Diary... peeping into one pandal each day.

You can also visit 2015's posts here --> Ganesh Pandal hopping from Mumbai.

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