Bangalore, May 3, 2015: The ISKCON temple at Rajajinagar glittered like a crown jewel, devotees were coming in hordes continuously. There was hustle-bustle all around, it felt like a grand fair of spiritual celebration. From toddlers dressed in traditional attires, to devotees with their shikas and Matajis in their best clothing, everyone was ready to see and be seen by the Lord. A sea of devotees awaited the beginning of the celebration of Lord Narasimha Deva’s appearance.
Narasimha Jayanti, the auspicious appearance day of Lord Narasimha was celebrated at Sri Radha Krishna temple, ISKCON. The celebrations included special abhisheka and puja to the mula and utsava Deities of Narasimha. Narasimha Jayanti is celebrated on the Chaturdashi of bright fortnight in the month of Vaishakha every year.
The abhisheka ceremony for the mula Deity was performed in the early morning at 5.30. The Lord was anointed with white sesame paste and sandalwood oil and bathed with panchamrita, panchagavya, fruit juices and other items. Then the Lord was smeared with turmeric and offered a special arati with lamps of various sizes. This was followed by pushpa-vrishti, showers of a variety of colorful and fragrant flowers on the Deity. The Lord was then dressed with fine costumes and adorned with ornaments and garlands to give darshan to thousands of devotees visiting the temple on this day.
The evening witnessed a grand abhisheka and puja performed to the utsava Deity of the Lord. The evening abhisheka also included a kalasha snana with the recitation of the Purusha Sukta before showering flowers on the Deity. During the kalasha snana, the Lord was bathed with holy water from 108 small kalashas and nine big kalashas. Devotees were dancing in ecstasy, crying with joy upon seeing Narasimha Deva. There was a huge crowd and no-one was needed to control them for they were one with their Lord, who rules their hearts. There was sankirtana, a blissful experience for a regular devotee as well as the first timers. Everyone had shed their inhibitions in the Lord’s light.
Next there was an audio-visual presentation that included glimpses of the abhisheka ceremony conducted in the morning and a documentary film on ISKCON Sri Radha Krishna temple. The film highlighted the purpose behind this glorious temple and the various programs conducted daily in the temple including the colorful festivals round the year.
After the video presentation which captivated the audience, Lord Narasimha was offered shayana arati during which devotees glorified the Lord by singing His 108 names. The celebrations culminated in shayana pallakki utsava followed by dinner prasadam feast. When the pallakki utsava was over, there was no rush for the feast, everyone wanted to spend some extra time in the peaceful environment. Peaceful environment with thousands of people present sounds ironical but the Lord’s pastimes cannot always be comprehended; they can be felt and experienced. We capture a glimpse or two and relive them all our lives.
It was great to see people from all walks of life sit down together to enjoy the prasadam feast, all social boundaries were obliterated and everyone was reveling in Krishna bhakti.