The workshop was a success with Sri Padmanabha Acharya conducting it very well. While close to 15 bhaktas from different parts of the city participated as actors, another 10-12 listened to the instructions of Acharya from the sidelines. People started assembling from 8 AM and by 9:15 everybody had completed snAna, sandhyAvandana etc and were ready for the main event to start. Copies of Sankshipta Devapuja Paddhati in telugu by Pujya Sri Maligi Bhimachar(He was previously editor of Telugu Tattvavada magazine) were given out to all participants. Acharya went through the different upachAras one by one and explained the meanings of the mantras that are recited at each stage. He also gave details about different sampradayas where applicable.
Special emphasis was given on Naivedya especially on the anusandhana and chintana that is to be followed during that time. It is during Naivedya that we offer all our belongings and actions done during the whole day at the feet of the Lord, while He is feasting on His svAkhyarasa. The bhakta has to meditate upon the Aikya(identity) of his Bimba murthi, the rupa of the Lord in the idol(s), shAlagrAma and the rupa-s of the Lord in all the naivedya items offered.
By 12:15 PM, everyone had finished performing mangaLArati and were tying up their devara pettige-s. Sumptuous teertha prasada was served shortly after that.
Sri Padmanabhacharya clearly explained both the mantra and the tantra aspects of devara puja and was very patient in providing clarifications to all the queries of participants. We once again offer sAshTAnga pranamas to Acharya.
All the participants personally expressed their thanks to ITMS for conducting the workshop and wished that many more such events be conducted on a regular basis.
Please find photographs from the session below:
ITMS Malkajgiri team.
The shishyavarga of Sri Padmanabhachar closely guide the participants through the holy and mandatory ritual.