Festivals: Aashadi Ekadashi, Wadala Vithal mandir 11 july 2011

Hi good day ppl !
This post is about Aashadi Ekadashi which was this year 2011 on 11th july. Lord Vithal or Vithoba is the form of Lord Vishnu.

This day, a huge yatra or religious procession of pilgrims culminates at Pandharpur, a town in south Maharashtra, situated on the banks of the Bhima River. Pandharpur is main center of worship of the deity Vithoba. Thousands of pilgrims come to Pandharpur on this day from different parts of Maharashtra. Some of them carry Palkhis (palanquins) with the images of the saints of Maharashtra.These pilgrims are referred to as Warkaris. They sing Abhangas (chanting hymns) of Saint Tukaram and Saint Dnyaneshwar, dedicated to Vithoba.


Lord Vithal or Vithoba.

I have this new activity now-a-days of visiting temples which have powerful energy flow in them. Check these posts :
Vithal temple, Sion
Lalbaug cha Raja
Tulja Bhavani temple, Chembur


So on 11th after office decided to visit the Wadala Vithal mandir.

Vitthal Mandir in Wadala is one of the oldest temples in Mumbai and dates back to 400 years. All those who are unable to visit Pandharpur flock here to worship their deity on Ekadashis. The idol in the temple is very beautiful and is always decorated with beautiful clothes, gold jewelry and flowers. People come from far off corners of the city just for a glimpse of Lord Vitthal.





Vithal Mandir, Wadala from outside. In recent years it has been renovated.On Sundari's suggestion- This temple is in the lane where GSB Ganapati, Wadala is located, also the Albela Hanuman mandir. Another landmark is the Wadala depot which is very near to this. Also this road is the straight one from Gandhi market->Khalsa College->St.Paul School...


My granny used to take us on Ekadashi to this temple for darshan & then later the fair or mela for khao & toys. Missing my granny after she expired this January, so it was call of sorts to go there, couldnt remember a thing about the temple only the toys we used to buy, the sweets to eat, the giant wheel rides & the huge wave of crowds pouring in from morning to night.



The entrance to the temple. This time they had arrangement of 3lines: General, ladies only & pass holders. So it was smoother, it would have been good if one came in the morning for darshan. It took me 30mins to get darshan which was fast considering the crowd around that area.


Ekadashi is the eleventh lunar day of the bright fortnight (Shukla paksha) of the Hindu month of Ashadha (June - July). Thus it is also known as Ashadhi Ekadashi or Ashadhi or Mahaekadashi. On this day images of Vishnu and Lakshmi are worshipped, the entire night is spent singing prayers, and devotees keep fast and take vows on this day, to be observed during the entire chaturmas, the holy four month period of rainy season. These may include, giving up a food item or fasting on every Ekadashi day.



The inside of the temple. On the far end is the deity's room or gabhara. It was pouring outside while we waited in queue. Guess it was a divine call after all coz I didnt get wet at all throughout ;) .

This Mahaekadashi is also known as Shayani Ekadashi, because on this day Vishnu falls asleep to wake up four months later on Prabodhini Ekadashi in the Kartik month. This period is known as Chaturmas and coincides with the rainy season.



The Vithal Rukhmini idols which are a replica & as powerful as Pandharpur. The pics are blurred coz of crowd pushing & volunteers ready to snatch cameras if you were delaying the darshan of other devotees :)




There was a Shankar temple besides this. Monday & darshan of Shiv was like a double bonanza for me ;)




All the TV media channels were present since morning to cover the throngs of devotees. Outside the entire lanes on both sides were crowded with stalls & stage hosting some political party or other offering assistance, water, sherbats,.... free of cost.


You go to a mela, you cant miss the sweets. This is speciality in most maharashtra melas. There is Petha, the red sev is made of sugar & looks like turmeric but is yummy to eat, the white seva on top left is also made of sugar with ginger added to it.




Fun fair & giant wheels go hand in hand I guess.

I always remember these giant wheel rides granny used to let me enjoy but surprised that you put my sister in them & she will howl away before it completes a round :)

I enjoyed the 30seconds darshan, will go for a bigger one on a normal day in the morning. The getting lost barefoot with your sandals in the starting point shoe stand & walking in the wet, muddy streets wasnt bad ;). The youngster crowd in full on masti & tapori giri mood blowing away the trumpets & horns you get in such fair was a little irritating, thankfully police & volunteers were everywhere to keep a check on such holigans & get the crowd moving smoothly.

Good time spent in a profitable activity I would say ;)

Please visit the temple sometime, its calm & serene.
On Sundari's suggestion to give address & landmark to reaching this temple - This temple is in the lane where GSB Ganapati, Wadala is located, also the Albela Hanuman mandir. Another landmark is the Wadala depot which is very near to this. Also this road is the straight one from Gandhi market->Khalsa College->St.Paul School...

Shravan is on the way so the season of festivals is here, yipee :)

Bye. Tc. Waiting for your comments :)

Comments

  1. Hey Nilima, good post, as usual. After reading it, I am keen to visit this temple. I have not heard of this, until Venkat mentioned it on Ekadashi day this year. It's a coincidence that you are also writing about it. I plan to go to the temple on an ordinary day. Prefer to be away from crowds. Will definitely do it, especially as Wadala is so close by. My sis Lakshmi also writes about temples in Chennai and rest of Tamil Nadu. I have advised her to add google maps to help people know where to go. Same advice to you too ;)Please attach maps so that it will be easy for anadis like me. Like I know the temple is in Wadala. But where?

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  2. Good article.It must help for the people who doesn't know any thing abt festivals and their importance.Really i liked this article and keep going Nilima.

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