Saturday, September 04, 2021

GHANTA - The Ritual Bell



Adapted from Sanskrit Magazine (with changes):
The Ghanta or temple bell is extraordinary. The bell and/or clapper may be panchaloha (panchadhatu) or gold, silver, copper, zinc / brass and meteoric iron, with perhaps cadmium, lead, nickel, chromium or manganese. The scientific mix of proportions produces a distinct sound unifying the left & right brain. The instant you ring the bell, it generates a sharp and lasting sound - minimum seven seconds of echo to touch your seven healing centers or chakras.

The moment the bell sounds your brain is emptied of all thoughts. You enter a trance state: receptive and aware. You are normally so occupied in mind that only way to awaken you is with a Shock! And trust me Bell works as Antidote to your mind.

Before you enter temple – to awake you and prepare you for taste of awareness is the real reason behind temple bell. In other words “it helps to ring to wake yourself Up!” . To an extent Fragrant generators, Low light lamps all form Ecosystem to create awareness.

Bell or Ghanta is an indispensable part in most Hindu pujas. Ghanta is sounded before the actual puja and worship begins. A well-designed Ghanta or bell produce long strains of the sound ‘OM.’ 

A bell is rung in a Hindu temple, during the waving of light in front of the deity, while bathing the deity and while offering food. Hindu devotees on entering the temple also hit the ghanta hung in front of the sanctum sanctorum.

The most widespread belief is that the ghanta is sounded to invite the deity to accept the worship and prayers. Another belief is that it is to drive away the evil forces.

The sound made from a well-designed Ghanta is uninterrupted, reverberating, deep and sonorous.

Symbolically, the body of the bell represents time – Ananta. The tongue of the bell symbolically represents Goddess Saraswathi. The handle of the Ghanta is considered to be the vital principle (Prana Shakti) and symbolically represents Hanuman, Garuda, Nandi or Chakra.

Even while doing the ritualistic aarati, we ring the bell. It is sometimes accompanied by the auspicious sounds of the conch and other musical instruments. An added significance of ringing the bell, conch and other instruments is that they mask irrelevant noise that might disturb or distract the worshiper from devotion, concentration, and inner peace.

Start daily rituali puja (worship). Ring the bell, chanting:
Aagamaarthamtu devaanaam
gamanaarthamtu rakshasaam
Kurve ghantaaravam tatra
devataahvaahna lakshanam
Translation:
This bell ring invokes GOD. Virtuous & noble forces welcome - NOW oust ignorance & every darkness.



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