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Hanuman Jayanti is the celebration of the birth of Hanuman; Rama's loyal devotee.
Hanuman Jayanti is celebrated on the full moon day (pournima) of the Hindu lunar month of Chaitra. A special feature of Hanuman Jayanti is that according to some religious almanacs (panchangs) the birthday of Shri Hanuman falls on the fourteenth day (chaturdashi) in the dark fortnight of the month of Ashvin while according to others it falls on the full moon day in the bright fortnight of Chaitra. On this day, in a Hanuman temple spiritual discourses are started at dawn. Hanuman was born at sunrise. At that time the spiritual discourse is stopped and the offering of food (Prasad) is distributed to everyone.
Incidents in Shri Hanuman’s life and their significance
To provide assistance for the establishment of the Divine Kingdom: The main objective of Shri Hanuman’s life was to destroy obstacles in the establishment of the Divine Kingdom by providing the required warrior element. As a result, the embodied souls who would assist in the establishment of the Divine Kingdom were protected.
For this reason itself Shri Maruti manifests Himself in various forms during different Yugas. His task in the manifest-unmanifest form never ceases. Shri Maruti has humility in serving (i.e. Dasyabhav) to the extent of 100%. Thus He is constantly active.
Assisting embodied souls in performing spiritual practice: Shri Maruti has always helped embodied souls do spiritual practice in various Yugas. In the Tretayuga Shri Maruti taught the right path of spiritual practice to the monkeys and helped them.
Liberating many souls: The embodied souls with an intense desire for spiritual practice were granted liberation by Shri Maruti even at the cost of His own powers. He liberated many souls from existence in their cursed class by using His mace.
An example of a perfect Sevak: Shri Maruti presented an example of a perfect sevak. As a result, many embodied souls attained Final Liberation by following the same path i.e. Dasyatva. Due to His humility only He was able to narrate the good qualities of Shri Rama to Ravan and when Ravan denigrated Shri Rama, Maruti burnt Lanka and returned safely.
1. Ritualistic worship of Shri Hanuman (Maruti) There is a specific science to the ritualistic worship of each Deity. This means that, actions done in a particular way during the ritualistic worship, have a specific underlying science. Just by following these actions, we can get maximum benefit of that Deity's Principle. The following questions and answers contains the divine knowledge received by the seekers regarding exactly how some routine actions should be performed during the ritualistic worship of Shri Hanuman (Maruti).
1. Applying sindoor
Q. - How should a worshipper apply sindoor before starting the ritualistic worship of Maruti ?
Ans. - Sindoor should be applied with the ring finger.
2. Offering flowers
Q. - Which flowers should be offered? In what number? What is the method of offering the flowers ?
Ans. - Flowers and leaves of calotropis (ruee) Five or multiples of five. The stems of flowers should be turned towards the Deity.
3. Waving incense sticks
Q. - Incense sticks of which fragrances should be used? How many incense sticks should be used ? What is the method of waving ?
Ans. - Kewda, Chameli (Jasmine) and Ambar. Two incense sticks. Holding them between the index finger and thumb of the right hand, the incense sticks should be waved thrice, in a clockwise direction, in a full circle.
Q. - How many circumambulations should be performed around Maruti ?
Ans. - Minimum five but if a worshipper wants to perform more, then they should be in multiples of five.
Prevalent ritualistic worship
In Maharashtra, Saturday is considered to be the day of Maruti while in rest of India (Bhaarat) both Tuesday and Wednesday are considered to be His days. There is a custom of offering sindoor and oil to Maruti on these days. Breaking a coconut in front of Maruti also appears to be an age old custom. For spiritual progress, Maruti with His face to the left (Vaammukhi Maruti) or Maruti with an attitude of service (Daas Maruti) is worshipped.