Tirupati Balaji - Views Not Even Personal Visitors Get

I've received a very interesting email forward recently. It has some stunning views of Lord Balaji of Tirumala, Tirupati. I don't think even the people who personally visit the temple are granted with such views. Really unbelievable how these photographs were taken despite strict restrictions with photography.

For most of you my friends, Lord Balaji is an unknown term. To be short and to the point, in India, this deity is one of the most believed ones! It is said that if you wish something praying this lord, visit his temple, take a glimpse of him, and give all your hair to him, your wish will come true.

Enjoy these photographs to the max! This seems to be a series of step-by-step bath of the lord, and the last one being completely groomed.

I don't claim copyright of these images as I have not taken these.

Lord Balaji Wearing Just A Dhoti
Lord Balaji Wearing Just A Dhoti

Applying Curd as a Soap, to Lord Balaji
Applying Curd as a Soap, to Lord Balaji

Bathing Lord Balaji with Milk - Photo 1
Bathing Lord Balaji with Milk - Photo 1

Bathing Lord Balaji with Milk - Photo 2
Bathing Lord Balaji with Milk - Photo 2

Bathing Lord Balaji with Honey
Bathing Lord Balaji with Honey

Bathing Lord Balaji with Rose Water
Bathing Lord Balaji with Rose Water

Bathing Lord Balaji with Panchamrut
Bathing Lord Balaji with Panchamrut

Bathing Lord Balaji with Water - Photo 1
Bathing Lord Balaji with Water - Photo 1

Bathing Lord Balaji with Water - Photo 2
Bathing Lord Balaji with Water - Photo 2

Bathing Lord Balaji with Water - Photo 3
Bathing Lord Balaji with Water - Photo 3

Applying Turmeric Powder to Lord Balaji
Applying Turmeric Powder to Lord Balaji

Bathing Lord Balaji with Flowers - Photo 1
Bathing Lord Balaji with Flowers - Photo 1

Bathing Lord Balaji with Flowers - Photo 2
Bathing Lord Balaji with Flowers - Photo 2

Balaji… Tirupati Balaji…
Balaji… Tirupati Balaji…

I have a feeling that this may be a newly created temple, perhaps by ISKCON, and that these photographs may be from their replica temple of Lord Balaji of Tirumala, Tirupati. I have 2 reasons to feel so…
1. There is a watermark of ISKCON on each image.
2. In the last photograph, the small sculpture near the feet of the lord seems to be of Swami Prabhupada, who is the founder of ISKCON.

81 comments :

  1. Beautiful images and so colourful.

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  2. Just great photos, Is taking photos your living or hobby.

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  3. Hi Lucy,

    Photography is currently my hobby. But I want to make it my living; still trying to know how. Thanks for asking :)

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  4. How intriguing! This reminds me of how in a place I once lived in the U.S., the friars in a certain mission would take down the bells in the church, dress them in clothes (yes) and parade them around the square each year, then give them a good polish and rehang them...but I do believe Lord Balaji is getting a much fancier grooming!

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    Replies
    1. Yes rituals in south India are very ostentatious ..... these are also means to monopolize brahmin supremacy ....Im from India..

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  5. Does each change mean something and is the order a protocol? Makes me wonder what they are using to change the colors? Very unusual. Peace

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  6. Yes it's a protocol Lady Di Tn. I'm not sure what exactly they use to change the colors, but for sure, everything is naturally made.

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  7. What an interesting ritual and belief Bhavesh. The end result is beautiful.

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  8. Fascinating! A joy to get a sense of this culture and images we would never have seen. Thank you for sharing.

    About HDR, typically, I use 5 or 7 images by manually altering the shutter speed, (I do not use AEB). But my Basilica images were one photo. I use Photoshop to change the exposure and save 3 images for HDR processing in Photomatix.

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  9. Thank you for these photos. I particularly like the mild and honey bath. Very interesting and visually stimulating. I was also interest to see that turmeric was also used. I'm a great believer in this spice.

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  10. I feel like I just got my education, Bhavesh!

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  11. Interesting. It looks as if this Lord is receiving a ceremonial bath and clothing. He looks quite festive in the last photo.

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  12. What the purpose of doing so? To cherish him?
    Look interesting.

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  13. You are very right in saying, this may be from ISKCON.In Bangalore ISKCON, I remember seeing this statue. But there also photography allowed in general.

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  14. Hi Bhavesh,
    Nice to have come across your blog... From the first shot itself, i felt these are from ISKCON. Coz Thirupathi Balaji statue is not like this. This appears too new and orig Balaji almost telld u the story of several centuries, by just a single look. The oil and other abhishekams done everyday for several centuries are pretty much evident on the sculpture. This looks way too new.
    Do drop into my blog when time permits.
    My Travelogue

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  15. Hi Bhavesh,
    Thanks for dropping by my blog and commenting. Welcome to my blog.. :)
    Do drop in often. Would love your frequent visits and comments and followups.. :)
    My Travelogue

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  16. Hi Bhavesh,
    Saw you following my blog. Dropped in to say Thanks.
    Hope u like my blog. Pls vote for me at this link. It requires signing up with your mail id. Hope u'll vote for me. Thanks in advance.. :)
    My Travelogue

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  17. You have taken beautiful photos of Lord Balaji and also described it very nicely.Really you are a very good photographer.I have been to Tirupati thrice and would love to visit again.

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  18. Thanks for sharing this! Very interesting!!

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  19. I want to thank you for visiting my blog. If you have never been a parent, especially a mom, it is hard to live your life to the fullest when your youngest son cuts you out of his life and there is not a good reason for it. If there was I would try to make it right. I still appreciate your beautiful pictures so you make my life happy and I want to thank you.

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  20. Fantastic series of this ceremony. Thanks for sharing !

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  21. Thank you very much for sharing these rare and incredibly beautiful images.

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  22. What a wonderful sequence!
    Thank you for sharing your wonder and your amazing land with us lucky visitors, Bhavesh!
    Aloha my friend,

    Comfort Spiral

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  23. Fabulous photographs of Lord Balaji, the whole sequence was gorgeous. I also enjoyed what you wrote, that if we visit him, his temple, pay our respects and "give him all our hair" he will grant our wish. That is quite a request...
    You are a very good photographer and should make it your main profession. Have you thought of applying to photographic magazines, like National Geographic? You never know.

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  24. Terrific series of photos, I have never seen anything like this. The bathing with milk and applying Turmeric powder are especially stunning. Thank you for sharing.

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  25. Shobin Chawla09 August, 2009

    Hey, nice effort made. These pics are very rare. 1Thanks a lot for sharing them.

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  26. nice series. things I never thought about. pretty nice

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  27. Hi Celeste,

    Thanks for recommending me to be a professional photographer. In fact I am trying to be it for a long now, but haven't earned a penny yet by that. If you can guide me, that will be very useful :)

    And yes, I had thought of giving a couple of my best shots to National Geographic, but haven't tried yet. I am still preparing those best ones.

    Thanks again :)

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  28. ...very interesting. The photos of the ritual are beautiful.

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  29. Beautiful photos! It's always nice to learn something new.

    Donna Marie

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  30. I found that to be most intriguing and most beautiful to see. Amazing to be part of viewing something so interesting of this!

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  31. Thank you. Beautiful pictures, wonderful ritual.

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  32. Dear Sir, I dont wanna hurt you but I dont reckon that these snaps are of Tirumala Balaji. Regards.

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  33. Hi Srinivasa,

    I too believe so. Where the post ends, I have mentioned already that I don't think these photos are from the original Balaji temple in Tirumala.

    Don't worry; no harsh feelings.

    Regards,
    Bhavesh Chhatbar

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  34. my favorablegod

    ome namo narayanaaya namaha




    ome adinarayananayanamaha





    ome venkatesaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

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  35. balaji has only two hands

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  36. Oh! That's quite a new information for me and the readers too probably, dear Anonymous! Thanks for the input :)

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  37. Srinivasa Govinda,govvinda thazal i can say...buz he is the god ..that he know how to give dharshanam to us

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  38. great photoz.......... really liked those... thank u vry much :-)

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  39. Arun Krishan Sharma27 April, 2010

    Arun Krishan Sharma

    I am son of the lord vishnu bhagwaan. I love him very much i never seen before this photos. I am very very glad heartely. Thank You Lord Vishnu Bhadwaan.

    I am telling few words for you bhagwaan.

    Shkulamberdhar Vishnu,ShashivaranamChatuarbhugham
    Prassana Vadanam Dhayate,Sarva Wighnopshantaye

    Vyasaya Vishnu Roopaya,Vyas Roopaya Vishnave |
    Nahmo Vaibhram Nidhaye,Vasistaya Namho Namaha|

    Arun Krishan Sharma
    Madhya Pradesh (Morena)
    arunkrishan_sharma@yahoo.com

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  40. @ Arun Krishan Sharma: So glad you visited and commented!

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  41. My FIRST EVER EXPERIENCE which i feel no words to explain... wish to be a fortunate visitor here and so today place myself in THE LORD'S FEET...

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  42. @ Poonam: I'm so happy you liked it :)

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  43. WOWW ITS RELAY NICEE

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  44. @ Chetu: Glad, you liked it! :)

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  45. Anonymous29 June, 2010

    Wow. Really very nice photos. The series of Lord balaji photos are amazing. i am collecting all photos of Lord Venkateswara. These are help ful fo rme. Thanks for sharing...

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  46. am very lucky to see the lord balaji

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  47. super photos.thank for this oppertumity. chaitanya

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  48. @ rajash: My pleasure, Chaitanya :)

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  49. Thanks for the help of sharing the nice pictures of Balaji.

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  50. These are not Tirupati Balaji pictures. Tilakam is not correct. From whereever they are from though, wonderful pictures of the lord. i always love watching Abhishekams and wish that it remains in my mind when the death is near, so that Narayana is in the heart and mind while leaving for the journey.

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  51. @ Anonymous: Yes, I too think so. I think these photos are from Iskcon Balaji. And I must say that your thoughts are so nice.

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  52. Just fantastic,fabulous.

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  53. sreenivasa reddy03 June, 2011

    Hi Bhavesh , some nice photos, very interesting and good story play. I thought it was the real srinivasa in tirupathi but your points are corect it is not. I am trying to see ifthe areany eal photos if you know of any can you post or link. I have had a fascination with photos of god,especially now as more and more temples are banning photography of the god. when i ask why i get answers like it will diminish the power of god , i asked once in tirupathi why i cant take photos but media and rich people can and they said because they pay to do a special puja which restores the power of god, ridiculous answers i suspect its a growing trend as more and more temples have started following, probably driven by profit motive rather than devotion. probably assume if people can see a photo then they wouldnt visit the temple? I would say get any photos you can before they are all banned

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  54. @ sreenivasa reddy: I have to say that you have very valid points. I agree completely. In fact, I actually have some photographs that are not possible now.

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  55. Just to add to this thread - these are not Tirupati Balaji's pictures at all.. The real Tirupati idol is more than 7 feet tall and the idol in these pictures is almost 3 ft.. Just compare the relative height of the priests and the idol. Also, it is the idol of srila prabhupada at the corner of the image

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  56. @ Anonymous: I too feel so. You might not have seen the end of the post where I have expressed the same :)

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  57. When the very first time I visited Tirupati Balaji, I was really annoyed with the rush and queue, but after Tirupati Darshan, I made my mind to come back.

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  58. Tirupati is really an amazing place. This is our sacred place. I have been there 7 times. Nice post and thanks for efforts!

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  59. @ Anonymous: So you're a regular visitor now!

    @ Anonymous: 7 times! Wo!!

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  60. Jai ho Tirupati Balaji kee jai ho

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  61. Hey Bhavesh
    Do you know what they use to make their statue black. We also have a granite murthi but it is not as black and shinny as this 1.

    thanks

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    Replies
    1. I think they use the rock from the mountains of the Western Ghats.

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  62. Om venkateswara namaha...

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  63. Hi I am trying to get the exact same murti in you first picture for our temple in SA. Can you put me in contact with the correct persons.

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    Replies
    1. I'm sorry! I received these photos in an email forward many years back. I have no contact information about the sculptor :( But if you search for it, you may find artists in south India :)

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  64. good job and good luck de diji
    IMC BUSINESS MAIN SUCCESS DE DIJIYE
    MBA KA PAPER CLEAR KAR DIJIYE
    EVERY WORK SE PABLE APP KA DARSHAN APNE MAN MAIN KARU.
    MAIRA MAN NIRMAL KAR DIJIYE

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  65. Aadyantarahita Govinda
    Ihaparadayaka Govinda

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