Rath Yatra festival is also known as the festival of Rath, Dashavatar Yatra, Gundicha Jatra, Nawadina Yatra and Ghosa Yatra which are celebrated with great enthusiasm, joy and happiness by people every year in India. The festival is completely dedicated to the Hindu God, Lord Jagannath and is especially celebrated in Puri in the Indian state of Orissa.
It is held every year on the second day of the bright fortnight of the month of Ashadh (also known as Ashadh Shukla Dwitiya). The festival is celebrated to commemorate Lord Jagannath on an annual basis, which includes the holy journey of Lord Jagannath and culminates at the Gundicha Mata Temple, passing through the Mausi Maa temple of Balagandi Chaka, Puri.
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Essay on rath yatra (rath yatra essay in hindi)
The entire Rath Yatra process involves the holy procession of the Gundicha Mata Temple of the Hindu deities Lord Puri Jagannath, Goddess Subhadra and Lord Balabhadra. After nine days, people bring Hindu deities to the same place with the Rath Yatra which means Puri Jagannath Temple. The return process of the Rath Yatra at Puri Jagannath Temple is called Bahuda Yatra.
History of Rath Yatra Festival:
The Rath Yatra festival is celebrated every year on the second day of the Shukla Paksha of the month of Ashada in the state of Orissa, India, to take out a procession of Lord Jagannath chariots from Puri Jagannath Temple to Goundi Mata Temple. The chariots bearing the idol of the Hindu god and goddess are adorned with attractively colored flowers. A procession takes place at the Mausi Maa temple for some time to complete the prasad.
The highly decorated three chariots (for Lord Puri Jagannath, Goddess Subhadra and Lord Balabhadra) in the holy procession are quite similar to the temple, which is drawn by electric system or devotees on the streets of Puri. This festival is celebrated to complete the visit of Lord Puri Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra’s own sister Subhadra to her aunt’s house i.e. Gundicha Mata Temple.
The festival attracts huge crowds of devotees from all over the world and fulfills their heartfelt wishes along with participating in the holy procession of the Lord. The people involved in the chariot pulling the chariot sing devotional songs, chants with the sound of drums.
Rath Yatra Festival Symbol:
Yatra is the most famous and ritualized part of worship in Hinduism. It can be of two types, one is the journey made by devotees around the temple and the other is the chariot journey of Hindu deities in a chariot adorned from one temple to another. The Rath Yatra, celebrated annually to visit Lord Jagannath with Lord Balabhadra and sister goddess Subhadra from Puri Jagannath Temple to Gundicha Mata Temple, is also another type of journey.
It is believed that the Vamana avatar means that the dwarf form of Lord Vishnu was the incarnation of Lord Jagannath (who is free from the cycle of birth and death). The yatra is the most important event that happened during the special and sacred occasions of Hinduism. Lord Jagannath is a Hindu deity who was incarnated as Lord Krishna on earth in Dwapara Yuga.
This special festival of the holy journey of the chariot is performed by devotees, saints, scriptures, poets with sacred mantras and devotional songs. People want to touch the chariot or pull the ropes and seek God’s blessings. Devotees on this day sing a special Oriya song and pull the holy chariot on wheels.
Rath Yatra in Puri:
The celebration of the entire festival consists of three huge attractively decorated chariots resembling temple structures drawn on the streets of Puri. This holy festival is celebrated by Hindu devotees for nine days at the Gundicha temple located 2 km from Puri Jagannath Temple to commemorate the holy visit of Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and his sister Subhadra.
During the celebration of the festival, millions of Hindu devotees from all over the world come to the destination to be a part of the festival and receive many blessings of Lord Jagannath. People draw chariots by singing devotional songs to the sound of drums and drums, including music and other instruments.
The celebration of the holy festival is broadcast live on various TV channels all over India and abroad. The construction of the chariots begins on the Akshaya Tritiya in front of the Puri Mahal using sticks of special trees such as dhosa, fasi, etc. brought from another state by Carpenter’s team.
All the huge chariots are brought to the royal temple at Sinhwar. Lord Jagannath’s chariot is entitled to the Nandighosh chariot with 44 feet height, 24 feet width, 26 wheels of 6 feet diameter and adorned with red and yellow cloth. The name of Lord Balarama’s chariot is Taladhwaj Rath, which is 44 feet in height, has 14 wheels of 7 feet diameter and is decorated with red, blue or black cloth.
How is Rath Yatra celebrated in West Bengal?
The most famous Rath Yatra in India is in Puri in Odisha and then in Ahmedabad in Gujarat. There are three famous Rath Yatras in West Bengal which are of the past. The first of these is the Mahesh Rath Yatra which began in the 14th century AD.
It was a pioneer by Mr. Durbanand Bhramachari and is celebrated till date. The chariot or chariot was last donated by Krishnaram Basu and produced by the Martin Burn Company. It is an iron cart, with an architectural design of nine towers, which rises to a height of 50 feet.
It weighs 125 tonnes and has 12 wheels. It was built at an expense of 20,000 rupees and has been used in rath yatra since 1885. The huge nine-layered and multi-layered chariot is decorated with colorful confetti and metal hangings. It is equipped with wooden horses and many wooden sculptures.
Several wheels of the chariot are pulled by four thick ropes, one of which is reserved for being pulled by women only. Rath Yatra of Guptpara is a major festival and the place is a major center of worship of Vaishnavism. Although Guptipara holds the honor and fame of organizing and establishing Bengal’s first public or “Sarbajanin” Durga Puja, it is not the main festival of Guptipara.
The rope and colored chariots of Guptipara are those that make it famous and sought after in West Bengal. Mahishadal, in East Midnapore, though not so famous as Mahesh or Guptpara, is still quite famous for being the tallest wooden chariot in the world.
The 70 feet high chariot is built in the architectural design of the 13 minarets and is decorated with lavishly colored wooden horses and sculptures.
It was built in 1776 under the patronage of Queen Janaki Devi and despite the fact that there have been many changes in the design and approach of the chariot, its main structure remains intact for the last 236 years.