Sri Venkateswara Swami vari Brahmotsavam or Srivari Brahmotsavam
One of the most important annual attractions at the Sri Venkateswara Temple in Tirumala-Tirupati of Chittoor District in Andhra Pradesh, India is the Sri Venkateswara Swami vari Brahmotsavam or Srivari Brahmotsavam. It is nine days long event celebrated between September and October, during the Hindu Calendar month of Asvina. During the celebrations, the idol of Lord Venkateswara, along with his consorts Sridevi and Bhudevi, will be taken on a procession on different Vahanams on the streets surrounding the temple.
Why is Srivari Brahmotsavam celebrated
Lord Brahma, the creator first conducted this festival to worship Lord Venkateswara on the banks of the holy Swami Pushkarini in Tirupati thanking him for protecting the mankind, hence the name Brahmotsavam.
Celebrations of the Festival
Falling parallel to the Navaratri and Dussehra festival, Brahmotsava is performed over a nine-day period in the beginning of Āśvina Masa as per the Hindu Lunar Calendar. An evening before the commencement of this nine-day festival, the rite of “Ankurarpana” (sowing of the seeds to signify fertility, prosperity, and abundance) is performed along with a festival for Vishvaksena who is the leader of Narayana’s retinue, responsible for removing obstacles and protects worship. “Dwajarohana,” is the main activity on the first day which is carried out by hoisting of the Garuda flag at the Dhvajastambham; marking the commencement of the Brahmotsava. It is believed that Garuda goes to Devalokam and invites the Devas to attend the function. The other days of the festival involve daily chanting and procession of the utsava-murti on different Vahanas on mada streets(roads surrounding the Temple). Each evening the itsava-murtis of the idols are decorated with different alankarams (jewelry and accessories). The concluding day is the Janma Nakshatra (birth star) of Sri Venkateswara, which is celebrated in a grand way with Avabhritha Utsava where special abhishekams for the utsava murti are performed. In Tirupati, the Sudarshana Chakra is bathed in the Swami Pushkarini and all the devotees bathe along with the Chakra. In Aurora, a priest takes the Sudarshana Chakra on his head and takes a holy bath in Swami Pushkarini. Afterward, the Chakra is placed on a high platform, so the devotees can walk under it and be blessed with the water dripping down from the Sudarsana. The celebrations are witnessed by devotees and tourists from all across the world while they enjoy a comfortable stay in the various hotels in Tirupati. The celebration officially concludes with “Dhvajavarohanam,” the lowering of the Garuda flag. The priests pay respects to Gods and Sages with the chanting of Vedic mantras and see them off on their return to the Devaloka.