Sringeri Vidya Bharati Foundation in Stroudsburg, PA is happy to announce that we have completed construction of our Go-Shala (Cow Barn) at our premises and have acquired our first cow (Lakshmi) and calf (Sharada) as the first residents of our Go Shala. Abhishekam to Sharadamaba and other deities are performed using only our cow's milk!
The Hindu scriptures and tradition consider the cow as one of the most sacred beings worthy of worship and protection. Our scriptures attribute the status of "mother" to five entities and enjoin us to treat all of them with equal reverence. They are : One's own Mother, the Vedas, the Earth, the Cow and the Divine Mother, Goddess Lakshmi. The reason why they are supposed to be treated with equal reverence is mainly because of one common attribute they all share. It is the quality of "self-less giving" to all!
The Yuva Bharathi Quest 2012, the Foundation's annual talent search contest for young and budding carnatic music artistes was held on October 6. The carnatic vocal winner is conferred the title of 'Gayika Yuva Bharati' and the carnatic instrumental winner is conferred 'Vadya Yuva Bharati'. The title winners get to perform at Sri Sharada Temple, US and in India. The Foundation recognizes and honors a Young Talent during Saint Thyagaraja Day celebrated during the month of April every year. SVBF is committed to encourage young artists in this part of the world to promote carnatic music.
This year, the annual talent search of SVBF was held on October 6 at the Bharati Teertha Community Hall at Stroudsburg PA. The title of Gayika Yuva Bharati was conferred on Sriranjani Darbha from Houston TX. The competition was followed by a workshop cum lecture demonstration by Sri. D. Seshachary.
Abhishekam to Goddess Sharadambal was performed on the Mahalaya Amavasya day, Sunday October 14. This was the second abhishekam for the year after the one on the Kumbabhishekam anniversay day July 14. Goddess Sharadambal was beautifully decorated as the Universal Mother, the "Jagat-prasutika". The next abhishekam will be on the Pournami after Navarathi on October 29.
The Navarathri that occurs in the Sharad Ritu (the autumn season) is celebrated as Sharada Navarathri. The Goddess is worshipped as Shakti (Sri Durga), Wealth (Sri Lakshmi) and Knowledge (Sri Saraswathi) during nava rathri, each night attributed to each aspect of Goddess. The 9th day of the Navarathri is celebrated as Saraswathi Puja, where the Goddess of Knowledge is worshipped.
In South India during Navarathri, a tradition is followed where dolls are exhibited in homes. The dolls (made of earthern clay) of Goddesses Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswathi are kept in the top most step, followed by dolls of other dieties in the next steps. Then follows dolls of men and women in various walks of life, followed by birds and animals in the next few steps. The whole set-up signifies that each and every thing in this universe is a manifestation of the Supreme being .
There will be an exhibition of the dolls in the Sharada Temple at Stroudsburg, PA.
On every day of Navarathri Sri Sharambal will be adorned in various forms. The details of the alankaram along with the Vahanas are given below:
Sunday, October 14 :: Jagat-prasutika
Monday, October 15 :: Brahmi - Hamsa Vahana
Tuesday, October 16 :: Maheswari - Rishabha Vahana
Wednesday October 17 :: Koumari - Mayuravahana
Thursday October 18 :: Vaishnavi - Garudavahana
Friday October 19 :: Varahi - Ashwa Vahana
Saturday October 20 :: Indrani - Gaja Vahana
Sunday October 21 :: Veena Sharada
Monday October 22 :: Chamunda - Simha Vahana
Tuesday October 23 :: Kamadhenu Mohini
Wednesday October 24 :: Rajarajeshwari.
On Sunday, October 21 there will be a Chandi Homam at the temple beginning at 9 a.m.
The tenth day is celebrated as Vijaya Dashami, when pursuits of new fields of knowledge are begun. Aksharabhyasa, the initiation into learning the alphabet is performed on this day. Aksharam, means "the undecaying", and stands for the alphabet which form the very basic foundation of a language. The initiation into learning the language is performed on the auspicious day of Vijaya Dashami. Aksharam also stands for the 'Eternal Reality', and hence this ritual also signifies initiation into the Knowledge of the Eternal Reality, since shastras in the form of words reveal the Ultimate Reality.
There will be several batches for Aksharabhyasa during Navarathri in the Sharamba temple, on Saturday Oct 20, Sunday Oct 21 and on Tuesday Oct 23.
Click here for more details on the Navarathri program