Shri Jagannath Sharanam Mamah
The Puri Jagannath Rath Yatra
The Puri Jagannath Rath Yatra also known as The Gundicha Jatra, Ghosa Jatra, Navadina Jatra
or Dasavatara Jatra, is the most important 10 days Famous Hindu festival of Lord Jagannath.
This annual festival is celebrated on Ashad Shukla Dwitiya (second day in bright fortnight of Ashad month).
This year it commenced on 21st June 2012 and ends on 30th June in Puri, Bhubhaneshwar, Orissa.
This festival also symbolizes Lord Sri Krishna meeting his relatives and friends at Dvaraka
travelling from Kurukshetra after long gap.
Lord Shri Jagannath is believed the Daaru Brahma –
The Wooden Prime Soul incarnation of Lord Vishnu in Kali Yug.
The very short story in simple form
There are many versions, Traditional, Vaishnavite, Puranic and Sarala dasa Mahabharatha
of Lord Jagannath’s origin . But in most of the versions character of King Indrayumna plays important role.
According to Hindu Mythology Lord Vishnu in Divine form of Imdranila (Blue Diamond)
establishes himself near a Banyan tree, at Seashore, Puri, during the end of Threta Yuga,
as the original image of Jagannath.
The sparkling rays of this Nilamani has so much power to grant Moksha to the people
in its vicinity with prosperity to all and including the place.
This became a problem to the God Of Dharma, Yama who decided and hides it from the Earth.
But the search for the Powerful Nilamani continued till the begining of Dwaparayuga by
the Malwa King Indrayumna performed staunch and rigorous Penances to find The Nilamani.
Pleased with his devotion Lord Vishnu instructed him to go back to Sea shore of Puri,
to find a Log Of Wood floating on the sea and follow his instructions to carve images
designed by Viswakarma (Lord Brahma).
As said The King found the log of wood and did a yajna from which God Yajna appeared.
He Instructed the King to make fourfold expansion, i.e. Paramatma as Vasudeva,
his Vyuha as Samkarshana, Yogamaya as Subhadra,
and his Vibhava as Sudarsana of the wood.
Visvakarma, the architect of Gods gave the design to Lord Vishnu.
And also he made a magnificent temple to house the idols.
King engaged most skilled carpenters to fine finish the would before carving the Idols.
But to eveyone’s surprise even the sharpest and strongest of the chisels
could not even make mark on the wood.
And the worried King summoned all the Expert carpenters from other places.
But nothing could be done.
And Lord Sri Maha Vishnu himself approached the King in disguise of a very old carpenter
and told him that he can cut and carve the wood in to the idols as per the design.
But he put a condition that he would work with the doors of the temple lock closed
and not to be disturbed till he completes the work in three weeks .
The works started and the beat of Chisels carving the wood resounded
every day and night outside the temple.
But after two weeks the Queen and the King Indrayumna on their routine visit to the temple,
found the sound of Chisel stopped all of a sudden.
And the queen out of curiosity about the old carpenters health, suspecting he died,
requested the king to open the doors.
As the King himself much worried took no time in breaking the promise by getting the Doors opened.
And when the doors were opened, they found Lord Vishnu at work on carving the Idols.
But Lord Vishnu finding the King and queen seeing him doing the work vanished from the site
leaving the idols unfinished devoid of any hands and feet.
But the Divine voice of Lord Vishnu instructed King Indrayuman to install the idols.
He told the King that the Idols are equally sacred as they are carved by Him.
The Ratha Yatra is one of the largest processions in the world with 50-foot high ornate
and decorated wooden chariots seated with Lord Jagannath, the Lord of the Universe, Lord Balabhadra
and Goddess Subhadra are paraded throughout the city to give Darshan to all their Devotees.
It is said that those who participate in the Jagannath Yatra in Puri earn their ‘passage’ to heaven.
Suna Besha of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra and Maa Subhadra at Puri, Odisha, India
An interesting information of Rath Yatra Chariots
The 3 towering and royal chariots resemble Lord Jagannath Temple architecture.
Lord Jagannath Chariot, called ‘nandighose’ is 35 feet high with 18 solid wheels
Lord Balabhadra’s chariot called ‘Taladwaja’ is 33 feet high and has 16 solid wheels
Goddess Shubhadra’s Chariotcalled ‘Devadalan’ is 30 feet high and has 14 solid wheels
Every year New chariots and wheels are made with the same ancient chariot-specifications.
Thousands of devotees pull the chariots by long ropes.
And millions of hands struggle to merely touch the Chariot or pull the rope as it is believed lucky, pious, holy and prosperous for the devotee.
The whole Rath Yatra moves in a large procession amidst loud beating of percussion instruments, gongs and blowing conch shells.
About the side Deities on each of the chariot.
Sudarsana is seated by the side of Lady Subhadra in Her chariot, Madanamohana sits in the Lord Jagannatha’s chariot, and small Deities of Lord Rama and Krisna take their seats in the Balabhadra chariot. Thus total seven Deities are seated on the three chariots and are pulled by the devotees by the ropes tied to the chariots and taken to the Gundica temple which is about 3 km away from the main temple.
Sri Jagannatha Ratha Yatra NOW
Sri Jagannatha Ratha Yatra in 1909
THE BIG RISK AND HAZARD AND A SAFETY ALERT
A FLOOD OF MILLION VISITORS ARE EXPECTED EVERY YEAR FOR 10 DAYS AND THEY HAVE TO TAKE CARE OF STAMPEDE AS LIVES ARE KNOWN TO BE LOST MAKING THIS FESTIVAL A FUNERAL FOR THEM.
ANOTHER IMPORTANT HEALTH HAZARD IS LOSS OF BREATHING DUE TO SUFFOCATION
ALL THE MATERIAL IS EXTRACTED FROM THE WEB AND MADE EASY FOR THE READERS.
KINDLY PARDON ME FOR ANY MISTAKES.
Shri Jagannath Sharanam Mamah.
I Pray The Lord Sri Puri Jagannatha Swamy
to Shower his blessings on all of us.
In the services of Lord Shri Jagannath
Regards & Blessings