Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Guest guest

Millions of Devotees Arrive for Annual Festival to Lord Jagannath

Rate this topic

Recommended Posts

Guest guest

Millions of Devotees Arrive for Annual Festival to Lord Jagannath



PURI, INDIA, July 1, 2003: Millions of devotees converged in Puri

Tuesday to participate in the annual chariot festival dedicated to Lord

Jagannath. The three chariots bearing the murthis of Lord Jagannath,

Balabhadra and Subhadra were pulled through the main streets of the

town and taken to Gundicha temple. The Deities will remain there until

July 9 and then journey back to the Jagannath temple. Bells were rung

and devotees sang devotional songs as the three presiding Deities were

taken out of the sanctum sanctorum and ceremoniously placed on the

decorated chariots. The celebrations took place amid tight security.

Metal detectors were installed at entrance to the Jagannath temple and

"spotters" were stationed at strategic points to prevent terrorists

from sneaking in disguised as pilgrims.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest guest

Lord Jagannath's Devotional Chariot Makers



PURI, INDIA, July 1, 2003: They are chariot makers for the Gods, and

millions of devotees depend on them to help make the festival,

dedicated to Lord Jagannath, successful. The 10 artisan families in the

temple town of Puri have been making the chariots of devotion for

hundreds of years. They are known as Maharana, or carpenters, and are

given their due status in society. The artisans do other jobs for ten

months, then in May they become very busy making the chariots from the

rare fashi wood. "We get a tremendous amount of personal satisfaction

because we are making cars for the Gods after working throughout the

year for men. The temple officials give us US$1.72 a day, which is less

than what we get for any other work that we do, but it doesn't matter,"

said 81-year-old Damodar Moharana. "We wait for the occasion because it

provides us fixed money as well as gives us God's blessings. We work

day and night to meet the deadline given to us by the temple

authorities so that the chariot rolling festival begins on the

scheduled date. There has been no delay ever as far I know. This is our

hereditary tradition, and we have been doing this for hundreds of

years," he added.


The three gigantic chariots, Nandighosh, Taladhwaja and Deva Dalana of

Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra and Subhadra, pulled by devotees, are built

in front of the famous Jagannath temple. The Nandighosh is the biggest

with a height of 15.20 meters and 16 wheels. The Taladhwaja chariot is

14.81 meters tall and the Deva Dalana chariot is the smallest at 14.32

meters. The cost to build the chariots is $97,296.56.


But all is not well with the hard-working artisan families. "The

erstwhile king of Puri provided us land and houses. We still have the

homes but have lost the cultivable lands because of a 1963 law. As a

result, we are forced to work for others," said Moharana.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest guest

Darsan of Lord Jagannath at Ratha-yatra


A conversation with

His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada


Devotee: Prabhupada, can you explain a little more about Ratha-yatra. Anyone who takes part in Ratha-yatra, are they liberated?


Prabhupada: Certainly.


Devotee: Does that mean they will not take birth again?


Prabhupada: Yes, provided they take it seriously. Otherwise, if they keep their mentality differently, then according to mind, one has to get a body. But... Just like so many boys. They come here in the beginning out of curiosity, but gradually, they get the chance of becoming devotees. Similarly, if they take the chance, then they will be liberated. They come out of curiosity, but if they take it seriously, then they will be liberated. Just like the hospital is meant for curing disease. So one should take the treatment. If one simply goes and visits the hospital thinking "Now I am cured," how it can be done? Suppose if I advertise that "Anyone who comes to this hospital, he will be cured of his disease," that's a fact. But if he thinks that "I have come here. Now I am going," then how he will be cured? If one sees Jagannath on the Ratha-yatra, his way for liberation is open, but if he comes back again and entangles himself, then? One goes to the doctor. He gives injection. The disease is cured. But again he comes back and does the same thing so that he develops this disease again. So whose fault is it? This is called hasti-snana. The elephant takes bath very nicely but then as soon as it comes on the bank of the river or the lake, he takes dust and throws it all over his body again. If we do that, then we shall remain always dirty. You go, take bath, cleanse, but don't take dirt again. ...It is a fact that seeing Jagannath one becomes mukta. But if he again comes to maya, then who can check him? Just like you are all on the path of liberation, but if you again come back to maya, then where is your liberation? If somebody comes here and sees his path for liberation is open. Now he should protect himself. Just a like disease, the fever is subsided. Now one should be careful not to relapse the fever. ... Not that, "Now I have seen Jagannath. My liberation is guaranteed. Now I can do anything. That's all." This mentality will not give you liberation. You have seen Jagannath, your sinful activities are now neutralized. Now don't commit them again. Now make progress. Then your liberation is guaranteed. Namno balad yasya hi papa buddhih. In every initiation we teach this, that once chanting Hare Krishna is sufficient to make us pure from all sinful activities. But if we commit sin again in the hope that, "Because I am chanting, this will be neutralized." that is the greatest sin. So one side, you should always chant Hare Krishna mantra so that you may not fall down; and on another side, you should be careful: "Now no illicit sex life, no intoxication, no meat-eating." In this way, if you carefully make progress, then your liberation is guaranteed.


(SP, Lecture, LA, 1 July 1971)


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You are posting as a guest. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Create New...