Arizona (USA), Nov 23: The VenkataKrishna Temple (SVK Temple) recently celebrated Srinivasa Kalyanam - the ceremonial marriage of the Lord with his consorts. This was the culmination of the installation and consecration of Lord Venkateshwara and other deities, which started in June 2011.
Srinivasa Kalyanam was performed for the Utsava Murthies Venkateshwara, Sridevi and Bhudevi. The day started with Kalashabishekam - the purification of the three shrines by pouring sacred waters from the top of the sanctums. This was followed by an Abhisheka - the ceremonial bathing of all the deities. The deities were ornately and beautifully dressed and decorated, with flowers woven together by the devotees.
A garland made of 1008 Sudarshana Chakra Saligrams was offered to the Lord Sri Venkateshwara. The deities were taken on a palanquin in procession to the marriage hall which had already been purified by sprinkling the waters from the sacred rivers during a Punyahavachana ceremony. Then Kalyaanothsava was performed in the traditional way. The wedding was accompanied by veda-manthras, Bhajans, Classical and instrumental music, followed by grand Maha-Pooja.
This year also happens to be the 50th birth year of the chief pontiff, Sri Sugunendra Theertha Swamiji of Udupi Sri Puttige Mutt, India. This was celebrated with a Guru Vandana – thanking him for his leadership, dedication and vision in establishing a religious environment for the Indian community in the USA and Canada. He has established four temples in the USA and one in Canada and has been responsible for a lot of innovative social welfare schemes for the community in India.
The Upanishads say “Aacharya Devo Bhava”- one’s teacher or guru is revered as God and without a guru it is hard to attain Moksha or salvation. Sri Sugunendra Theerha Swamiji was honored by the devotees with a silk turban and shawl, fruits and flowers.Regarding the installation of the new Venkateshwara deity in Phoenix, Swamiji said that “the devotees in Phoenix should feel blessed that He chose to come here, while in most other temples they make elaborate plans to have this happen.”
Lord Venkateshwara has steadily been attracting more devotees to the temple. There is space now to have many spiritual events, artists come and perform, Bhagavatam sessions and Bhagavad Gita sessions are held. We are positive that the temple will grow steadily in the years to come.