Ganga Sindhu Saraswati cha Yamuna Godavari Narmada |
Krishna Bheemarathi cha phalguSarayu Sri Ghandaki Gomathi ||
Kaveri Kapila Prayaga Vinatha Nethravathi dhyadayo |
Nadhya Sri Haripada pankaja bavaha kurvantu vo Mangalam ||
The above stanza is from the very famous Mangalashtaka Stotra which is chanted just minutes before the very important moment in one’s life. Before the Mangalya Dharana, we offer our prayers to not only all the Gods, but to all the Rishis, Gurus, Parvatas, Rivers, Kings, Navagrahas and Stars. It is only in our religion and in particular, our Madhwa sampradaya, Rivers and Oceans are given the highest place. They are not just picnic spots for a jolly trip on a Sunday evening, but they are to be revered and worshipped every day. We have read that mere chanting the name of Ganga everyday during bath itself will bring abundant punya. Our scriptures have discussed in length on the importance and significance of snana in our sacred rivers. There are some very auspicious period like Maga Snana, Vaishaka Snana and Tula Snana(in Kaveri), which are very sacred. The auspicious period for Vaishaka snana has already started and we 72 Madhwa Bhandugalu from Chennai were fortunate to do Vaishaka Snana in the Krishna River in Vijayawada on 28th April early morning hours. The programme was conducted by “Yathi Thraya Sannidhana” of SRS Mutt, Nanganallur in co-ordination with “Yathi Thraya Parayana Samiti & Bhajana Mandali”.
On the auspicious Ugadi day, like most of you I too prayed for just one thing – ” Lord, please bless me to do more sadhane than last year“. It is indeed great blessings of the Supreme Lord Hari and our elders, that we got an opportunity to be part of this kshetra yatre and very glad to begin the new Vijaya Samvatsara in such an auspicious manner. We left Chennai on 27th morning by Jan-Shatabdi express to Vijaywada and reached by 3PM there. We stayed in Uttaradi Mutt and it was very convenient and also very close to the Krishna bathing ghat.
After taking some rest and palahara, we managed to take a quick bath in Krishna and that rejuvenated us all from the scorching heat and all the tiredness is gone. We wasted no time and immediately proceeded to Sri Kanaka Durga temple which is very famous in Vijayawada. This temple is located on a hill (Indrakeeladri) overlooking the city as well as the River Krishna. There are free buses to fetch the devotees to the hill shrine. It was a great sight to see the lord decorated in such a nice manner and we couldn’t move our eyes of it for a long time.
On 28th Sunday, our day started very early and Sri Guru Achar made the Snana Sankalpa to all of us by 04:30 AM. We quickly went to the river and took bath in those auspicious minutes(Bhrami Murtha) and surprised to see the sea of people there already. After Sanydavandana and devara pooja, it was time for parayana and our samiti(Yathi Thraya Parayana Samithi) members quickly assembled in front of the mrithika brindavana of Sri Rayaru and Sri Satya Sanduru. There is one Pranadevara sannidhana in this mutt which was installed by Sri Satya Sandaru. We chanted in chorus the sacred Hari Vayustuthi, Sri Vishnu Sahasranama, Sri Raghavendra Stotra and of Madhwa Vijaya first sarga. Bhajana Mandali members sang devara namas and dasara padas.
We then proceeded to the most important part of our trip, the visit to Sri Panaka Narasimha Swamy temple in Mangalagiri. It is located at 12 km from Vijayawada and is the renowned temple of Lord Narasimha, on a hillock. The unique feature of this temple is that the mouth of the idol accepts half the quantity
of panaka offered by devotees, irrespective of the size of the vessel. It was a great experience having darshana of this idol and we all did panaka pooja to Sri Panaka Narasimha swamy and took the Panaka prasada with us. After having teerthaprasada at mutt, we boarded the same train on Sunday afternoon and reached Chennai by night.
Though it was a short trip, it was a very memorable and rewarding one and we are thankful to Sri T K Srinivasa Rao and Sri Guru Achar for making all the arrangements and ensuring our yatre was a pleasant one. We couldn’t help but look forward eagerly to our next similar kshetra yatre soon with this group.
|| Sri Krishnarpanamastu ||