Dwarka is an ancient city and a municipality of Devbhoomi Dwarka district in the state of Gujarat in northwestern India. It is located on the western shore of the Okhamandal Peninsula on the right bank of the Gomti River. In 2011 it had a population of 38,873. Dwarka is one of the foremost Chardhams, four sacred Hindu pilgrimage sites, is one of the Sapta Puri, the seven most ancient religious cities in the country. Dwarka is identified with the Dwarka Kingdom, the ancient kingdom of Krishna, is believed to have been the first capital of Gujarat. Dwarka is believed to have been the first capital of Gujarat; the city's name means the "gateway to heaven" in Sanskrit, as Dwar means "gate" and ka references "Brahma". Dwarka has been referred to throughout its history as "Mokshapuri", "Dwarkamati", "Dwarkavati", it is mentioned in the ancient prehistoric epic period of the Mahabharata. According to legend, Krishna settled here after he killed his uncle Kansa at Mathura; this mythological account of Krishna's migration to Dwarka from Mathura is associated with the culture of Gujarat.
Krishna is said to have reclaimed 12 yojanas or 96 square kilometres of land from the sea to create Dwarka. Dwarka was established as the capital in Saurashtra by the Aryans during the Puranaic; the Yadavas, who had migrated from Mathura, established their kingdom here when the city was known as "Kaushathali". It was during this period that the city was named Dwarka. A friendly population of natives prompted Krishna to settle at Dwarka when he decided, after fighting Jarasandha, the king of Magadh, to retreat from Mathura; the kingdom known as the Yaduvanshi empire, was established by Uugrasena, father of Kansa the ruler and Krishna flourished and extended its domain. It is said that Krishna conducted the administration of his kingdom from Dwarka while residing with his family in Bet Dwarka.. The city's Dwarkadhish Temple dedicated to Krishna was built around 2,500 years ago, but was destroyed by Mahmud Begada rulers and subsequently rebuilt in the 16th century; the temple is the location of Dwaraka maţha called Sharada Matha/Peeth and "western peeth", one of the four peeths established by Adi Shankaracharya.
As an important pilgrimage centre for Hindus, Dwarka has several notable temples, including Rukmini Devi Temple, Gomti Ghat, Bet Dwarka. There is a lighthouse at the land end point of Dwarka. Archaeological investigations at Dwarka, both on shore and offshore in the Arabian Sea, have been performed by the Archaeological Survey of India; the first investigations carried out on land in 1963 revealed many artefacts. Excavations done at two sites on the seaward side of Dwarka brought to light submerged settlements, a large stone-built jetty, triangular stone anchors with three holes; the settlements are in the form of exterior and interior walls, fort bastions. From the typological classification of the anchors it is inferred that Dwarka had flourished as a port during the period of the Middle kingdoms of India. Coastal erosion was the cause of the destruction of what was an ancient port. Dwarka is mentioned in the copper inscription dated 574 AD of Simhaditya, the Maitraka dynasty minister of Vallabhi.
He was the son of the king of Dwarka. The nearby Bet Dwarka island is a religious pilgrimage site and an important archaeological site of the Late Harappan period, with one thermoluminescence date of 1570 BC. In 200 AD, King Vasudev II of Dwarka was defeated by Mahakshatriya Rudradama. Upon the death of Rudradama, his wife, Queen Dheeradevi, invited his brother Pulumavi, seeking guidance to rule. Rudradama had worshipped Krishna at Dwarka. Vajranabha, his successor, deified an idol of Krishna in it. An epigraphic reference ascribed to Garulaka Simhaditya, the son of Varahdas, the king of Dwarka, is inscribed on a copper plate dated to 574 AD, found in Palitana; the Greek writer of the Periplus of the Erythraean Sea referred to a place called Baraca, interpreted as present-day Dwarka. A reference made in Ptolemy's Geography identified Barake as an island in the Gulf of Kanthils, inferred to mean Dwarka. One of the four dhams, which were founded by Adi Shankaracharya at the four corners of the country, was established as a monastic centre at a time when mainstream Hinduism had still not been accepted.
In 885 AD, the temple was renovated by head of the Shankaracharya pitha. In 1241, Mohammad Shah damaged the temple. During this battle, five Brahmins fought against him and were honoured as martyrs. A shrine was built near the temple in their honour and is known as "Panch Peer", a name of Muslim origin. In 1473 the Gujarat Sultan Mahmud Begada destroyed the temple of Dwarka; the Jagat Mandir or the Dwarakadhisa temple was rebuilt. Vallabha Acharya retrieved an idol of Dwarkadhish, revered by Rukmini, he hid it in a stepwell, known as Savitri vav, during the Muslim invasion, before moving it to Ladva village. In 1551, when Turk Aziz invaded Dwarka, the idol was shifted to the island of Bet Dwarka. Dwarka, along with the Okhamandal region, was under the rule of Gaekwad of Baroda state during the Indian rebellion of 1857. A war broke out at Okhamandal in 1858 between the British; the Vaghers had won the battle and ruled until September 1859. After a joint offensive of the British, the Gaekwads, other princely
Diamond is a solid form of the element carbon with its atoms arranged in a crystal structure called diamond cubic. At room temperature and pressure, another solid form of carbon known as graphite is the chemically stable form, but diamond never converts to it. Diamond has the highest hardness and thermal conductivity of any natural material, properties that are utilized in major industrial applications such as cutting and polishing tools, they are the reason that diamond anvil cells can subject materials to pressures found deep in the Earth. Because the arrangement of atoms in diamond is rigid, few types of impurity can contaminate it. Small numbers of defects or impurities color diamond blue, brown, purple, orange or red. Diamond has high optical dispersion. Most natural diamonds have ages between 1 billion and 3.5 billion years. Most were formed at depths between 150 and 250 kilometers in the Earth's mantle, although a few have come from as deep as 800 kilometers. Under high pressure and temperature, carbon-containing fluids dissolved minerals and replaced them with diamonds.
Much more they were carried to the surface in volcanic eruptions and deposited in igneous rocks known as kimberlites and lamproites. Synthetic diamonds can be grown from high-purity carbon under high pressures and temperatures or from hydrocarbon gas by chemical vapor deposition. Imitation diamonds can be made out of materials such as cubic zirconia and silicon carbide. Natural and imitation diamonds are most distinguished using optical techniques or thermal conductivity measurements. Diamond is a solid form of pure carbon with its atoms arranged in a crystal. Solid carbon comes in different forms known as allotropes depending on the type of chemical bond; the two most common allotropes of pure carbon are graphite. In graphite the bonds are sp2 orbital hybrids and the atoms form in planes with each bound to three nearest neighbors 120 degrees apart. In diamond they are sp3 and the atoms form tetrahedra with each bound to four nearest neighbors. Tetrahedra are rigid, the bonds are strong, of all known substances diamond has the greatest number of atoms per unit volume, why it is both the hardest and the least compressible.
It has a high density, ranging from 3150 to 3530 kilograms per cubic metre in natural diamonds and 3520 kg/m³ in pure diamond. In graphite, the bonds between nearest neighbors are stronger but the bonds between planes are weak, so the planes can slip past each other. Thus, graphite is much softer than diamond. However, the stronger bonds make graphite less flammable. Diamonds have been adapted for many uses because of the material's exceptional physical characteristics. Most notable are its extreme hardness and thermal conductivity, as well as wide bandgap and high optical dispersion. Diamond's ignition point is 720 -- 800 °C in 850 -- 1000 °C in air; the equilibrium pressure and temperature conditions for a transition between graphite and diamond is well established theoretically and experimentally. The pressure changes linearly between 1.7 GPa at 0 K and 12 GPa at 5000 K. However, the phases have a wide region about this line where they can coexist. At normal temperature and pressure, 20 °C and 1 standard atmosphere, the stable phase of carbon is graphite, but diamond is metastable and its rate of conversion to graphite is negligible.
However, at temperatures above about 4500 K, diamond converts to graphite. Rapid conversion of graphite to diamond requires pressures well above the equilibrium line: at 2000 K, a pressure of 35 GPa is needed. Above the triple point, the melting point of diamond increases with increasing pressure. At high pressures and germanium have a BC8 body-centered cubic crystal structure, a similar structure is predicted for carbon at high pressures. At 0 K, the transition is predicted to occur at 1100 GPa; the most common crystal structure of diamond is called diamond cubic. It is formed of unit cells stacked together. Although there are 18 atoms in the figure, each corner atom is shared by eight unit cells and each atom in the center of a face is shared by two, so there are a total of eight atoms per unit cell; each side of the unit cell is 3.57 angstroms in length. A diamond cubic lattice can be thought of as two interpenetrating face-centered cubic lattices with one displaced by 1/4 of the diagonal along a cubic cell, or as one lattice with two atoms associated with each lattice point.
Looked at from a <1 1 1> crystallographic direction, it is formed of layers stacked in a repeating ABCABC... pattern. Diamonds can form an ABAB... structure, known as hexagonal diamond or lonsdaleite, but this is far less common and is formed under different conditions from cubic carbon. Diamonds occur most as euhedral or rounded octahedra and twinned octahedra known as macles; as diamond's crystal structure has a cubic arrangement of the atoms, they have many facets that belong to a cube, rhombicosidodecahedron, tetrakis hexahedron or disdyakis dodecahedron. The crystals can be elongated. Diamonds are found coated in nyf, an opaque gum-like skin; some diamonds have opaque fibers. They are referred to as opaque if the fibers
Sunlight is a portion of the electromagnetic radiation given off by the Sun, in particular infrared and ultraviolet light. On Earth, sunlight is filtered through Earth's atmosphere, is obvious as daylight when the Sun is above the horizon; when the direct solar radiation is not blocked by clouds, it is experienced as sunshine, a combination of bright light and radiant heat. When it is blocked by clouds or reflects off other objects, it is experienced as diffused light; the World Meteorological Organization uses the term "sunshine duration" to mean the cumulative time during which an area receives direct irradiance from the Sun of at least 120 watts per square meter. Other sources indicate an "Average over the entire earth" of "164 Watts per square meter over a 24 hour day"; the ultraviolet radiation in sunlight has both positive and negative health effects, as it is both a requisite for vitamin D3 synthesis and a mutagen. Sunlight takes about 8.3 minutes to reach Earth from the surface of the Sun.
A photon starting at the center of the Sun and changing direction every time it encounters a charged particle would take between 10,000 and 170,000 years to get to the surface. Sunlight is a key factor in photosynthesis, the process used by plants and other autotrophic organisms to convert light energy from the Sun, into chemical energy that can be used to synthesize carbohydrates and to fuel the organisms' activities. Researchers can measure the intensity of sunlight using a sunshine recorder, pyranometer, or pyrheliometer. To calculate the amount of sunlight reaching the ground, both the eccentricity of Earth's elliptic orbit and the attenuation by Earth's atmosphere have to be taken into account; the extraterrestrial solar illuminance, corrected for the elliptic orbit by using the day number of the year, is given to a good approximation by E e x t = E s c ⋅, where dn=1 on January 1st. In this formula dn–3 is used, because in modern times Earth's perihelion, the closest approach to the Sun and, the maximum Eext occurs around January 3 each year.
The value of 0.033412 is determined knowing that the ratio between the perihelion squared and the aphelion squared should be 0.935338. The solar illuminance constant, is equal to 128×103 lux; the direct normal illuminance, corrected for the attenuating effects of the atmosphere is given by: E d n = E e x t e − c m, where c is the atmospheric extinction and m is the relative optical airmass. The atmospheric extinction brings the number of lux down to around 100 000 lux; the total amount of energy received at ground level from the Sun at the zenith depends on the distance to the Sun and thus on the time of year. It is 3.3 % lower in July. If the extraterrestrial solar radiation is 1367 watts per square meter the direct sunlight at Earth's surface when the Sun is at the zenith is about 1050 W/m2, but the total amount hitting the ground is around 1120 W/m2. In terms of energy, sunlight at Earth's surface is around 52 to 55 percent infrared, 42 to 43 percent visible, 3 to 5 percent ultraviolet. At the top of the atmosphere, sunlight is about 30% more intense, having about 8% ultraviolet, with most of the extra UV consisting of biologically damaging short-wave ultraviolet.
Direct sunlight has a luminous efficacy of about 93 lumens per watt of radiant flux. Multiplying the figure of 1050 watts per square metre by 93 lumens per watt indicates that bright sunlight provides an illuminance of 98 000 lux on a perpendicular surface at sea level; the illumination of a horizontal surface will be less than this if the Sun is not high in the sky. Averaged over a day, the highest amount of sunlight on a horizontal surface occurs in January at the South Pole. Dividing the irradiance of 1050 W/m2 by the size of the Sun's disk in steradians gives an average radiance of 15.4 MW per square metre per steradian. Multiplying this by π gives an upper limit to the irradiance which can be focused on a surface using mirrors: 48.5 MW/m2. The spectrum of the Sun's solar radiation is close to that of a black body with a temperature of about 5,800 K; the Sun emits EM radiation across most of the electromagnetic spectrum. Although the Sun produces gamma rays as a result of the nuclear-fusion process, internal absorption and thermalization convert these super-high-energy photons to lower-energy photons before they reach the Sun's surface and are emitted out into space.
As a result, the Sun does not emit gamma rays from this process, but it does emit gamma rays from solar flares. The Sun emits X-rays, vis
India known as the Republic of India, is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh largest country by area and with more than 1.3 billion people, it is the second most populous country as well as the most populous democracy in the world. Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the southwest, the Bay of Bengal on the southeast, it shares land borders with Pakistan to the west. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka and the Maldives, while its Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime border with Thailand and Indonesia; the Indian subcontinent was home to the urban Indus Valley Civilisation of the 3rd millennium BCE. In the following millennium, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism began to be composed. Social stratification, based on caste, emerged in the first millennium BCE, Buddhism and Jainism arose. Early political consolidations took place under the Gupta empires. In the medieval era, Zoroastrianism and Islam arrived, Sikhism emerged, all adding to the region's diverse culture.
Much of the north fell to the Delhi Sultanate. The economy expanded in the 17th century in the Mughal Empire. In the mid-18th century, the subcontinent came under British East India Company rule, in the mid-19th under British Crown rule. A nationalist movement emerged in the late 19th century, which under Mahatma Gandhi, was noted for nonviolent resistance and led to India's independence in 1947. In 2017, the Indian economy was the world's sixth largest by nominal GDP and third largest by purchasing power parity. Following market-based economic reforms in 1991, India became one of the fastest-growing major economies and is considered a newly industrialised country. However, it continues to face the challenges of poverty, corruption and inadequate public healthcare. A nuclear weapons state and regional power, it has the second largest standing army in the world and ranks fifth in military expenditure among nations. India is a federal republic governed under a parliamentary system and consists of 29 states and 7 union territories.
A pluralistic and multi-ethnic society, it is home to a diversity of wildlife in a variety of protected habitats. The name India is derived from Indus, which originates from the Old Persian word Hindush, equivalent to the Sanskrit word Sindhu, the historical local appellation for the Indus River; the ancient Greeks referred to the Indians as Indoi, which translates as "The people of the Indus". The geographical term Bharat, recognised by the Constitution of India as an official name for the country, is used by many Indian languages in its variations, it is a modernisation of the historical name Bharatavarsha, which traditionally referred to the Indian subcontinent and gained increasing currency from the mid-19th century as a native name for India. Hindustan is a Middle Persian name for India, it was introduced into India by the Mughals and used since then. Its meaning varied, referring to a region that encompassed northern India and Pakistan or India in its entirety; the name may refer to either the northern part of India or the entire country.
The earliest known human remains in South Asia date to about 30,000 years ago. Nearly contemporaneous human rock art sites have been found in many parts of the Indian subcontinent, including at the Bhimbetka rock shelters in Madhya Pradesh. After 6500 BCE, evidence for domestication of food crops and animals, construction of permanent structures, storage of agricultural surplus, appeared in Mehrgarh and other sites in what is now Balochistan; these developed into the Indus Valley Civilisation, the first urban culture in South Asia, which flourished during 2500–1900 BCE in what is now Pakistan and western India. Centred around cities such as Mohenjo-daro, Harappa and Kalibangan, relying on varied forms of subsistence, the civilization engaged robustly in crafts production and wide-ranging trade. During the period 2000–500 BCE, many regions of the subcontinent transitioned from the Chalcolithic cultures to the Iron Age ones; the Vedas, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism, were composed during this period, historians have analysed these to posit a Vedic culture in the Punjab region and the upper Gangetic Plain.
Most historians consider this period to have encompassed several waves of Indo-Aryan migration into the subcontinent from the north-west. The caste system, which created a hierarchy of priests and free peasants, but which excluded indigenous peoples by labeling their occupations impure, arose during this period. On the Deccan Plateau, archaeological evidence from this period suggests the existence of a chiefdom stage of political organisation. In South India, a progression to sedentary life is indicated by the large number of megalithic monuments dating from this period, as well as by nearby traces of agriculture, irrigation tanks, craft traditions. In the late Vedic period, around the 6th century BCE, the small states and chiefdoms of the Ganges Plain and the north-western regions had consolidated into 16 major oligarchies and monarchies that were known as the mahajanapadas; the emerging urbanisation gave rise to non-Vedic religious movements, two of which became independent religions. Jainism came into prominence during the life of Mahavira.
Buddhism, based on the teachings of Gautama Buddha, attracted followers from all social classes excepting the middle
Jagannath Temple, Puri
The Shree Jagannath Temple of Puri is an important Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Jagannath, a form of lord Maha Vishnu, located on the eastern coast of India, at Puri in the state of Odisha. The temple is an important pilgrimage destination The present temple was rebuilt from the 10th century onwards, on the site of an earlier temple, begun by King Anantavarman Chodaganga Deva, first of the Eastern Ganga dynasty; the Puri temple is famous for its annual Ratha yatra, or chariot festival, in which the three principal deities are pulled on huge and elaborately decorated temple cars. These gave their name to the English term Juggernaut. Unlike the stone and metal icons found in most Hindu temples, the image of Jagannath is made of wood and is ceremoniously replaced every twelve or nineteen years by an exact replica; the temple is sacred to all Hindus and in those of the Vaishnava traditions. Many great saints, such as Ramananda and Ramanuja were associated with the temple. Ramanuja established the Emar Mutt near the temple and the Govardhan Mutt, the seat of one of the four Shankaracharyas.
It is of particular significance to the followers of the Gaudiya Vaishnavism whose founder Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, was attracted to the deity and lived in Puri for many years. The temple was built by the Ganga dynasty king Anantavarman Chodaganga in the 12th century CE, as suggested by the Kendupatna copper-plate inscription of his descendant Narasimhadeva II. Anantavarman was a Shaivite, became a Vaishnavite sometime after he conquered the Utkala region in 1112 CE. A 1134-1135 CE inscription records his donation to the temple. Therefore, the temple construction must have started sometime after 1112 CE. According to a story in the temple chronicles, it was founded by Anangabhima-deva II: different chronicles variously mention the year of construction as 1196, 1197, 1205, 1216, or 1226; this suggests that the temple's construction was completed or that the temple was renovated during the reign of Anantavarman's son Anangabhima. The temple complex was further developed during the reigns of the subsequent kings, including those of the Ganga dynasty and the Suryvamshi dynasty.
Jagannath and Subhadra are a trio of deities worshipped at the temple. The inner sanctum of the temple contains statues of these three Gods carved from sacred neem logs known as daru sitting on the bejewelled platform or ratnabedi, along with statues of Sudarshana Chakra, Madanmohan and Vishwadhatri; the deities are adorned with different clothing and jewels according to the season. Worship of these deities pre-dates the building of the temple and may have originated in an ancient tribal shrine. According to legend, the construction of the first Jagannath temple was commissioned by King Indradyumna, son of Bharata and Sunanda, a Malava king, mentioned in the Mahabharata and the Puranas; the legendary account as found in the Skanda-Purana, Brahma Purana and other Puranas and Odia works state that Lord Jagannath was worshipped as Lord Neela Madhaba by a Savar king named Viswavasu. Having heard about the deity, King Indradyumna sent a Brahmin priest, Vidyapati to locate the deity, worshipped secretly in a dense forest by Viswavasu.
Vidyapati could not locate the place. But at last he managed to marry Viswavasu's daughter Lalita. At repeated request of Vidyapti, Viswavasu took his son-in-law blind folded to a cave where Lord Neela Madhaba was worshipped. Vidyapati was intelligent, he dropped mustard seeds on the ground on the way. The seeds germinated after a few days, which enabled him to find out the cave on. On hearing from him, King Indradyumna proceeded to Odra desha on a pilgrimage to see and worship the Deity, but the deity had disappeared. The king was disappointed; the Deity was hidden in sand. The king was determined not to return without having a darshan of the deity and observed fast unto death at Mount Neela, Then a celestial voice cried'thou shalt see him.' Afterward, the king built a magnificent temple for Vishnu. Sri Narasimha Murti brought by Narada was installed in the temple. During sleep, the king had a vision of Lord Jagannath. An astral voice directed him to receive the fragrant tree on the seashore and make idols out of it.
Accordingly, the king got the image of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra and Chakra Sudarshan made out of the wood of the divine tree and installed them in the temple. Indradyumna's prayer to Lord Brahma King Indradyumna put up for Jagannath the tallest monument of the world, it was 1,000 cubits high. He invited the cosmic creator, consecrate the temple and the images. Brahma came all the way from Heaven for this purpose. Seeing the temple he was immensely pleased with him. Brahma asked Indradyumna as to in what way can he fulfill the king's desire, since was much pleased with him for his having put the most beautiful Temple for Lord Vishnu. With folded hands, Indradyumna said, "My Lord if you are pleased with me, kindly bless me with one thing, it is that I should be issueless and that I should be the last member of my family." In case anybody left alive after him, he would only take pride as the owner of the temple and would not work for the society. The traditional story concerning the origins of the Lord Jagannath temple is that here the original image of Jagannath at the end of Treta yuga manifested near a banyan tree, near seashore in the form of an Indranila mani or the Blue Jewel.
It was so dazzling that it could grant instant moksha, so the God Dharma or Yama wanted to hide it in the earth and was successful. In Dvapara Yuga King Indradyumna of Malwa wanted to find th
In religion, a blessing is the infusion of something with holiness, spiritual redemption, or divine will. The modern English language term bless derives from the 1225 term blessen, which developed from the Old English blǣdsian; the term appears in other forms, such as blēdsian, blētsian from around 725 and blesian from around 1000, all meaning to make sacred or holy by a sacrificial custom in the Anglo-Saxon pagan period, originating in Germanic paganism. Due to this, the term is related to the term blōd. References to this indigenous practice, Blót, exist in related Icelandic sources; the modern meaning of the term may have been influenced in translations of the Bible into Old English during the process of Christianization to translate the Latin term benedīcere meaning to "speak well of", resulting in meanings such as to "praise" or "extol" or to speak of or to wish well.'To be blessed' means to be favored by God, the source of all blessing. Blessings, are directly associated with, are believed to come from, God.
Thus, to express a blessing is like bestowing a wish on someone that they experience the favor of God, to acknowledge God as the source of all blessing. A biblical damnation, in its most formal sense, is a negative blessing. In the Bible and negative blessings are related. One of the first incidences of blessing in the Bible is in Genesis, 12:1-2 where Abram is ordered by the God to leave his country and is told: "I will bless you, I will make your name great." The Priestly Blessing is set forth at Numbers 6:24-26: May Adonai bless you, guard you. In Rabbinic Judaism, a blessing is recited at a specified moment during a prayer, ceremony or other activity before and after partaking of food; the function of blessings is to acknowledge God as the source of all blessing. A berakhah of rabbinic origin starts with the words, "Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe..." Rabbinic Judaism teaches that food is a gift of the one great Provider and that to partake of food legitimately one should express gratitude to God by reciting the appropriate blessing of rabbinic origin prior, while torah mandates an informal blessing afterwards.
Jewish law does not reserve recitation of blessings to only a specific class of Jews. Blessings and curses of Christ appear in the New Testament, as recounted in the Beatitudes of Luke 6:20-22. Within Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, Anglicanism and similar traditions, formal blessings of the church are performed by bishops and deacons. Particular formulas may be associated with papal blessings. In Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox and Lutheran churches blessings are bestowed by bishops and priests in a liturgical context, raising their right hand and making the sign of the cross with it over persons or objects to be blessed, they give blessings to begin divine services and at the dismissal at the end. In the Eastern Orthodox Church liturgical blessings are performed over people, objects, or are given at specific points during divine services. A priest or bishop blesses with his hand, but may use a blessing cross, candles, an icon, the Chalice or Gospel Book to bestow blessings, always making the Sign of the Cross therewith.
When blessing with the hand, a priest uses his right hand, holding his fingers so that they form the Greek letters IC XC, the monogram of Jesus Christ. A bishop does the same, except he uses both hands, or may hold the crozier in his left hand, using both to make the Sign of the Cross. A bishop may bless with special candlesticks known as the dikirion and trikirion; when blessing an object, the rubrics instruct Orthodox bishops and priests to make use of such substances as incense and holy water. Formal ecclesiastical permission to undertake an action is referred to as a "blessing"; the blessing may be bestowed by one's own spiritual father. When an Orthodox layperson bestows a blessing, he or she will hold the thumb and first two fingers of the right hand together, make the sign of the cross over the person or object they are blessing. In the Methodist tradition, the minister blesses the congregation during the concluding part of the service of worship, known as the benediction. With regard to house blessings, the Methodist The Book of Worship for Church and Home contains "An Office for the Blessing of a Dwelling".
In the Roman Catholic Church a priest or bishop blesses the faithful with the Blessed Sacrament in the monstrance during Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. According to the guidelines given by the Vatican's Congregation for the Discipline of the Sacraments that govern the procedures for liturgical ceremonies, if a Roman Catholic layperson or any non-ordained religious leads a Sunday service, such as Eucharistic adoration, the Rosary, or celebration of the Liturgy of the Hours, he or she does not perform rites or sacraments reserved to the clergy and does not solemnly bless the people as a bishop, priest, or de
A Hindu temple is a symbolic house and body of god. It is a structure designed to bring human beings and gods together, using symbolism to express the ideas and beliefs of Hinduism; the symbolism and structure of a Hindu temple are rooted in Vedic traditions, deploying circles and squares. It represents recursion and equivalence of the macrocosm and the microcosm by astronomical numbers, by "specific alignments related to the geography of the place and the presumed linkages of the deity and the patron". A temple incorporates all elements of Hindu cosmos—presenting the good, the evil and the human, as well as the elements of Hindu sense of cyclic time and the essence of life—symbolically presenting dharma, artha and karma; the spiritual principles symbolically represented in Hindu temples are given in the ancient Sanskrit texts of India, while their structural rules are described in various ancient Sanskrit treatises on architecture. The layout, the motifs, the plan and the building process recite ancient rituals, geometric symbolisms, reflect beliefs and values innate within various schools of Hinduism.
A Hindu temple is a spiritual destination for many Hindus, as well as landmarks around which ancient arts, community celebrations and economy have flourished. Hindu temples come in many styles, are situated in diverse locations, deploy different construction methods and are adapted to different deities and regional beliefs, yet all of them share certain core ideas and themes, they are found in South Asia India and Nepal, in southeast Asian countries such as Sri Lanka, Cambodia and islands of Indonesia and Malaysia, countries such as Canada, the Caribbean, France, Kenya, the Netherlands, South Africa, Tanzania and Tobago, the United Kingdom, the United States, countries with a significant Hindu community. The current state and outer appearance of Hindu temples reflect arts and designs as they evolved over two millennia; the Swaminarayanan Akshardham in Robbinsville, New Jersey, United States, between the New York and Philadelphia metropolitan areas, was inaugurated in 2014 as one of the world's largest Hindu temples.
A Hindu temple reflects a synthesis of arts, the ideals of dharma, beliefs and the way of life cherished under Hinduism. It is a link between man and the Universal Purusa in a sacred space, it represents the triple-knowledge of the Vedic vision by mapping the relationships between the cosmos and the cell by a unique plan, based on astronomical numbers. Subhash Kak sees the temple form and its iconography to be a natural expansion of Vedic ideology related to recursion and equivalence. In ancient Indian texts, a temple is a place for Tirtha – pilgrimage, it is a sacred site whose ambience and design attempts to symbolically condense the ideal tenets of Hindu way of life. All the cosmic elements that create and sustain life are present in a Hindu temple – from fire to water, from images of nature to deities, from the feminine to the masculine, from the fleeting sounds and incense smells to the eternal nothingness yet universality at the core of the temple. Susan Lewandowski states that the underlying principle in a Hindu temple is built around the belief that all things are one, everything is connected.
The pilgrim is welcomed through 64-grid or 81-grid mathematically structured spaces, a network of art, pillars with carvings and statues that display and celebrate the four important and necessary principles of human life – the pursuit of artha, the pursuit of kama, the pursuit of dharma and the pursuit of moksha. At the center of the temple below and sometimes above or next to the deity, is mere hollow space with no decoration, symbolically representing Purusa, the Supreme Principle, the sacred Universal, one without form, present everywhere, connects everything, is the essence of everyone. A Hindu temple is meant to encourage reflection, facilitate purification of one’s mind, trigger the process of inner realization within the devotee; the specific process is left to the devotee’s school of belief. The primary deity of different Hindu temples varies to reflect this spiritual spectrum. In Hindu tradition, there is no dividing line between the lonely sacred. In the same spirit, Hindu temples are not just sacred spaces, they are secular spaces.
Their meaning and purpose have extended beyond spiritual life to social rituals and daily life, offering thus a social meaning. Some temples have served as a venue to mark festivals, to celebrate arts through dance and music, to get married or commemorate marriages, commemorate the birth of a child, other significant life events, or mark the death of a loved one. In political and economic life, Hindu temples have served as a venue for the succession within dynasties and landmarks around which economic activity thrived. All Hindu temples take two forms: a house or a palace. A house-themed temple is a simple shelter; the temple is a place where the devotee visits, just like he or she would visit a friend or relative. The use of moveable and immoveable images is mentioned by Pāṇini. In Bhakti school of Hinduism, temples are venues for puja, a hospitality ritual, where the deity is honored, where devotee calls upon, attends to and connects with the deity. In other schools of Hinduism, the person may perform jap, or meditation, or yoga, or introspection in his or her temple.