14 August 2009

Festivals of India - Janmaashtami

Greetings on Janmaashtami

Hi ! Today is the birthday of Lord Krishna, one of the most favourite Hindu Gods. It is celebrated with great joy by Hindus in India and other parts of the world. Janmastami, also known as Krishnastami is a festival dedicated to Lord Sri Krishna and commemorates his birth. This festival occurs on the eight day (Astami) of a lunar fortnight hence the name (Krishna+astami). Krishnastami which comes around sometime in August is celebrated over two days. This first day is Krishnastami or Gokulastami. The second day is called Kalastami or more popularly Janmastami. On the midnight between the first and second days the 'birth of Lord Krishna is replicated with pomp and ceremony. Delicacies are prepared from milk and curds that Krishna loved. The more popular ceremony of Dahi-handi (breaking a pot full of milk and its derivatives} takes place on the second day. This ceremony is so popular that Krishnastami has come to be synonymous with the ceremony of Dahi-handi. The stamps shown above were issued by Guyana in 1969 featuring Lord Krishna playing Holi with Radha and Gopis. Recently India Post stamps and Miniature sheet on Jaydeva & Geet govinda depicting Dashavtars (10 incarnations) related with Lord Krishna. My Greetings to all on this festival of great joy, enthusiasm and celebration ...... Till Next Post.....Have a Great Time !!

Dashavtar (10 Incarnations)
The concept of Dashavatar (Ten Avatars) has tremendous significance even in today’s jet age. Evil has been present at all stages in the evolution of mankind and the Dashavatar in a way brings out this evolution through the triumph of good over evil. The most famous of the divine incarnations of Lord Vishnu are Rama, whose life is depicted in the Ramayana, and Krishna, whose life is depicted in the Mahabharata and the Bhagavad Gita. The four great era or epochs in Hinduism are: Satya Yug, Treta Yug, Dwapar Yug and Kali Yug. Satya Yug or the Age of Truth is said to last for four thousand divine years, Treta Yug for three thousand, Dwapara Yug for two thousand and Kali Yug will last for one thousand divine years. It is also believed that three of these great ages have already passed, and we are now living in the fourth one. The four ages are said to symbolize the four phases of human evolution during which man gradually lost the awareness of his inner self. Another theory explains these epochs of time on the basis of the degree of loss of righteousness in the world. It says, during Satya Yug only truth prevailed (Sanskrit Satya = truth), Treta lost ¼ truth, Dwapar lost ½ truth and Kali is left with only ¼ truth. Evil and dishonesty has replaced truth in the last three ages or yugs. This verse from the Indian epic, The Bhagavad Gita, embodies the soul of Dashavatar. Lord Vishnu, the Preserver of life manifests Himself in many forms through the eras to wipe out evil and establish the rule of righteousness.

The ten avatars of Vishnu are known to all and Dashavatar is an energising experience that shows how some of the darkest powers on earth were eradicated by the most popular heroes from the past, present and even the future...

Dashavatar weaves together the fascinating stories of Rama, Krishna, Parshurama, Vamana, Narsimha, (sundari one who is in focus at the time of samudramanthan and help to god in getting amrit)...and also the tales of Vishnu in earlier avatars – Matsya, Kurma and Varaha...and yes, finally - Kalki Avatar! Dashavatar is an odyssey through time, showing the values of the old world matching the sensibilities of the modern one...

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