Rath Yatra or the famous Chariot Festival marks Lord Jagannath’s yearly sojourn to HIS maternal aunt’s abode. This is one of the most awaited festivals of Orissa and is falling on July 14. The Puri Rath Yatra is one of the largest spiritual gathering in India among Hindus. Odisha is known for its famous and sacred Jagannath Temple, which is in Puri. The Ratha Yatra or the Chariot festival is celebrated at the temple of Jagannath which is associated with God Jagannath.
Here is how PM Narendra Modi Wished Everyone!
Greetings on the auspicious occasion of Rath Yatra.
With the blessings of Lord Jagannath, may our country scale new heights of growth. May every Indian be happy and prosperous.
Jai Jagannath! pic.twitter.com/1Ifrxueaiu
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) July 14, 2018
Here are some interesting facts about Rath Yatra which you might not know:
Even Gods Need Cajoling
Common Folklore has it that the deities refuse to go to their aunt’s house (Gundicha) and the chariots eerily refuse to budge even an inch with 1000s of people pulling it with brute force. But after much coaxing and requests done to the deities by their servitors does that Chariots finally start moving
It always rains on Rath Yatra
The occasion is celebrated every year on the Ashadh Shukla Dwitiya, according to Hindu calendar. And, apparently, there hasn’t been a single Rath Yatra day ever when it hasn’t rained in Puri!
Why it is also called as the Festival of Chariots?
The three deities, Jagannath, Balaram and Subhadra travel in three different chariots—Nandighosha, Lord Jagannath’s chariot, has 18 wheels and is as much as 45.6 ft high, Taladhwaja, Lord Balaram’s chariot, has 16 wheels and is around 45 ft. in height and Devadalana, the chariot of Lord Jagannath, has 14 ft. and is around 44.6 ft. high.
The prasad never goes wasted!
The mahaprasad made inside the premises of the temple is considered very sacred and is consumed by thousands of devotees every day. However, no one knows just as how, even if the number of takers go far below expected, why the prasad never gets wasted!
The Rath Yatra is the only festival in the world where the deity is taken out of the temple.
It is said that people who attend the festival find their way towards heaven after death. The entire state as well as many people across the country attend the Rath Yatra for a fascinating sight and also to seek darshan and witness the holy view in Puri.
New chariots, every year
The chariots are constructed each year anew with new set of wood, and invariably the height and width and every else would be an absolute replica of the past!
Lord suffers from high fever
It is believed that Lord Jagannath suffers from fever before the Rath Yatra begins. This is the reason why devotees are not allowed to enter the temple during this time. After the completion of seven days though, Lord Jagannath makes a move towards his aunt’s place!
If you observe, the Sudarshana Chakra on top of the temple will always seem to be facing you. No matter where you stand in the city, the disc of the Chakra will always appear in its whole circular pattern to your eyes.
Benefits of Participating In The Yatra
* If anyone just sees the cart passing and stands up to receive the Lord Jagannath on Rath Yatra day, one can purge all sinful acts.
* Even a touch of the chariot or even the ropes with which these are pulled on Rath Yatra day is considered enough to confer the results of several pious deeds.
* One can uplift one’s soul beyond all meditations by engaging in dancing and chanting during the Jagannath Ratha Yatra.
* By performing activities which contribute to the success of the Rath Yatra ceremony one is granted with divine blessings of the Lord.
* By donating one’s time, effort or money to Rath Yatra – one’s home, family and friends will be fully blessed by Lord Jagannath forever.
* One who recites ‘Vishnusahastra’ will abide in heaven forever.
* One who gets the glimpse of Lord Jagannatha’s face and rolls in dust and mud on Rath Yatra day receives salvation and abides in heaven.
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