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Spiritual Nainital, Kumaon Himalaya Photo Journal

Travel

Naina Devi being a Sidhpeeth, Kumaonis from far off villages come here to pray and worship. The Puranas name Naini Lake to be as sacred as Mansarovar Lake (Kailash Mansarovar, Tibet). Naini lake is a manifestation of Lord Shiva's wife Devi Sati's left eye. The Puranas also mention that many Rishis including Atri, Pulatsya and Pulah meditated on the banks of Naini Lake.
Tags: Nainital, Kumaon-Himalaya, Gurney-House, Roadmap,
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Chocolate Biscuit Pudding, Vaishnav cuisine

Ayurveda

Mix all ingredients listed for the chocolate sauce and simmer on medium heat, until the mixture thickens. Spread a layer of this sauce in a platter. Dip the glucose biscuits one at a time in the coffee mixture and arrange neatly over the sauce. Repeat to make three layers, topping with chocolate sauce. Sprinkle crushed walnuts over it. Ready to offer Krishna…
Tags: Vaishnav-cuisine, Ayurvedic-food, vegetarian, chocolate, recipe, sweet-dish
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Salad recipes for an Indian lunch and Ayurveda

Ayurveda

Kuchumma is the the simplest salad that goes with a number of Indian dishes and meal menus. According to Ayurveda, raw vegetables are best had during lunch, when the digestive agni is at its peak. The ginger-lemon juice salad, of course is an enhancer of digestive agni, therefore can be had with dinner too. Onion-lemon juice salad is great for the Indian summer. It protects one from the heat. The kuchumma salad is great for Kapha body types.
Tags: fat-free-recipe, summer-recipe, Indian-food, vegetarian, salad, recipe, Ayurvedic-food,
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Cypress Vine in my garden in Lucknow, North India

Relax

In the monsoon rains, cypress vine seeds have germinated on their own from the seeds dropped during summer. This vine is a hardy resident in my garden. It requires very little care. It simply knows when to sprout, and how to bloom! A liberal dose of organic fertilizer (aged cow-dung) and daily watering is all it asks.
Tags: garden, gardening, North-India, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India, flowers, flora
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Anti-depression pill

Yoga

Depression is a state of failed promise to oneself. Is it time to collect our wits together and reach out for new promises we make to ourselves? We are the ones who set our goals, and promise to reach them. We can do that yet again!
Tags: anti-depression, therapy, spirituality, mental-health, mind
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Krishna Bhajan by Surdas, sung by Ashwini Bhide

Videos

He gave me his heart and stole mine. Surdas (the lady in this bhajan) says, after taking my heart, all that I had, Prabhu Krishna smiled and sped away on his chariot. सुंदर सदन सुख सदन श्याम को निरख नयन मन ठाग्यो...
Tags: Ashwini-Bhide, Krishna-bhajan, Surdas, Indian-music, Hindi, lyrics
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कृष्ण: एव गतिर्मम – Pushti Marg, the path of grace

Yoga

“Sarvada Sarva Bhaaven Nishchintiten Bhajneeyo Vrajadhip.” In all conditions in life relax and be one with Krishna. And how to do that? “Sada Sevya Sada Sevya Srimad Bhaagwati Katha…” See life unfolding as a doing of God, a story of God’s doing.
Tags: vallabhacharya, krishna, pushti-marg, bhakti-yoga, bhakti
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Wild flora of Nainital, Kumaon Himalaya Photo Journal

Ayurveda

I am am told that the Bicchu booti is a tame thing when compared to the wild flora of Valley of Flowers (Nanda Devi National Park) and Hemkund Sahib. Not all the plants there have been documented. And some have special powers of stinging, causing swelling, itching and even unconsciousness. Plus there are just a few locals to help a traveller out with antidotes. So the general advice to all trekkers there is, ‘Do not touch or smell any plant.’
Tags: Kumaon-Himalaya, India, Photo-Journal, gardening, ayurveda, bone-health, Bicchu-booti, herbs, flora,
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Ram bhajan from Sri Ram Charit Manas by Lata Mangeshkar

Videos

Excerpts from Shiva’s praise of Rama in Uttarakand of Sri Ram Charit Manas by Goswami Tulsidas: जय राम रमारमनं शमनं, भव ताप भयाकुल पाहि जनं। महि मंडल मंडन चारुतरं। धृत सायक चाप निसंग बरं।
Tags: Ram, Lata Mangeshkar, bhajan, video, Sri-Ram-Charit-Manas, Goswami-Tulsidas
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Sri Vishnu Sahastranam, shloka 1, meaning of names

Books

After the great war between the Kauravas and Pandavs, Yudhishthir wanted to know who to look up to as the highest ideal. Bhishma gave him a 1000 names of God, elaborating on God's qualities and the reasons for choosing God as the best friend. Chanting or singing this piece of poetry is said to have therapeutic effect on the body and mind.
Tags: Vishnu, Sanskrit-text, Mahabharat, Ved-Vyas, Shankaracharya, English-translation, bhakti-yoga
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Flowering trees of India – Dhak, Palash, Chamata, Modugu Chettu or Tesu tree

Relax

The tesu flowers are traditionally used for colour-play in the spring festival of Holi. Tesu flowers are boiled in water to give a fragrant, deep yellow water which has medicinal properties and prevents skin problems in the coming summer.
Tags: flowering-tree, flora, gardening, India, North India, Haridwar, Kerala, Andhra-Pradesh, Vrindavan, Radha-Vallabh-temple, gardening, ayurveda, temple
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