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Viraja
25 January 2013, 08:54 AM
There are some powerful female deities of Hinduism that do not seem to have any festivals associated with them - to name some, Gayathri devi, Meenakshi, Kamakshi, Lalitha Tripura Sundari, Chamundeswari, Bhuvaneshwari, Raja Rajeswari, Santoshi mata and so forth..

Gayathri devi is considered to be the 'Veda mata'. There is a special place for her in every Brahmin household because the boys are initiated into the sacred Gayathri mantra during the upanayanam ceremony.

The Gayathri Maha mantra is supposed to be so powerful - it is not only a mantra for yogis (such as Samarth Ramadas who recited it from morning 6 am - 12 noon everyday) but also for the householder, as it supposedly wards off diseases, gives success in disputes, and so many boons as this.

Given such an importance for Gayathri devi, why no festivals for her, even by Brahmins who recite Gayathri mantra every day?


http://navvis.files.wordpress.com/2008/10/gayathri-mata.jpg?w=595 (http://navvis.files.wordpress.com/2008/10/gayathri-mata.jpg)

JaiMaaDurga
27 January 2013, 10:26 PM
Namaste Aspirant,

I will attempt to answer as best I can, but please bear in mind
I am only a devotee of Devi and no authority; I ask forgiveness
for any errors made.
To generally answer, I ask that you first consider the great
number of names and forms Devi possesses, and that while it would
be a mistake to treat any name or form as "less real", or less important
than another, it is both Her grace and Her lila.
Human minds can but grasp but so much at one time, to any degree of depth;
and therefore the blind can hear Her, the deaf may see Her, and so on.

This song (http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=BDPHhPFZeo0#t=246s)'s an enjoyable attempt to illustrate the idea ;)


So- are there truly no festivals for the devis you mention?
Perhaps no separately named, globally known ones, in the way
you are thinking; but- they are there, all the same.


If you wish to learn more specifically about Gayatri Devi, here (http://www.ambaa.org/pdf/gAyatrI_Worship.pdf) is a pdf which
also has many links and references on the last two pages, if the
document itself is not helpful.

I hope this has helped a little in some way , at least..

JAI MATA DI

Viraja
28 January 2013, 09:10 AM
This song (http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=BDPHhPFZeo0#t=246s)'s an enjoyable attempt to illustrate the idea ;)


So- are there truly no festivals for the devis you mention?
Perhaps no separately named, globally known ones, in the way
you are thinking; but- they are there, all the same.



Aha, that wonderful song from Adhiparasakthi, how did I forget?! :rolleyes: I wouldn't have asked this question if I remembered that song! Late actress Padmini has really done a wonderful job conveying the message to the English viceroy (Thomas Monroe?) that all goddesses are emanations of the same Sakthi - the movie-maker is praise-worthy for this movie and this song. I think it is a real-life narrative too - I have heard somewhere that mother Parasakthi saved an English diplomat before his house caved-in from thunderstorm.

Given this understanding, yes, I can see now we do worship mother Adi Sakthi as Durga in the navaratris - this Durga puja must then cover all aspects of Adi Parasakthi.

Thanks for attaching the pdf too. I cannot follow Sanskrit, but some of the slokas, such as Gayathri Ramayana are in my stotra book too, in Tamil. Some days I can recite that for getting the blessings of mother Gayathri.

JaiMaaDurga
28 January 2013, 08:39 PM
Namaste Aspirant,

I am very glad to read your reply; yes, the movie is based on a true story-
the scenario you mention is portrayed in the movie. The Englishman tries to
tell his wife of what has happened, and his realization, but she is having none
of it.. until Devi as a young girl comes to the house, and leads them out, just before its collapse from the storm.

Again, I am most happy to have been of some help :)

JAI MATA DI

ShivaFan
29 January 2013, 01:28 AM
Namaste

Actually, you will find that specific aspects, manifestations, glories and forms of Devi are in fact specifically present for certain festivals, it depends on what peetha or temple or tirtha or region or mansion or realm you find yourself standing (in a physical body for example) at the time of the festival.

Let us take the example of Meenakshi (Whom I am a devotee of). You included Her in the list “do not seem to have any festival associated”, and now let us look at the festival of Meenakshi Thirukalyanam (Meenakshi Kalyanam) which is the festival of the Divine Marriage of Sundareswar (“The Beautiful Iswara” or “Beautiful Lord”, i.e. aspect of Shiva) and Meenakshi (“The Fish-Eyed (Goddess)” i.e. aspect of Devi). The Meenakshi Temple is regarded as one of the most sacred mansions of Parvati in India and this celebration draws countless thousands. It is one of the most spectacular festivals in India, the Murtis are taken out in beautiful chariots. And during Navratri, Meenakshi is worshiped. This is because Her presence if very powerful at Her temple in Madurai (and many other areas and tirthas).

But let us take Gayatri Devi. There is the celebration of Gayatri Japa Day, also called Gayatri Japam Sankalpam. It is observed on the day after the Raksha Bandhan or Avani Avittam in July-August, or the next day of Purnima (Full Moon day) in Shravan month.

Here is some information on that Day from Sree Durga Mandir Trust Manchester:

http://mcrdurgapuja.com/the_mantra.html

I can give many other examples for the Devi’s you noted, yes they are aspects of Parvati and so on as Devi manifests, but She is also Her Own in Her Realm, and if you go to That Realm then you will See Her and call Her by Her Name where She Awaits or She may Come.

Today I think of Devi Karumari Amman The Mother of the Black Rain.

Om Namah Sivaya

Viraja
29 January 2013, 08:47 AM
Let us take the example of Meenakshi (Whom I am a devotee of). You included Her in the list “do not seem to have any festival associated”, and now let us look at the festival of Meenakshi Thirukalyanam (Meenakshi Kalyanam) which is the festival of the Divine Marriage of Sundareswar (“The Beautiful Iswara” or “Beautiful Lord”, i.e. aspect of Shiva) and Meenakshi (“The Fish-Eyed (Goddess)” i.e. aspect of Devi). The Meenakshi Temple is regarded as one of the most sacred mansions of Parvati in India and this celebration draws countless thousands. It is one of the most spectacular festivals in India, the Murtis are taken out in beautiful chariots. And during Navratri, Meenakshi is worshiped. This is because Her presence if very powerful at Her temple in Madurai (and many other areas and tirthas).

Oh, yes, the Meenakshi Kalyanam - I am aware of it too :) My question was why there are no festivals celebrated for her in the household like for example 'Shiva ratri'. Yes, I have watched the video recording of Meenakshi Kalyanam in Madurai through Vijay TV and I can see there 'the ocean of heads' - the entire Madurai seems to be there at the temple during this time.


But let us take Gayatri Devi. There is the celebration of Gayatri Japa Day, also called Gayatri Japam Sankalpam. It is observed on the day after the Raksha Bandhan or Avani Avittam in July-August, or the next day of Purnima (Full Moon day) in Shravan month.


I think I am just not aware of this function until you told me now, ShivaFanji. I guess in every Brahmin household where they wear sacred thread they do celebrate this, I don't know yet. My husband wears sacred thread too, and he does change them every year on the Avani Avittam day but I don't do anything special on that day nor I am aware of what mantras he is reciting. Secondly, we don't do anything in our household on the next day to goddess Gayathri devi either. Your post has informed me to ask my family and my inlaws in finding out if I am missing something. Thank you. :-)