Who is Lord Panduranga !

Who is Lord Panduranga ?
Who is lord panduranga, or mostly known as Pandarinath, Vitthalaswamy etc ? 
Panduranga is one of famous gods who is being worshipped since ages in India, his name Vitthala describes the quality of being innocent, as the word vitthal is being picked from sanskrit and it signifies innocense.

Panduranga or Lord Vitthala is one of the forms of Lord Vishnu who is known and worshipped as Lord “Vitthala or Panduranga” in the southern part of India mostly in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra.

In the Honor of Lord Panduranga an Extravaganza temple with architectural excellence is built in Hampi, nothing can explain the architectural work of them being sculptured on the hard rock during early centuries.
In the Honor of Lord Panduranga the Devotees keep Deeksha same as people do for Lord Ayyappa for 41 days and leave the deeksha by visiting Pandaripur a temple in the border of Karnataka and close by Maharashtra.
It is assumed that whoever performs the 41 day deeksha with utmost efficiency and bhakti and offers his prayers to lord Panduranga his wishes will be fulfilled and he will the satisfied person and will be blessed with good things in life.

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Interview with a Cham elder

The Cham Hindus of Vietnam are an almost forgotten people, remnants of the Cham dynasty which endured in the region now known as central Vietnam from the 7th century well into the 19th. Yet they are 60,000 strong, and they have kept their traditions alive for centuries, far from India’s shores. Builders of cities named Indrapura, Simhapura, Amaravati, Vijaya and Panduranga, these Hindu people and their culture continue to flourish to this day. When we speak of the Champa people, it is not a trek through history; we are speaking of a living culture with roots going back thousands of years. Along with the Balinese Hindus, the Cham Balamon represent the only remaining non-Indic populations of indigenous Hindus surviving today.

Inrasara is a Cham Balamon leader, scholar, author and elder. He has written many books and is a recognized expert on Cham culture.

What is your most important festival? It could be said it is our New Year, called Rija Nagar, or “the nation’s festival.” It is most important since it has common value and is celebrated by Ahier (Hindus) and Awal (Muslims), together with its very beautiful and philosophical dances.

What connections do your people have with India, past and present? Our kingdom at its very early stage, 192 CE, adopted Hinduism as its religion and had the trading connection ever since. But about a thousand years later, as the merchants stopped coming to Southeast Asia, its influence fell, replaced by the growing power of Islam. The Indian researchers and friends who have come to Phanrang to see the culture have said much Indian influence can still be seen today, especially in some of the beliefs and the Hindu temples.

Do people still worship at the ancient Hindu temples? Yes, we have four temples that are still worshiped in nowadays: Po Inu Nugar, Po Rome, Po Klaung Girai and Po Dam. As for My Son heritage, we have lost our land and so have not reached there since long ago, but that is still the holy ground that people would love to visit.

What are the biggest challenges facing the Cham people? Keeping our culture, language and traditions alive is generally the challenge from hundreds years ago, as the influence from Vietnam grows greater. Now not many young people know how to read or speak properly, or clearly understand our beliefs.

Is the Balamon religion Hinduism? Yes, we can say so.

Who is your favorite God and why? For our forefathers and ourselves it is Siva, the true holy sage, the destroyer of untruths who enlightens all followers.

What is the long-term vision for your people? As long as the language and culture are alive rather than vanishing, we shall be able to play a part in building a beautiful and colorful world. (source)