Jagannath Puri Rath Yatra 2021: Interesting facts about the lords’ chariot festival

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July 12, 2021 12:26 PM

Jagannath Puri Rath Yatra History, Significance: Here are some of the interesting facts associated with Lord Jagannath Puri Rath yatra that is 460 years old and has its mention in Brahma Purana, Skanda Purana, Padma Purana, and Kapila Samhita.

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Rath Yatra began at Jagannath Temple in Ahmedabad and Puri’s Sri Jagannath Temple today amid Covid pandemic. Hundreds of people gathered outside the Lord Jagannath Temple early on Monday morning to witness the chariot festival. Rath Yatra witnesses the annual journey of the deities, Jagannath, Balaram, and Subhadra on giant wooden chariots from the Jagannath Temple to the Gundicha shrine. This event attacks thousands of devotees from all across the globe who participate in pulling the three vehicles with ropes to take part in the Lord’s yatra.

Here are some of the interesting facts associated with Lord Jagannath Puri Rath yatra that is 460 years old and has its mention in Brahma Purana, Skanda Purana, Padma Purana, and Kapila Samhita.

Jagannath’s chariot

The wooden chariot is made of a particular type of Neem tree wood that is later dismantled and goes to the temple kitchen to be used as firewood to cook prasad.

Lord Jagannath’s Rath Nandighosha is about 44 feet tall, it has wheels and dominant colours like red and yellow. Balbhadra’s chariot is called Taladhwaja, is 43 feet in height, and has 14 wheels. Subhadra’s chariot in red and black has 12 wheels and is 42 feet tall. Canopies for the chariots are made of almost 1200 meters of cloth. A team of 15 tailors makes the canopies.

Rituals before and after Rath Yatra

The king dresses like a sweeper and sweeps the road with a golden broom and water and fortify with sandalwood paste to mark the start of the yatra., This is called the Chera Pahara ritual.

Onlookers say the Rath does not move even after lots of efforts by the devotees. It’s only after a few hours of cosmic efforts and ‘Dahuka boli ‘is sung, Rath starts moving.

Lord Jagannath and his siblings take. A halt on the way back to their own abode after a stay at the Gudischa temple where Poda Pitha is offered to them.

The main door of the Puri Jagannath Temple is kept shut for one week prior to the festival. As the lord is believed to have caught a high fever after taking his annual bath. During this period the sanctum sanctorum is not open to the public. Once the period of rest is over, the Lord travels to his maternal aunt’s house which is called the Rath Yatra.

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