Jagannath Rath Yatra 2023: Date, Significance & Celebration

The Jagannath Rath Yatra 2023 date and details

Jagannath Rath Yatra is one of the most prominent festivals that people celebrate in India, particularly in the eastern state of Odisha. The festival is a grand procession that involves carrying the idols of Lord Jagannath, his brother Balabhadra, and sister Subhadra. There are chariots or raths, which the devotees pull. People celebrate the festival every year on the second day of the bright fortnight of the Hindu month of Ashadha. The event usually falls in June or July. People are very eager to celebrate the Jagannath Rath Yatra in 2023 since it holds such spiritual significance!

This event holds a significant place in the hearts of devotees. People also believe that participating in the festival brings good fortune and blessings from the deities. The festival moreover is a symbol of unity and brotherhood, as people from all walks of life come together to participate. People show unity and walk in the grand procession. It is a celebration of the rich culture and traditions of India. It is indeed a visual treat for the eyes with colorful chariots, traditional dresses, and mesmerizing music.

Jagannath Rath Yatra 2023: Date and Timings

The much-awaited Jagannath Rath Yatra for 2023 is just around the corner. The devotees are gearing up to celebrate this grand festival with great zeal and enthusiasm. According to the Hindu calendar, the auspicious occasion of Jagannath Rath Yatra falls on the second day of Shukla Paksha during the Ashadha month. In the year 2023, the festival will commence on 20th June at 22:04. It will conclude on 21st June at 19:09.

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Celebrations and rituals to follow

The Jagannath Rath Yatra is a grand festival that people celebrate in the city of Puri in Odisha, India. It is an annual event that commemorates Lord Jagannath’s journey from his temple to his aunt’s place, which is three kilometers away. Here are some of the rituals and customs followed during the Jagannath Rath Yatra:

  • The preparation for the Rath Yatra starts with the construction of the chariots. Devotees build Three massive chariots for Lord Jagannath, his brother Balabhadra, and his sister Subhadra.
  • On the day of the Yatra, people take out the idols of the three deities from their temple and place them on chariots. Devotees then pull the chariots with ropes, while chanting the names of the Lord.
  • The procession moves through the streets of Puri, and people gather on either side to catch a glimpse of the deities. The air is filled with the sound of conch shells, drums, and cymbals.
  • The chariots stop at various places, where people worship the deities and offer them holy items. These offerings include fruits, sweets, and flowers.
  • On the fourth day of the festival, the deities return to their temple in a similar procession called the Bahuda Yatra.
  • Devotees take a dip in the holy river of Mahodadhi to purify themselves before participating in the Rath Yatra.
  • The Rath Yatra is also an occasion for people to dress up in their finest clothes and jewelry. The streets of Puri are filled with colorful processions and street vendors selling various items.
  • Moreover, taking part in the Rath Yatra and pulling the chariots brings good luck and blessings from Lord Jagannath.

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Significance of the Gundicha temple

The Gundicha temple is a significant landmark during the Jagannath Rath Yatra in the city of Puri, Odisha, India. It is the destination of the annual Rath Yatra procession. Here, people take the idols of Lord Jagannath, his brother Balabhadra, and sister Subhadra to the Gundicha temple for a nine-day stay. Devotees with their high spirits will attend the Jagannath Rath Yatra in 2023 at Gundicha temple. The temple holds great significance in the festival, and here are some reasons why:

  • The Gundicha temple is the birthplace of Lord Jagannath. The temple is also known as the Garden House of Jagannath, and it is where the deities take a vacation during the Rath Yatra.
  • The Rath Yatra is a symbolic journey of Lord Jagannath, his brother Balabhadra, and his sister Subhadra from their temple to the Gundicha temple. This journey represents their annual visit to their aunt’s house, as per the mythology.
  • The Gundicha temple is the most sacred place during the Rath Yatra. People clean the temple and decorate it with flowers and lights to welcome the deities during their stay.
  • During their stay at the Gundicha temple, the people worship the deities with great devotion. Devotees perform various rituals and offer Prasad, and people from all over the world come to seek their blessings.
  • The return journey of the deities from the Gundicha temple to their temple is called the Bahuda Yatra. It is a significant event of the Rath Yatra, and thousands of devotees gather to witness the procession.

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Legends associated with the Rath Yatra

The Jagannath Rath Yatra is a significant festival that people celebrate in Puri, Odisha. The festival has steeped in mythological tales and legends. Here are some popular legends:

One of the most famous legends associated with the festival is the story of King Indradyumna. According to this tale, the king wanted to build a temple for Lord Vishnu. He dreamt, Lord Vishnu instructed him to find a wooden log that would wash up on the shores of Puri. The king found the log and employed skilled artisans to carve the idols of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra, and Subhadra. However, the Lord told the king that he would not be able to see the final form of the idols. Else, they would disappear before the finishing touches are applied.

Another popular story is the tale of Lord Jagannath and his sister Lakshmi. According to this legend, Lord Jagannath and his brother Balabhadra wanted to visit their aunt’s house. However, they left their sister Lakshmi behind. Hurt by their actions, Lakshmi visited Puri disguised as a human and wanted to see the idols of her brothers. However, the temple guard stopped her. Lord Jagannath, upon hearing of the incident, vowed to never see his sister again. As a result, the idols of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra, and Subhadra are not worshipped for the next nine days after the Rath Yatra.

According to another tale, a carpenter named Visvakarma carved the idols of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra, and Subhadra from a wooden log. The Lord promised Visvakarma that people would worship him for a thousand years, but after that, he will perish and people will replace him with new idols. This is the reason why the idols of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra, and Subhadra are replaced every twelve years during the Nabakalebara ceremony.

Astrological significance of Jagannath Rath Yatra 2023

The Jagannath Rath Yatra is not only a festival of cultural and religious significance, but it also has astrological significance in Hindu mythology. The day of the Yatra will be the day of the Sun’s entry into the zodiac signs Cancer, which is an important astrological event. This transition marks the beginning of the monsoon season in India, and it will have a profound effect on the environment and human life. People celebrate the festival during this time because it brings good luck, fortune, and prosperity.

Astrologically, Lord Jagannath connects with the planet Jupiter, which people also know as the Guru planet. Jupiter brings knowledge, wisdom, and prosperity. During the Jagannath Rath Yatra, the people take out the Lord from his temple and place him on a chariot, which represents the movement of the planet Jupiter. This also brings good fortune and prosperity to the people who participate in the Yatra.

Another astrological significance of the festival is that it marks the beginning of the Chaturmas, a four-month period of spiritual and religious significance. During this period, it is believed that Lord Vishnu goes into a state of sleep, and his followers observe austerities and undertake religious activities to gain his blessings.

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Posted On - April 5, 2023 | Posted By - Kasturi Chaudhari | Read By -


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