Festival - Lakshmi Puja: Must See India
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Lakshmi Puja

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Lakshmi Puja occurs during the time of Diwali, which is known as the festival of lights. As per the tradition, people light small lamps outside their homes in the expectation that Goddess Lakshmi will bless them. The Goddess is worshipped by those who like to preserve or acquire further wealth. Lakshmi Puja is conducted on the third day of the Diwali festival, and the entire day is devoted to rituals and the worship of Goddess Lakshmi. This day falls on ‘Amavasya’ or the full moon day.

The Goddess is said to visit only those homes that are clean and people are hardworking. Hence, people begin cleaning operations in and around their homes prior to the ‘Puja’. Lakshmi the Goddess of wealth, good fortune, beauty and light is worshipped during Diwali so that prosperity is welcomed into the family.

On the third day of Diwali festival when Lakshmi Puja is conducted, the sun enters the second course and goes past Libra. Since Lakshmi Puja falls on Amavasya, the impenetrable darkness of the city is perforated by several light rays. It is believed that Goddess Lakshmi descends down to Earth with a blaze of light, bringing all celestial glory. The significance attached to the presence of Goddess Lakshmi in every Hindu household makes her an important domestic deity.

The deity is worshipped for the family’s well being and prosperity. Women and businessmen offer their daily prayers to her and invite their neighbors to take part in their festivities. There is a beautiful story and religious perception that surrounds the belief that Goddess Lakshmi took refuge in the ocean of milk and churned it into ‘Amrut’, the immortality drink.

Goddess Lakshmi is believed to bestow luxuries and material gains and success in your accomplishments. Lakshmi Puja is a combined Puja of five gods and goddesses. Lord Ganesha assumes the form of Vigneshwara and he is worshipped before beginning any activity. The four forms of Lakshmi are worshipped and prayed to during the Puja: Mahasaraswathi, Mahalakshmi, Mahakali and Kuber (the Gods’ treasurer).

Traditions


Lakshmi Puja has specific and distinct steps. First, the entire house needs to be cleaned and a higher platform with new cloth is created to place Goddess Lakshmi. A pitcher or ‘Kalash’ of terracotta, copper, silver and gold containing grains, water, betel nut, coin, flower and rice is placed on the platform. Mango leaves are used to decorate the Kalash, and a plate containing rice grains is used to cover it.

A lotus is drawn using ‘Haldi’ or turmeric powder on the grains, on top of which the Goddess is placed. Vedic mantras are chanted to invoke Goddess Lakshmi. Offerings of flowers, mixture of clarified butter, curd, milk, sugar and honey are made and the deity is bathed in ‘Panchamrit’ on the ritual day.

Tourist Essential


Diwali is one of the most important Indian festivals. Tourists from all over the world visit India to involve in all the grandeur and rituals associated with the festival. Taking part in Lakshmi Puja is one of the important activities during their visits.

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by Kapil
 

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