Sri Rama Navami - 04/03/2009

Sita Rama moola viratu (main deity) picture from Bhadrachalam.

The seventh reincarnation/avataram of Lord Maha Vishnu, Sri Rama Navami marks the birth of Lord Rama in the Ikshwaku dynasty to Kousalya, the 1st wife of King Dasaratha of Ayodha. He was born on Chaitra Suklapaksha Navami (the ninth day of the Hindu month Chaitra on Navami) when the ruling star of day is Punarvasu.

Sri Rama is considered as Ardarsha Purusha, the one to be followed. He has 16 perfect qualities (poorna chandrudu) which make him Maryada Purushottama, the perfect Lord. He led his life as a human being without using his supernatural powers. Rama's life and journey is one of perfect adherence to dharma, in harsh tests of life and time. For the sake of his Father's honor, Rama abandons his claim to the throne to serve an exile of fourteen years in the forest. He is a responsible elder brother to Lakshmana, Bharata and Shatrugna.

Rama's courage in searching for Sita and fighting a terrible battle with Ravana, the king of Lanka to rescue his wife shows his absolute love and loyalty for her.

Friendships made with Guha, Sugriva, Hunuman, Vebhishna and the Vanaras of Kishkinda, with whose help he rescued Sita, are powerful and full of devotion.

On Sri Rama Navami, Sita Rama Kalyanam is performed for Loka Kalyanam, to bring prosperity and well being to mankind. It is performed with pomp and show in Bhadrachalam, AP, on the shore of Godavari river every year.

Om and Ra-ma are the only two ‘taaraka mantras', that is, the mantras which takes you across the ocean of samsaara. (That which can ferry you across.)

In the name `Rama' the syllable 'ra' comes from the eight lettered mantra (astakshari) of Om Namo Narayanaya and the syllable 'ma' comes from the five lettered mantra (panchakshari) of Namasivaya.

Both are the life giving letters (jiiva aksharas) of the respective mantras because without them the two mantras become a curse.

Without these letters, the mantra Om namo narayanaya becomes Om namo na yanaya - meaning, not for good; and Namasivaya becomes Na sivaya - meaning, again, not for good.

Thus the word Rama combines in itself the life giving letters of the two most important mantras of the Hindu religion.

"Sri Raama Raama Raameti Rame Raame Manorame.
Sahasranaama Tattulyam Raamanaama Varaanane."

This slokam from Vishnu Sahasranamam told by Siva to Parvati has so much power that by merely saying this slokam 3 times it is as good as reading Vishnu Sahasranamam 1000 times.

For Sri Rama Navami, the "Prasadams" offered are: Vadapappu and Panakam.

Panakam

1 cup Jaggery – Grated
1 tsp Cradamon : Elachi – Powdered
½ tsp Fresh Black Pepper - Ground
3 cups Water

Mix the jaggery in water and stir till is dissolves well. Filter the liquid using a clean cloth or filter. Add elachi powder, pepper and mix well. Serve chilled.

Vadapappu

1 cup Moong dal – Pesara pappu

Soak pesara pappu in water for 1 – 2 hrs and drain the water. Dal will be swollen and can be eaten raw.

Or can be made into a salad.

Chop raw mango, cucumber, green chili, coriander and mix well with lemon juice, chili powder and salt. This is a refreshing salad.

In olden days, there was a custom to gift hand-made fans to other people. Since there were no electric fans then, to reduce the effect of the heat, these hand-operated fans were very useful during the summer months. It was indeed a thoughtful gesture. The idea behind vada pappu and panakam is also to reduce the heat in the body due to the heat of the Sun.

2 comments:

avagdro said...

Thank you so much for sharing.Wish you n all a Happy Sri Ram Navmi.

Best wishes
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Uma. said...

Happy Sri Rama Navami to you too.