LIVERMORE, CALIFORNIA, August 9, 2020 (India Currents): Over 250 volunteers, 32 priests, three shilpis, two musicians and one sthapathi came together to celebrate the third Maha Kumbhabhishekam at the Shiva-Vishnu temple here. The festivities began July 6 and concluded July 10. It took two years of planning to pull this event together. But, as most of 2020 was wiped out with Covid, the real planning started from Jan 2021, said Sreeni Malireddy, Chairman of the Maha Kumbhabhishekam 2022 Apex Committee. The Maha Kumbhabhishekam, which happens once every twelve years, is a set of rituals performed over a five day period to restore and reset the energy of the temple. It can also be a chance to bring in new statues, and engage in restoration efforts. An estimated 12,000-15,000 devotees visited over the five-day ceremony.

Sthapati Selvanathan, who belongs to the 38th generation of temple architects in his family lineage, was essential in terms of directing how the new statues and various elements of the temple should be installed according to the scriptures. The vimanas, at the top of each shrine outside, and rajagopuras, on top of the main temple entrance used to be only brass. They are now brass with gold plating. The two dhwaja stambhams, or flagpoles, that stood outside each main shrine of Shiva and Vishnu were also previously brass, and received gold plating. The bases for each were replaced with new glossy black granite from India in just a week due to delays. Tiling and flooring inside the shrines was updated, in addition to relighting them and installing track lighting to brighten them up. On the final day when chief priest Pandit Sampath Sridharan poured the sanctified water over the golden khumbams atop the temple, the energy in the crowd was electric. Not only was the temple re-energized but so were the devotees.

Much more at source including several colorful photos.