Saturday, August 30, 2008

Gowri Ganesha Habba (Festival)

Bangalore is getting ready for the celebration of Gowri Ganesha Habba. September 3rd is not far for the people to rejoice in this celebration. Gowri Festival is celebrated on the previous day of Ganesh Festival.

The prices of flowers, fruits and the beautifully carved idols in various sizes and shades, have already gone up. The shopkeepers both in the big shops as well as in the roadside, are trying to exhibit their best forms of Ganesha idols for the prospective buyers.

Monday, August 25, 2008

A Trip to Chendamangala, Kochi

I had to visit my niece and family staying at Chendamangalam, about 42 kms from Ernakulam in Kerala. Chendamangalam is an amazingly beautiful small town, comprising of three rivers, seven inlets, hillocks and green pastures. There are some interesting places to explore in Chendamangalam.

The Paliam Palace, 450 year old, is the architecture marvel of Kerala. It was the home of Paliath Achans, and now houses some rare artifacts, relics and historical documents. They were the hereditary prime ministers to the former Maharajas of the erstwhile state of Kochi. A visit to the hillock at Kottayil Kovilakom is worth because it presents an unusual view of the church, temple, mosque and the synagogue.

Jewis Synagogue

In the hillock, you can see a Hindu temple, a church, a mosque and the remains of a Jewish synagogue, all together within a distance of hardly one km of each other. It was amazingto see the co-existence of four religions harmoniously - a unique blend of culture!

It is believed that the Jews arrived here in Chendamangalam after the destruction of the second temple and the final desolation of Jerusalem in (A.D. 69)and founded a colony. They built a Jewish synagogue in 1614 AD.Later, the Jews built another synagogue in Fort Kochi in the year 1341 AD. In the courtyard behind the synagogue in Chendamangalam, one can see the old Jewish graves, including one of a Jewish woman, dated 1264 A.D. Now most of the Jews have gone back to Jerusalem. We were excited to see a Jew family who had come from Jerusalem as tourists, just to show their native place and synagogue to their younger generation.

Periyar Lake

Vypeenkotta, built in the 16th century by the Portuguese, is another attraction here.
Right next to the seminary is an old Catholic Church built in the 11th century.
Sree Venugopala Krishna Swami Temple is another religious place, famous for Hindus, built in 1900 AD.

A journey from Kochi to Chendamangalam is the surrounding beauty created by the lavish greenery, the crystal like clear water of the three rivers that flow nearby and the small hills that adorn the surrounding scenery.

Hindu Temple


The beautiful Cherai Beach is also nearby.

Reaching There : Cochin International Airport is just 20 kilometers from this place.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Oottuthirunal festival at Edathiruthy, Trissur

Recently I had visited a friend in Trissur. It happened to be a day of Festival in their church. The festival was called "Oottuthirunal" of our Lady of Carmel Forane and St.Vincent de Paul, at Edathiruthy in Trissur. My friend asked me to join her if I don't mind when she proceeded to the church. I was in fact only too happyto attend the festival .

It was a grand festival with spectacular firework. Thousands of pilgrims attended this festival,followed by a mass feast.