Sri Mangalam – Nithya Subhamangalam

The ‘Suprabhatam’, ‘Stotram’, ‘Prapatti’, and ‘Mangalasasanam’ are the verses that is being recited in the Tirumala Temple daily in the early morning.

Suprabhatam

(Waking the Lord from the sleep) consisting of twenty-nine slokas. (From Kousalya Supraja Rama Purvasandhya Pravartathae… to Itham Vrushachalapathe Riha Suprabhatham….)

In the Suprabhatam the first verse is addressed to Srirama son of kousalya, the second to Govinda and Kamalapati, the third and fourth to Sri Lakshmi and the next 24 slokas to Lord Venkateswara praised variously as Venkatachalapati, Seshachalapati Srinivasa, Seshadrivibhu etc.,

The last and the 29th Stanza exhorts the devotee to aspire to ‘Paramartha’ and ‘Moksha’.

Stotram :

(Hymns to the Lord) consisting of eleven slokas. (From Kamalakucha Choochuka Kumkumatho…. to Agnanina Maya Doshanaseshanvihitan Hare…..) In the stotram the devotee earnestly addresses the Lord surrendering his all to him and entreats His protection.

The tenth sloka is a beautiful one when where the devotee submits that having come from a long distance to worship at the Lord’s feet he might be blessed by the Lord even though his visits are infrequent due to his own limitations and that he might receive the Lord’s blessings in abundance.

Prapatti

(Surrender to the Lord) consisting of sixteen stanzas. (From Eeshanam Jagathosya Venkatapatervishnoh Param preyasim…. to Nityasrithaya Niravadyagunaya Thubhyam…) In the prapatti or surrender, the first sloka is a prayerful adoration to SriLakshmi, the Supreme Mother who showers Her grace on account of Her eternal Vatsalya and entreats Her as Bhagavati.

The next 15 verses are in exquisite words and phrases of unparalleled grandeur and simplicity, where the devotee, with the complete annihilation of his ego, surrenders himself and his all, at the Lotus feet of the Lord. I

t would appear that the initial invocation to Sri Lakshmi is to invoke the Supreme, mother’s intervention before surrendering to the Lord, as a child moves for the favour of the father through the mother. This idea is said in the 16th and the last Stanza of the Prapatti.

The other verses of the Prapatti seek the glory of the holy feet of the Lord which have been decreased by the Rigveda as the most exalted state of attainment and which the Lord himself in the Dhruva Bera seems to point out by his hand even as Parthasarathi did to Arjuna.

Mangalasasanam

(A prayer of the Lord’s glory) consisting of fourteen stanzas, thus making altogether a total seventy slokas. (From Sriyah Kantaya Kalyana Nidhaye Nidhayerdhinam…. to Mangala sasana parairmadacharya purogamah…..) In the mangalasasanam there is a moving verse viz., verse 9 where the Lord is supposed to indicate His own feet with His own hand as the sole refuge of all human beings.

The devotee is enjoined to hope to be present at the behest of the Lord for all times and to lose his limited soul in the eternal grace of the Lord. In fact, this is the general experience of many a devotee who comes with devotion and utter surrender to the Lord. So, tremendous is the divine charm of the beauty of the Prasanna Mangala Murti of the Lord and His excellence, that one forgets one’s ego in the presence of the Lord.

The composer of the Suprabhatam is Prativadi Bhayankara Annan who is said to have flourished during the closing years of Sri Vedantadesika.

As the purpose of this sacred invocation (Suprabhatam) to Lord Venkateswara Swami is to awaken human beings to realise their true nature.

There is appropriateness in opening it with an address to Sri Rama who has proved himself to be the personification of Dharma (Raamo Vigrahavaan Dharmah) to rise from sleep and attend to the daily routine of duties to be discharged towards the divinities and human beings. Such routine discipline is needless for one of Rama’s moral and spiritual attainments, but he should set the example for people to emulate for their own purification and uplift.

The Sacred Suprabhatam verses are to be recited every day for our wellbeing. Let everyday morning resound with your recitation to the Lord!

Source: Saptagiri Magazine

Cultural and Folk Arts – Brahmotsavams

Brahmotsavam – A Festival organized by Brahma

According to some of the Epic Sources, it is on the day of Lord Sri Venkateswara’s Self Manifestation on the Tirumala Hills his son BRAHMA was called by HIM and asked to celebrate a festival in memory of His Manifestation Day.

Ever since this festival has been celebrated under the leadership of Brahma. Hence it is called Brahmotsavam. Secondly, these annual celebrations are called Brahmotsavams because among all the festivals of Lord Sri Venkateswara these are the most magnificent annual festivals.

Because of their GRAND nature, they are called Brahmotsavams.

Salutations to Srivaru

During these Nine days of Brahmotsavas while Lord Srinivasa is moving in the Four Mada Streets on these vahanas named earlier the festivity touches the heights of sky everywhere. The auspicious music of the instruments is appealing to the ears. Devotees from Anga, Kosala, Karnataka, Pandya, Kerala, Kashi, Maharashtra, Gujarat and all other regions arrive and stand on either side of the procession and with folded hands offer their salutations to Srivaru during Brahmotsavam.

Tirumala

A classic touch to Sri Vari Procession

The Devotees who come from different forms are experts in many kinds of arts.

In front of the procession,

  • Some teams of devotees sing in praise of the GOD.
  • Some others dance in a blissful state.
  • Still, others lay steps rhythmically doing bhajans.
  • Some devotees play on Trumpets.
  • Some give great Drum Beats.
  • Some devotees appear in the attire of Deities.
  • Some classical dance artists also offer their worship through their skill of dance forms.

Brahmotsavams 2018

Thus all the arts of Music and Performance arts are offered to Srinivasa as a Kainkarya or as a Devoted Service. In this procession, the line between the Earth and Sky disappears. Now everywhere it is divine…serene and noble-spirited.

Here the services of devotees through different classical and folk arts are to be considered as the very gestures of Goddess Sarasvati as She is the spouse of Brahma the chief performer of these festivals.

Pancha Bhutas

The pleasing sounds of the Auspicious musical instruments sanctify all the quarters of the Universe till the ends. As said by the Sage Bhrugu in the holy treatise Arcana Tilaka the Five Gross elements : Pancha bhutams : The Earth, The Water, The Fire, The Air and The Ether (Prthvi, jal, Tejas, Vayu and Akasa) are serving the Lord Srinivasa through the Mridanga, Conch, Bells and Nadasvara instruments and the human voices respectively.

Many teams of devotees following the troops of instrumentalists utter repeatedly the name of GOVINDA. Along with them, there are Acharya purushas, Archakasvamins, Jiyyangars, Vedic Savants and officers.

The Vibrant sounds of Vedic chants fill all the directions with a kind of tranquillity and nobility. In the front side and back side of the Vehicle, people of different regions who are experts in different folk arts are formed into some groups and present their talents as a holy offering to the GREAT GOD. Entire Nature is very calm and pleasant with the impressive utterances of different names of Lord HARI. The Seshadri mountain enjoys the arrival of devotees.

Must Maintain while in Tirumala

Before proceeding to Tirumala, the devotees should go to Tiruchanur for the grand ‘darshan’ of Goddess Padmavathi Devi which is traditional.

Tirumala

is not a place of excursion or place of entertainment. It is place of ‘yoga’ and ‘practice.’ The Ananda Nilayam is a sacred place for worship. The entire Tirumala is charged with sacredness and godliness.

Devotees who visit Tirumala and the Ananda Nilayam must maintain discipline, peace and sacredness so that they can experience the divine feelings and spiritual happiness.

They should forget about their family affairs, worldly fortunes, power and status. They should think about their present atmosphere, chant the holy name ‘Govinda’ and discuss things related to the Lord.

Tirumala is a magnificent ‘kshetra’ which can protect all ‘lokas.’ Human beings need not worry about its safety and protection. But the devotees must be sacred in mind, speech and action in the ‘kshetra.’

Tirumala

One should not waste time in unnecessary talk or argument. The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams is providing many facilities and services to donors, charitable people, Srivari sevaks and devotees.

As there is an ever-increasing number of devotees day by day, the facilities may not reach all the devotees. So, the devotees are requested to cooperate with the staff of the Devasthanams with patience and fulfil the grand ‘darshan’ of the Lord. They should respect the feelings of other neighbouring pilgrims.

Thereby, one gets the abundant grace of Lord Venkateswara. Consequently, one gets salvation which is the chief target of one’s life.

Bhagavad Darshanam
Aihikaamshmika Soukhyapradam

Data Source – Saptagiri Magazine

Pedda Sesha Vahana Seva 2018

There is one ceremony or the other almost daily for Lord Venkateswara manifest on Tirumala.

Different ceremonies are conducted on a grand scale for the Lord with different time frames— daily, fortnightly, monthly and yearly. Of them, special mention may be made of annual Brahmotsavas.

Devotees go on raptures witnessing the Lord on different carriages and earnestly wait for the next earliest opportunity to visit them. Brahmotsavas are conducted twice this year much to their jubilation.

Because of the addition of one month as per the Telugu Calendar, two categories of Brahmotsavas are conducted this year, namely—Salakatla and Navaratri (nine-day).

Serpent Sesha’s Service to the Resident of Ananda Nilaya – Pedda Sesha Vahana Seva)

Seven-hooded Serpent Sesha’s service (Pedda Sesha Vahana Seva) to the Lord along with His consorts Sridevi and Bhudevi. Since the Lord is settled on Seshadri making Sesha His bed, Sesha’s carriage is preferred on the very first day of celebrations.

Adisesha serves the Lord variously in different postures as the habitation, bed, seat, shoes, upper garment, pillow, umbrella to shade from sun and shower, pedestal and servant. Hence, he is regarded as Sesha.

This procession suggests the rise of serpentine kundalini from mooladhara (primary consciousness) to Sahasrara (highest consciousness) in yoga.

Chinna Sesha Vahana Seva 2018

There is one ceremony or the other almost daily for Lord Venkateswara manifest on Tirumala.

Different ceremonies are conducted on a grand scale for the Lord with different time frames— daily, fortnightly, monthly and yearly. Of them, special mention may be made of annual Brahmotsavas.

Devotees go on raptures witnessing the Lord on different carriages and earnestly wait for the next earliest opportunity to visit them. Brahmotsavas are conducted twice this year much to their jubilation.

Because of the addition of one month as per the Telugu Calendar, two categories of Brahmotsavas are conducted this year, namely—Salakatla and Navaratri (nine-day).

Srinivasa on the Younger Serpent Sesha – Chinna Sesha Vahana Seva

Lord Venkateswara alone proceeds on the younger five-hooded Serpent Sesha’s carriage (Chinna Sesha Vahana Seva) on the second day of Brahmotsavas. Born of the aspect of Narayana, Sesha has the privilege of offering his service twice with his intimacy to the Lord. Vasuki is regarded as the younger Sesha.

 

Hamsa Vahana Seva 2018

There is one ceremony or the other almost daily for Lord Venkateswara manifest on Tirumala.

Different ceremonies are conducted on a grand scale for the Lord with different time frames— daily, fortnightly, monthly and yearly. Of them, special mention may be made of annual Brahmotsavas.

Devotees go on raptures witnessing the Lord on different carriages and earnestly wait for the next earliest opportunity to visit them. Brahmotsavas are conducted twice this year much to their jubilation.

Because of the addition of one month as per the Telugu Calendar, two categories of Brahmotsavas are conducted this year, namely—Salakatla and Navaratri (nine-day).

Mother of Learning on Swan – Hamsa Vahana Seva

In the evening of the second day, the Lord appears as Saraswati, Goddess of Learning, on the Swan carriage (Hamsa Vahana Seva). This service suggests discriminating power of the good and the bad. The liberated soul is compared to a swan. God as the wisest swan on the swan carriage offers a delightful sight.

Simha Vahana Seva 2018

There is one ceremony or the other almost daily for Lord Venkateswara manifest on Tirumala.

Different ceremonies are conducted on a grand scale for the Lord with different time frames— daily, fortnightly, monthly and yearly. Of them, special mention may be made of annual Brahmotsavas.

Devotees go on raptures witnessing the Lord on different carriages and earnestly wait for the next earliest opportunity to visit them. Brahmotsavas are conducted twice this year much to their jubilation.

Because of the addition of one month as per the Telugu Calendar, two categories of Brahmotsavas are conducted this year, namely—Salakatla and Navaratri (nine-day).

Lord of Seven Hills on Lion-Carriage – Simha Vahana Seva

The Lord appears on the Lion carriage (Simha Vahana Seva) on the third day morning of Brahmotsavas. Manifesting Himself as the lion, He suggests eradication of violence in human nature.

Just as the animals are scared at the sight of the lion, human beings should restrain themselves from sin for fear of punishment at the hands of the Lord. In yogic science, the lion is a symbol of forbearance and speed. Thus, the lion simile suits the Lord.

Muthyapu Pandiri Vahana Seva 2018

There is one ceremony or the other almost daily for Lord Venkateswara manifest on Tirumala.

Different ceremonies are conducted on a grand scale for the Lord with different time frames— daily, fortnightly, monthly and yearly. Of them, special mention may be made of annual Brahmotsavas.

Devotees go on raptures witnessing the Lord on different carriages and earnestly wait for the next earliest opportunity to visit them. Brahmotsavas are conducted twice this year much to their jubilation.

Because of the addition of one month as per the Telugu Calendar, two categories of Brahmotsavas are conducted this year, namely—Salakatla and Navaratri (nine-day).

Lord Srinivasa on the Pearl Canopy – (Muthyapu Pandiri Vahana Seva

On the night of the third day, the processional deity Malayappa Swami is taken in procession in the Pearl Canopy (Muthyapu Pandiri Vahana Seva) along with His consorts Sridevi and Bhudevi.

Going on a pleasure ride in a cool Pearl Canopy, the Lord seems to cool down the heat and tensions of the devotees.

Pearl is one of the nine jewels a symbol of the Moon who gives coolness and health.

Hence, wearing pearls not only adds to beauty but the coolness of the body. It also gives all the good fortune to us. This is the purpose behind pearl canopy ceremony.

Kalpavriksha Vahana Seva 2018

There is one ceremony or the other almost daily for Lord Venkateswara manifest on Tirumala.

Different ceremonies are conducted on a grand scale for the Lord with different time frames— daily, fortnightly, monthly and yearly. Of them, special mention may be made of annual Brahmotsavas.

Devotees go on raptures witnessing the Lord on different carriages and earnestly wait for the next earliest opportunity to visit them. Brahmotsavas are conducted twice this year much to their jubilation.

Because of the addition of one month as per the Telugu Calendar, two categories of Brahmotsavas are conducted this year, namely—Salakatla and Navaratri (nine-day).

Wish-fulfilling Tree for Devotees – Kalpavriksha Vahana Seva

On the fourth day morning of Brahmotsavas, Malayappa Swami along with His consorts moves about the streets on the heavenly Wish-fulfilling Tree carriage (Kalpavriksha Vahana Seva).

Kalpavriksha Vahanam

This Wish-fulfilling Tree emerged in the churning of the Milky Sea by the angels and demons. Being evergreen, it fulfils the desires. While this tree grants only earthly pleasures, the Lord on this tree grants the pleasures of both this world and the other.

As the heavenly wish-fulfilling tree, the Lord blesses those who seek His refuge.

Sarva Bhupala Vahana Seva 2018

There is one ceremony or the other almost daily for Lord Venkateswara manifest on Tirumala.

Different ceremonies are conducted on a grand scale for the Lord with different time frames— daily, fortnightly, monthly and yearly. Of them, special mention may be made of annual Brahmotsavas.

Devotees go on raptures witnessing the Lord on different carriages and earnestly wait for the next earliest opportunity to visit them. Brahmotsavas are conducted twice this year much to their jubilation.

Because of the addition of one month as per the Telugu Calendar, two categories of Brahmotsavas are conducted this year, namely—Salakatla and Navaratri (nine-day).

SarvaBhupala Vahanam

All Lords in the Service of Supreme Lord

Malayappa Swami goes on a procession in Sarva Bhupala Vahana Seva as the Lord of Lords along with Sridevi and Bhudevi on the night of the fourth day of Brahmotsavas.

The Lord with His consorts appears in the golden pavilion dazzling with electric bulbs. He has all the crown-jewels of the kings at His feet.

He is the sovereign emperor and hence all the kings under His reign participate in this procession as His carriage. The demigods of eight directions also take part in this with reverence.