Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Siruvachur Maduraikaliamman

Today's temple visit is the most famous place which is quite dear to me in many ways.This temple is my ancestors temple and also our kulatheivam.This temple and the amman here brings a sense of peace to the mind that searches it.The town of Siruvachur is loacted near Perambalur in Tamil Nadu, around 50km from Trichy. The main deity at Siruvachur, Madhurakali, is an epitome of beauty and grace. Unlike the usual Kali with a face fuming with anger and tongue sticking out, the Devi here is calm and serene.
The temple is known for protecting people from demonic forces and evil elements. In the times of yore, a board existed on the border of the town of Siruvachur claiming thus, “In the holy town of Siruvachur, ruled over by MadhuraKali, no form of evil will be allowed to exist. Eval, Billi Soonyam, Kaathu Karuppu will all fail to work and backfire on the originators. People with evil intents are warned from entering the town.” Even today, the temple happens to be on the top of the list of ways to counteract black magic and other similar stuff. I would strongly recommend people who doubt that they are being hindered by evil forces to visit this temple and take refuge in the shadows of Her holy feet. She will protect us all.


Kannagi was a young woman of legendary beauty, as devout and chaste as she was beautiful. A fitting match was made when she was given in marriage to Kovalan, a wealthy merchant from KaveriPattanam. Life was a bed of roses for the loving couple until fate came in the form of Madhavi, a strikingly beautiful danseuse at the court of the Chozha king Karikaalan. Kovalan was at once enamoured by Madhavi’s dashing looks and totally forgot that he too had a wife, as beautiful and chaste. Lust took over the man’s senses and he started living with Madhavi.
Back at KaveriPattanam, Kannagi was heartbroken over the news of her husband staying in with a danseuse, but nevertheless she continued living as his wife, offering prayers for the well being of Kovalan, wherever he was.
Kovalan stayed with Madhavi for a year. Over the period, his lack of interest in trade made him loose all his wealth. He had spent all that he had had in pleasing Madhavi. Madhavi soon bore him a daughter whom they named Manimekalai (another epic in Tamil is based on this daughter of Kovalan and Madhavi). At the end of the year, totally devoid of any wealth, Kovalan’s senses managed to kick in and he realised what he had done under the influence of lust. He begged Madhavi to forgive him and rushed back to Kannagi, who welcomed him back with open arms.
The reunited couple decided to go to Madurai and start a new life all over again. Kovalan planned to restart his trade in the prosperous Pandian kingdom. But having lost everything, he had nothing to capitalise on. It was then that Kannagi came to his rescue once again and gave him one of her anklets. The anklet (silambu) was an exquisite work of art. Made out of gold and filled with precious rubies, it was worth a fortune. Kovalan reluctantly took it to the market place to sell it for a suitable price.Unfortunately for Kovalan, the queen of Nedunchezhian, the king of Madurai, had had one of her anklets stolen by a greedy courtier. The anklets were very similar to Kannagi’s except for the fact that they were filled with pearls rather than rubies. So when Kovalan attempted to sell the anklet at a goldsmith’s place, the goldsmith immediately accused him to be the thief of her majesty’s anklets and promptly turned him in to the guards. Nedunchezhia Pandian, in a towering fit of rage over the fact that a theft had taken place in his prosperous city, ordered the guards to behead Kovalan without even holding a trial. Kovalan was beheaded and his head rolled onto the sands of madurai.
Kannagi on hearing the news was overwhelmed with anger and grief. She at once took her other anklet and marched onto the court of Nedunchezhian. There, in front of all the assembled courtiers, she challenged the king, “Pandia, in the land that is reigned over by the Goddess Meenakshi, you have committed an act of grave injustice”.The King was shocked, “Pious lady, pray, what fault have I done? Why are you calling me unjust?”
“You have beheaded an innocent man. Your hands are soaked with the blood of a man who knew no harm, who knew no crime.”
“That man stole my queen’s anklets. He deserved to die. In this prosperous land of Madurai, which is overwhelmed with the blessings of the divine couple, no crime will be tolerated.”
“You fool, the man was innocent.”, screamed Kannagi, her eyes were red with anger.
“How do you know that? Do you know the man? Can you pove he is innocent?”
“What is the use, his life cannot be returned,” cried Kannagi, her voice chocked with grief. “He was my husband, my god, my everything. And those anklets he tried to sell were mine, not the queen’s.”
“Aaaah, nice story. How can a poor woman like you have such an exquisite anklet?”
“Base man, unjust king, behold this.”, she screamed and took out her anklet. The king was shocked. “The queen’s anklets are filled with pearls, but here is mine, the other of the pair, filled with rubies. Rubies, the colour of the innocent blood on your hands.” And she threw down the anklet. The anklet broke and rubies burst out of it. “There, do you see? Your act of injustice. You killed an innocent man. You have slipped in your duty as a king. Do you deserve the crown and the umbrella and all the other paraphernalia?” Kannagi shouted, her voice thick with anger.
The king and queen, could’nt bear the injustice that they had done and right there in front of Kannagi, they gave up their life. But Kannagi was not satisfied. She was burning inwards at her loss, at the injustice she had been subjected to. She tore off one of her breasts and flung it to the ground, “If I have been a true Pathivratha, then let this entire city of Madurai be reduced to ashes. The burning that I feel, let it burn up the city too.” she cursed.

And at once, tall flames burst up in the city. The whole of Madurai was burning, fed with the power of Kannagi’s chastity. People ran helter skelter and buildings just crumbled down into ashes. Finally, the patron goddess of the city, requested Kannagi to stop the raging fires. Kannagi agreed to the divine request and withdrew her curse. Badly burnt in the fires herself, Kannagi left the smouldering city of Madurai and proceeded northwards.
Near the city of Trichy, Kannagi came across a devi temple and decided to rest there for the night. The temple’s presiding deity was Chelliamman, fondly referred to as Chelli. Kannagi went into the deserted temple and prepared to rest for the night. It was then that something strange happened.
Chelli came out of the sanctum and said “Lady, I request you not to stay here.” she said to Kannagi.
Kannagi was astounded, “Devi, why are you asking me to go away. Are’nt you supposed to protect us?”
“Child, you dont know the situation. I am a powerful goddess, yes. But now I am bound to serve the whims and wishes of a cruel magician. He won my favor with his intense devotion towards me. And when I granted him any boon that he could wish for, he wanted me to be his servant, obeying his tiniest commands. By the power of my own boon, I am bound to him. He uses me to do all his wicked deeds. If he finds out that you have been here, he will surely kill you. Thats why I beseech you to go away as soon as possible.”, explained Chelli.
Kannagi was moved by Chelli’s problems and promised that she would help her to get out of the same. Kannagi and Chelli planned to kill the wicked magician. As night fell, Kannagi withdrew into the sanctum along with Chelli. She invoked her family deity, Kali, to help her in vanquishing the magician. Kali granted Kannagi all her powers to kill the evil sorcerer.
Soon the magician came by and ordered Chelli to come out. But to his great surprise, Kannagi sprang out and with one sweep of the sword she cut his head off. Before dying, the sorcerer made a final request that he sould have his samadhi in the very same temple and all the devoteed should stamp on him for all the evil that he had done. Kannagi granted him his final wish. Chelli too was freed from the bond and was happy beyond all measures.
Chelli looked at Kannagi, her eyes full of gratitude, ” Kannagi, I am so grateful to you for what you have done. I want you to stay over here forever more and protect the people of this village of Siruvachur. This place is mine no more. In this village, under your powerful rule, no deeds of evil can take place any more. People with evil intentions cannot even enter the village. Billi-soonyam, black magic and Devilic tantras will not workout here. Protect all of the people who come in search of refuge from the evil forces. I will now retreat into the forests of Periyasami hills. You are always welcome to visit me over there.”
Kannagi was overwhelmed with happiness and promised Chelli that she would do her best to rid the world of evil. “I will bless your devotees and mine with protection from all kinds of evil. But I will be down here only twice a week, on mondays and fridays. The other five days, I will be with you, up on the summits of Periyasami hills. I also request that you accept all the offerings and poojas at this temple before I accept them”, she said.
Chelli agreed to Kannagi’s conditions and left to her new abode at the Periyasami Hills
And so, Kannagi took over the seat of Chelli at the temple. She came to be known as Madhurakaliamman, since she had come from Madurai and had gotten rid of the evil sorcerer with the grace of Kali. Several other explanations are also given for her name. Soon, word of her power spread far and wide and people started pouring in. The town of Siruvachur became famous for the grace and protection of the presiding deity and has remained so ever since.

The temple is open only on mondays and fridays, as was commanded by Kali. All the other days it is believed that Madhurakali amman retreats into the Periyasami hills to spend time with Chelli. The temple teems with thousands of devotees on these two days. At every pooja, when the arathi is being offered, the priest first lifts the arathi upwards in the direction of Periayasami hills, offers prayers to Chelliamman and then only proceeds to worship Madhurakali.

In front of the main sanctum is present the samadhi of the evil sorcerer who had commaded over Chelli. The devotees stamp over the samadhi in the rush during the pooja, as had been requested by him. Also, it is believed that all the priests at the temple are descendents of the sorcerer. It is believed that Kali keeps a close watch on them so that they do not, in anyway, inherit the evil mind of their forefather.And so remains Madhurakali, in the village of Siruvachur, granting solace and refuge to all her devotees who come to her in times of need, just like she had protected and solved the problem of Chelli eons ago.


The temple is situated on the chennai-trichy route.

Buses from chennai to trichy passes through this place.It is very near to permabalur.

From Trichy:
1) Trichy – Othiyam (Via) Padalur, Perambalur, kalpadi.
Maruvathur , Perali W/S: Perambalur and othiyam

2) Trichy and Perambalur (Via) padalur.

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Chottanikkara Bhagavathy Temple

Chottanikkara Bhagavathy Temple is one of the most celebrated Hindu shrines of Kerala. The temple is located in Chottanikkara town, 17kms away from Ernakulam. Rajarajeswari (Adiparasakthi) alias Durga Bhagavathy - the mother Goddess, is the presiding deity of the temple. It is said that this deity was brought from Mookambika Temple in Kollur, Karnataka and therefore there is a presence of Mookambika (Saraswathy) Devi till 7am in the morning.
The temple situated in a hilly region, is surrounded on all sides by green farms. The entry is through the west and the spiritual atmosphere in the temple gives mental peace and harmony to devotees.
In the main temple, the golden hued idol of Bhagavathy 4 to 5 ft. high, is bedecked with flowers, garlands, jewels and bathed in myriad of lights splendidly. The idol has four arms. The upper right holds the disc, the upper left bears the conch, the lower right hand is held in a boon-conferring pose and the lower left indicates the abhaya (fearlessness) pose. The Bhagavathy is worshipped in three different forms as Saraswathy in the morning clothed in an impeccable white garment,Lakshmi at noon with crimson red cloth and Durga in the evening wearing a bright blue dress. Durga is a much milder form. The original idol of Bhagavathy, three or four feet high which faces east, is of laterite and is believed to be self-born (swayambhoo). This image called 'Rudraksha Sila' is irregular in shape, red in colour and is untouched by the human sculptor. This image can be seen only in the wee hours of morning at 4 am when the Nada opens for nirmalyam.
Adjacent to the image of Bhagavathy, to her right, there is an image of Mahavishnu in granite on the same pedestal. Vishnu and Bhagavathy together are referred to as Lakshminarayana. The deity is also called Ammenarayana, Devinarayana and Bhadrenarayana. Along with Lakshmi and Narayana there are idols of brahma, siva,ganapathi, subramanya and Sastha on the same pedestal.The idol of the deity in the temple is not fixed to the ground. Hence the area around the pedestal is full of loose sand. Water offered during ablution ceremonies percolates underground. It is believed that the water flows underground and joins the tirtha of the Onakkur Bhagawati temple, one and half furlongs away.A platform known as 'Pavazhamallithara', where the deity is believed to have made her first appearance, is on the south of the main temple. Siva shrine is on the south-west. Nearby is the images of Nagas and yakshi can be seen.Kizhukkavu, a shrine to Bhadrakali is outside the main temple on the eastern side. The one-foot granite idol of Bhadrakali facing westward is said to have discovered by Vilvamangalam Swamigal, a saint associated with this shrine. It is said that Vilvamangalam had retrieved the idol from the tank which is in front of the shrine. It is believed that worshipping bhadrakali here will exorcise evil influences, psychological ailments, evil spirits etc from devotees.The famous pooja Valiya Guruthy, which means great sacrifice, is performed in kizhukkavu on every night at about 8.45 p.m by the chief priest. Guruthy is a solution prepared out of turmeric and limewater which looks like blood.. It is believed that being present here during this pooja on Fridays permanently cures women suffering from mental abnormalities like schizophrenia.
The annual festival (ulsavam)of the temple comes in Kumbham of Malayalam Era. i.e in February- March. It begins with Kodiyettu (Flag hoisting ceremony) on Rohini day, lasts for 7 days and ends on Uthram star. A special feature of the ulsavam is the daily Para ezhunnellippu and Aarattu.
considered to be most effectual for Mangalyam (long married life) and for getting best marriage for girls. It is believed that Bhagavathy in her full attire, specially decorated with gold and diamonds shine in its entire splendor, gave darsan to Vilwamangalam Swamiyar on the Makom day and appears on the same day every year for giving darsan to the devotees in her special appearance. On that day, the whole temple premises will be over crowded by devotees especially the women folk.
Navarathri Aghosham is a famous festival, which attracts large number of devotees. Vidyarambham is conducted on the Vijayadasami day of Navarathri ulsavam. The Vrishchicka Mandala mahotsavam (festival) is celebrated during the entire period of mandalam season. On the makaravilakku day there is lakshadeepam (lighting of one lakh lamps) and fire works.Vazhipaadu or offerings performed in Chottanikkara Bhagavathy Temple are Bhajanam, Annadanam, Chuttuvilakku and Niramala, Rudrabhishekam, Thrikala Pooja, One day Pooja, Mahabhagavath Seva, Noorum Palum, Palpayasam, Mrithyunjaya Homam, Chathussadam, Pantheerayiram pushpanjali, Mandapathilpaattu and Guruthy Vazhipaadu and Poomoodal at Kizhukkavu Bhagavathy Temple.


According to the legend, the place where the temple stands today was once a dense forest inhabited by tribals. Kannappan a ferocious dacoit who dominated this area, brought a cow to his home with the intent of slaughtering it. But the cow escaped into the forest and Kannappan tried to trace it but failed. He returned home disappointed and was surprised to find his beloved only daughter playing with the very same cow. At her request, Kannappan dropped the idea of killing the cow. But some days later his daughter passed away and this shattered him. He lost interest in mundane things and turned his thoughts towards god. One day, Goddess Bhagawati appeared in his dream and revealed that it was she who had come in the form of the cow. She also informed him that the presence of Her idol and that of Vishnu would sanctify the cowshed. The following day, Kannappan found the two images in the cowshed. He built a humble shrine and worshipped the images. Known as 'pavizamallithara', located south of the main temple was the exact place where Kanappan's cowshed and shrine was located.
After the death of Kannappan the temple fell in ruins, as the place became uninhabited. One day a pulaya (outcaste) woman who had come to cut grass sharpened her knife against a stone, which started to ooze blood. This was informed to the learned Edathu Nambudiri and he realised that there was divine Chaitanya of Parasakti at the place. Several poojas were performed and a prasnam was held in which it was revealed that the stone be worshipped as Devi and the adjoining one as Vishnu. It then grew into a shrine of the magnitude seen today, over a period of time.

How to reach:

Cochin Air Port - Kalamassery, Kakkanadu, Irimpanam, Karingachira, Chottanikkara
Eranakulam South Railway Station - Vyttila, Tripunithura, Thiruvankulam, Chottanikkara
Eranakulam North Railway Station - Palarivattom, Vyttila,Tripunithura,Thiruvankulam, Chottanikkara
Eranakulam K.S.R.T.C.Bus Stand - Vyttila, Tripunithura, Thiruvankulam, Chottanikkara
Kaloor Private Bus Stand - Palarivattom, Vyttila,Tripunithura,Thiruvankulam, Chottanikkara

Monday, 16 November 2009

Devi Temples in India - Kateel Durga Temple

I had given brief insight into some of the temples of devi in my second blog.Let us continue with the visits to the different temples and have her darshan and I hope it brings peace and prosperity for those who read and for those who want to visit these temples. In all these temple visits Iam planning to look into the routes for travel as well so that it would be easy for those who want to make the trip to that particular temple.
First on the list is :
Kateel Durga Temple - dakshina kannadaKateel is a sacred place for Hindus in Dakshina Kannada. This temple is dedicated to Goddess Durga Parameshwari. The holy temple is situated in the middle of the sacred river. The temple surrounded by panoramic scenes and fascinating greeneries. The devotees overwhelmed with pious emotions when they glance at the flowing water in the river, which embraces all around the lower layer of the temple. Kateel is 29 K.M. distances from Mangalore city.
When Goddess slew Shumbha & Nishumbha, Arunasura, one of the ministers, had fled from the battlefield and saved his life. Later he became the leader of the Rakshasas (demons). He began to disturb the sages and destruct their Yajnas. As a result, the Devas stopped raining, which resulted in total draught and scarcity of water and food grains on the earth. Moved by the pathetic conditions of the people Maharshi Jabali, the great sage decided to perform a Yajna to appease the Devas. He approached Devendra and requested him to send Kamadhenu (a sacred cow) with him for the ritual. Since Kamadhenu had been to Varuna Loka, Devendra permitted the sage to take Nandini, the daughter of Kamadhenu in order to assist him as Homadhenu (symbolic cow for ritual) in his proposed Yajna. Jabali went to Nandini and put forth his request. In reply Nandini abused the earth and the people there and refused to accompany him. When the sage found that Nandini was firm in her refusal, he cursed her to flow as a river on the earth. As Nandini prayed Jabali for mercy, kindhearted sage advised her to pray Adhishakti to get freed from the curse. Accordingly she prayed Adhishakti. Pleased by her deep meditation Goddess appeared before Nandini and told her that she has to flow as a river as a result of the curse, because nobody can trespass the sentences (Rishi Vakya) of a holy sage. But she added "I shall take birth as your daughter in due course and purify you from this curse". Satisfied by this assurance Nandini emerged as a river from Kanakagiri on the day of Magha Shuddha Poornima and made the earth green once again.
Meanwhile Arunasura acquired a boon from Brahma, which made him free from fear of death by Trinity, Devas, men or women or by any two legged or four legged animals & creatures. Goddess Saraswathi also blessed him with Gayathri Mantra (Holy chants).
All these made him the most powerful. He defeated the Devatas and conquered Heaven. Disheartened by disastrous defeat, the Devatas, along with Trinity pleaded Adhishakti for the rescue. Goddess said that unless and until Arunasura is prevented from reciting Gayathri Mantra she too would not be able to destroy him. She suggested them to send Brihaspathi (Guru of Devatas) to distract Arunasura from his meditation of Gayathri, and make him get rid of Gayathri recitation so that she would be able to kill him. Brihaspathi approached Arunasura, flattered him, poisoned his ears and succeeded in diverting him from his meditation.
Now Arunasura vainly felt that he was more than God himself. He not only ordered his subjects to worship him but also troubled the sages and spoiled their Yajnas. As promised to the Devas, Goddess took the shape of Mohini, a charming woman and began to wander in the garden of Arunasura. Chanda & Prachanda, ministers of Arunasura saw her and informed the master about her beauty. Arunasura decided to marry her and approached her. When she turned deaf ears to his request & teased him for fleeing from the war field, in afraid of the lady who killed his masters Shumbha & Nishumbha, he became furious. When he tried to take her by storm, she disappeared inside rock. Arunasura broke the rock with his sword. Suddenly, a vast swarm of bees emerged from the rock and stung him. Devi had taken the form of a big, furious bee that is 'Bhramara' and stung him repeatedly till his last breath.
Now the Devas and the sages led by Jabali performed "Abhishekham" (holy bath) to Devi with tender coconut brought from the Kalpavriksha of Devaloka, and prayed her to bless the world with 'Soumya Roopa' (tender posture). According to this request Devi emerged in the form of 'Linga' (symbolic holy rock) in the middle of the river Nandini and is known as Shree Durga Parameshwari. KATI means waist and ILA means earth. So Kateel stands for that area of the earth, which is the Kati, or the center of the river Nandini. The Nandini is purified by the birth of Adhishakti in her "Kati" and Durga Parameshwari is here for the good of the universe and blesses those who come to her.
Other important Idols of Deities in the temple:
Rakteshwari: After entering main entrance, before entering into the temple, on the left side a big symbolic rock can be seen by us is called as Goddess Rakteshwari. Poojas performed everyday thrice to Goddess Rakteshwari. On every Sankramana devotees offer coconut sevas to the Goddess.
Mahaganapathi: In southern side of the main sanctum there lies idol of Shri Mahaganapathi. In the pit (homa kunda) in front of the Shri Mahaganapathi, priests perform Ganahoma (holy lighting) every day. Ganahoma and Pancha Kajjaya are the exclusive sevas offered by the devotees to the Lord Mahaganapathi.
Shasthara: Shasthara is another name of the Lord Ayyappan. His shrine lies in right side of the Shri Mahaganapathi.
Kshetrapala: On the southwestern side of the temple there lies an abode of Shri Kshetrapala. Special poojas and coconut sevas are offered to Shri Kshetrapalas on occasion of festivals. Daily poojas will be offered to him every night after main pooja to the Goddess Shri Durga Parameshwari.
Abode of the Naga Devata: There are two abodes of Naga Devatas. One is near Shri Kshetrapalas abode, which is inside the temple and another is outside.
Brahma's Shrine: Outside the temple on the right side of the premises we could find one shrine dedicated to Brahma. Devotees and believers strongly believe that in the event of loss of any important personal possessions the oath of doing certain poojas or sevas will fulfill their desires of finding and getting back of their lost items.
How to reach the temple:
Mangalore-Bajpe-Kateel:- 25 K.M. distance.
Udupi-Mulki-Kinnigoli-Kateel:- 45 K.M. distance.
Moodabidri-Kinnigoli-Kateel: 22 K.M. distance

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

Memories of Aberdeen

This post is about the beautiful place where I had the opportunity to stay and work for a year.It is none other than the granite city Aberdeen.This place is very special to me because it helped me to look into myself and made me a better person.I was spell bound by the country side beauty of it and I fell in love with its gardens and the buildings.Its architecture and the less crowded streets.I like to go to places but not for a day or for a week ,I like to spend time knowing the people their culture their way of living and above all take in the beauty of the place slowly like how we would sip a cup of coffee sitting in the armchair near a fire my exploration of this place was something like that i saw the summer there and the winter and my body and soul drenched in its beauty ,serenity and its pride.The buildings stand so proudly welcoming visitors the people understand their diverse nature of their city and try to accomodate the people from different parts of the world.come join me into this journey and i will take you through the places where i roamed and gazed taking in everything in its own stride. The latest official population estimate, for 2008, is 210,400.Aberdeen's architecture is known for its principal use during the Victorian era of granite, which has led to its local nickname of the Granite City or more romantically the less commonly used name the Silver City, since the quartz in the stone sparkles in the sun.
The hard grey stone is one of the most durable materials available and helps to explain why the city's buildings look brand-new when they have been newly cleaned and the cement has been pointed. Unlike other Scottish cities where sandstone has been used the buildings are not weathering and need very little structural maintenance on their masonry.

Unlike the roads in the UK the roads are very broad and the traffic eases very quickly because of the big roads.The main street here is the union street.It is like MG Road in India and High street in other is a busy shopping centre and there is always a road side show of music from the highlanders near Mark's and Spencer.I spend my weekends doing shopping here and listening to the highlanders singing their favourite numbers.The other shopping centre in aberdeen is Nicholas centre.You find everything here:

In and around Union street there are STATUES which catches one's eye, it is like a treasure hunt for are a few of them.

Everything about the place is beautiful.There is always the grey sky and pleasant drizzle hitting your face and the cold air reminds you that you are not very far from the artic circle. The Indian Resturant is always packed with people because the people love indian curries and takeaways.I used to sit on the roof of Nicolas centre and wonder what am I doing here and then turn around and look at people around me and say to myself it is an experience that God has given me to enjoy and treasure because I will never be able to do it again.Life smiled at me and said take it for you would be robbed of it very soon.My thoughts ran a bit too far and I used to stand in front of the cathedral looking up and smiling to myself at the simple thought of its simplicity.

The beautiful garden on my way home from school always lifts up my heart and gives me the assurance that nature towers above us and that we all are at its mercy.

One never misses the Mercat cross in aberdeen.Diagonally opposite the Tolbooth and adorned with a white unicorn stands the Mercat Cross, a medieval symbol of the Aberdeen's right to hold a market. On the town cross which was built in 1686 by Aberdeen's guild of merchants, the portrait medallions show the heads of the 10 Stuart monarchs from James I through to James VII, Charles I, Charles II and Mary Stuart.Only a few yards away stood the town residence of the Earl Marischal from whose window in 1562 Mary Stuart is said to have watched the execution of her cousin and admirer Sir John Gordon of Findlater. He had threatened Mary with a forced marriage but later found himself a victim of the "Aberdeen Maiden", a Scottish variation of the guillotine.

the people of aberdeen love flowers they not only decorate their houses with colourful flowers but even their garden and the main centres are all decorated with flowers during spring and summer.

Adjacent to where I lived was His Majesty's theatre. It is fantastic place to be in during the weekends there are musicals and plays all round the year.It is real treat to be there and anyone going there should experience this great place and the vibes it brings with it.

It would be unfair on my part if i do not talk about the harbour of aberdeen.Aberdeen Harbour is both one of Europe's most modern ports and according to the Guinness Book of Business Records - Britain's oldest businesses.
Through more than eight centuries, history traces the harbours increasingly important role in the development and prosperity of North-east Scotland.
The sheltered estuary of the River Dee is a natural harbour and its first use is lost in the mists of time. There is evidence of human habitation around 5,000 BC.Around 2,000 BC, immigrants from the Rhineland and Holland arrived, probably using the estuary as a base for fishing. The Romans may have used it to supply soldiers in the area.

My life in aberdeen was a memorable one and the beauty of the place and its closeness will ever remain as long as I live.I live to cherish those memories.

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Master helps to conquer death

Sri Yukteshwar, who later became Swami Yogananda's Guru, was a very close disciple of Shyama Charan Lahiri. One day his dearest friend, Ram, was attacked by cholera. Two doctors tried to save his life, but it seemed that all their efforts were in vain. It was a matter of a few hours before Ram would die.Yukteshwar ran to his Master, crying to him to save his friend's life. Shyama Charan Lahiri said to Yukteshwar, "You have doctors. Why do you need me? The doctors will save him. They will be able to do the needful. I don't have to be involved."Yukteshwar went back, full of hope, but gradually his friend's condition became worse. When it was a matter of four or five minutes before he would die, Ram said to his dearest friend Yukteshwar, "I will be dead in a few minutes. Please tell the Master that I have a last wish. My last wish is that he come and touch my dead body and thus bless me. This will be my last plea to him." In a few minutes' time he passed away.Crying, Yukteshwar went back again to Shyama Charan Lahiri in order to give him Ram's message. The Master said, "How is Ram?" Yukteshwar replied, "Please go and see him yourself. This was his last prayer to you: that you would touch his dead body and bless him."But Shyama Charan said, "Then why should I go? He is not dead.""Yes," said Yukteshwar, "He is dead. The doctors have pronounced it."Shyama Charan Lahiri took some oil from a lamp and said, "Go and put a little bit of this oil into his mouth."His friend was dead, but this was the command of the Master, so what else could Yukteshwar do? He went and put a small quantity of the oil that his Master had given him into Ram's mouth. In a few minutes Ram came to life, saying that he had had a dream in which he saw Shyama Charan Lahiri in a most beautiful form. The Master had said to him, "Ram, why are you sleeping? Get up and come to me."Then Ram stood up, put on his clothes and both the friends went to Shyama Charan's place. The Master said to Yukteshwar, "Now I have taught you how to conquer death. From now on if anybody dies, just take a small quantity of oil and put it into his mouth. I have given you the medicine to conquer death." Everybody laughed and laughed, because they knew perfectly well that the oil was just an outer gesture, a token, a symbol, whereas the actual gift of life had come from Lahiri.
It is only the omnipotent spirituality that can turn impossibility into facile possibility. But spirituality, out of its sheer magnanimity, tries to adopt outer earthly means so that it can convince the physical mind that the truth-principle can be accessible to the human in us. Otherwise, without the least possible hesitation, one can say that it is the spiritual force that in silence turns the impossible reality into clear and certain possibility. Not only that, but afterwards it turns possibility into practical and inevitable reality.It was the Master's spiritual power that revived Ram. Otherwise, no matter what kind of oil one puts into a dying man's mouth, will he survive? It could have been anything. Only to convince the physical mind with a physical object did the Master tell his disciple to use oil. That is why spiritual Masters say, "Do this, do that," when somebody is sick. Actually, it is their spiritual power which cures, but they know that this will convince the physical mind, so the patient's physical mind can believe that the Master has true concern for him.