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Why do we do Aarati?

Why do we do Aarati? Towards the end of every ritualistic worship (pooja or bhajan) of God or to welcome an honored guest or saint, we perform the aarati. This is always accompanied by the ringing of the bell and sometimes by singing, playing of musical instruments and clapping. It is one of the sixteen steps (shodasha upachaara) of the pooja ritual. It is referred to as the auspicious light (mangla niraajanam). Holding the lighted lamp in the right hand, we wave in a clockwise circling movement to light the entire form of God.  Each part is revealed individually and also the entire form of God. As the light is waved we either do mental or loud chanting of prayers or simply behold the beautiful form of God, illumined by the lamp. At the end of the aarati we place our hands over the flame and then gently touch our eyes and the top of the head.  We have seen and participated in this ritual from our childhood. Let us find out why we do the aarati?  Having worshipped God with lov
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