The Abhishekam of Shree Balaji performed each month, on an auspicious day during Shravana Nakshatra, is an elaborate ceremony of celebrating the glory of the Lord. Here, at Shree Balaji Temple, Charkop, the idol of Lord Venkateshwara is smeared with turmeric paste and then bathed with scented water along with the chanting of Sri Sukta, Purusha Sukta and Brahma Samhita by the priests of the temple. Abhishekam is continued with the pouring of the panchamrutam, fruit extracts, Tulasi and flower petals. The entire temple is decorated with flowers to the liking of Lord Venkateshwara and a Mahabhog is offered in the end followed by a grand arati.
Seeking the blessings of the Lord on this day is said to bring in immense positive energy and clarity of vision in one’s life.
Vaikuntha Ekadashi is dedicated in the name of Lord Vishnu. It falls between the months of December and January, which, according to the Hindu calendar, is the month of Margashirsh. It is believed that the doors of Vaikuntha are open during Vaikuntha Ekadashi. Those who observe Vaikuntha Ekadashi are liberated from the cycle of birth and death and they gains entry into the sacred gates of Vaikuntha, the abode of Lord Vishnu.
On this day, the temple is decorated beautifully with flowers and lamps and Lord Venkateshwara is worshipped with aarti and offered special bhoga and prasadam is distributed amongst all devotees.
This festival is celebrated at Shree Balaji Temple, Charkop to recall the immense love of Sri Andal and the rituals she carried out to win the Love of the Lord Himself and be wedded to him.
Sri Andal is considered to be none other than Goddess Lakshmi Herself. Since childhood, Sri Andal was only devoted to the worship of Lord Srinivasa and while observing the Dhanuramas Vrat, she would compose beautiful poetries which are now termed as Tiruppavai. Sri Andal finally got wedded on the full moon day (Poornima) to Lord Srinivasa.
Here, at Shree Balaji Temple in Charkop, Mumbai, Dhanuramas Festival is a month long celebration, which is spent by worshipping Sri Andal and Shree Balaji with the singing of one verse per day from the Tiruppavai. Each day during this month, pongal bhoga is offered to the Lord in the mornings and prasadam is distributed to the devotees after the aarati. To conclude this festival, on the last day of the month or rightly known as the wedding day of Sri Andal and Lord Balaji, the temple is decked up with special decorations and Maha Arati is performed along with distribution of prasadam.
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