Chennai: OCTOBER 15-24, 2012

Sharannavaratri Celebrations

On 15th October 2012, the grand Navaratri Celebrations began with the Mahabhisheka of Goddess Sharadamba. The Mahamangalarati of the Goddess, in the Jagatprasutika Alankara took place in the presence of Jagadguru Shankaracharya Sri Sri Bharati Tirtha Mahaswamiji before noon.

This day being Mahalaya Amavasya day, also marked the Videha Mukti of the renowned Jivanmukta, Jagadguru Sri Chandrashekhara Bharati Mahaswamiji.
(This event is covered here:

The Sharannavaratri Mahotsava began in its full splendour from the following day, October 16th 2012. Devotees noted a rare occurrence as part of the Navaratri this year: the Murti of Goddess Sharadamba that is part of the Jagadguru’s Nitya Puja was the one chosen for worship. The large smiling Murti of Goddess Sharada, that was at Kodambakkam also graced the dais.

Each day, Parayana of the four Vedas, Sri Adi Shankaracharya’s Prasthana Traya Bhashyas, Srimad Bhagavatam, Lalitopakhyanam, were conducted in the morning as per the tradition of the Peetham. The Jagadguru then performed special Puja to Goddess Sharadamba from noon until 2 PM. Thousands of devotees witnessed the Puja performed by the Jagadguru and were blessed. Suvasini Puja and Kannika Puja took place with the Navaratri Seva Kartas taking Sankalpa before performing these Pujas. After the Puja, the Jagadguru individually blessed the Seva Kartas. In the evening, kritis of various Carnatic saint-composers were rendered by leading musicians.

In the evenings, devotees eagerly awaited for the Rathotsava of Goddess Sharada. A moving event unfolded during the Rahthotsava on October 16th. Rains had disrupted the event on the previous two days and the rain continued to come down heavily on this evening as well. Sri A. Krishnamoorthy (Chairman of the Chennai Vijaya Yatra committee) approached the Jagadguru as the evening Darshan was winding down to seek His guidance. The Jagadguru immediately arose and said that He would join the Rathotsava today and moved towards the Ratha to offer prostrations to Goddess Sharada. The heavy rain suddenly turned into a drizzle and by the time the Jagadguru took His first steps, it had stopped raining! As the procession turned the bend at Sudharma, the clouds had cleared and the moon came shining through! The Jagadguru accompanied the joyous devotees on the Rathotsava throughout the entire circumambulation of Sudharma.

At night, after the daily Chandramoulishwara Puja by the Jagadguru, the Jagadguru presided over the traditional Durbar. The eastern end of the main hall of the Puja Mandapam was modified with a glorious golden backdrop. Even though the Jagadguru was not in His traditional royal splendour consisting of sporting the silk dresses, diamond crown, golden Padukas and the Japamala of pearls, the rich ambience and the thousands of the devotees provided a suitable substitute. The Jagadguru was led to the eastern end and then seated in the Simhasana with two beautifully sculpted large silver lamps placed nearby. Thereafter Saptashati Parayana took place followed by Mahamangalarati to Godess Sharadamba. Then Ashtavadhana Seva was performed including Chatur Veda Seva, Panchanga Seva with the Panchanga being read out in Sanskrit, and Sangeetha Seva rendered by eminent artists performing as part of the Navaratri concerts.

The Shatachandi Yaga began on 19th October and concluded on Mahanavami day – 23rd October with Poornahuti performed in the Jagadguru’s presence after the worshipping of Goddess Sharada in Simha Vahana Alankara. Gaja Puja and Ashwa Puja were also performed by the Jagadguru.

On Vijayadashami (October 24th), the Jagadguru did Parayana of the Pattabhisheka Sarga from Valmiki Ramayana. Devotees gathered in large numbers on that day and the stipulated area for Annadanam was overflowing. Sri A Krishnamoorthy quickly converted one of the Mandapams inside Sudharma to a Bhojanashala and thousands were served Prasadam inside Sudharma. Soon after, at about 4 pm, a grand Suvasini Puja was held in the premises where more than a thousand Suvasinis were worshipped. The Suvasinis chanted Lalita Sahasranama thrice and then received the Darshan of the Jagadguru and His blessings. It was a fitting conclusion to the Navaratri Celebrations at Chennai, as the Jagadguru also gave an Anugraha Bhashanam expressing the significance of the Suvasini Puja and the importance of looking upon every lady as a manifestation of the divine Mother.

At Sringeri, the Mahabhisheka to Goddess Sharadamba, the Aradhana celebrations of Paramaguru Sri Chandrashekhara Bharati Mahaswamiji at the Adhishtanam, and the Sharada Sharannavaratri celebrations took place in a grand manner under the able leadership of Guru Seva Dhurina Sri V R Gowrishankar.


Photos (October 16, 2012)


Photos (October 17, 2012)


Photos (October 18, 2012)


Photos (October 19, 2012)


Photos (October 20, 2012)


Photos (October 21, 2012)


Photos (October 22, 2012)


Photos (October 23, 2012)


Photos (October 24, 2012, Vijayadashami)


Photos (Navaratri Kolu)