A bank that accepts prayers, not money, in northern India

A large number of devotees visit the unique ‘Om Namah Shivay’ bank in India’s northern temple town of Varanasi and “deposit” their prayers to Hindu god Shiva ahead of ‘Mahashivratri’ festival.

VARANASI, UTTAR PRADESH, INDIA (MARCH 06, 2016) (ANI) – A large number of devotees visited the unique ‘Om Namah Shivay’ bank in India’s northern temple town of Varanasi on Sunday (March 06) and “deposited” their prayers to Hindu god Shiva ahead of ‘Mahashivratri’ festival.

The ‘banking’ temple close to the banks of River Ganga was set up in 2002 and it accepts deposits in form of handwritten chants “Om Namah Shivaya”.

“The difference between commercial banks and Om Namah Shivay bank is that people deposit money in those banks, whereas here devotees deposit their prayers dedicated to Lord Shiva by writing chants ‘Om Namah Shivay’. The service is free of cost,” said Caretaker, Om Namah Shivay Bank, Acharya Pandit Rajendra Trivedi.

Devotees believe they would be blessed by this exercise of depositing the handwritten Panchakshari Mantra (devotional hymn dedicated to Lord Shiva).

Every year, on Mahashivaratri festival, Hindus from different parts of the country visit the bank and submit their chants as a manifestation of their faith in Shiva.

“We get a booklet from the bank. Then we write the handwritten chants ‘Om Namah Shivay’ on the booklet and deposit it in the bank,” said a bank account holder, Gopal Krishna Nagar.

Mahashivratri falls on Monday (March 07) this year. The festival is celebrated with much fervour by Hindus in reverence of Shiva.

Varanasi or Benaras is Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s parliamentary constituency.


Associated Links

  • Shaivism
  • Hindu gods
  • Names of God in Hinduism
  • Om Namah Shivay
  • Maha Shivaratri
  • Varanasi
  • Shiva
  • Hindu temple
  • Om Namah Shivaya
  • Pimpleshwar Mahadev

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