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Grandeur and festivity marked the celebrations of Sri Krishna Janmashtami, the divine appearance day of Lord Sri Krishna at ISKCON Hubli-Dharwad, in which a large number of devotees from all over Hubli-Dharwad and other places came to participate. The entire temple bore a festive look with various types of decorations. Beautiful and colourful lights on the temple building and lawns presented an enchanting scene.

The two-day program began with Mangala Arati at 4:30am on 17th August 2014. Then the deities were given ceremonial bath and they were adorned in ‘Vajralankara’ with finest garments and dazzling jewels. The deities gave their special darshan to the devotees at 7:30am. The archanas and the sevas for the day began at 8am with devotees from all over Hubli-Dharwad thronging the temple to have a glimpse of Sri Sri Krishna Balaram.

At 11:30am, amidst the chanting of vedic mantras by the priests, the deities received a grand abhishekam. The deities were bathed with all the sanctified ingredients such as milk, curd, honey, jaggery water, turmeric water, fruits juices etc. Colourful flowers were showered on them with all the devotees cheering ‘haribol, haribol’.

The evening witnessed an enrapturing presentation of devotional songs and classical dance by the artists of Hubli-Dharwad. Kum. Chethana Mudhol and group presented devotional songs in Indian classical style at 5:30pm. What followed this was a soulful rendition of the compositions of Dasas of Karnataka by Sri Shrikant Bakale. Smt. Vidushi Sahana Bhat and group enacted the pastimes of Krishna in the dance drama titled ‘Sri Krishna Lila’ at 7:30pm. The days’ program came to a close at 9:30pm with feast prasadam distribution to one and all.

On the next day(18th August 2014), the temple observed the grandest celebrations to commemorate the appearance of Lord Krishna. Hundreds of devotees congregated to greet the deities at 4:30am. A grand Mangalarati was performed to their Lordships at 4:30am with the recital of Sri Guruastaka composed by Srila Vishwanatha Chakravarti Thakura. The vigrahas were then adorned in ‘Vrindavan Chandra Alankara’ with special red colour garment with golden embellishments and grand embroidery, specially crafted in Vrindavan, the birth place of Lord Krishna. The devotees drank the nectar of the Lord’s darshan in this special alankara at 7:30am. The altar was decorated like a forest in vrindavana with quintals of colourful flowers arranged aesthetically. The archanas and the other sevas of the day began at 8am.

The members of Vatsalya Satsang sang the devotional songs composed by the great Vaishnava acharyas at 11:30am. A huge spread of well garnished 108 delicacies, all prepared by the devotees were then offered to their Lordships Sri Sri Krishna Balaram. A huge laddu weighing 115kg prepared from pure ghee offered to the Lord was the special attraction among the lot of delicacies.

In the evening, the entire temple and the devotees basked in the resonance of divine music performances given by various artists of Hubli-dharwad. All India Radio artist Sri Y. Kashanna transported the devotees to the spiritual world with his soul touching Hindustani Vocal rendition. A Jugalbandi of flutes and tabla was presented by Harish Kulkarni and troupe. This was followed by a breathtaking Yakshagana performance entitled ‘Bhaumasura Vadhe’ by the all women troupe ‘Saakaara’.

While the deities were being shifted and made ready for the Mahaabhishekam on the well decorated dias in Vanamali Lawns of the temple, Sri Mohan Guruswamy & group sang devotional songs composed by Vaishnava Acharyas and lead the crowd to sublime heights of devotional ecstasy.

The grandest part of the days’ celebrations, ‘Mahabhishekam’ began with the blowing of conchshells. The archa-vigrahas were placed on a golden platform . Various upacaras were performed to the deities. The deities were then massaged with sandalwood oil. This was followed by a grand ceremonial bath to the deities which comprises many stages like smearing with sesame paste, shuddhaudaka snana, bathing with panchagavya(a mixture of cow like milk, curd, ghee, cow urine and cow dung), panchamrita snana(a mixture of milk, curd, ghee, honey and jaggery water), ratnodaka snana(water in which valuable gems and gold are dipped), phalodaka snana(all varieties of fruit juices) etc. The Mahaabhishekam came to an end at 11:30pm.

ISKCON Hubli-Dharwad President Sri Rajiv Lochan Dasa gave a short lecture on the appearance of Lord Krishna and how to understand his lilas. At 12 midnight, the curtains opened with the recital of the verses from Brahma Samhita. A grand Mahamangalarati was performed to Krishna Balaram. The devotees had fasted the whole day, still actively rendering all the allotted services. The devotees were served with special anukalpa feast with delicacies cooked out of non-grains, fruits, vegetables and milk. All the people who visited the temple both the days were served with sumptuous prasadam.

Sri Krishna Janmashtami

Grandeur and festivity marked the celebrations of Sri Krishna Janmashtami, the divine … Readmore

The II Batch of Culture Camp 2014 was conducted from12th May 2014 to 27th May 2014.  About 60 children participated in the camp.  6 to 9 year old children were taught Krishna Rhymes.  They were engaged in activities such as colouring, painting etc.  They were also made to memorize slokas from Bhagavad Gita.

10 to 16 year old children were taught to recite slokas from Bhagavad gita.  They were also taught how to apply those principles in their daily life.  They were instilled with values like co-operation, simplicity, humility, cleanliness and tolerance.  They were also taught to respect elders & teachers and how to control anger.  All these were taught in a very playful way with active participation of all the children through group activities such as group discussions, role plays, quizzes etc.  The children were also taught clay modeling and many other art & craft works.

The highlight of the camp was Talents day, which was conducted on 25th May 2014, Sunday.  Children displayed their talents which they acquired during this camp.  Lakshmi Harakuni, Shivani Harakuni, Shrigouri Kadam and Surabhi Arakasali displayed their dancing abilities by gracefully dancing for the songs composed by the dasas of Karnataka.  Lakshmi Harakuni and group presented a lovely Dandiya dance.  ‘Krishna’s Headache’ – a play enacted by 19 children was the talk of the day.  The dialogue ‘aiyo, no no no no’ spoken by the sages in the drama echoed throughout the hall even after the program came to an end.

As part of Industrial visit, the children visited the Akshaya Patra Hubli Kitchen, which is the World’s largest kitchen.  The children were taken for a tour to Central Science Centre, Dharwad on 27th May 2014.  And the camp came to an end there.  The children departed with heavy hearts promising to attend Culture Camp 2015.

Culture Camp II Batch

The II Batch of Culture Camp 2014 was conducted from12th May … Readmore

Hiranyakashipu was ready to kill his own son Prahlada Maharaja, but the Supreme Personality of Godhead appeared in front of the demon as Sri Narakesari, half lion and half man, and killed him.

Following the instructions of Prahlada Maharaja, all the sons of the demons became attached to Lord Vishnu, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. When this attachment became pronounced, their teachers, Sanda and Amarka, were very much afraid that the boys would become more and more devoted to the Lord. In a helpless condition, they approached Hiraëyakaçipu and described in detail the effect of Prahlada’s preaching. After hearing of this, Hiranyakashipu decided to kill his son Prahlada. Hiranyakashipu was so angry that Prahlada Maharaja fell down at his feet and said many things just to pacify him, but he was unsuccessful in satisfying his demoniac father. Hiranyakashipu, as a typical demon, began to advertise himself as being greater than the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but Prahlada Maharaja challenged him, saying that Hiranyakashipu was not God, and began to glorify the Supreme Personality of Godhead, declaring that the Lord is all-pervading, that everything is under Him, and that no one is equal to or greater than Him. Thus he requested his father to be submissive to the omnipotent Supreme Lord.

The more Prahlada Maharaja glorified the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the more angry and agitated the demon became. Hiranyakashipu asked his Vaihnava son whether his God existed within the columns of the palace, and Prahlada Maharaja immediately accepted that since the Lord is present everywhere, He was also present within the columns. When Hiranyakashipu heard this philosophy from his young son, he derided the boy’s statement as just the talk of a child and forcefully struck the pillar with his fist.

As soon as Hiranyakashipu struck the column, there issued forth a tumultuous sound. At first Hiranyakashipu, the King of the demons, could not see anything but the pillar, but to substantiate Prahlada’s statements, the Lord came out of the pillar in His wonderful incarnation as Narasimha, half lion and half man. Hiranyakashipu could immediately understand that the extraordinarily wonderful form of the Lord was surely meant for his death, and thus he prepared to fight with the form of half lion and half man. The Lord performed His pastimes by fighting with the demon for some time, and in the evening, on the border between day and night, the Lord captured the demon, threw him on His lap, and killed him by piercing his abdomen with His nails. The Lord not only killed Hiranyakashipu, the King of the demons, but also killed many of his followers. When there was no one else to fight, the Lord, roaring with anger, sat down on Hiranyakashipu ‘s throne.

The entire universe was thus relieved of the rule of Hiranyakashipu, and everyone was jubilant in transcendental bliss.

To commemorate this pastime of Prahlada Narasimha, Narasimha Jayanti was celebrated with great enthusiasm on 13th May 2014, Tuesday.  An elaborate Narasimha Yagna was performed in the temple cultural hall in the evening.  There were elaborate aratis, kirtan and bhajans that evening.

Narasimha Jayanthi

Hiranyakashipu was ready to kill his own son Prahlada Maharaja, … Readmore

It is said in Vedic Literatures that Lord Anantha Shesha is an expansion of Lord Vishnu.  He has millions of hoods adorned with dazzling jewels.  And He is the one who holds all the planets on His head.  He also serves Lord as a bedstead on the milk ocean.  He is also called as servitor godhead because he knows nothing but service to Lord Krishna.  As per the Agama Vidhi, it is important to place Anantha Shesha deity in the foundation, whenever a Vishnu temple is built.  The deities are to be placed exactly on top of Anantha Shesha.

At ISKCON Hubli-Dharwad, Anantha Shesha Sthapana was performed for the new Sri Sri Radha Krishna Temple on 4th May 2014.  The day’s program started with Sudarshana Yagna at 6:00am.  This was followed by Anantha Shesha Sthapana.  Three Anantha Shesha deities were placed who would hold the deities Sri Sri Radha Krishna, Sri Sri Krishna Balarama and Sri Sri Gaura Nitai.  The Anantha Shesha deities were placed by His Grace Sriman Madhupandit Dasa, President, ISKCON Bangalore in the presence of His Grace Sri Rajiv Lochan Dasa, President, ISKCON Hubli-Dharwad and many other devotees.

Anantha Shesha Pratisthapana

It is said in Vedic Literatures that Lord Anantha Shesha … Readmore

Akshaya Tritiya falls on the third day of shukla paksa in the month of Vaishaka. It is an auspicious day of the birthday of Lord Parasurama who is the sixth incarnation of Lord Vishnu. On this day, Vyasdev and Lord Ganesha began to write Mahabharata.

In Odisha, on Akshay Tritiya day, farmers start ploughing their land and the construction of chariots for Rath Yatra begins at Puri.  As summer heat becomes scorching during this period, the deities in temples are smeared with sandalwood pulp and taken for a boat ride in tanks.

At ISKCON Hubli-Dharwad, Sri Sri Krishna Balaram and Sri Sri Gaura Nitai deities were adorned in chandan alankar on this auspicious day.  The deities were given garments made out of colourful flowers

Akshaya Tritiya

Akshaya Tritiya falls on the third day of shukla paksa … Readmore

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