Different Styles of performing the Salagram seva puja
........latest update 25th February2015



(HARI BHAKTI VILASA 8/503 from SKANDA PURANA Yamaraja instructs his messengers)

 "When someone worships the Supreme Lord in the temple, he must follow rules and regulations properly,
but when he worships the Lord in his house, he can worship as he likes, but he should not break his vows."
(from our page on Hari Bhakti Vilas and Japanga seva & Bhaktyanga seva puja)

Below are a few examples of how different devotees serve the Lord according to their capacity, etc.

The late Sriman Vishvambara Goswami of Sri Sri Radha Raman temple in Vrindavan,
father of Sriman Padma Nabha Goswami compiler of the very nice book on Shalagrams

The worship - seva pujan of the Salagram in a typical Madhwa Vaishnava home

Worshipping the Salagrams in the Sripadiraj mutt of the Madhwas

Sripad Puttige Swami of the Madhwa Vaishnava line serving the mutt Deities, the Salagrams are on the bottom shelf of the pith.

Sripad Satyatma Tirtha Swami of Uttaradi mutt of the Madhwas'

Chaturmasya puja 2012

Sripad Satyatma Tirtha Swami of Uttaradi mutt engrossed in the seva puja


Chaturmasya puja 2012 - 96 pics

His Holiness Vishveshwar Tirtha Swami (Senior Pejwar Swami) doing the pujas

His Holiness Vishveshwar Tirtha Swami (Senior Pejwar Swami) doing the pujas

Aradhanam being performed at the Ahobalam mutt of the (Tengalite) Sri Vaishnava sampradaya in Andra Pradhesh - note the Salagrams in the middle at the front in the snan vedi. This system has been going on for hundreds of years in this way. Salagrams middle left of the snan vedi.

For a full rendition of the Sri Vaishnavaite Thiruvaradhanam seva pujan click HERE:
Here you will also find shastric presentations - realizations from a Sri Vaishnava perspective

Poojya Sri V V Sridhar Guruji http://picasaweb.google.com/jwalas/KurmaNarayana

Poojya Sri V V Sridhar Guruji with his silas at Ahobilam-2003 he is a Srivaishnava of the Vadagalai persuasion


Here below we see much the same style of seva being performed by some Iskcon devotees:

Jananirvas prabhu ACBSP  bathing the Silas in public using among other items a coconut daab

see the intensity of the children's watching the bathing............

bathing with a sahasra dharu shower


Akinchana Nitai dasa preparing for abhisekha

with his Silas sitting in the bathing tray

bathing Nrisingha shila

drying ready to place back on the altar

Matsya Avatara prabhu in Sydney Australia.

Trivikrama dasa drying his Govardhan Sila during the puja at home

His Holiness (the late) Suhotra Tapa Gauravanacharin (Suhotra swami) doing the seva puja for his Silas whilst travelling

here's a link to Suhotra maharaj's detailed seva pujan

His Holiness Indradyumna Swami 2005

Jaya Tirtha Charan dasa at his altar April 2006 - photo by Bhakta Andre Wagner

Jaya Tirtha Charan dasa putting tilak on Pavana Nrsimha - photo by Bhakta Andre Wagner

Baladev Vidyabhushana prabhu performing his puja

Hari Prasad Kemka in Benares (Varanasi) serving the 65,000 silas in his care.

Sri Vidyabhushana in his early morning puja to his beloved Lakshmi Narasimha!!!

His Holiness Sri Sri 1008 Sri Vidyadheesha Theertha Swamiji of Palimaru Matha.

Shesha kunkdali also called Eka chakra Narayana Salagrama - Palimaru Matha

Very Old Salagrama Silas of Parasara Bhattar family in Srirangam

Very Old Salagrama Silas of Parasara Bhattar family in Srirangam

Salagramas of the Annan Kovil Temple in Sri Rangam

Here you see Annan Koil Swamy holding the beautiful Salagramas on a silver plate. They are very unique, ancient and one can see how they are polished
by the worship done by devotees over the last few hundred's centuries. One of this Silas, is a carved like dancing Krishna. See for your self!

Divya Aloukika Salagrama Sannidhi

Photo courtesy from UTTARADIMATH & SRI SATYATMA TIRTHA SWAMIJI Info & Activity Page

Abhisheka to "Rama Parivara Saligrama". This is a very rare spiritual Saligrama stone where on one side Lord Rama, Sita, Lakshmana & Hanuman have been delicately carved.
On the other side is the naturally formed pattern of Adi Shesha.

Salagrama Archana for Sri Rama Pattabhisheka Salagrama

Pujya Swamiji places Sri Rama Pattabhisheka Salagrama on Kurma Yantra Peetham

Abhisheka to Sri Rama Pattabhisheka Salagrama

Rama Parivar on Salagrama sila ~ Dattapeetam

............and some perform this Panchayatana puja

Panchayatana puja is the system of worship which was most common in every house till few decades ago.

The Panchayatana is a system which consists of
the worship of five deities:
"Adityam Ambikaam Vishnum Gananaatam Maheswaram"

Aditya is Surya; Ambika is Devi; Vishnu is
Narayana; Gananaatham is Ganesha, Mahesvara is shiva.

These five are the great divine force whom every householder worships as pancha devata puja.

Based on the tradition
followed by the family, one of these deities is kept in the center and the other four surround it and worship is offered to all the deities.

Adhi Shankara systemetised the Sanatana Dharma(Hinduism) and classified it into broad Six categories.

Shaiva - with Shiva as the Presiding deity
Vaishnava - with Vishnu as the Presiding deity
Shaktha - with Devi as the Presiding deity
Ganapatya - with Ganesha as the Presiding deity
Kaumara - with Subramanya as the Presiding deity
SoWra - with Surya (planets) as the Presiding deity

People mistake that Shri Shankara actually started this Panchayatana puja system - which is wrong. Deva Puja and Archana is one of the most important duties imposed by the Shastras. The Shastras are filled with details of the Panchayatana puja details and Shankra only prescribed us to follow it without fail..

The panchayatana scheme represent the five elements:

AkAshasyAdhipo viShNuH agneshchaiva maheshvarI |
vAyoH sUryaH kShiterIshaH jIvanasya gaNAdhipaH ||

Akasha : Space : Vishnu
Vahni : Fire : AmbikA
Vayu : Air : Aditya
kShiti : Earth : Shiva
Jala : Water : Ganapati

All the five deities are not Panchaloka or any other metal idols; But these five are represented by small natural stones found in various parts of Bharatha Desham.

Deity Stone River Place
Jala : Water Ganesha Red Sonabhadra Sone Bihar
Vayu : Air Surya Crystal Vallam Tamil Nadu (Tanjavur)
Akasha Space Vishnu Saligrama Gandaki Nepal
kShiti : Earth Shiva Bana Linga Narmada Madhya Pradesh
Vahni : Fire Ambika Swarna Mukhi Swarnamukhi Andra Pradesh

The image of that particular devata is kept in the centre, surrounded by the other gods.
If he is a devotee of Vishnu, he places the idol of Vishnu in the centre with the other idols surrounding it.
If he is a devotee of Lord shiva, a lingam is placed in the middle with the other images around it. If he is a devotee of Suryanarayana, he has a sphatika as the central object of worship.

The positioning in the panchayatana poojas are as follows:

Shiva Panchayatana Puja
Shiva at the center
Aditya at Southeast
Gananatha at Southwest
Ambika at Northwest and
Vishnu at the Northeast.

Ganapathy Panchayatana Puja
Ganapathy at the center
Vishnu at Northeast
shiva at Southeast
Adithya Southwest and
Ambal at Northwest

Vishnu Panchayatana Puja
Vishnu at center
shiva at Northeast
Ganapathy at Southeast
Adithya at Southwest and
Ambal at Northwest

Ambal Panchayatana Puja
Ambal at center,
Vishnu at Northeast,
shiva at Southeast,
Ganapathy at Southwest and
Adithya at Northwest

Adithya Panchayatana Puja
Adithya at center,
shiva at Northeast,
Ganapathy at Southeast,
Vishnu at Southwest,
Ambal at Northwest
Along with this people worshipping Subramanya will include Him in the form of a (silver) Snake or Vel (spear)

shaiva ca vaiShNavam shaaktam sauram vainaayakam tathaa .
skaandam ca bhaktimaargasya darshanaani Shadeva hi ..

I can surely say - till panchayatana puja was strictly followed in our country we were really flourishing. Though the technical advancements were not present people were peaceful, satisfied and happy.

Only when this Panchayatana stopped during english invasion- we began to loose our glory- happiness, mental peace and everything.

Panchayatana Puja is a systematic procedure which involves physical and mental discipline, requires inner and outer cleanliness. This - when done systematically will surely bring the progress in the material world and the final truth - awareness of the true Self. By following it, one obtains the Lord’s Anugraha, without
which liberation is not possible.

The Swarnamukhi ( Telugu:) is a river of southern India. It was mentioned as Mogaleru in the works of Dhurjati.
The river flows near famous piligrimage Srikalahasti in Chittoor District of Andhra Pradesh state, India.The Swarnamukhi river has five major Saivite shrines along its course in the district. Besides Srikalahasti, there are temples of Agastheswara in Thondavada, Parasareswara in Yogimallavaram, Parasurameswara in Gudimallam and Moolasthaneswara in Gajulamandyam, to which great religious significance is attached by the local people for being on the bank of the equally-sacred river. It is not perennial and flows in October to December of every year, and merges Bay of Bengal near Tupilipalem. This age old Swarnamukhi River in Dhurjati’s time was known as Mogaleru the river of Mogali Puvvulu.

The Son River (also spelt Sone) (Hindi:) of central India is the largest of the Ganges' southern tributaries.
The Son originates near Amarkantak in Madhya Pradesh, just east of the headwater of the Narmada River, and flows north-northwest through Madhya Pradesh state before turning sharply eastward where it encounters the southwest-northeast-running Kaimur Range. The Son parallels the Kaimur hills, flowing east-northeast through Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand and Bihar states to join the Ganges just above Patna. Geologically, the lower valley of the Son is an extension of the Narmada Valley, and the Kaimur Range an extension of the Vindhya Range. Dehri on sone is the major town situated on Son River.
The Son river at 784 kilometres (487 mi) long, is one of the largest rivers of India. Its chief tributaries are the Rihand and the North Koel. The Son has a steep gradient (35–55 cm per km) with quick run-off and ephemeral regimes, becoming a roaring river with the rain-waters in the catchmentarea but turning quickly into a fordable stream. The Son, being wide and shallow, leaves disconnected pools of water in the remaining part of the year. The channel of the Son is very wide (about 5 km at Dehri on sone) but the floodplain is narrow, only 3 to 5 km wide. In the past, the Son has been notorious for changing course, as it is traceable from several old beds near its east bank. In modern times this tendency has been checked with the anicut at Dehri, and now more so with the Indrapuri Barrage.
Sir John Houlton, the British administrator, describes the Son as follows, “After passing the steep escarpments of the Kaimur range, it flows straight across the plain to the Ganges. For much of this distance it is over two miles – and at one point, opposite Tilothu – three miles wide. In the dry weather there is vast expanse of sand, with a stream not more than a hundred yards wide, and the hot west winds pile up the sand on the east bank, making natural embankments. After heavy rain in the hills even this wide bed cannot carry the waters of the Son and disastrous floods in Shahabad, Gaya, and Patna are not uncommon.”
The first obstruction in the Son was an anicut in 1873-74 at Dehri. The Indrapuri Barrage was constructed, 8 km upstream, and commissioned in 1968 The Bansagar Dam in Madhya Pradesh was commissioned in 2008.
The Son bridge built in deolond was inaugurated by Motilal Vora and Pandit Ram Kishore Shukla then Chief Minister and Finance Minister of Madhya Pradesh on 1986/02/13, the Koilwar Bridge, near Arrah, was amongst the earlier long bridges in the country. It was opened in 1862. While the Koilwar Bridge remained the longest bridge in the country, till it was over taken by Nehru Setu, at Dehri, opened in 1900, the latter started off as the longest bridge in the country, and retained its position as the longest railway bridge for more than a century.

The Government of Bihar sanctioned in 2008, a bridge across the Son River connecting Arwal and Sahar inBojpur district.
A four-lane road bridge, carrying NH 30, parallel to the existing rail and road Koilwar Bridge, has been planned.

Famous Temples of India page

Some video examples of seva puja/ aradhanam:

This was recorded one day while doing Aradhanam at home. The basic steps of Aradhanam are found same in all sampradayam.
But the Slokas, Stotras uttered are found different. This can be considered as an elementary level to learn the basics before going to learn from a highly qualified scholar.

Bhagavadaradhana- Worship to Saligramams at Home

Saligram puja as part of my nitya daily prayers including sandhyavandanam. I may not always do the whole puja everyday but I do say the Shaligram prayers daily when I'm home or mentally if away. This was on the very auspicious Ekdashi (11th day) of the month Kartik (prabodhini ekadashi) from when the annual Tulsi Vivaah starts anytime from then until the full moon on Nov. 2nd. and the inauspicious time (chaturmas/4 months) for weddings etc. is over

Saligram Poojan Bidhi - Nepa Rudraksha presenting Saligram Pooja Bidhi.

Parakalaswamy Performing Aradhanam At Parakala Swamy Mutt Hyderabad

Sri Krishna Pooja - puthige swamiji

Aradhana Mahothsava of Shri Guru Raghavendra Swamiji - Part 1 of 2

Aradhana Mahothsava of Shri Guru Raghavendra Swamiji - Part 2 of 2

1 of 8: Sri 1008 Sri Satyatma Theertha Sripadangalavaru Pooja 1 of 8

2 of 8: Sri 1008 Sri Satyatma Theertha Sripadangalavaru Pooja 2 of 8

3 of 8: Sri 1008 Sri Satyatma Theertha Sripadangalavaru Pooja 3 of 8

4 of 8: Sri 1008 Sri Satyatma Theertha Sripadangalavaru Pooja 4 of 8

5 of 8: Sri 1008 Sri Satyatma Theertha Sripadangalavaru Pooja 5 of 8

6 of 8: Sri 1008 Sri Satyatma Theertha Sripadangalavaru Pooja 6 of 8

7 of 8: Sri 1008 Sri Satyatma Theertha Sripadangalavaru Pooja 7 of 8

8 of 8: Sri 1008 Sri Satyatma Theertha Sripadangalavaru Pooja 8 of 8

Sri keshavanidhi theertha Sripadangalavaru samsthana pooja Santikellur

Sri Sripadarajara Aradhane at Dr. Sudhindra and Poornima's home, in New Jersey

Shaligram Puja Part 1 Panchamrit Abishekam

Shaligram Puja Part 2 Panchamrit Abishekam

Also see our Upacharas page

and Japanga and Bhaktyanga seva puja page