Varalakshmi Vratham 15th August 2008
Varalakshmi Vratam was celebrated on 15th August and I know I am late in posting about it. As you all know I have already blogged about my last year's Varalakshmi Vratam puja and shared some photos with you. Varalakshmi vratam is widely celebrated across southern states of India., Andhra pradesh and Karnataka. This festival falls on the friday before Full Moon day Pournami/ Poornima in the holy month of Shravan/Sravanam.
Lot of preparation go in to perform this puja. I am briefly describing about the puja vidhanama here in the hope that it helps those who are new to this puja, newly wed and married women like me staying abroad. I know there are so much of information on the internet that we sometimes find it difficult which method/vidhanam to choose from. I belong to a Andhra-Reddy family and I am going to describe how Varalakshmi Vratam is celebrated in our family.
As I am brought up in Mumbai, I dont know to read and write Telugu, (regional language in India). So it was difficult to find a book on this puja in Hindi or Sanskrit. So I purchased CD on this puja and perform accordingly. If you google it you will find many online links like this one. This Vratam is observed by married women who pray for her husband's well being, good health and prosperity.
For any puja the main element to perform is through your bhakti~ devotion. On this day I get up early in the morning and take head bath, dress in new clothes and start cooking prasadam for ammavaru. Its up to you how many items you can make.
Naivedyam ~ Prasadam
Usually I usually make 5 types of prasadam but this year I made 7 different types of prasadam - Boorelu, Garelu, Appalu, Payasam, Pulihora, Guggulam and plain rice with pappu.
For Kalasham you can use tumbler made out of bronze, silver, or mud. Take some fresh water in kalasham and add pasupu, kumkuma, gandham, navadhanyalu, rice, few coins, tulsi leaf and flower. Place Kalsham on top of muggu with rice and navadhanyalu. Place five mango leaves in the kalasham. You can use betal leaves and any kind of leaves available. Take a clean coconut and apply turmeric all over. Wrap with a new blouse piece and place it on the kalasham as you can see in my photos. Now your kalasham is ready for puja. You can decorate it with your new and old jewellery, flowers and perform the puja. There are many ways to make this puja, like some make puja for Varlakshmi photo, some use Roopam of ammavaru, some make Roopam from turmeric and stick it on coconut. And few do Kalasham puja.
Firstly we do Maha Ganapathi puja and then perform Varalakshmi Vratam puja in which you invoke Goddess Lakshmi in 'Kalasham'. We offer our devotion and seek Her blessings. After the puja , I bow (do padanamaskaram) to my husband and get his blessings, goodies (gold or cash). This is my favorite part. This day I fast till the vratam is over and eat the prasadam offered to Goddess. In the evening we invite friends (married women) and offer tamboolam. At night we perform haarati and move Kalasham three time to left and three times to right thus ending the puja. Next day we sprinkle the kalasham water all over the house and left over we our it to Tulsi or any plant.
May Goddess Lakshmi shower you with blessings and fulfill all your wishes.
I will blog the prasadam recipes soon....