8 December 2008

Deepam Processions

I am posting photos of some of the current festivities of Deepam 2008. There are far too photographs to post, so would remind readers that I am compiling a full pictorial history of the Deepam Festival 2008. In this respect there will be well over two hundred photographs of the Festival.

If you wish to receive a DVD pictorial history of the 2008 Arunachala Deepam, please get in touch at the contact link situated top left of Arunachala Grace. A donation is required in order to cover costs and expenses. There is a PayPal facility located at the left column of this page. In the case of International readers please add an additional U.S.$10 to your donation to bear the cost of registered, airmail.

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Second Night Function

The below is of lighted representations of the Five Deities (Five Deities:

Vinayaka, Arunachaleswara-Unnamulai, Amman, Murugan, Chandeswarar -- at the Brahma Tirtham inside Arunachaleswarar Temple.

Outside the concourse leading up to the Raja Gopuram (main gate of Temple) are the murtis of the Five Deities on display. They will be loaded onto vehicles and taken around in procession around the 26 acre perimeter of Arunachaleswar Temple.

And in the next photograph, the procession around Tiruvannamalai is underway. And the first chariot is that of Arunachaleswara-Unnmulaiamman.

Procession on the Fourth Night

Kalpataru Tree (wish fulfilling tree)

Lord Arunachaleswara and his Goddess, Unnamulai are seated under a representation of Kalpavriksha (of which the Kalpataru Tree is a synonym) -- which is a wish-fulfilling divine tree common in Sanskrit literature. Along with the Kamadhenu, or 'wish-giving cow', the Kalpavriksha originated during the ‘Samudra manthan’-- "churning of the milk ocean", and the King of the gods, Indra returned with it to his paradise. The Kalpavriksha tree figuratively refers to a source of bounty.

To those interested in finding out more about the esoteric significance of this tree, there is a very interesting article I found which starts:

"Leaving aside the sheer narrative brilliance of Vyasa, it is the perception of over-arching symbols, such as the Kalpataru, which gradually dawns on the readers, stirring the innermost depths of their psyche, as they voyage across the one hundred thousand verses of this ocean among epics; that fascinates them, compelling them to return, time and again, to the Mahabharata.

To appreciate the thematic brilliance of this concept, it is first necessary to recount the story of the Kalpataru, the Wish-fulfilling Tree, described in eidetic detail by Krsna in the beginning of chapter 15 of the Gita. Its roots are in the heavens and its branches permeate the cosmos, paralleled in occidental mythology by the Norse Yggdrasill" . . . to read more go to this link: ‘Desire Under the Kalpataru Tree’.

Kamadhenu (wish fulfilling cow)

In Hindu mythology, Kamadhenu was a divine cow who was believed to be the mother of all cows. Like her daughter Nandini, she could grant any wish for the true seeker. Kamadhenu provided Vasishta with his needs for the sacrifices. Kamadhenu (kama-dhenu, 'wish-cow'), was a miraculous cow of plenty who could give her owner whatever he desired.

1 comment:

Caroline said...

The Kamadhenu statue is absolutely amazing but it doesn't look Indian - do you think an overseas person donated it to the Temple?