Update: Sree Narasimha Jayanthi – May 20 2016

Narasimha Jayanthi celebrated on May 20 2016

Narashima2

Khambha-Narashima

This day signifies the appearance of Lord Narasimha on the planet. Lord Narasimha is the fourth and the greatest incarnation of Lord Vishnu. He is believed to have appeared to protect his devotee, Prahlada, from his father Hiranyakashyapu .

If you listen to the song ” Narashima Nembo davana” posted on youtube, there is a paragraph which explains how Lord Narashima came from the pillar. Hiranyakashyapu pointed out at a pillar in his palace and asked Prahalada whether Lord Vishnu was present in it pillar. Prahalada who was a great devotee said yes. Next, you know Hiranyakashyapu uses his Gadha and broke open the pillar and there emerged our Lord Narasimha who than slained  Hiranyakashyapu using his sharp paws.

The day signifies the triumph of good over evil and the eagerness of the lord to protect his devotees from evil.

When my Parents visited us last year, my Father recited the “Bhagavatha Purana” for three weeks at my place. The way my Dad explained this part of the Purana, brings tears to my eyes every time I listen “Narashima Nembo Devana”. The greatest mistake I made was to not record the purana. Hopefully will record the next time my Father visits us.

Here is the link for the song Narashima Nembo Devana on Lord Shri Lakshmi Narashima

Here is the link for Kayo Shree Narasimha.

About Narasimha Jayanthi: Ms. Lakshmi’s write up summary from the book  “ಭಾರತೀಯ  ಹಬ್ಬ  ಹರಿದಿನಗಳು” by ಶ್ರೀ ಶ್ರೀ ರಂಗಪ್ರಿಯ ಮಹಾದೇಷಿಕ ಸ್ವಾಮಿಗಳು.

“The pillar in evil Hiranyakashipu’s royal court, signifies the ṃērusthambha, the central backbone system. Through the central nervous system called ṣuśumna, the brilliant light emanated. The energy associated came out  in its full fierce glory  as Narasimha and later transformed into the peaceful form after the destruction of evil force.”

When is Narasimha Jayanthi celebrated?
Narasimha Jayanthi is one of the important festivals of Vaiśnavas. It is
celebrated in the vaiśāka māsam,on ṣukla pakśa chaturdaśi, after akśhaya thrithēya, svāti nakśatra, siddha Yōga, vanija karanam. The date is  determined according to chāndramāna system. Since the inception of this avatāram is in the evening, the worship is done in the evening. It is considered to be more auspicious if this day coincides with sōmavasarē, Monday or ṣanivasarē, Saturday.  It is a sacred day to remember Lord Narasimha’s  sarva vyāpakatva- all pervading – spiritual knowledge,
wealth, strength, valor, splendor, and compassion toward His devotees.

Which are the major manifestations of Lord Narasimha?

There are three major forms of Lord Narasimha.

1. Ugra-Narasimha – His fierce form: In this form He has conch – ṣanka, discus – chakra, mace – gada, bow – chāpa, bells – ghanta-, trident like – ankuśa, and his two hands ready to chisel the demon heart, as His āyudhams – weapons. This form is  worshipped in the evenings.
2. Lakshmi Narasimha: In this form he is very peaceful – ṣanta – with His consort – Sri Lakshmi sitting on his left lap, with ādiseṣa on his head as umbrella, and Prahallāda standing in his front praying with his folded hands.  This manifestation is followed after his fierce form– as a result, he is worshipped in the morning.
3. Yoga Narasimha – meditative: Here, He is in his Meditative form for those who aspire for results of Yoga.

What are the various ways of experiencing Lord Narasimha?

Sāligrāma – sacred stone that pervades the presence of the deity
Narasimha mantra – sacred chant
Idol worshipping
Fire – agni – by performing homam.
Reading scriptures such as the Upaniśad and ṣruthi – sacred knowledge orally transmitted by the Brahmans from generation to generation.

What are the items are offered to Lord Narasimha?

There following items are offered to Lord Narasimha:

– Incense, lamplight, flowers and ṣrigandha or perfume.-
tuḻasi or Holy Basil — Since he has the element of both viśnu and rudra-
kamalam – Lotus,
bilva daḻam – leaves of stone apple,
japākusumam- red hibiscus can be offered to the Lord.

What kinds of  food can be offered to Lord Narasimha?

Athirasa – fried cake made with jaggery and rice flour.
Pāyasa – milk puddings made out of any of moong dal, channa dal, and – – – Pānaka – typically made with jaggery water and pepper, or fruit juice like lemonade.
Any sātvik food can be offered with great devotion by chanting the Narasimha Mantra. sātvik  food is that food creates an internal calmness and balance, when one consumes it.

The lord graciously accepts devotees’ service and reverence.  All worship should be followed by distribution of Prasāda  or food offered to God.

How do we worship Lord Narasimha?

Lord Narasimha can be worshipped in two ways.  The first is detailed below:
Along with firm faith, worship of Narasimha is associated with rigid criteria.
This is explained in detail below
1. ācharana ṣuddhi – Requires strict adherence to performance.
2. Cleanliness of ḍravya- physical things like utensils, lamps, ingredients.
3. Inner sanctity of five senses – body, intellect, mind, place, and act of worship
4. Chastity of Mind, speech and deeds unification, compassion, calmness of virtuous soul within. These are to prevent any glitches that might distract the mind while doing the worship.
5. Taking bath and starting with daily routine worship followed by pūja sankalpa-declaration to do worship, and completion without break with little or no food intake till then.
6. Bodily calmness in turn calms the mind. This helps to open up the channel that leads to internal visualization and realization of Narasimha.
These are things that keep body, mind and intellect in balance to further the pursuit of (worship til)attaining perfection.
7. Those who seek Salvation, do fasting till worship is over in the evening.Those who seek all types of desire fulfillment  do fasting till the next day morning worship and  follow with chanting of Narasimha mantra.
8. To do further,  people could do hōma – oblation and read “Nrsimhatāpini ” upaniśad.
9. An idol of Narasimha can be donated to someone who has great respect and potential to worship the idol.

The second means of worship is detailed for those who find it difficult to adhere to the above strict rules, can do the following steps

1. ḍhyāna or  meditation – along with imagining the worship of Narasimha with the above said flowers etc.
2. Acts of mind and soul offered to God is also oblation. This is equivalent to hōmam.
3.Various purifying actions performed during puja
a. snānha – ablution, pāna – intake of water and food offered to God
b. pādya – chant with clean and clear heart and intellect
c. arghya – water offered with respect from the river of faith
d. āchamana – water used for sipping same river
e. abhiśeka – for the lord
f.  Mind filled with the flow of thoughts of God from the river of faith,
ṣraddha – as the water for cleansing.
4. ātma – Offer sacred soul which is inside the body.
5. bow and perform salutation with state of equanimity
6. ṣaranāgati– self surrender to the Lord

With pure mind and internal contemplation there is no need for external rituals to be performed. Pāramārthika or worship of realizing supreme alone with internal purity surpasses all other forms of worship. That is, true worship with internal purity is more powerful than the external rituals.

As part of worship, singing, listening to discourse is recommended at the end of the worship.

What is the power of worshipping Lord Narasimha?

Lord Narasimha destroys sins, grants virtues, grants moral religious merits, grants objects of human pursuit – Puruśhartha. The lord grants ultimate peace, knowledge, and joy. He fulfills wishes for the seekers of the worldly desires.

Insight about this incarnation of ṣri mahāviśnu:
The brilliant form of Narasimha is described as comprising of three entities.  1. Brahma from feet to naval, 2. Vishnu–naval to neck  3. Rudra–neck unto head., From there onwards– it is  the supreme Godhead,  Parabrahma.
Narasimha is personification of truth–perceived and experienced by those who are in the state of union with divine, and that, which is beyond senses – Yoga Samādhi.

The brilliant form of Narasimha is also considered and viewed as an internal phenomenon.

” ōm namō bhagavatē narasimhāya namas tējas-tējasē āvir-āvirbhava vajra-nakha vajra-damśtra karmāsayān randhaya randhaya tamō grasa grasa ōm svaha; abhayam abhayam ātmani bhūyistha ōm ksraum ”
-Stanza from Srimad Bhāgavatam

South Indian Vegetarian Low Carb Diet – Our Progress

It has been almost a month since we started the low carb diet. I wrote in great detail why I wanted to go on this diet. You can read all about it here:

We have continued the diet, have not eaten Rice or any rice items. No Upma, No Avalakki, No Dosa, No Idli or No Chapathi(just me). And No Akki Roti  or Sabudhana Khichadi which we love.😉

Initially for a day or two, I used to have slight headache, now even that has gone away.

We threw away all the bread, Pizza dough, all the potatoes we had. We visited my Daughter for Mothers day, but didn’t visit any restaurant. I am surprised how we always combine any celebration with food or going to a fancy restaurant. I told my daughter instead I wanted to go hiking, and we went on a hike and walked almost 7 miles.

It has been easy doing this diet since even my Husband stopped eating any rice or rice products. I make or sometimes he himself makes 1 or 2 chapathis.

So, if you wish to do this diet, make sure you have a buddy who is willing to do this with you. You definitely need a support system.

I still make all the south Indian dishes, Rasam, Sambar, Vegetables, Khadi, Yogurt, Raitas, lots of Kosambaris.

Yesterday, since it was Pushya Nakshatra if it was my normal diet, I would have made a sweet dish. However, yesterday I made Nucchina Unde, Kosambari, Majjige Huli or Khadi. No sweet dish, instead recited Rayaru’s name a couple more times.

It has also been easy doing this diet since I have not traveled anywhere. Starting next week, I am going to travel again until almost end of July. I hope to continue doing this diet.

I have more energy, sleep better, and am happy losing weight. I have no portion sizes, I eat as much as I want. Since I am eating lots of fruits and vegetables and whole grains, I feel full soon. I should warn that this diet is expensive, since you need to buy lots and lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and pulses.

The one fruit which we have not eaten is Banana. The one vegetable we have not eaten is Potato. Other than that, all fruits and vegetables can be consumed. We have not skipped breakfast even for a single day, and breakfast has been oats every single day.

Share with me your experiences.

P.S: If you really have chronic illness, please consult your Doctor.

South Indian Vegetarian Low Carb Diet – Red Kidney Beans Salad

Quick and easy Red Beans Salad with colorful red and yellow peppers. No Onion. You can eat it raw, but I like it cooked for a few minutes. The pepper still has its crunch.

RedBeansSalad

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 Can washed and rinsed Red Kidney beans
  • 1/2 large red bell pepper chopped
  • 1/2 Large yellow bell pepper chopped
  • 1/2 large green bell pepper (optional)
  • 2-3 green chillies
  • 1 tsp oil, mustard seeds, Jeera and Hing
  • Salt to taste

Method:

  1. In a pan, add oil and when hot mustard seeds, jeera and hing
  2. Add bell peppers and green chillies
  3. Fry until translucent
  4. Once done, add red kidney beans and cook covered until soft
  5. Add salt, cilantro if you wish and lemon juice.

 

South Indian Vegetarian Low Carb Diet – Day 4 Lunch

A simple day 4 lunch which includes lots of proteins and really colorful vegetables. Colorful, delicious and completely healthy. This was prepared on a Thursday, so no onion was included.

LowCarbdietDay4Lunch

So, the plate has Red Kidney beans Salad with lots of colorful bell peppers, Carrot and Cucumber Kosambari, and Cucumber Raita.

You can find recipes for a variety of Kosambaris using both Channa Dal and Moong Dal here:

  1. Channa Dal Kosambari
  2. Carrot Kosambari
  3. Cucumber Kosambari

You can find several recipes for Raita variations other than the plain cucumber ones here:

  1. Badnekayi Mosaru Bajji or Roasted Eggplant Raita
  2. Carrot and Tomato Raita

I will post the recipe for Red Kidney Beans Salad soon!

 

South Indian Vegetarian Low Carb Diet – Day 3 Lunch

A simple day 3 lunch which again includes lots of proteins and vegetables. Colorful, delicious and completely healthy white beans Salad. I ate this Salad with a cup of Cucumber Raita. My Husband had it with 2 Chapathis.

 

LowFatDiet-WhiteBeansSalad

Ingredients:

  • 1 Can washed and rinsed white beans
  • 1 large onion chopped ( optional)
  • 1 large red bell pepper chopped
  • 2-3 green chillies
  • 1 tsp oil, mustard seeds, Jeera and Hing
  • Salt to taste

Method:

  1. In a pan, add oil and when hot mustard seeds, jeera and hing
  2. Add onion and green chillies
  3. Fry until translucent
  4. Once done, add white beans and cook covered until soft
  5. Add salt, cilantro if you wish and lemon juice.

 

South Indian Vegetarian Low Carb Diet – Breakfast2

LowCarbDietBreakfast

It is very tough to be on a low carb diet and eat any Indian breakfast. Especially if you are working since you have no time to do all the grinding for any healthy options of Idli or Dosa where you can completely eliminate rice, use just dals.

It has been 2 and 1/2 weeks, yes it is 2 and 1/2 weeks since I started this low carb diet and I have lost close to 10 lbs. I feel really better, my clothes fit a little better, way more energized.

SO, everyday in the morning it is my Husband who makes a bowl of Oat meal. The first few days I added a tsp of honey, low fat milk, and slowly and steadily moved away and now not using either milk or honey.

Ingredients:

  • Steel cut Oats
  • 5 Walnuts
  • 5 Dates
  • Almond Milk
  • 5-7 any other nuts you have
  • Finely chopped fruits

Procedure:

  1. Cook Oats as per instructions using 1/2 water and 1/2 milk or just Almond milk
  2. Add chopped walnuts and dates
  3. Eat immediately
  4. Add any other nuts or raisins you have in hand
  5. You can also add strawberries, blue berries, red berries, apples

 

South Indian Vegetarian Low Carb Diet – Snack – Roasted Chickpeas

roasted-chickpeas

When you are on a low carb diet you do need some snacks to eat in between meals. I read at a few places about Roasted Chickpeas. Since we started the diet, we brought a big tin of chickpeas from Costco.

Half of the tin I made chickpeas usli. The remaining I decided to make this crunchy yummy roasted chickpeas.

Ingredients:

  • Drained and washed chickpeas – 2 cups
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Red chili Powder to taste

Method:

  • Drain and wash the chickpeas. I brought the canned ones.
  • Place it on a paper towel for 1/2 day so all water is evaporated
  • In a bowl add Olive oil and coat the chickpeas.
  • Transfer to a baking sheet.
  • Bake for 30 minutes in 400 degree F.
  • Take out and once cooled, add salt and red chilli powder.
  • Stays crunchy for weeks.
  • Store in an airtight container.
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