Tuesday, November 16, 2010

My Tryst with the Lord of Universe: Lord Jagannath of Puri

"14th November" its a date that symbolizes the Children's Day in India. But, this 14th November of year 2010 has a day to reckon with, which marked a sensational awakening inside my little atheist exterior.

12th November 2010, early morning my wife got up from bed with a dream, where she saw both of us together inside the abode of Lord Jagannath of Puri. This was quite a so called invitation from the Lord Himself. It so happened, our marriage took place on 6th June 2010 and it was customary for a newly wedded Hindu couple in Orissa to visit the temple of Lord Jagannath and pay respect to HIM. Also, the whole process of marriage begins with an Invitation to Lord Jagannath. But, as we both (me & my wife) got entangled in social and professional ties, it wasn't possible for both of us to visit Puri, even though we have been in Bhubaneswar, which is very near to Puri. So, this dream got us on our toes and made us to visit Puri which we made on 14th November 2010. It was 11am when we left Bhubaneswar and reached Puri at around 1pm, then from the car parking we took one Rickshaw (a cart with hood pulled by man) to reach the temple main gate (singhadwara: Lion Gate). The gate is directed by Aruna Stambha {a huge monumental pillar atop which the charioteer of Lord Surya (the SUN) sits in a way saluting Lord Jagannath}. Then started the journey inside the temple going up through the 22 steps (the path to salvation):

1. 1st five steps describes all five Sense Organs, organs are eye, ear, nose, tongue, skin.

2. 2nd five steps describes five breathing (Prana): up-breathing (prana), down-breathing (apana), back-breathing (Vyana), out-breathing (Udana), on-breathing (Samana), (Prana, in its capacity of the life force in breath, takes five separate forms. These five vital forces (pancha prana) breathe life into body).

3. 3rd five steps describe the inner Beauty: looks (rupa), aesthetics (rasa), taste (swada), smell (gandha), noise (shabda).

4. 4th five steps describe the Panchamahabhutas: earth, water, fire, air, space.

5. 21sth step is for wisdom and the 22nd is for ego. After crossing each step, devotee can see the Lord of the universe of Shri Jagannath.

Crossing the 22nd step you really feel like loosing your EGO and enter the abode of the Lord. Then we purchased Prasad (dry sweet items for offering to the 3 deities: Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra, & Subhadra) and found a young priest to perform the puja. He took us around the temple to the ticket counter to get the entry pass, but it was already 2pm and the counter got closed. We both got disheartened and were in a very sorry state for the situation and the chance of not seeing the Lord. Completely devastated, we sat near the Mukti Mandap (a heightened pillared outdoor hall of 38'.0" X 38'.0" size located towards south gate which was reconstructed during 1580 AD). It was distressing and we were simply inside our heart praying God that since YOU called us here, YOU only will show us the way, and I had made up mind that with out the complete Darshan (glimpse/view) we aren't going out. Then suddenly out of nowhere, one Sebayata (worker of Lord Jagannath) called as Mr. Satya Narayana Gochhayat came to us and after listening to our plight, took us personally inside the temple by cordoning off the rest public and within minutes we were inside the Garbhagruha (the sanctum sanctuary: the inside of the Main Temple where the 3 deities are sitting). The moment we crossed the main door and stepped inside the Garbhagruha, it was simply ecstatic, and we were completely transformed into some senseless entities, totally speechless in front of the Lord sitting atop the Ratna Simhasan or Ratna Bedi (a raised platform known as Ratnabedi or Mahabedi 16'.0" long X 13'.0" wide X 4'.0" high, it is believed that inside the Ratnabedi one lakh Salagram: a dark stone symbolizes Lord Vishnu, are kept). In that weak moment, we felt ourselves being dragged by an non-existing heavenly force that took us from one deity to the other and then around the Ratna Bedi. The entire place was heavenly and describing the feeling is next to impossible. It is the sheer faith of us on Lord Jagannath that HE listened to us and sent HIS person/worker to lead us to HIM. Then, once we are out of the Garbhagruha having made success this Birth that we have in this earth, we along with Mr.Satya Narayan went around the temple premises visiting different other Deities and went inside the temple of Maa Maha Laxmi (The Goddess of Wealth and wife of Lord Jagannath/Vishnu) by passing all the people in the line straight near Maa Laxmi and did puja (worship) inside the temple in HER feet. I had got the opportunity to put the Sindoor (holy red powder adorning Indian Hindu married women's head) from Maa Laxmi's forehead on the hair lines of my wife, and this was a very sacred moment for both of us. This was followed by our going inside the main temple of Lord Jagannath and we watched the most secret and sacred process of offering 56kinds of heavenly food to the 3 deities. The process is very sacred and 7 ton of food (prasad) is offered to the deities when the priest sees the image of the 3 GODs in the water in his both palms. I will be more precisely put forth all the details in coming days regarding the process. There after we got the opportunity to have the prasad (food offered to Lord) and Mr. Satya Narayan came all the way leading us to the exit gate called Dakshina Dwara (South Gate). Finally, we took a blissful and content journey back to Bhubaneswar in the evening.


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Ask me WHY?

I never thought,
I would be falling for u...
I never thought,
I will be missing u...
I never thought,
I will be hurting u...
I never thought,
I will be loving u...
I fell in love with u....
You ask me why??
Coz' I miss U...
You ask me why??
Coz' I hate U...
You ask me why??
Coz' I am not supposed to Love U...
You ask me why??
Coz' I fear hurting U...
You ask me why??
Coz' I can't live without U...
You ask me why??
Coz' I am crazy about U...
You ask me why??
Coz' I am not fit for U...
You ask me why??
I know, U know... WHY??
Or, is it that U R pretending
Or, may be am flirting???
U might be testing,
And, in the end...
I might be dying???
All this have a reason...
Only Coz'
You don't care,
Or, may be my fear of loosing U...
Tempts me to hold back,
Bringing in all the negative feelers...
Silently and slowly,
Dragging me to the...
Lake of sorrow
Ocean of tears
Valley of death
End of life