Vaikuntha Ekadashi is an important festival in all the Vishnu Temples across the globe. It is said that, Deities had an occasion to go past the Northern Entrance of Vaikuntha, to have the glimpse of Lord Maha Vishnu to alleviate misery and sorry.
Lord Maha Vishnu is also known as Vikuntha, which denotes a phenomenon that relieves worries of all sorts. Vaikuntha is a place, pertaining to Vikuntha. As the access thru the Northern Entrance is obtained by deserving Celestial beings on the Ekadashi of Margashira Month, this day is celebrated as Vaikuntha Ekadashi. The mythology further explains that the event happened in the month of Dhanush. (It is a custom of the Vaishnava Pundits to follow the Solar Calendar. Hence, the Ekadashi of Shukla Paksha is regarded as Vaikuntha Ekadashi, irrespective of the incidence of Margashira Maasa).
This is a major festival in the historic Sri Datta Venkateswara Temple, established by Pujya Sri Swamiji. It was a divine coincidence, that Sri Swamiji was present for the occasion in Mysore.
Pujya Sri Swamiji offered Purnahuti for Narayana & Sudarshana Homa and confided that this is the wish of the Lord, that Sri Swamiji should be in Mysore for the occasion. All other reasons are superficial. Hence, it was the chosen day for a number of devotees to become a part of the proceedings on this day.
Karnataka Police Department, along with Volunteers managed the surging crowds with sincerity and expertise. Prasadam was distributed to more than 30,000 devotees. Rathosavam was also conducted, carrying the Kalyana Utsava Murty of the temple. It was a life time experience for many devotees, to experience the divinity on such wonderful occasion. Earlier in the day, Sri Swamiji inaugurated the Kannada Calendar of the Temple for 2010. The website of the Temple www.sdvtemple.in was also inaugurated on this occasion. (Devotees can browse this site for the Details of Seva in the temple and also enroll for the group, to receive mails about the upcoming programs.) The calendar is also available for free download.
In the evening, Pujya Sri Swamiji conducted a wonderful session of Divya Nama Sankeertana. Ahoratra Nama Sankeertana (Continuous) Night Long Bhajan session was conducted by the Bhajan Group of Mysore Ashrama led by Sri. Mani and Sri. Mahesh.
Jaya Guru Datta. Om Namo Narayanaaya.
The Ratha (chariot) carrying the Utsava idols enter Sri Datta Venkateshwara Temple
Gurudeva offers Arati to Lord Venkateshwara kept in Vaikuntha Dwara (northern entrance)
The northern entrance - Vaikuntha Dwara - of the temple was thrown open to the public for darshan,
Devotees waited for more than 2 hours in the queue to enter the Temple
Rathotsava at 5 pm
More than 30 thousand people visited the Temple on this auspicious day
The wonderfully lit up Sri Datta Venkateshwara Temple
The front entrance of the temple