Vrindavan, 2018.01.28 (VT) Due to a lunar eclipse on Wednesday 31st January, many temples and businesses in Vrindavan will remain closed. The manager of Banke Bihari temple said that the temple will open in the morning but will remain closed after 8am.
The manager of Banke Bihari, Manish Kumar Sharma, informed that the temple will open at 5am and Sringar Aarati will be held at 5.15am, after which Rajbhog will be offered. Darshan will be closed from 6am until 6.45. Shayan Aarati will be held at 7.55am; darshan will be closed from 8am and will reopen on the morning of 1st February.
Eclipses are considered both inauspicious and a powerful time for spiritual practice. Many devotees take full advantage of the eclipse by fasting and singing kirtan. In Vrindavan, the eclipse begins to occur partially from 7.04 am. The full phase of the eclipse is between 6.21pm and 7.37pm. Fasting ends at 8.41pm.
The Puranas trace the origin of eclipses to the churning of the oceans, during which the demon Svarbhānu tried to drink the elixir through deception. Since a few drops of the elixir entered their bodies, they partially survived and became part of the planetary system as Rahu and Ketu. Astrologically, Rahu and Ketu are represented by the North and South lunar nodes – when the Sun and moon cross these points, eclipses take place. Historians believe that the fear of the evil influences at the time of eclipses inspired early astronomers to refine their ability to predict when eclipses would take place.
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