[GHHF] Dhoopa Deepa Naivedyam scheme continues to enable many Village Temples to light the lamp and offer Naivedyam to the presiding Deities.

12 Jun 2023 287 Views

Nancy Wilson Ross (1901 -1986)
"Hinduism – not only in philosophy and literature but also in art – has the capacity for immense conceptions, profound an subtle apprehensions, that can entice the imagination and stun the mind with their depth, range and boldness. The many masks of the many gods, their various appearances and incarnations, have been employed to suggest the infinitely possible variations of one supreme essence.” 
Global Hindu Heritage Foundation is extremely happy to recognize the need to preserve and protect the traditions and customs in the villages. We feel that many villagers identify themselves their Gram devatas and pray for their blessings to protect them from possible impeding dangers. This is our effort to revive the sentiments and faith in Gram devatas who once played a significant role in unifying the entire community.

Grama Devatas means village Goddesses/Deities who were installed in the villages to protect the village, to protect the crops, to prevent calamities, to prevent various kinds of ailments and to bless the villagers with health and wealth. As we know that many Grama Devatas are in a small place in the community or village. Overwhelming majority of Grama Devatas are Goddesses with very few notable experiences.
Lighting the lamp in Hindu Temples and houses is mandatory. Lamps are lit while performing ppuja in the Temples and houses. Fire and oil are considered sacred from ancient times. The oil lams lamps are called Diya, Deepam, or Deepa. Fire element is considered as pure energy that dispels the darkness and create positive vibrations. Lighting the lamp is done to create Divine protective shield around the Vastu, the Temple premise and family household. It is expected to protect the area and the people from negative energies.
    The oil in the lamp signifies our negative thoughts, intentions, lower emotions like greed, envy, anger etc. The wick symbolizes our ego. The meaning of lighting the lamp is total surrender to Divine and burn away our ego and negativity. Light symbolizes knowledge.
For times immemorial, people use to light the lamp during dusk and recite the “Shubham Karoti” slokam.
The meaning the sloka is: 
“O flame of the light, you bestow auspiciousness and wellbeing, health, and wealth. You also destroy the intellect of enemies. Therefore, I pray obeisance to you.
Lighting emanating from the oil lams is fact a form of Parabrahma. An oil lamp is Parameswara, eliminating the sorrow in the world. O lamp, absolve me of my sins. I offer Obeisance to you.
Lord Shiva even tells Parvati Devi the importance as follows:
    “Due to lamp we can obtain victory over people. The lamp is lustrous. It is giver of Dharma, Artha, Kama and Moksha. Hence, O dear, lamps should be lit.”

Importance of Karthika Depam
Throughout Karthik month lamps are lit in the Temples and in front of the house in the evening. On the Karthik Deepam day the whole Temple is decorated and Rangoli images of Lord Shivs, Goddess Parvati and others are drawn and the lamps are positioned around the images and Deepas are lit. Similarly, many houses are decorated with the oil lamps. 
Karthik Deepam signifies the end of rainy season and the start of Winter and at the start and end of all seasons, Indians celebrate one or other festival.
One of the earliest references to the festival is found in the Aganaanooru which clearly states that Karthigai is celebrated on the full moon day (Purnima) of the month of Karthigai, as per calendar.
It was one of the most important festivals  of the ancient Tamils, including for the people modern Kerala too. Avaiyyar, the renowned poet of those times, refers to the festival in her songs. She calls this festival as Peruvizha or big festival.

By 6 o clock, people start to do pooja to Gods and light the lamps all around the Temples and houses-outside, inside, in pooja room, in all corners of the house and everywhere-farms, wells, ponds, rivers, etc., and it’s said that on Karthika Deepam day, we should light lamps in all the lamps of the house mainly the Gajalakshmi Deepam/Kuthu Vilakku/Amman Vilakku where Goddess Lakshmi is present.
Tamil Nadu celebrates Karthigai Deepam as the traditional festival. It is a very old festival and is also celebrated in the neighboring states like Kerala, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. This festival is very important among the Tamils and every Tamil want to celebrate it wherever they are in this huge world.

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