This year Deepavali (10/11/2015) devotees had the sukrutham(good fortune) to be in Kanchipuram and participate in the festivities with Varadaraja Perumal. The previous day was Hastham so there was purappadu for Perumal as usual on sannidhi street. Perumal along with ubhaya nachimars stayed in kannadi-arai for the night. Usually when there are purappadus in close succession Perumal is not taken uphill(Hathigiri) everyday and so devotees can have His darshan at the mirror-room immediately on entering the temple. Rains were continuous last few days but this did not dampen the Diwali spirit. Diwali Tirumanjanam took place at about 9.00am at kanadi-arai and devotees in sparkling new clothes enjoyed the Tirumanjanam of Deva Perumal and His Consorts. If His sandal powder covered Tirumeni with pink flower garlands was Beautiful, The turmeric covered Tirumeni with Tulasi garlands was Bewitching. The beautiful rendering of kattiyam, the sahasra dhara Tirumanjanam, the sambrani smoke spreading on His Tirumukkamandalam, the care with which the aradhar swamis tied the yellow towel around His Head, the deftness with which they changed His wet clothes into a blue dry vastram and the loving offerings of fruits and camphor lights was simply wonderful. Above all the sonorous Vedic chanting and Neeraatal pasurams rent the air making us feel that we were in Srivaikuntam. Then there was the lining up for Theertham and Srisathari. The curtains were drawn for alankaram and then there was goshti viniyogam.
Evening it was drizzling intermittently as Perumal came in purappadu with His ubhayanachimars. Huge crackers were being laid down like narrow red-carpets . When Perumal led by the divyaprabhandha goshti was nearing the vicinity the crackers were lit and there was bursting all around. When the signal was given Perumal moved on with the Vedic chanting chasing Him. All through the veedhis devotees vied with one another in bursting crackers, so that Perumal would stop at their doorstep for a longer time. When we spend for ourselves it seems a waste but the same thing is offered to Him it is justified. This was the feeling one got on seeing crackers bursting continuously. They were referred to in terms of their value as Rs.5000 and Rs.10,000. When He came to our doorstep on South Mada Street it was a feeling of joy to burst crackers with the Lord of the Universe and age was forgotten in the thrill of lighting sparklers and flower pots and sending crackers up into the air and watch the riot of colourful stars formed by them. Inspite of the rains no one seemed to bother and happiness filled the air as the young and the old joined the procession. Tiruaradhanai took place at Chettimar street mandapam After Theertham/Srisathari and prasada viniyogam Perumal returned to kanadi-arai for the night as the following day was amavasyai and tirumanjanam and purappadu would take place. Wonderful was it to be with Varadaraja Perumal, His Consorts the divya prabhandham and Veda goshtis and the ever-smiling sripadamthangis, the umbrella holders, the drum beaters and music makers ,the petromax lamp holders and exciteddevotees during Deepavali festival enjoying the fireworks without feeling guilty.
The following are the photos taken during the Utsavam:
Courtesy: Sri Elangadu Ranganatha Chakravarthy, Write-up: Smt Vyjayanthi Rajan
To know more about Deepavali please visit: Deepavali Wishes To Anudinam Readers