Archive for the ‘Hobbies’ Category

Kartivirarjuna Mantra – iPhone

Since I posted the mantra for recovering lost items in 2009, I have seen hundreds of comments on this post. You can read the post here:

Last Saturday, we went to Costco the wholesale shop near my house to buy a few items for my Daughter Sneha who was home for Thanksgiving holiday. Just like all other girls, Sneha was excited seeing all the clothes and items on sale. We went around for almost an hour stocking up the cart, and when we were almost ready to leave Sneha says ” Mom Dad where is my iPhone?”. We were like it is with you, and we hurriedly went through all the items in the cart and the phone was found nowhere. we looked in all of our coats, pockets and handbags. Being a Saturday, Costco was jam packed with people. we were very sure we will not find the phone.

We were so upset, and I told her “Sneha, let us recite our Kartivirarjuna Mantra”. We started reciting the mantra and went to the main entrance and started to trace back our steps. I told her, have you enabled Find my iPhone, can we test it? She took my iPhone, entered the required details, and it showed us the phone was in the store and we started walking towards the direction the phone started giving us. And there it was ringing in between 4 pairs of jeans. My Husband was close there, and he immediately got the phone.

So, our great Kartivirarjuna Mantra and Find my iPhone helped us find the phone. All is well that ends well.

Just wanted to share with you all this incident. We have to do our part and leave everything else to God to help us.

8 Million All Times Hits to Kalpavriksha Kamadhenu – Thank You

I had never imagined having so many visitors visit this blog even in my wildest dreams. I had posted about 7 Million in April 22, 2016, and within a few months to have another million is just unimaginable.

screen-shot-2016-11-28-at-11-59-40-am

THANKS TO ALL OF YOU. Let us keep our culture alive, spread our customs and traditions in a good way and above all spread tolerance and patience.

None of this would have been possible without the blessings of Lord Almighty and our Beloved Rayaru.

I have gone silent for the past few months, have gone through some tough challenges in personal life. It was tough to keep faith during those challenges, and our Beloved Rayaru has his own way of showing light and making us feel secure once again.  I promise all of you that I will keep posting regularly and keep this blog lively once again.

THANKS AGAIN. AND HERE IS TO WISHING WE WILL REACH ANOTHER MILLION IN THE NEXT FEW MONTHS.

Updated:ತುಲಸೀ ಹಬ್ಬವಿವಾಹ ಉತ್ವಾನ ದ್ವಾದಶಿ – Uthwana Dwadashi/Tulasi Habba – November 12th 2016

ತುಲಸೀ ಹಬ್ಬವಿವಾಹ ಉತ್ವಾನ ದ್ವಾದಶಿ – Uthwana Dwadashi/Tulasi Habba – November 12th 2016
Last year’s pictures:

Collages2

Close up of our little Tulasi Plant:

IMG_1920
Lighting of Agarbathi:

IMG_1906

Aaruthi for Tulasi.
IMG_1912

Tulasi Pooje Preparation 2013:IMG_2807

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Uthwana Dwadashi – Tulasi Habba or Tulasi Pooje is celebrated a fortnight after Deepavali. It signifies the day Tulasi married Lord Vishnu. On this day, Tulasi katte is decorated like a bride. Amla trees are planted along with the tulsi plant.

Pooje to be done in the evening.

What’s Tulasi?

In most Hindu homes, you find a Tulasi plant growing out of a Tulasi katte . Tulasi is considered to be a holy plant and is worshiped every morning. Tulasi has medicinal value and is often used as a herb in curing the common cold and cough.

So what’s Tulasi Habba?
Tulasi came out of the ocean during Amrita Manthan as a younger sister of Lakshmi. She too was devoted to Lord Vishnu and wanted to marry him. But Lakshmi who was already married to him did not like the idea and cursed her to become a plant. Thus the tulasi plant was born. But the all merciful Lord Vishnu took pity and fulfilling her wish declared that when he will be in the form of a saligrama, found in most temples and madhwa houses, she will remain close to him in the form of a tulasi leaf. Therefore even today a saligrama will have a tulsi leaf along with it. In front of every Hindu home there will be a tulasi katte in which a plant grows round the year.
Although the prayers are offered to Tulasi everyday by watering the plant in the morning and lighting an oil lamp before it in the evening, on Kartik Shukla Dwadashi there will be an annual Tulasi Pooja in the evening when the tulasi katte will be beautifully decorated with clay lamps.

Attached below is a screen shot of the Tulasi Vivaha Slokas and Procedure as printed in the Uttaradi Matta Panchanga. If you click on the image a bigger picture will display which has the words very very clear.

tulasi-vivaha-sloka

Here is the link for all the Tulasi slokas at this weblog.

1. Slokas

2. Daily Tulasi Pooja Procedure

3. Tulasi Sankeerthaney Lyrics and Audio

4. Devaranama on Tulasi – ಒಲ್ಲನೋ ಹರಿ ಕೊಳ್ಳನೋ

5. Vrundavanadevi Namo Namo Lyrics

6. Tulasi Pooje Songs

Updated: Deepavali-Diwali – October 27th – 31st

Diwali dates – 2016

This year Diwali is celebrated from October 28th – 31st

October 28th – Neeru Thumbuva Habba

October 29th – Naraka Chaturdasi

October 30th – Lakshmi Pooja

October 31st – Bali Padyami

The word Diwali originated from the Sanskrit word “Deepavali” which means “rows of light”. This 5 day long Hindu festival is celebrated throughout the world with great enthusiasm and happiness. Diwali or deepavali is the festival signifying the victory of good against evil.

It usually occurs in October/November, and is one of the most popular and eagerly awaited festivals in India and all over the world. Diwali comes 3 weeks after Dasara.

October 28th – Neeru Thumbuva Habba

The first day of Diwali celebrations i.e. on Thrayodasi ತ್ರಯೋದಶಿ is called as Neeru Thumbuva Habba ನೀರು ತುಂಬುವ ಹಬ್ಬ in Kannada. This day all the vessels which are used to fill or collect water are cleaned in the evening, decorated with mango leaves, flowers, and rangoli. I remember all the water geysers and boilers were washed, filled with fresh water and rangoli drawn on them this day.

The rangoli prepared is by soaking rice in water for a few hours and grinding the same into a smooth paste. My Mom used to take a piece of cloth, dip it into this rice paste and draw Rangoli every where from the front door to the kitchen. All corners of the house used to have rangoli, which used to be as white as milk. Just amazing.

Naraka Chaturdashi is celebrated on the second day of diwali celebrations. People wake up early in the morning apply the kumkum (ladies in the household do the arathi), on their foreheads and then take bath.

We used to all sit on a platform, usually called a Mane which is decorated with Rangoli designs, lamps lit on both sides. Everyone is applied Kumkum on the forehead, given betel leaf, nut, and arathi is done by elderly ladies in the house. They will take the oil cup and dip a flower  in it and apply it on everyones head. And the man are supposed to give money for the ladies doing the Aarathi. Such a nice tradition, isn’t it?

The story goes that Narakasura the daemon ruler of Pragjyotishpur after defeating Lord Indra had snatched away the magnificent earrings of Aditi, the Mother Goddess and imprisoned 16,000 daughters of the gods and saints in his harem. On the day previous to Naraka-chaturdashi, Lord Krishna killed the demon and liberated the imprisoned daughters and also recovered those precious earrings of Aditi. As a symbol of that victory Lord Krishna smeared his forehead with the demon’s blood and returned home in the very early morning of the Naraka-chaturdashi day. The womenfolk massaged scented oil to his body and gave him a good bath to wash away the filth from his body. Since then the custom of taking bath before sunrise on this day has become a traditional practice.

Another legend is about King Bali. His power and increasing influence posed a threat to the security of all ‘Devatas’ so they prayed Lord Vishnu to help them out. To help Devatas and to curb King Bali’s powers Lord Vishnu went to King Bali in the guise of a short-height ‘Brahmin’, and begged to give him only that much area of land that he could cover with in three steps because King Bali was well known for his philanthropy. King Bali saw just a short-height ‘Brahmin’ asking for a little piece of land so he proudly granted him his wish. That very moment that short-height ‘Brahmin’ disappeared and there was almighty Lord Vishnu in place of him. In his first step Lord Vishnu covered the heaven and in the second step the earth and asked King Bali where to put his third step. Then King Bali offered his head to Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu put his third step on his head and pushed him deep into the underground. But at the same time being impressed by his generosity Lord Vishnu gave King Bali the lamp of knowledge and allowed him to return to earth once a year to light millions of lamps.

The third day of Diwali is the most important day during which we perform Lakshmi Pooje; to the Goddess Lakshmi. Lakshmi Pooje falls on the dark night of Amavasya. Lakshmi Puja is performed in the evening to seek blessings of Goddess of Wealth.

I am sure you all will do the Lakshmi Pooje, and get her blessings. The most important song we sing while performing Lakshmi Pooje is Bhagyada Lakshmi Baramma song.

The fourth day of Diwali is called “Bali Padyami“. Bali would come out of Pathala Loka and rule Bhuloka as per the boon given by Lord Vishnu. Hence, it is known as ‘Bali Padyami’.

What is Naraka Chaturdashi?

October 29th – Naraka Chaturdasi

Naraka Chaturdashi is celebrated on the second day of diwali celebrations. People wake up early in the morning apply the kumkum (ladies in the household do the arathi), on their foreheads and then take bath.

The story goes that Narakasura the daemon ruler of Pragjyotishpur after defeating Lord Indra had snatched away the magnificent earrings of Aditi, the Mother Goddess and imprisoned 16,000 daughters of the gods and saints in his harem. On the day previous to Naraka-chaturdashi, Lord Krishna killed the demon and liberated the imprisoned daughters and also recovered those precious earrings of Aditi. As a symbol of that victory Lord Krishna smeared his forehead with the demon’s blood and returned home in the very early morning of the Naraka-chaturdashi day. The womenfolk massaged scented oil to his body and gave him a good bath to wash away the filth from his body. Since then the custom of taking bath before sunrise on this day has become a traditional practice.

Another legend is about King Bali. His power and increasing influence posed a threat to the security of all ‘Devatas’ so they prayed Lord Vishnu to help them out. To help Devatas and to curb King Bali’s powers Lord Vishnu went to King Bali in the guise of a short-height ‘Brahmin’, and begged to give him only that much area of land that he could cover with in three steps because King Bali was well known for his philanthropy. King Bali saw just a short-height ‘Brahmin’ asking for a little piece of land so he proudly granted him his wish. That very moment that short-height ‘Brahmin’ disappeared and there was almighty Lord Vishnu in place of him. In his first step Lord Vishnu covered the heaven and in the second step the earth and asked King Bali where to put his third step. Then King Bali offered his head to Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu put his third step on his head and pushed him deep into the underground. But at the same time being impressed by his generosity Lord Vishnu gave King Bali the lamp of knowledge and allowed him to return to earth once a year to light millions of lamps.

October 30th – Lakshmi Pooja

P.S: Past few years pooja pictures attached below….

LP2


The third day of Diwali is the most important day during which we perform Lakshmi Pooje; to the Goddess Lakshmi. Lakshmi Pooje falls on the dark night of Amavasya. Lakshmi Puja is performed in the evening to seek blessings of Goddess of Wealth.

I am sure you all will do the Lakshmi Pooje, and get her blessings. The most important song we sing while performing Lakshmi Pooje is Bhagyada Lakshmi Baramma song.

Some useful links for Lakshmi Pooja:

October 31st – Bali Padyami

The fourth day of Diwali is called “Bali Padyami“. Bali would come out of Pathala Loka  ಪಾತಾಳ ಲೋಕ and rule Bhuloka ಭೂಲೋಕ as per the boon given by Lord Vishnu. Hence, it is known as ‘Bali Padyami’.

King Bali of the netherworld, with his mighty power, had become a threat to the gods. To curb his powers, Lord Vishnu in the guise of a Brahmin boy (Vamana), visited him and begged for that much land he could cover with three footsteps.

So, with the first step, Vamana covered the entire heaven and with the second step the earth. When he asked Bali where he could keep his third step, Bali offered his head and put the Lord’s foot on his head. Lord Vishnu banishes Bali into the Pathala (nether land) by his third stride. Later, pleased by his generosity, Lord Vishnu grants him a boon to return to earth once in a year to light millions of lamps to dispel the darkness and ignorance and spread the radiance of love and wisdom.

Links to songs sung while performing Aarathi during Diwali.

Diwali Songs Part 1

Diwali Songs Part2

Dishes to be prepared for Diwali

Rangoli for Diwali

Goddess Lakshmi Songs

Rangoli For Lakshmi Pooja

Rava Dosa

ravadosa

We all have eaten crunchy, paper like rava dosa. There are several posts on the web for Rava dosa. I changed the recipe for rava dosa quite a bit. Tried this twice at home and each time it was a super hit. So, here comes the recipe for Rava dosa. I was and am tired of eating Oats for breakfast every single day. So, this Sunday, it was Rava Dosa for a change. I see all recipes using All purpose Flour or Maida. I didn’t use it as you see in the ingredients list. It was crispy, it was delicious. This is a recipe for ages now.

Just a quick note, we don’t get super fine Rava here at least at my Indian grocery stores. I had brought a kilo of this from my last trip to India. Since there was some leftover batter, I made 2 dosas in the night also. It was still perfect. 

Ingredients:

  1. 1 cup super fine Rava
  2. 1/4 cup rice flour –
  3. 4 tsp urad dal flour
  4. 1/4 cup yogurt
  5. salt to taste
  6. 1 tsp baking powder

Method:

  • Sieve Rava, rice flour and urad dal flour
  • Add it to a bowl, mix salt and yogurt.
  • Now add water and make sure it is of running consistency.
  • Just before preparing dosa, I added baking powder. For the millionth time, I have no idea when to use baking soda vs powder. I always use them interchangeably. ravadosabatter
  • Now heat a Griddle or Tava and make dosa. Don’t spread the batter like you do for normal dosa. The thinner the batter, the crisp the dosa gets. ravadosaontava
  • We ate with Chatni Powder. Plain and simple. ravadosa

Shri Krishna Janmashtami – Thursday August 25th 2016

ಕೃಷ್ನಯ ವಾಸುದೇವಾಯ
ದೇವಕಿ ನಂದ  ನಾಯಚ
ನಂದಗೋಪ  ಕುಮಾರಾಯ
ಶ್ರೀ  ಗೋವಿಂದಯ ನಮೋ  ನಮಃ

ಕೃಷ್ಣಯ ವಾಸುದೇವಾಯ  ಹರಯೇ  ಪರಮಾತ್ಮನೇ
ಪ್ರಣತ ಕ್ಲೇಶ  ನಾಶಾಯ  ಗೋವಿಂದಾಯ  ನಮೋ ನಮಃ

KRISHNAYA VASUDEVAYA
DEVAKI NANDA NAYACHA
NANDAGOPA KUMARAYA
SRI GOVINDAYA NAMO NAMAHA

KRISHNAYA VASUDEVAYA HARAYE PARAMAATMANE
PRANATHAH KLESHA NAASHAAYA GOVINDAAYA NAMONAMAHA

Shri K G Bhimsen Doss has left this comment.

Difference between Sri Krishna Janmashtami and Sri Krishna Jayanthi.
Normally Shravana, Krishna Paksha Ashtami is celebrated as Sri Krishna Janmashtami. In such years, the Rohini star comes on Bhadrapada Krishna paksha Ashtami. So in places like Udupi (or those who follow solar panchanga) observe Sri Krishna Jayanthi in the month of Bhadrapada. Generally Iyegars follow this practice.
If the Rohini Nakshtra falls on Shravana Krishna Paksha Ashtami then both Sri Krishna Janmashtami and Sri Krishna Jayanthi fall on the same day. This year both Sri Krishna Janmashtami and Sri Krishna Jayanthi are on the same day.
O

P.S: Click on any picture to see it enlarged.

Shree-Krishnastami-2014

Flowers to our Lord.
Collages

Fried items.Shree-Krishnastami-20141

Pooja Preparation.Shree-Krishnastami-20142

Lord Krishna sitting with all decoration.Shree-Krishnastami-20143

Pooje as evening approaches.

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Flowers offered to our Lord.Shree-Krishnastami-20145

Naivedya for the Lord.Shree-Krishnastami-20146
Shri Krishnastami is celebrated on Thursday August 25th 2016. Sri Krishnastami or Krishna Jayanthi marks the celebration of the birth of Lord Sri Krishna;the eighth avatar of Lord Vishnu. Lord Sri Krishna was born on the ‘Rohini’ nakshatra on Ashtami; that’s why it is called Krishnastami. In karnataka it is also known as Gokulashtami and Janmashtami. The festival occurs between August and September in our English calendar.

According to our Hindu mythology, Krishna was born to destroy Mathura’s demon King Kamsa, brother of his virtuous mother, Devaki. A celestial voice told Kamsa that he would be killed by the eighth child of Devaki. Alarmed by the message, Kamsa imprisoned Devaki and her husband Vasudeva. Taking no chances, Kamsa went on killing Devaki’s children soon after birth. Lord Krishna was born as the eighth child of Vasudeva at midnight. But at Krishna’s birth, under divine instructions, Vasudeva left the prison unnoticed with the baby. He crossed the mighty river Yamuna which was in spate due to heavy rains. Without any difficulty, he walked across the river protected from rain by the mighty serpent Shesha, and reached Gokul. In Gokul, on the same midnight, a girl named Yogamaya had been born to Yasoda, wife of Nanda a herdsman. The babies were exchanged, and Vasudeva came back to prison with the girl. When Kamsa was told that his sister had given birth to a child, Kamsa attempted kill the child. But the baby who was Goddess Maya, flew off to the heaven, warning Kamsa that Krishna, who would kill him, had already been born and was alive. Eventually, Krishna killed Kamsa, and released his parents from the prison, and brought peace and happiness to the common people.

In our Madhwa tradition, we are supposed to fast on this day, and late during the night; usually midnight we are supposed to give Arghya to Lord krishna. Here is the stotra to be said while giving Arghya to Lord Krishna. While giving the Arghya, hold a coin, a lemon and dried date in your right hand, and using a silver spoon offer 3 times milk and 3 times water to Lord krishna in a silver bowl, and keep repeating the below Stotra as well. Everyone in the household has to give Arghya to the Lord.

Argya Stotra

Arghya Stotra

Arghya Stotra from the Utharadi Matta Panchanga

Arghya Stotra from the Utharadi Matta Panchanga

Krishna Arghya

Jathaha Kamsavadarthaya Bhoobharotharanayacha|
Kouravanam Vinashaya Dhaityanam Nidhanaya Cha ||
Pandavanam Hitharthaya Dharamasamsthapanaya Cha|
GruhanaArghyam Maya Dhatham Devakya Sahitho Hare ||

Chandra Arghya

Kshirodharnava Sambhootha AthiGotraSamudhbhava |
GruhanaArghyam Maya Dhatham Rhohinya Sahitho Shashin ||

Another set from Prasanna.

Krishna Arghya mantra
jatah kamsavadharthay bhubharo harNayacha

kouravaNam vinashaya diatyanam nidhanaya cha
panDavanam hitarthaya dharma sansthapanay cha

grahaNaarghyam mya dattam devikya sahito hare||

chandra arghya
kshirodarNav sambhootham atrigotra samudbhavam
grahaNrghyam mya dattam rohiNya sahitah shashinah||

The food items performed are mostly sweet dishes, fried items and items with Avalakki. All these dishes are performed with extreme madi. If you are not able to do so, here are some useful tips:

1. The most important thing in any festival is the breaking of the coconut and offering it to god, so bring a coconut.

2. Keep also 5 fruits for offering to god, like Banana, Mango, Apple, Orange, Grapes, Plum, Pear and so on..

3. You can make the following dishes which have been mentioned here in the blog which need no cooking at all, add the seasonings after you do the Naivedaya to god.

4. If you don’t mind cooking on the gas stove, here are other recipes you can make as well

5. Bring lots of flowers which are again easily available; roses

6. Offer butter also to the Lord which again is available in all grocery stores.

7. Below are several links which has all the songs in praise of Lord Krishna posted in this blog.

8. Here are some links from dvaita.org as pdf files

9. We also place a silver cradle and keep the Ambegalu Krishna idol in the cradle and rock the cradle while singing the following song:

10. Recite Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya as many times as possible.

11. Little feet of Lord Krishna are drawn as well along with other rangolis.

11. Last but not the least, do as many namaskaras as you can and break the fast.

Once you finish the pooje, surrender yourself to the Almighty Lord by saying the following Stotra.

ಕಾಯೇನ  ವಾಚ ಮನಸೇನದ್ರಿಯಿರ್ವ
ಬುದ್ಧ್ಯತ್ಮನ  ವ  ಪ್ರಕೃತೆ  ಸ್ವಭಾವತ್
ಕರೋಮಿ  ಯದ್ಯಥ್   ಸಕಲಂ  ಪರಸ್ಮೈ
ಶ್ರೀಮಾನ್ ನಾರಾಯಣಯೇತಿ ಸಮರ್ಪಯಾಮಿ

KAYENA VACHA MANASENDRIYAIRVA
BUDDHYATMANA VA PRAKRITE SWABHAVATH
KAROMI YADYAD SAKALAM PARASMAI
SRIMAN NARAYANAYETI SAMARPAYAMI

May Lord Krishna Bless ALL

ಶ್ರೀ ಕೃಷ್ಣರ್ಪನಮಸ್ತು

Shri Krishna Janmashtami/Krishna Jayanthi Pooja Preparation – Tips & Tricks

IMG_3103Many of you have asked me how I prepare for one of the most exciting and beloved Festivals we have, Shri Krishna Janmashtami/Krishna Jayanthi or whatever name you wish to give this festival. It is celebrated all over the world. With the invent of internet, everyone wants to perform this festival and is looking for tips and tricks especially if you are working.  Based on decades of experience I have in observing as performed by my parents and performing the festival myself since I got married,  I am sharing some tips and tricks which will make it easy and not to stress out.

Remember, at the end of the day it is the Bhakthi and devotion which you can offer the Lord which is of utmost importance than the count of items you cook.

Since this year it is on a Saturday, and my daughter is joining us, it will once again be a Festival to perform with great enthusiasm and cook several dishes as well. Enough of my story right?

Attached below are some tips and tricks I follow.

Grocery List:

I buy all items new for this and Ganesha festival. Just a habit, nothing else. I am not listing how many lbs/kgs t buy, left to your discretion. With the list below you can prepare all items listed in Recipe Section.

Shree-Krishnastami-20141

  1. Rice Flour
  2. Maida or All purpose flour
  3. Besan
  4. Urda dal flour
  5. Red chilli powder
  6. Hing
  7. Oil
  8. Moong Dal
  9. Channa dal
  10. Dry Coconut Powder
  11. Salt
  12. Thick Poha
  13. Thin Poha
  14. Sooji
  15. Jaggery
  16. Sugar
  17. Jeera
  18. Mustard Seeds
  19. Ghee
  20. Butter
  21. Milk
  22. Butter Milk since Yogurt is not used during this vrata
  23. Coconut

Pooja List:

I am hoping you have the daily pooja items like Haldi, Kumkum, etc etc. This list is specific for this day and in no particular order you can arrange them as you wish.

  1. Flowers, buy assortment of all flowers as shown below:Collages
  2. Fruits, all fruits are allowed in this vrata.IMG_29333. Banana plant and Leaves if available IMG_31034. Argya Items, milk, water, lemon, coin and a dry date. Keep them ready!IMG_30035. Prepare all the lamps to light, Mangalarathi and aarathi  using Ghee or Oil.IMG_3004IMG_30056. Make sure you have Rangoli, if you don’t have the dry powder, use Kundan Rangoli, a chalk and draw. If even that is not available, take some printouts and use them. I have used a combination of all of them as seen below. Draw small feet of Lord Krishna from the front door.

Shree-Krishnastami-20143
O7. Prepare Gejje Vastra with Kumkum. No set number here, I use one set for each idol I keep.IMG_30158. Make sure you have camphor, Agarbathi and also soaked for Mangalaruthi.

9. Prepare the cradle for Lord Krishna. Once you are done giving the Argya, we rock the cradle and sing the lullaby. IMG_3089

10. If not anything else, just offer a coconut.IMG_1881

11. The detailed pooja procedure is posted at the following link:

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