Karthigai Deepam Brings Blessings Of Forefathers
Karthigai Deepam is a wonderful festival of lights, celebrated on the Pournami (full moon) day of the Karthigai month coinciding with Karthigai star in Tamil calendar. Karthigai Deepam is celebrated by lighting Agal Villakkus (lamps) in houses. Ghee or oil is used for lighting the lamps. It is believed that it will give the blessings of dead forefathers and ancestors. Adhirasam, Pori urundai, Aval urundai, Vellai sedai and Kadalai urundai are prepared in houses and offered as Nivedhanam to God on this day.
Why Tiruvannamalai Karthigai Festival Is Celebrated
According to Puranas, once there was a serious argument between God Brahma & Vishnu as to who is superior among them. Lord Shiva tired to solve the problem between them. Lord Shiva took fire (Jyothi) form on the Tiruvannamalai hills. He asked them to find His fire form. Lord Brahma took swan form and flew up to find the ‘Jyothi’ and Lord Vishnu took varaha form and drilled down into the earth. But both failed in their task and they realized that God Shiva has no beginning or ending. They forego their ego and worshipped Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva appeared before them on Tiruvannamalai hills.
Lord Shiva appeared as a fire form on Tiruvannamalai hills and this day is celebrated as Karthigai Deepam. In this place, Lord Shiva manifests himself as a pillar of light. Lighting of Deepam on this day is symbolically representing the Lord Shiva’s fire form.
The word ‘Tiruvannamalai means hill of holy light. Thousands of devotees visit Tiruvannamalai on the Karthigai Deepam day to celebrate this festival of lights. When lighting the deepam, devotees praise the Lord Shiva as ‘Annamalaikku Arohara’. The celebration of Karthigai Deepam helps to turn our mind towards our heart in order to merge with inner soul.
Karthigai – One Of The Most Auspicious Months
Karthigai month begins in the mid of November month and ends in the mid of December month. The important deities to worship in this Karthigai month are Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu and Goddess Tulsi. Usually, Mondays are considered as very auspicious to worship Lord Shiva. In most of all Shiva temples, 1008 Sangabishekam (conch shell abishekam) is performed on Mondays in Karthigai month. Devotees of Lord Shiva take part in Sangabishekam with great faith and devotion to obtain His spiritual blessings. Most of the people observe ‘Karthigai Somavara Vratham’ and Pournami day is also considered very auspicious in this month.
Every evening, people light Deepam and perform pujas to Lord Shiva. Worshipping Lord Shiva, observing Vrat on Mondays and Karthigai Pournami day in this month will helps attain Mukti or Salvation. Hearing Karthigai Purana is an important feature of Karthigai month.
And also, Karthigai Suddha Ekadasi is the day Lord Vishnu wakes up from his deep sleep on Ashadha Suddha Ekadasi. It is believed that on Karthigai Pournima day, Lord Shiva killed the demon Tripurasuras and protected the Universe.
Important Spiritual Events Of Karthigai Month
River Ganga enters into all rivers, lakes, ponds and wells in this month. It makes all the water as equal holier as River Ganga. Taking holy bath in these water sources during this month gives the benefits of bathing in River Ganga.
Devotees of Lord Ayyappa start their fasting in Karthigai month and they end their fasting, after visiting Lord Ayyappa temple in Sabarimala, Kerala.
‘Vana Bhojanam’ is celebrated in Andra Pradesh during this month. On this day, some people go to fields with food ingredients and prepare their foods for their families under Amla or Villavam trees. This is one of the great ways to spend some valuable time with family.
Karthigai month will remove all the troubles in life and brighten your path of success. Offering special rituals to Lord Shiva on this day will bring disease free life, gain more spiritual power and so on.