Located on the Verdant Foothills of the Eastern Tirupathi is both a cultural hub and a major pilgrimage site. Nestled in its Tirumala Hills is the famous temple of Sri Venkateswara Swami, fondly called Balaji by his worshippers, Devotees believe that Sri Venkateswara, a form of Lord Vishnu, answers the Prayers of all those who seek his help and performs the greatest miracles in granting their wishes. As a result, the temple draws millions of pilgrims to its doors and is the busiest pilgrimage centre in the world.
Sri Venkateswara: Lord Balaji and His Holy Abode of Tirupathi is a compilation of numerous folk legends on the Benevolent Balaji. The Book also offers an insight into the 1000 year – old customs and traditions of the sacred Tirumala Hills.
Written as a mark of gratitude to the Lord, the Book details all the rituals, sevas and festivals associated with him. Here also are captured glimpses of the many teerthas, lakes and waterfalls of Tirumala. Along with this is a wealth of information for visitors and devotees alike on the various educational, medical and developmental activities of Tirupathi.
Shantha Nair, MA, PhD, has studied, worked and lived for the majority of her life and career in the temple town of Tirupathi. She has written many books on Hindu religion, spirituality and economics.
The glory, sanctity and antiquity of the sacred Hill known as Tirumala and that of the Teerthas or the holy springs that are found there, the Temple located on top of it and most important, the Supreme power or energy that resides in the inner core of all beings, and that has manifested itself as lord Venkateswara or Srinivasa, is beyond human understanding.
However an attempt is made in this book to describe the tales found in the various puranas and in the beliefs of the Bhakthas. The Deity, the Temple and the sacred Hill known as Tirumala attract Millions of devotees. It is considered 'Kaliyuga Vaikunta' and the Deity, the Kaliyuga Varada' who washes away all the sins of His devotees and greats material prosperity and a happy and peaceful life on Earth for all who sincerely pray to him. He uplifts the minds of those who take refuge in Him and liberates them from the sorrows of life. He blesses them with the experience of Sat Chit Ananda that is Existence – Consciousness Bliss.
An effort is also made to explain the history of the sacred Hill, the Temple and Tirupathi and Tirumala regions. The structure of the Temple, the inscriptions found on the walls and the Sevas and festivals are also described.
A short sketch of the various activities of the Tirumala Tirupathi Devasthanams that administers this Temple and that is taken mainly from the TTD official website is also presented here.
This book is a guide of the visiting pilgrim, both to first time and regular devotees. I have compiled and summarised the information could be obtained and not to the another of this book. The book was written as a mark of gratitude to Lord Venkateswara for all His blessings. I place it at his Feet. May the Lord forgive me for any errors. May the Lord bless all beings on Earth with material and spiritual well being, happiness and peace.
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