Bhajana Mandali

A Bhajana Mandali is a religious place for Hindus, who used to perform bhajans on deities, like Lord Krishna, Rama and Durga, and would perform puja, and distribute the holy Prasad items after the completion of puja. It can be considered similar to a small Hindu Temple, but mostly in Bhajana Mandalis, only the pictures and small idols of the deities would be kept and worshipped. We can see lot of Bhajana Mandalis in Maharashtra, especially in Pandharpur.

A group of devotees who forms a religious place either in their homes or in the rented places, in a simple manner is called as a Bhajana Mandali. This system is in practice since from 12th century, and it was well established during the regime of the great Varkari Saints like Thukaram, Gora Kumbhar and Eknath Maharaj. In cities like Chennai, we can find lot of Bhajana Mandalis, where in which, the devotees would eagerly worship the pictures of Lord Krishna by singing beautiful songs on him, and chanting his holy names, especially during Saturdays.Some Bhajana Mandalis would also be later converted into big temples, based on the financial background and the eagerness of the devotees. Bhajana Mandalis for Shirdi Sai Baba and Raghavendra Swamy were also formed earlier, which were later converted into holy mutts. Since it is very difficult to found temples for the deities, Bhajana Mandalis have been created for the benefit of the local devotees.

In North India, we can find lot of Bhajana Mandalis for Ma Durga. Every Friday, the idol of Durga would be decorated with flowers and flower garlands, and sweets also would be distributed to the participants as holy Prasad item. During Navarathri festival days, grand celebration would be taken place at the Mandalis, and lot of devotees would visit the Bhajana Mandalis nearby their homes, to have a glimpse of the holy mother Ma Durga.

“JAI MA DURGA”
WRITTEN BY
R.HARISHANKAR

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