On the seventh day morning in the bright sunny day Goddess Padmavathi Devi took celestial ride as Sury Narayana Murthy on the finely decked Surya Prabha Vahanam. It is often considered that Lord Surya is considered akin to Lord Sri Maha Vishnu as He also controls the affairs of entire universe. So he is also being worshipped as Lord Surya Narayana. The seven horses yoked to the sun-god’s chariot are named Gayatri, Brhati, Usnik, Jagati, Tristup, Anustup and Pankti. While the sages glorify the sun-god with the hymns of the Sama-Rig- and Yajur Vedas, which reveal his identity, the Gandharvas also sing his praises and the Apsaras dance before his chariot. The Nagas arrange the chariot ropes and the Yaksas harness the horses to the chariot, while the powerful Raksasas push from behind. Facing the chariot, the sixty thousand brahmana sages known as Valakhilyas travel in front and offer prayers to the almighty sun-god with Vedic mantras. Meanwhile on Monday morning, the Goddess was mounted on a colourfully decked Suryaprabha Vahanam which was decorated with mammoth garlands made of Ixora-the Vrikshi flowers. The beauty of the Goddess enhanced in the bright red shade of these flowers on the mighty Vahanam.
Snapana Tirumanjanam-the sacred bath which is being rendered every day to Goddess Padmavathi Devi at Tiruchanoor during the annual Karthika Brahmotsavams involves 40 interesting bathing styles. According to senior Archaka of the temple, Sri Vempalli Srinivasa Bhattar, usually archakas render the holy bath to divine mother as if a mother rendering bath to her new born baby with utmost live and care. This gesture is called “Matruvat” in Vedic language. During Snapana Tirumanjanam, the archakas renders forty types of ‘Snanopacharams’ to Goddess Padmavathi Devi. While offering the holy bath the Archakas render Pancha suktas. Unlike in Tirumala where the suktas commence with recitation of Purushasuktam, here the archakas begin the holy bath fete to Goddess chanting Sri Suktam followed by Bhu, Neela, Dasa shanti and Slokas from Taittiriyopanishat. Again the recitation of slokas from Taittiriyopanishat for this ritual are as per the tenets prescribed in Seekshavalli, Bhruguvalli and Anandavalli.
It appeared as if the full moon has arrived ten days prior in the temple town of Tiruchanoor, as the Goddess Padmavathi took a celestial ride on the pleasant and glitterati Chandraprabha Vahanam. In Vedic Astrology Lord Chandra represents brain and mind, emotions, sensitivity, softness, imagination, brightness, serenity and good fortunes. Chandra is a Sanskrit means “illustrious”. In Hindu astrology, the Moon is considered a planet and it promises wealth and happiness. Chandra was born in the Ocean of Milk, and nearly blinded the gods with his bright, glowing body. The gods unanimously decided to give Chandra the status of a planet and sent him into the cosmos. Being the loving sister of Lord Chandra, the beauty of Goddess Padmavathi enhanced as she took a pride ride on Her beloved brother.
The following are the photos taken during the Utsavam:
Courtesy: Tirumala Tirupathi