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Tirumala Srivari Annual Brahmotsavam Schedule - 2017

Dussehra Navaratri is one of the most important Hindu festivals that is celebrated for a continuous period of 9 days (actually 9 nights) from the next day of Mahalaya Amavasya.  Mostly the festival falls in the months of Sept / Oct and is celebrated in different ways in different regions.

In Tirumala, the annual Brahmotsavams of Lord Venkateswara is celebrated during Dussehra. During these days, Malayappa Swamy - the Utsava Vigraham i.e the small festival idol of Lord Venkateswara is placed in different Vahanas (vehicles) and is taken in a big procession across the Mada Veedhulu i.e the temple streets. Tirumala is heavily crowded with devotees who throng from all over the world to witness the grand festival of Lord Venkateswara.

Schedule of Srivari Annual Brahmotsavam - 2017

Sept 22 (Friday) - Ankuraarpana
Annual Brahmotsavam begins with Dhwajarohana i.e the hoisting of Garudadhwaja marks the beginning of the festival celebrations. In the evening, on the previous day of Dhwajarohana, Lord Viswakshena (Ganesha) along with his consorts Sootravati and Jayadevi, perform Bhoomipuja i.e worship Mother Earth. These are taken in a grand procession and enter the temple premises. On entering into the temple, Bhoomipuja is performed in the South-Western side of the temple and soil is then collected. In the night, Ankuraarpana for Brahmotsavalu is done with the sowing of 'navadhanyalu' (9 different types of cereals) in the collected soil.

You can watch the festive events live on TTD's SVBC channel.

Sept 23  - Saturday

Morning - Dhwajarohana
Dhwajarohanam is celebrated by hoisting Garudadhwaja (flag with an emblem of black Garuda - the celestial vehicle of Lord Vishnu) at the Alaya Dhwaja Stambham. This event marks the beginning of Srivari Brahmotsavalu when Lord Venkateswara is taken in grand procession in the mornings and evenings in different vehicles i.e vahana on each of the 9 days during the Dussehra festival.

Evening - Pedda Sesha Vahanam
As the Divine serpent with 1000 hoods, Adiseshu serves as mattress for Lord Vishnu, the honor of serving / carrying the Lord during Brahmotsavam is conferred first upon Adiseshu. Malayappa Swamy - the Utsava Vigraham (idol) of Lord Venkateswara is seated on a gold plated vehicle shaped in the form of Adiseshu which is known as Pedda Sesha Vahanam. Malayappa Swamy seated on the huge serpent shaped vehicle is taken in a grand procession round the Mada Vedhulu i.e the main streets round the main temple. It is believed that Tirumala Hills are the manifestation of Adi Seshu and the aerial view of the 7 hills appear to be twined in the form of a serpent. It is believed that devotees who witness this seva / uregimpu i.e procession, will gain knowledge.

Sept 24 - Sunday

Morning - Chinna Sesha Vahanam
Vasuki who is believed to be the younger brother of Adi Seshu, carries Malayappa Swamy which is known as Chinna Sesha Vahanam. Vasuki was used as a rope twined around Mt Manthan during the churning of Milky Ocean i.e Ksheera Sagara Mathanam. Chinna Sesha Vahanam is smaller than the Pedda Sesha Vahanam is a silver plated one.

Evening - Hamsa Vahanam
The deities are taken to the Uyyala Mandapam for Unjala Seva. From here, Malayappa Swamy dressed as Goddess Saraswati is seated in the gold plated Hamsa Vahanam and taken in a grand procession round the Mada Veedhulu. Hamsa i.e swan is signifies purity as it capable of distinguishing good from bad i.e takes pure milk and discards the watery content. Devotees who witness the procession gain self-realization.

Sept 25 - Monday

Morning - Simha Vahanam
Malayappa Swamy is taken in a grand procession on a gold plated lion shaped vehicle i.e Simha Vahanam. The ferocious lion is humbled down as a mewing cat in front of Lord Venkateswara. It signifies the equality of all creatures - no one is superior to the other - all His creatures are equal.

Evening - Mutyala Pandiri Vahanam
The spectacular procession in Brahmotsavam is the Mutyala Pandiri Vahanam. After Unjala Seva, Malayappa Swamy accompanied with His consorts - Sridevi and Bhoodevi - is carried in a vehicle beautifully decorated with original pearls (i.e mutyalu in Telugu). The spectacular procession is worth watching and it gives a feeling of pureness as pearls symbolize purity. Devotees get mesmerized on witnessing the procession of Mutyala Pandiri Vahanam.
Courtesy: Wikipedia

Sept 26 - Tuesday

Morning - Kalpa Vriksha Vahanam
In Hinduism, Kalpa Vriksham is believed to be the celestial tree that fulfills one's wishes. Malayappa Swamy is taken in a grand procession seated in the gold plated vehicle that is designed in the shape of Kalpa Vriksham. 

Evening - Sarva Bhoopala Vahanam
Sri Hari i.e Lord Venkateswara is believed to be the Lord of the Universe. All the earthly kings and emperors (sarva bhoopala) are transformed into vehicle to carry the Lord of the Universe. This signifies the supremacy of God over all beings.

Sept 27 - Wednesday

Morning - Mohini Avataram
On this special day, Malayappa Swamy is dressed as Mohini and is taken in a procession in an ivory palanquin (pallaki). Lord Vishnu took the form of a beautiful lady named Mohini to get back the divine nectar (Amritham) from the demons (danavasa) when it was extracted from the depths of the ocean during ksheerasagara madhanam i.e churning of the milky ocean. The idol of Lord Krishna with butter in hand is also seated in the palanquin. This particular procession directly starts from the temple.

Evening - Garuda Vahanam
Garuda is the Divine Eagle and the vehicle of Lord Vishnu. His service to the Lord is commendable. Hence He is honored to serve Malayappa Swamy during annual Brahmotsavam by carrying Him. The vehicle is designed in the shape of Garuda.

Sept 28 - Thursday

Morning - Hanumad Vahanam
Lord Hanuman known for His selfless service to Lord Rama and His surrendered devotion to the Lord. No one can replace His devotion. Hence Hanuman, in the form of vehicle, is honored to carry Malayappa Swamy on His shoulders.

Evening - Gaja Vahanam
Vasantotsavam (i.e colorful spring festival) is celebrated in Unjala Mandapam. After this utsavam,
the deities are mounted on a gold elephant shaped vehicle. The Lord on Gaja Vahanam is then taken in a grand procession round the Mada Veedhulu. Elephant has a special place in Hindu temples and it is considered height of glory when mounted on an elephant.

Sept 29 - Friday

Morning - Surya Prabha Vahanam
Sun (i.e Surya) is considered 'Pratyaksha Daivam' i.e the Visible God who is the ultimate source of energy on Earth. Malayappa Swamy with a Gold Aura behind His head is taken on a ride in a gold plated Sun chariot driven by 7 gold horses.

Evening - Chandra Prabha Vahanam
After Unjala Seva, the deities are taken on a procession in the moon-shaped chariot round the four streets. Malayappa Swamy with a Silver Aura behind His head is seated in the Chandra Prabha Vahanam.

Sept 30 - Saturday

Morning - Rathotsavam
Malayappa Swamy is taken in a grand procession in a beautifully decorated gold chariot i.e ratham. The devotees get an opportunity to serve the Lord by pulling the chariot when the entire area reverberates with the chant 'Govinda Govinda'!

Evening - Ashwa Vahanam
On the last day of Brahmotsavam, Malayappa Swamy is taken out on a grand procession in the Mada Veedhulu in a chariot with gold horse (ashwam) pulling the vehicle. Horses symbolize great strength and energy.

Oct 1st - Sunday

Morning - Chakrasnanam
Chakrasnanam is the event on the final day of Srivari Brahmotsavam. Abhishekam is performed to Malayappa Swamy along with both His consorts and with Chakratthaalwar i.e Sudarsana Chakram (the divine disc of Lord Vishnu), at Varaha Swamy temple near Pushkarini i.e the Holy Tank. These idols are then dipped or given a bath in the Pushkarini (lake) waters.

Evening - Dhwaja Avarohanam
After the events / sevas to Srivaru (Lord) for 9 continuous days in the mornings and evenings, Srivari Brahmotsavalu culminates on 10th day night with Dhwajaavarohana in the night which marks the end of Brahmotsavalu - the festive celebrations at Tirumala.

Tirumala is heavily crowded with devotees from all corners of the country. Many dance troupes from different regions of the country perform regional dances in the Thiru Mada Veedhulu and show their devotion to the Lord.