About : Mahalaxmi Kolhapur
Goddess Mahalaxmi - Ambai
Kolhapur is a historic city, from very ancient time words Dakashan Kashi [South Kashi] are in the use for the city. Religious importance of city ranks high ,as the place is known as the home of Goddess Mahalaxmi - Karveer Niwasini Ambai Devi.
It is said that King Karandev, who migrated from the kokan area [of the present Maharashtra state] to kolhapur and found a small temple for the Goddess with rich flora around, it was kings efforts that brought the neglected temple in the vision of all. The idol at temple is being constructed using the diamond particle contains precious stone and is about 40 kgs in weight.
There are about 35 small temples in the surrounding of main temple beside a mandap, which is being used during many festivals and celebrations like the Shardai [Winter] Navratra and so on. Fore more and detailed info visit www.kolhapurworld.com
Daily Pooja [Worship] and Aarti [Prayer] Schedules
During the day Aarti is done five times, starts with first one at
4:30AM early in morning, when temple is opened for the devotee and "Kakada - Aarti" and "Padya-pooja" [ Feet Worship] washing feet of Goddess with milk, are performed. Usually at this time Pratah kaleen salok [ Morning chants and devotional songs] are recited by the bunch of poojaries of the temple.
Every day at 8:30 AM in the morning "Maha-Pooja" followed by the "Mangal- Aarti" is offered to Goddess. Majority of visiting devotee remain present for this. Pancha Amrut, [ made up of the Ghee, Honey, Sugar, Curd and Milk] is distributed among the devotees present in the main chamber of the temple as the blessings of Ambai.
Third Aarati is performed at 11:30 AM and devotees usually offer "Kumkum" and flowers to Goddess with the light of camphor burning. This is the longest offering of the day usually goes on till 1:30 or 2:00 in the noon.
Every day in the evening "Bhog Aarti " at 7:30 PM is offered to the Goddess, Usually at this time idol is being decorated with the Golden and Silver ornaments. Devotees offers variety of offerings at this time.
The last worship of the day "Sej Aarti", which is being conducted at Shayan Guha [Bed-room] of the Goddess is performed at 10:00 PM and it marks the end off day.
After this doors of temples are closed till the 4:30 AM of the next morning.
At various occasions such as "Tramboli - Yatra", " Rathostav" , "Kiranostav", " Gokul- Ashtami" and so on special prayers are performed beside the regular daily prayers. Similarly it is also traditional that during the visit of Chhatrapati [Royal Family] of kolhapur and " Shankaracharya" special prayers are performed.
Navratra & Kiranostav
Starting with from the day of " Ghatasthapana" till the day of " Dasara" [Kande Navami] Navratra are celebrated and during these days devotees, spread all over the globe, visit kolhapur for their offering to Goddess Mahalaxmi.
During all these days in the evening a special event took place, during which Palaki [ Chariot carried on the shoulders] is taken in the procession around the temple with the traditional kolhapuri Music, this event is called " Palaki Pradakshina".
A super natural phenomena can be seen at this temple. The temple is constructed in such a style that every year on fixed days sun rays are reaching directly to the idol of Goddess to glorify the divinity of Goddess Mahalaxmi. This is celebrated as the Kiranostav festival.
As per the dates of Indian calendar starting with 18th Date of Kartik month and 11th date of Magh month for three days , First day at feet, Second day up to chest area and on the third day sun rays covers whole body. During these days all the electrical lights of the temple are kept off. It is fact that man made structures are always prove obstacle to natural effects and same can also be seen here, it is observed that sky towering buildings some times prove obstacle for this Kiranostav.