My favorite alankaram!


While lavish floral decorations are always a treat to our eyes, many times I am pulled into a simple and basic ones. This photo is a great example…Similarly I have enjoyed many times when a Shivalingam just has a Vastram around with one flower on the top of the lingam. Imagine that for all murthis – so pretty they are! Am I the only odd guy to think this way or I have some friends here?!

You can see this alankaram typically very early in the morning darshan at Sri Matam. Thanks Sudhan, Sri Guruvayurappan for sharing many of this kind of photos…

Hara Hara Sankara Jaya Jaya Sankara!


Categories: Photos


6 replies

  1. I am also with you on this. In our Puja room, my wife and I decorate the frames pictures of the different deities with a single rose flower for each.

  2. Dear Mahesh
    many think like you. Adhistanam looking simply grand.

  3. I am also of the person that simple alankaram makes more divine. If you see in this picture, there is no golden kavacham in the abhaya hastham which somehow I like it very much!!!

    Jaya Jaya Sankara Hara Hara Sankara!!!

  4. There are surely many more who think like you.
    There are two aspects connected with this issue.
    One is about the sources from which the flowers come. All big, old temples used to have their own Nandavanams or dedicated traditional flower grower families from whom the flowers were procured. But today this is a commercial ( ie purely money making) enterprise. Yet we see a few dedicated families bringing a few home grown flowers – grown and gathered with care, dedication and devotion.
    There are flowers/leaves which are specifically associated with each Deity and a few such favourite flowers would seem to do, instead of a heap of other flowers.
    Second aspect is about the disposal. Since the flowers offered to the Deity become Nirmalyam, they too have to be handled with devotion and due respect.. But in most temples, removal is entrusted to contractors and what they do, and how, is not known. We have heard that in many big temples, the same flowers once offered are recycled- they are sold again, due to the nexus between temple officials and contractors.
    It is a real problem how the Nirmalyam flowers are handled. We have seen how in many places, even the priests step on the flowers, ( may be unintentionally) when there are too many of them. We also see heaps of them strewn around the temple, floating in ponds, lakes, rivers, etc.
    It would therefore be better on the whole if fewer flowers are offered, of the right variety and the Nirmalyam is handled with due regard. We may explore if they can be used for compost. Another way would be to convert them into Agarbathies- this is actually being done in some places. Some flowers like Ketaki and desi Rose retain their fragrance even when dry; in others the fragrance may have to be artificially enhanced- this can be done with natural substances like roots, barks , herbs,etc. However, such Agarbathies cannot be used for puja even at home ( as Dhoopam) since they are derived from Nirmalyam. But they can be developed to drive away mosquitoes, in the place of chemicals. I am actually using such agarbathi sticks made in Sri Aurobindo Ashram.
    Offering fewer flowers seems to avoid many difficulties, besides enhancing the simple majestic appearance of the Deities decorated. So we are with you in this matter.

  5. you certainly have friends who think the same.

  6. U r right. I too love to see our gods n godesses in their simple alankaram. They glow in their natural form.

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