It is often confusing as to what is the difference between puja and aarti. Is aarti a part of puja?
Can any one enlighten the differences between these two ?
What is Puja
Puja is the act of showing reverence to a god, a spirit, or another aspect of the divine through invocations, prayers, songs, and rituals. An essential part of puja for the Hindu devotee is making a spiritual connection with the divine. Most often that contact is facilitated through an object: an element of nature, a sculpture, a vessel, a painting, or a print.
It means worship,devotion and reverence. Puja is believed to be derived from the word 'pu-chey',or worship. The term puja is now used to include all forms of worship, ranging from the simple daily offerings of flowers, fruit, leaves, rice, sweetmeats and water to the deities in homes or temples, to the sacrifices in temples dedicated to Kali, Durga and other female deities.
What is Aarti
Traditionally the Aarti is performed during the morning and evening in a Hindu household.
The Aarti consists of a small flame which burns on a wick, placed on a plate, which is rotated round the Deity.
The Ritual of the Aarti makes the light of the flame dispel darkness, the incense that is burnt gives out fragrance, a bell is rung, hands are clapped while one sings the Aarti.
The Aarti reminds us of the greatness of the Lord, because the flame that we rotate is symbolic of the Cosmos (Sun, Moon, Stars) revolving around the Almighty paying obeisance to him.