I recently read about “Kuber kolam”, which is a kind of floor painting or rangoli done to please Lord Kuber.
Kuber is regarded as the god of wealth in Hindu mythology. Lord Kubera is also known as the God of yakshas (savage beings). Kubera is always remembered with the goddess of
fortune, Lakshmi. Lakshmi Kuber pooja is done on Diwali for prosperity.
It is believed that Chanting the Kuber Mantra blesses the worshipper with money and prosperity by drawing new avenues and sources of income and wealth. Mantra of Kubera helps to increase the flow of funds and the ability to accumulate wealth. It is said that One who worships lord Kubera and Goddess Lakshmi, can never fall short of money and material comforts. Auspicious dates to worship Lord Kubera is between Oct 15th to Nov 15th each year. Tuesdays and Fridays are the most auspicious days to draw the Kuber Kolam and worship Lord Kuber.
I managed to get myself an idol of him from e bay some days after I drew the Kolam. He looks quite like your friendly Laughing Buddha with his pot belly. His face has quite a stern look though, as I would imagine anyone guarding massive wealth would have on their face. (I hope I’m not offending him! God knows I cant afford to!)
I read several articles and decided I should try drawing the Kolam myself. So on a Friday alongwith my regular little prayer ritual I drew the Kolam with rice flour. I wrote the numbers as required and placed a coin in each square. The value of the coin should face the number in the square. I applied kumkum on each coin and placed some flower petals on each coin. Ideally red flowers should be used but I didn’t have any on hand. Then after lighting the lamp and burning incense, I prayed that I may be forgiven if I have not done everything as it should be done. I expressed gratitude for everything, all the goodness my life already offers and then chanted the a Mantra 11 times.
“Om Shreem Om Hreem Shreem Hreem Kleem Shreem Kleem Vitteswaraay Namah"
Meanings: Shreem for Lakshmi (love, beauty, health, prosperity), Hreem for Great Goddess/Sun (illumination/dispel illusion), kleem for Kama/Krishna (love and fulfiller of desires from material to moksha, where your intention is) and Vitteswaraay (Kubera) Lord Kuber, the lord of riches and wealth.
Once the this is done, the coins can be kept safe for the next time it is to be used.
For the longest time I had stopped lighting the lamp and spending some time in prayer. I grew up watching my mother remembering God in her casual conversations but never lighting the lamp at the altar at home so I guess I followed the same. Its only recently in a desperate attempt to be free of the worries that were getting to me, that I cleaned the dusty little temple and all the idols in it. I lit the lamp, prayed for a while and felt a sense of peace descend upon me.
To each his own, I say. Sometimes instead of questioning why as a Hindu I have a multitude of Gods I can pray to, I just like to surrender thoughtlessly. I find peace in some rituals.
No matter which religion you follow, what rituals you do, FAITH is all that matters.