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Preparations for Puri Jagannath Rath Yatra Begin with Traditional Rituals

Maharanee Kumari
Preparations for Puri Jagannath Rath Yatra Begin with Traditional Rituals
Preparations for Puri Jagannath Rath Yatra Begin with Traditional Rituals

Preparations for the Rath Yatra of Puri Jagannath, one of the four Dhams, have begun. Learn about the traditions, rituals, and auspicious timings of this sacred event.

Preparations have started for the Rath Yatra of Puri Jagannath, considered one of the four Dhams. In this temple, Lord Shri Krishna is seated with his sister Subhadra and brother Balabhadra. According to legend, Lord Shri Krishna had come to Puri with his brother and sister to meet his aunt. They fell ill for 15 days and were cured by the royal physician and medicines. After recovering, they set out to tour the city, a tradition that continues to this day.

The Tradition of Seclusion and Rath Yatra

This is the reason why all three gods go into seclusion for 15 days. After this period, they go on a Rath Yatra to tour the city. One special aspect of this Rath Yatra is that the wood for the chariot is not cut with an ordinary axe but with a golden axe. Let us delve into why this unique tradition is followed.

The Significance of the Golden Axe

The wood used for the Rath Yatra is cut with a golden axe. The preparation for making the chariot starts on the auspicious day of Akshaya Tritiya and takes a full two months to complete. Before making the chariot, the wood is carefully selected. The temple committee informs the forest department officials about the requirement for wood for the Rath Yatra chariot.

Priests go to the forest and worship the trees that will be used to make the chariot. Members of the carpenter community first place a gold axe on the trees. This gold axe is first touched to the idol of Lord Jagannath to obtain his blessings, ensuring that the chariot is imbued with divine grace.

Auspicious Time for Puri Jagannath Rath Yatra

The Jagannath Yatra is carried out on the second day of Shukla Paksha of the Ashad month. This year, it will start on 7th July at 4:24 am and will end on the next day, 8th July at 4:59 am. Therefore, Sunday, 7th July is considered auspicious for the Rath Yatra.

The Rath Yatra is a significant event in the Hindu calendar, drawing devotees from all over the world. The meticulous preparations and adherence to tradition highlight the reverence and dedication associated with this sacred festival.

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