Mangaluru: Shri Kshetra Dharmasthala is a special place and has its own divine attraction. The abode of Sri Manjunatha Swamy, Dharmadhikari Dr. Veerendra Heggade, his house, Gommata Hill, Museum, Car Museum, impeccable arrangement, and cleanliness are famous all over the country. Dharmasthala is popular not only in Karnataka, India but also abroad.
Lakshdeepotsavam, which starts from the Ekadashi of Krishna Paksha in the month of Kartika to the new moon day has a great sanctity. Dharmasthala’s Lakshadeepotsava is a pious celebration and exciting also. It is an indescribable experience to go and participate in the grand celebrations here. In the sanatana system, deepaaradhane in temples in the month of Kartika has its own significance. It is believed that Dakshinaayana is the time of the night for the deities. The negative energy try to enter the houses in the dark. It is believed that on this occasion, due to deeparadhane held in temples or at home, due to the brightness of the lamps there, negative energy does not enter the house or the temple. Therefore, deepotsava in the month of Kartika is of utmost importance.
Now Dharmasthala is celebrating the festival of lights. In the last two years, celebrations were held symbolically due to Corona. But this time, the five-day-long fest that began Saturday November 19 has made the devotees happy. Dharmasthala’s deeparadhane is not limited to the lighting of the lamp, as elsewhere. Here it is open to the festival of Gods, worship, mangalaarati as well as the worship of knowledge. Sri Manjunatha Swamy comes to Hosakatte on Ekadashi, he goes to Kerekatte on Dwadashi, on Trayodashi he goes to Lalitodhyana, on Chaturdashi he goes to Kanchimaru Katte and at last on new moon day he goes to Gourimaru. Every day there is a procession when the Lord comes out of the sanctum sanctorum. In the midst of the crowd, a procession is taken out with the royal honour.
During each day’s festival, recitation of the four Vedas and Ashtaavadhana Seva are performed by scholars in front of the Swami. Devotees are blessed to see it. The atmosphere around it becomes sacrosanct. This also increases the presence of the Lord.
Not only this, but there is also the work of creating religious awareness and motivating the love of literature. Since 1933, for 90 years, there have been continuous Sarvadharma Sammelanas and since 1937 Sahitya Sammelanas have been held. Sahitya Sammelana was started during late Manjayya Heggade, and later it was continued by his successor Ratnavarma Heggade. He was succeeded by Dharmadhikari Dr. D. Veerendra Heggade which has given a new sheen to these Sammelanas.
Veerendra Heggade is the Chairman of the Reception Committee of the Sammelanas and his welcome address at the conference continues to be a tradition. He does not make any other speeches at the two conventions. The stage is dedicated to the inaugurators and dignitaries. Notably, the inaugural address will be followed by the President’s speech followed by a lecture. At the Sarvadharma Sammelana, achievers of Hinduism, Christianity, Muslims, Buddhists, Jains and other religious sects are welcomed in procession and the audience is fed with the inculcation of values from them. Similarly, in the Sahitya Sammelana, eminent writers from Karnataka will be given an opportunity. Both these conferences have made their own contributions to the understanding of dharma and also absorb the fragrance of literature.
Since 1975, Lalithakala concerts have been allowed. For those who have come for Deepotsava, there is an all-religion conference for the inspiration of religiosity and on the other hand there is a Sahitya Sammelana for the love of literature. Similarly, on the other hand, there is a platform called Lalithakala Sammelana for the interest in the art of music. The world of dance, music, drama and entertainment is created here. All these activities have been allowed to take place at the exhibition hall and Amruthavarshini Auditorium. Every year music and dance exponents showcase their talent to the audience.
This will remain a memorable day in the hearts of the people who come to the Deepotsava. On the last day of Deepotsava, the Samavasarana Puja of Lord Sri Chandranatha Swamy is performed with utmost devotion by the Jain devotees. According to Jain tradition, basadis are the symbols of Samavasarana. The purpose of the Samavasarana Puja at Sri Chandranatha Swamy Basadi in the Kshetra is to present its significance in a mind-blowing manner. All the members of Heggade’s family participate in this puja. Samavasarana Puja helps in the welfare of the world along with the welfare of the self.
Dharmasthala’s Lakshdeepotsava, Silver Rathotsava, etc., which attract lakhs of devotees from the State are being held from November 19 to November 24. It is an opportunity to have darshan of the Lord with Manjunatha japa in Netravati River, participate in Anna Dasoha and indulge in religious and literary Samaradhane.