SRI BHARATAMATA WORSHIP ON AKSHAYA TRITEEYA
Vaishaaka Shukla Triteeya, the third day of the bright fortnight of the month Vaishakh of Vasanta Ritu (Spring Season) according to Hindu calendar, known as Akshaya Triteeya, is a day auspicious for the worship of Sri Bharatamata. Mother Earth is productivity and plenty incarnate and the Spring season is resplendent with the natural glory of Mother Earth.
Bhavani Bharati—The Shakti We Call India
The mark of a true Hindu is not whether he worships any god or goddess in the Hindu pantheon, follows any system of Hindu philosophy, cult or guru, practises Hindu rites, traditions or rituals and visits Hindu temples, Mathas and pilgrim centers, but whether he adores and worships his mother and Motherland that are greater than heaven. If he is not, he is a mlechcha – a non-Hindu and an outcaste. The word mlechcha was used in the past to denote those who came from outside India, who had no loyalty to this nation and to those who accepted the culture and religion of the aliens and gave up the precious cultural and spiritual heritage of the Motherland.
Rishi Bankim Chandra eulogizes Sri Bharata Bhavani in his famous Vande Mataram song with the words: “Mother I bow to Thee! Rich with thy hurrying streams, bright with Thy orchard gleams, cool with Thy winds of delight, dark fields waving, Mother of Might, Mother free”. This is the Spring Glory of our Motherland. “Life on this earth, to be prosperous and happy, needs a suitable mental outlook. Such an outlook is said to dawn upon humanity with every glimpse of the slender moonlight of the crescent moon that appears on the third lunar day of each bright fortnight (shukla triteeya). Hence the selection of this tithi for the worship of the Mother”, says Skandanarayan, a renowned scholar and writer on Hindu scriptures and astrology. This day is also auspicious because it is the day of the commencement of Treta Yuga, which saw the advent of Maryaadaa Purushottama Sri Ramachandra. It is also the auspicious day of Sri Parasurama Jayanti. The womenfolk of Bharat adore the Divine Mother in the form of Saraswati, Lakshmi and Kali and go in for purchase of ornaments etc., which mark the prosperity of the family.
Rishi Bankim eulogized Bharatamata as embodiment of Mahakali, Mahalakshmi and Mahasaraswati—Twam hi durgaa dasapraharana dhaarini, kamala kamaldala vihaarini,vaanee vidyaa daayini—“Thou art Durga, Lady and Queen; With her hands that strike and her swords of sheen. Thou art Lakshmi lotus-throned, And the muse a hundred toned.” During the struggle for India’s freedom, Mahayogi Sri Aurobindo who dreamt of setting up a Bhavani Mandir, a temple dedicated to Bharatamata, presented his ideal in inspiring words: “We cannot get strength unless we adore the Mother of Strength. We will therefore build a temple to the white Bhavani, the Mother of Strength, the Mother of India. This temple will be the centre from which Her worship is to flow over the whole country…. This is also what the Mother has commanded.” He pointed out: “The Shakti we call India, Bhavani Bharati, is a living unity of the Shaktis of 300 million people (Bharatiya population in about 1907). It is not a piece of earth, nor a figure of speech, nor a fiction of the mind. This is our mother country.” He exhorted: “Adoration will be dead and ineffective unless it is transmuted into Karma (action). We will have, therefore, a Math with a new Order of Karmayogins attached to the temple, men who have renounced all in order to work for the Mother.”
Who is a True Hindu?
Adoration and worship of the Motherland is the hallmark of Hindu way of life. There is no greater Divinity than the Motherland and no higher form of worship than the service of the Mother. Since times immemorial, the Rishis of our land have glorified Mother Earth as the manifestation of the Supreme Mother. “Maata bhoomi putroham prithivyaaa”—this land is my mother and I am her child – is the emphatic proclamation of the Vedic Aryan expressing his intense devotion to his Motherland. “Oh Motherland, we humans have been born from your womb and we move upon your surface. It is you who nourish the bipeds as well as quadrupeds. All humans are your children,” he declares in unequivocal terms expressing his gratefulness to his Mother who is the nourisher and sustainer of his life. Lord Ramachandra proclaims in Ramayana:
“Api swarnamayee lankaana me lakshmana rochate
Jananee janmabhoomischa swargaadapi garreyasee”–
“O Lakshmana! Even the golden Lanka has no charm for me. Mother and Motherland are greater than Heaven even.”
Hiranmayena paatrena satyasyaapihitam mukham
Tattvam pooshan apaavrunu satya dharmaaya drishthaye!
–“The face of Truth is covered with a golden chalice! Oh Nourisher of the world, please unveil it so that we shall see the face of Truth-Righteousness!!”—This is the fervent prayer of the Vedic Rishi in the Kathopanishad. We too have to cry out and pray earnestly to the Divine Mother if we have to see the true face of the Hindu. And when the Mother unveils for us the true face of a Hindu, we will be shell shocked to realize that Hindus are today an insignificant minority in this very land of Bharatavarsha. If we go by the definition of the word Hindu—
Aasindhu sindhuparyetaa yasya Bhaarata bhoomikaa,
Pitrubhoo, punyabhoo sa vai Hinduriti smritah
—“All those who adore and worship this Bharatavarsha extending from the River Sindhu in the north to the Sindhu, that is Hindumahasagar or Indian Ocean, in the south, as the land of their forefathers and the holy land, alone are Hindus”—then the majority of the people living in this country do not qualify themselves to be called Hindus. How many of the Hindus in our land today adore and worship the Motherland every day? Breaking a coconut while doing bhumi pooja once or twice in a lifetime, on occasions like laying of foundation for a house or shop, is not adoration or worship of the Motherland. It is an utterly selfish act prompted by a superstitious belief that something will happen to the structure if it is not built after bhoomipooja. How many of the so called Hindus touch the Mother Earth every morning when they get up from the bed, uttering the traditional prayer to the Mother to forgive them for the sacrilege of placing their feet on Her holy dust—
Samudravasane devi, parvata sthanamandale
Vishnupatnee namastubhyam paadasparsham kshamaswa me
—”Oh Mother Bhudevi, the Divine Consort of Lord Vishnu, who wears the oceans as cloth, whose breasts are the mighty mountains, salutations unto You; please forgive me for the sin of placing my legs on you”—and touch the sacred dust of Motherland with both the hands and place them with all reverence on their heads and hearts?
The great Tamil poet-philosopher, Mahakavi C. Subramania Bharati, addressing the little kids of his Motherland, sang:–
Atai deivamenru kumbidadi paappaa
—“Oh little child, adore and worship the Undivided Hindustan—Akhanda Bharat—as your Goddess.”
Hindus Who Have Gone Astray
It is the so called Hindus and their leaders who acceded to the demand of the Muslims to divide this Motherland of ours, as the Muslims could not get on with the Hindus in this land. Not only that, after cutting asunder the limbs of the Motherland and gifting them to the Muslims, they declared the rest of India as a ‘secular’ country where everybody including those who have been responsible for the partition, who do not accept the country as a sacred land, to whom their holy land is Mecca or Jerusalem or Vatican and not Bharat, could live here as a legacy that they have inherited from the invaders and colonialists who subjugated this land for centuries.
Leave alone the Muslims and Christians who refuse to accept this Motherland as a sacred land to be adored and worshipped, who refuse to sing the national anthem ‘Vande Mataram’ because it eulogizes this land as the manifestation of the Mahashakti who is Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswati. Think of those scoundrels who call themselves ‘Hindus’ while recording their names in the census register and while filling applications wherein they have to mention their religion, but feel ashamed to call themselves so openly because they find the name narrow, fundamentalist and anti-secular. And they have no sense of shame when they go and sit in a cocktail party on the eve of Christmas or New Year, drink gruel in an Iftar party to please Muslims, participate in a ball-room dance, wander about in jeans and mini-skirts, celebrate Valentine’s Day and feel proud to be followers of the western culture and way of life. They do not even hang their heads in shame when their boys and girls elope with boys and girls from the Christian or Muslim community and get converted to those religions.
Spurious Religious and Spiritual Leaders
You cannot find a Christian who does not adore Jesus and the Father in the Heaven. You cannot find anywhere in the world a Muslim who does not worship Allah and accept Prophet Mohammad as the only messenger of God. However, you can find umpteen numbers of religious and spiritual organizations, cults and missions of the so called Hindus, who do not even dare to call themselves Hindu lest they will incur the displeasure of the Muslims, Christians and lose the tag of “Universal Religion”. These institutions are led by blind spiritual preceptors, gurus, matajis, swamis and swaminis who think that Hinduism or Hindutwa is a narrow fundamentalist concept whereas they themselves are “Universal”. They do not accept the fact that Hinduism is a universal and eternal way of life evolved by the great sages and saints of this holy land of Bharatavarsha and is meant not only for the children of this holy land, but for the entire humanity and therefore called “Manava Dharma”. These organizations and cults often display the symbols like cross, crescent, etc., along with Aum or lotus and try to woo followers of other faiths like Islam and Christianity, but no Mullah or Moulvi, Padri, Bishop or Pope has ever accepted these institutions even as worthy as the dust of the feet of the followers of the Semitic religions. They scoff at the claim of these spiritual leaders that Hinduism, Christianity and Islam are equal and wonder how an ‘Infidel’ or a ‘Kafir’ can claim equality with Christianity or Islam. These spurious religious institutions, mutts and missions project their own Gurus, Godmen and Godwomen as greater than the gods, goddesses, saints and sages worshipped in the Hindu tradition since times immemorial. Most often, in order to keep up an “International” image, these organizations avoid with meticulous care, glorification of Mother Bharat or Sanatana Dharma, but at the same time misuse the names of the glorious spiritual techniques of the Hindu way of life, like Kriya, Yoga, Dhyana, etc., to hoodwink the so called spiritual aspirants who come and fall into their trap like moths in the flame. Today, the vast majority of the religious and spiritual leaders of the country are followers of those sects, Sampradayas, mutts and missions, which like the Semitic or Mlechha religions, assert that their own Gods or their own prophets are the true Gods and saviors.
Need to see Motherland as the Living God
Let us leave out these hypocrites and look at those who call themselves devout Hindus. How many of them qualify to be called really Hindus? Displaying religious marks like Vibhuti, Chandan, Kumkum and Naamam on the forehead, performing rites and rituals according to Hindu traditions and going to the temples in the hope of getting mundane material benefits, and running after spiritual leaders in the belief that by offering donations and purchasing their blessings and grace, the worldly problems could be solved, do not make one a real Hindu. We see every day, among people who do all such things, such utterly selfish brutes who leave even their aged parents in lurch or send them to old age homes so that they can live comfortably with their beloved wife and children, amassing as much bank balance as possible by hook or crook, and prepared even to desert their Motherland and settle down in distant lands if they could easily make fortunes there. We see the so called Hindus who adore thirty three crores of Gods and Goddesses, but express their stupidity by asking a silly question whether Sri Bharatamata is a Goddess or Deity to be worshipped. There are some among them who are even well educated! In how many Hindu homes do you find the portrait or picture of Sri Bharatamata as Simhavaahini Durga with the Bhagava Dwaja in Her hand? In many temples, you find many Parivaara Devataas apart from the main deity, but in how many temples do you find a sanctum sanctorum for Sri Bharata Bhavani?
Want of Deshaatmabodh
Now, let us for a moment forget about these rubbish heaps that have been making the Hindu society stink, and take the case of those handful of Hindus who claim to adore and worship Mother Bharat as the Mother of the whole universe, and who are proud to call themselves the descendants of the great sages and seers of this land, Bharatavarsha–the Preceptor of the World—Loka Guru. Do they really see themselves as the real sons of the Divine Mother Bharatamata? If they see themselves so, then there would definitely spring up in their bosom a feeling of unity and brotherhood with all those who think like them as children of Mother Bharat. However, we find everywhere a thick wall of egoism and egocentric desires separating these children from each other. For ages, efforts have been made by great men and women to bring these children together to build up a strong and well-integrated Hindu society, but every effort has been proved to be short-lived or unsuccessful. The reason is that though these Hindu brethren intellectually understand the oneness of the Hindu nation and fraternity of the Hindu race, they are not able to translate that intellectual understanding into a spiritual realization of the oneness of the Self—the Asmita or Chiti—of the Hindu society and nation by destroying their ego and seeking the identity with the Nation’s Self—the Deshaatmabodh. Therefore they are not able to stand together and worship their common Mother—Sri Bharatamata. The bloated ego makes each one of them to be one’s own leader and not to submit oneself to another’s leadership for the cause of the country and Dharma. The result is that they have proved themselves to be impotent eunuchs facing the onslaught of anti-Hindu and anti-national forces in their very Motherland. The salvation to the Hindu society, the re-establishment of the glorious Hindu Nation and the ascendance of Sri Bharatamata once again to the throne of Loka Guru is possible only when all the true Hindus stand together under one banner, worship the Mother Sri Bharataamba devotedly and sing Her praise in one voice.
Effort to Integrate the Hindus
This ideal of adoration and worship of the Motherland and elevating patriotism as the highest creed upheld by the Hindu race deteriorated when Hindus started founding various religious sects and creeds and started dividing the Hindu society into blind followers of various Gods and Goddesses without understanding the import of the Vedic dictum, “Ekam sat, vipraah bahudhaa vadanti”—“The Ultimate Reality is one and men of wisdom call Him by different names.” Swami Vivekananda points out the fall of the Aryan race: “Over the course of time….the descendants of the Aryans deviated from proper conduct; they lost their spirit of renunciation and their sharp intelligence and became deeply attached to popular customs. They even failed to understand the import of the Puranas, thinking them contradictory to one another because each one taught by emphasizing only a particular aspect of the spiritual ideal and because each taught people of ordinary intelligence the abstruse truths of Vedanta by using concrete imagery and elaborate language. They divided the whole of Sanatan Dharma–the sum total of all religious ideals–into many sects. They enkindled the fire of sectarian jealousy and anger and tried to throw each other into it. When the degraded Aryans had almost turned India, the land of religion, into a hell, Bhagavan Sri Ramakrishna incarnated himself to demonstrate the true religion of the Aryan race. He made visible the unity among the innumerable sects and denominations of Hindu religion that had cropped up throughout the country over a vast period of time. At that time, the Hindu religion had been devastated by continuous sectarian fights, and was seemingly divided into many sects. Its various sects were overrun by hideous customs, and Hinduism had become confusing to Indians and an object of contempt to foreigners. Over time, this eternal religion had been debased, but Sri Ramakrishna incorporated its universal and eternal aspects in his own life to become a living example of the eternal religion, which he lived before all for the good of humanity.”
Swami Vivekananda’s Clarion Call to Worship Bharatamata
“For the next fifty years this alone shall be our keynote — this, our great Mother India. Let all other vain gods disappear for the time from our minds. This is the only god that is awake, our own race — ‘everywhere his hands, everywhere his feet, everywhere his ears, he covers everything.’ All other gods are sleeping. What vain gods shall we go after and yet cannot worship the god that we see all round us, the Viraat? When we have worshipped this, we shall be able to worship all other gods. Before we can crawl half a mile, we want to cross the ocean like Hanuman! It cannot be. Everyone going to be a Yogi, everyone going to meditate! It cannot be. The whole day mixing with the world with Karma Kanda, and in the evening sitting down and blowing through your nose! Is it so easy? Should Rishis come flying through the air, because you have blown three times through the nose? Is it a joke? It is all nonsense. What is needed is Chittashuddhi, purification of the heart. And how does that come? The first of all worship is the worship of the Viraat — of those all around us. Worship It. Worship is the exact equivalent of the Sanskrit word, and no other English word will do. These are all our gods — men and animals; and the first gods we have to worship are our countrymen. These we have to worship, instead of being jealous of each other and fighting each other. It is the most terrible Karma for which we are suffering, and yet it does not open our eyes!”–This soul-stirring clarion call came more than a century ago, from the great patriot monk of India, Swami Vivekananda, who wanted the most ancient Hindu Nation, Bharatavarsha, to be seated once again on the throne of Loka Guru, the preceptor of the entire world.
The true Hindu concept of patriotism finds its finest expression in Swamiji’s clarion call to the Indians: “Thou brave one, be bold, take courage, be proud that thou art an Indian, and proudly proclaim, ‘I am an Indian, every Indian is my brother’. Say, ‘The ignorant Indian, the poor and destitute Indian, the Brahman Indian, the Pariah Indian, is my brother. Thou too clad with but a rag round thy loins and proudly proclaim at the top of thy voice: ‘The Indian is my brother, the Indian is my life, India’s gods and goddesses are my God, India’s society is the cradle of my infancy, the pleasure garden of my youth, the sacred heaven, the Varanasi of my old age’. Say, brother, ‘The soil of India is my highest heaven, the good of India is my good’, and repeat and pray day and night, ‘O Thou Lord of Gauri, O thou Mother of the Universe, vouchsafe manliness unto me! O thou Mother of Strength, take away my weakness, take away my unmanliness and—Make me a Man!’ ”
Serve Man, Serve God
And what is adoration and worship of Sri Bharatamata? It is not in performing Abhisheka and Arati to the idol, showing Dhoopa and Deepa and offering flowers, fruits and prasaad, but loving and serving the children of Mother Bharat, irrespective of their caste, creed or community. The great King Ranti Deva prays in the Srimad Bhagavata:
Na twaham kaamaye raajyam, na sukham na apunarbhavam,
Kaamaye dukha taptaanaam praaninaam aarti naashanam
—”I do not aspire for kingdom, comforts, not even Immortality; all that I aspire for is the removal of the pain and agony of all beings afflicted with sorrow.”
Sri Ramakrishna while on a pilgrimage to Kashi found poor and downtrodden people on the way and asked his patron, Mathur Babu, who was accompanying him, to distribute all the money they had to the suffering people, declaring that he saw his Shiva in them only. Swami Vivekananda, on the eve of his historic voyage to America to attend the Parliament of Religions, found on the Marina Beach of Madras, some fishermen children with emaciated faces and empty stomachs, afflicted by poverty and suffering. He cried aloud, “Oh God! Why you have created such suffering beings?” and distributed among the poor all the money that some enthusiastic youth of Madras had collected for his voyage. And on his triumphant return from abroad, in the course of his grand journey from Colombo to Almora, he called out to the Bharatiya youth to worship the Viraat, the poor and downtrodden of the land, and gave out his message, “Serve man, serve God!” How many of the so-called Hindu brethren follow his advice and translate his message into action?
Psuedo-sadhus and pseudo-sannyasins who are wandering today throughout the length and breadth of the country and outside, with bloated ego and selling their merchandise of religion, yoga, meditation, cults, occultism, sooth-sayings, etc., exploiting the gullible Hindus and minting money for their luxurious life will certainly be wiped out soon. Sri Bharatamata has not lost Her virginity and She will produce hundreds of Vivekanandas to carry on Her sacred mission. Swami Vivekananda himself has assured us: “Do you think that there will be no more Vivekanandas after I die! There will be no lack of Vivekanandas, if the world needs them–thousands and millions of Vivekanandas will appear–from where, who knows! Know for certain that the work done by me is not the work of Vivekananda, it is His work–the Lord’s own work! If one governor-general retires, another is sure to be sent in his place by the Emperor.”
Swami Vivekananda’s Plan of Action
Swamiji never wanted to create a new sect in the name of Sri Ramakrishna. He made it clear when he proclaimed: “The impulse is constantly coming nowadays to my mind to do this and to do that, to scatter broadcast on earth the message of Sri Ramakrishna and so on. But I pause again to reflect, lest all this give rise to another sect in India.” He asserted, “As for me, I again repeat–I form no sect, nor organization–I know very little and that little I teach without reserve.” He emphatically declared, “I haven’t been born to found one more sect in a world already teeming with sects.” Swamiji had clearly realized that the various reform movements that sprang up in the name of various reformers and new Sampradayas achieved no purpose other than disintegrating the Hindu society. Therefore he categorically declared, “Again, a piece of wood can only easily be cut along the grain. So the old Hinduism can only be reformed through Hinduism, and not through the new-fangled reform movements.”
Swamiji’s plan of action was to restore once again the most ancient ideal of worship of Motherland. Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose quotes Sister Nivedita on Swami Vivekananda: “The queen of his adoration was his motherland. There was not a cry within her shores that did not find in him a responsive echo.” Swamiji thundered, “If there is any land on this earth that can lay claim to be the blessed Punya Bhoomi, to be the land to which souls on this earth must come to account for Karma, the land to which every soul that is wending its way Godward must come to attain its home, the land where humanity has attained its highest towards gentleness, towards generosity, towards purity, towards calmness, above all, the land of introspection and of spirituality – it is India.”
Worshippers of Bharata Shakti
Swami Vivekananda’s illustrious disciple, Sister Nivedita, was embodiment of the spirit of patriotism that the Swamiji upheld and she declared: “Age succeeds age in India, and even the voice of the Mother calls upon Her children to worship Her with new offerings, with renewal of their own greatness. Today she cries for the offering of nationality. Today she asks, as a household Mother of the strong men whom she has borne and bred, that we show to Her, not gentleness and submission, but manly strength and invincible might.” Her patriotic colleague in India’s freedom struggle, Mahayogi Sri Aurobindo echoed: “Nationalism is a religion that has come from God.” Swami Rama Tirtha, who was inspired by Swami Vivekananda and followed his footsteps asks, “Is it not high time now to deify the entire Motherland and let every partial manifestation inspire us with devotion to the whole? Through praana pratishthaa the Hindus endow with flesh and blood the effigy of Durga. Is it not worthwhile to call forth the inherent glory and evoke fire and life in the more real Durga of Mother India?” And Sir John Woodroffe, the renowned Western exponent of Tantra Shastra, reminds the Indian people that “They will gain power (shakti) to uphold their race and will receive all their desires if they serve their country in the belief that service (seva) of Shri Bharata is worship (seva) of the Maha Shakti. Shri Bhagavati who, though appearing in one of her forms as Bharata Shakti is not merely a Devi of the Hindus but their name for the one Mother of the World.”
As Sri Aurobindo envisaged in his scheme of Bhavaani Mandir, “We have to create an order of dedicated missionaries who are prepared to offer their everything at the altar of the Mother. And what will be the work of these missionaries?” Sister Nivedita delineates their task: “Let the missionary travel with the magic lantern, with collections of post cards, with a map of India and with head and heart full of ballads, stories and geographical descriptions. Let him gather together the women, let him gather together the villagers, let him entertain them in the garden, in the courtyard, in the verandas, beside the well, and under the village tree with stories and songs and descriptions of India! India! India!”
During the period of long struggle of Bharatavarsha for its emancipation from the clutches of alien aggressors who ruled over this country, there did appear in the religious field umpteen number of religious and spiritual movements and gurus and sampradayas, but very few of them were interested in the liberation of the country and people from alien masters and instead they all spoke only of liberation or moksha from the world. Swami Vivekananda severely condemned such so called spiritual leaders and movements: “A country where millions of people live on flowers of the Mohua plant, and a million or two Sadhus and a hundred million or so Brahmins suck the blood out of these poor people , without even the least effort for their amelioration–is that a country or hell? Is that a religion, or the devil’s dance?” He warned people of the hypocrites in the garb of religious preceptors: “When people try to practice religion, eighty per cent of them turn into cheats, and about fifteen per cent go mad. It is only the remaining five per cent who get some direct knowledge of the Truth and so become blessed. Therefore beware!” And he boldly revealed a truth: “Religions of the world have become lifeless mockeries. What the world wants is character. The world is in need of those whose life is one of burning love, selfless. That love will make every word tell like thunderbolt….” He wanted the service of the poor and downtrodden masses to be elevated to the highest creed of the land: “Whoever will be ready to serve him–no, not him but his children–the poor and the downtrodden, the sinful and the afflicted, down to the very worm–who will be ready to serve these, in them he will manifest himself. Through their tongue the Goddess of Learning Herself will speak, and the Divine Mother–the Embodiment of all power–will enthrone Herself in their hearts.”
Sanatana Dharma is Indian Nationalism
Hinduism has always stood for universal and eternal values of life and propagated the existence of one and only God who is beyond all names and forms and whom the saints and sages worshipped in various names and forms in accordance to their inclinations and ultimately realized their identity in Him, the only One. Unless and until the various sects, sampradayas, mutts and missions in the Hindu society inside and outside the country realize that the Divine Mother manifesting in the form of Motherland is the Mother of all Gods and Gurus, and all forms of worship are to be subordinated to the worship of the Motherland, there is no salvation for Hindu society. Sri Aurobindo heard God’s voice speaking to him, “I am raising up this nation to send forth my word. When you go forth, speak to your nation always this word, that it is for the Sanatana Dharma that they arise, it is for the world and not for themselves that they arise. I am giving them freedom for the service of the world.” Swami Vivekananda said: “I was asked by an English friend on the eve of my departure, ‘Swami, how do you like now your motherland after four years’ experience of the luxurious, glorious, powerful West?’ I could only answer, ‘India I loved before I came away. Now the very dust of India has become holy to me, the very air is now to me holy; it is now the holy land, the place of pilgrimage, the Tirtha’.”
Worship Bharatamata on Akshaya Triteeya Day
Since times immemorial, sages and seers in our land have prescribed the worship of the Mother and Motherland as the supreme way of realization of Divinity. The Hindu tradition gives a superior position to the mother in the family. She is considered as the manifestation of Shakti. So also the Motherland, which has given birth to all, is adored as the common mother. In the Bhaarata bhoomaatru Stotram, She is praised as the Supreme Mother—seen and unseen–“Vande Maataram avyaktaam vyaktaam cha jananeem paraam.” In the manifest form She is “Saagaraalingitaam Lakshmeem jagajjanaka kanyakaam”—the daughter of the Creator of the Universe, embraced by the tri-seas around. She is also adored as Parvati standing atop the great Himalayan peak—“Sthitaam Himanagasyaamke Paarvateem aparaam bhaje”. In the manifest form She is the Praana Shakti—Life Force. As long as the Motherland is considered as an inert piece of land, as a mere geographical territory inhabited by a group of people, it cannot evoke any love and devotion to Her. Only when the nation is considered as a living force—the manifestation of the Supreme Consciousness–the producer and sustainer of all living organisms inhabiting the territory–the devotion and love towards Her and the preparedness to dedicate everything at Her altar is born. Knowing fully well the basic need to inculcate in the hearts of the children of the Motherland this fundamental spirit of worshipping the Motherland in the form of Maha Shakti, our ancients gave us a festival to be celebrated every year to keep ourselves constantly remembering the ideal. And that festival is Akshaya Triteeya—the third day of the bright fortnight of the month Vishaka in Vasanta Ritu or Spring Season when we worship Sri Bharatamata in the form of Divine Mother Bhavani. Unfortunately, the two thousand years of alien rule over the country has wiped off some of the very vital traditions and cultural symbols of our people. The aggressors did it deliberately, for they had realized that unless this devotion to the Motherland, which is part and parcel of Hindu Culture, is sponged out from the hearts of the people, the foreign rule could not thrive here. Fortunately during the freedom struggle, fought against the Muslim emperors as well as the later British rulers, our great men like Chhatrrapati Shivaji, Bankim Chandra Chatterjee and Mahayogi Sri Aurobindo rekindled the spirit of worshipping Shakti for the emancipation of the Motherland. Tradition is there that Tulja Bhavani appeared before Shivaji and presented to him a divine sword to fight for Her cause. Bankim gave the vision of Bharatamata in the form of Shakti to millions of his countrymen and inspired them to offer their lives at the feet of the Mother. Sri Aurobindo strove to build a ‘Bhavani Mandir’—an institution to train devotees of Motherland in the acts of self-sacrifice. Even when the revolutionary as well as non-violent movements were in full swing for the achievement of freedom, there were a few people who tried to drive the Britishers out by using mantra Shakti—by invoking the power of Deshamaatrika through poojas and Japayoga.
Surprisingly, after the independence, this supreme and unsullied devotion to the Motherland is gradually waning in the minds of our people. It has come to such an extent that the present day younger generation is totally ignorant of this great concept of Deshamaatrika and the lives of the matchless great men who offered themselves in Her worship. There is no use of blaming our youth and students when our elders have failed to preserve our noble traditions and pass them on to the youth. When materialism and mundane values capture the brains of the people who consider food only as of paramount importance to keep up their existence, there is no wonder that these eternal values cherished by our ancestors gradually vanish. Any right thinking person who ponders over the causes of many an ill afflicting our country and its people today would come to the correct conclusion that the deviation from the path shown by the great is the prime reason for our downfall. The only way to set things right and to put the train of our national life again on its track is to revive the festivals that bring back to the memory of our people the ideals cherished by our forefathers.
India that is Bharat will emerge as a powerful nation in the world, the day Hindus in this country and those abroad, who consider the land of their forefathers as a holy land that has given to them the most sacred values of life evolved by the ancient sages and seers, start worshipping the Divine Mother in the form of Sri Bharatamata and celebrate the Akshaya Triteeya as the day most auspicious to worship Her. When they start doing this in congregation and sing the eternal song, Vande Mataram as the hymn addressed to the divine Mother, this land of Bharatavarsha will become a beacon shedding the light of eternal knowledge about the meaning and purpose of human life to the entire world.
Our hard won freedom is at stake. The enemies on our borders are just waiting for the moment of betrayal of our nation by the unpatriotic, corrupt and selfish politicians who are prepared to sell their mothers and motherland for the sake of material comforts and fortunes. We need Parashuramas, Vidyaranyas and Samarth Ramdasas to create once again a new class of warriors and heroes who will sacrifice their everything at the altar of the Motherland and raise Her once again to Her pristine glory. Today the time has come for us to consecrate the temple of Sri Bharatamata with our own blood and flesh through acts of supreme self-sacrifice. Those who are unable to stand up to protect the honour and dignity of the motherhood of the nation and our sacred Motherland are mlecchas of the modern period irrespective of the religion that they profess or practice.
Akshaya Triteeya, the auspicious day for the worship of the Divine Mother Sri Bharatamata, falling on Vasishaka Shukla Triteeya, every year must be celebrated in all Hindu institutions all over the country and abroad as the day of worship of Sri Bharatabhavani. Temples, ashrams, mutts and religious congregations where the image or idol of Sri Bharata Bhavani is not installed and worshipped are all non-Hindu or Mleccha institutions and true Hindus must ignore them as useless tinsels. Sri Guruji Golwalkar gives his clarion call: “Devotion to Motherland of the intense, dynamic, uncompromising and fiery type is the life-breath of a free, prosperous and glorious national existence on the face of the earth. And we, the Hindus, are the inheritors of the most sublime devotion of the Motherland. Let those ancient embers of devotion lying dormant in every Hindu heart be fanned and joined in a sacred conflagration which shall consume all the past aggressions on our motherland and bring to life the dreams of Bharata Mata reinstated in her pristine undivided form.”
Let us celebrate the Akshaya Tritiya in every hearth and home of the Hindus in India and outside the country. Let the prayer room in every Hindu home be adorned with the picture of Bharatamata. Sri Bharatamta Mandir at Srinivasanagar in Krishnarajapuram of Bangalore is a sacred abode where Sri Bharatamata is installed as Bharata Bhavani with Chandi Homa, pooja and abhisheka etc, and the Prana Pratishtha of the temple was done by H.H. Sri Vishwesha Teertha, Pontiff of Udipi Pejawar Mutt, in the presence of late Sri H.V. Seshadriji, former Saha Sarkaryavah of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, on December 8, 2004. Every year, Akshaya Triteeya is celebrated in the Mandir with Araadhana, Abhisheka and special Poojas, including Deepa Pooja and Pongala by the mothers. We invoke the Divine Grace of Sri Bharatamata on all Her children in India and abroad, and also on all beings in the world as She is the Vishwa Maataa too. May all live in peace and bliss!
“Force, Life and bright-eyed Hope
Be the gifts of the Mother to Her chosen.”
—Mahakavi C. Subramania Bharati
SADHU PROF. V. RANGARAJAN [Founder Trustee, Bharatamata Gurukula Ashram & Yogi Ramsuratkumar Indological Research Centre, SISTER NIVEDITA ACADEMY, ‘Sri Bharati Mandir’, Srinivasanagar, Krishnarajapuram, Bangalore 560 036 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: 080-25610935; Cell: 94482 75935