The Jagannath temple is located at Puri in Odisha state, dedicated to Lord Krishna. This temple is one of the most eminent and the biggest temple of Orissa. Jagannath temple is said to be established in the early 12th century by the King Anantavarman Chodaganga Deva. The present structure of the temple is constructed by the King Ananga Bhima Deva in 1174 CE. The temple complex occupies an area of 400000 square feet and the height is about 20 feet. Jagannath temple is closely associated with Vaishnava traditions.
The mythology says that the idol of Lord Jagannath was found at the foot of a tree (it is said to be a banyan tree) in the form of Indranila which is known as a Blue Jewel. Its surprising brightness prompted Lord Dharma to hide it in the earth. The King Indradyumna of Malwa wanted to find the image and so performed penance. Then he was instructed by Lord Vishnu to go to the Puri seashore to find a floating log to make an image from its trunk. The king did found the log of wood. Lord Vishwakarma appeared in the form of artist and prepared the idols of Lord Krishna, Lord Balarama and Goddess Subhadra from the tree.
The main deity of this temple is Lord Jagannath (Lord Krishna), the Lord of the Universe. The idol of Lord Jagannath in this temple is made of Wooden and are replaced for every twelve years by sacred trees. The other deities of this temple are Lord Balabhadra, Goddess Subhadra, Lord Sudarshan, Lord Madhaba, Goddess Sridevi and Goddess Bhudevi. One of the most attractions of this Jagannath temple is that the pillars of the temple are embellished with images depicting the life of Lord Krishna.
The chariot of Lord Jagannath is structured with a height of 45 feet and with 35 feet square having 16 wheels. It is dragged by 4000 people during the festival. This temple is an important pilgrim’s journey place for the devotees of ‘Lord Vishnu’. The Jagannath temple contains the following four sections.
- Garba Griha (Sanctum Sanctorum)
- Mukhashala (Front porch)
- Natamandap (Dancing Hall)
- Bhoga Mandap (Offering hall)
- Dwarpitha and Mangal Aarati – 5.00 a.m.
- Mailam – 6.00 a.m.
- Abakash – 6.00 a.m. to 6.30 a.m.
- Mailam – 6.45 a.m.
- Sahanamela – 7.00 a.m. to 8.00 a.m.
- Beshalagi – 8.00 a.m.
- Rosha Homa Surya Puja and Dwarapal – 8.00 a.m. to 8.30 a.m.
- Gopala Ballava Puja – 9.00 a.m.
- Sakala Dhupa (Morning food offering) – 10.00 a.m.
- Madhyanha (Afternoon food offering) – 11.00 a.m. to 1.00 p.m.
- Madhyanha Pahudha – 1.00 p.m. to 1.30 p.m.
- Chandan yatra – March or April
- Sneha yatra – May or June
- Rath yatra – July or August
- Chitalagi amabashya – July or August
- Rahurekha lagi – August or September
- Saptapuri amabashya – August or September
- Ganesh chaturthi – August or September
- Rishi Panchami – 5th August
- Radhastami – 8th August
- Parswava Parivartan – 11th August
- Bamam janma or sunia – 12th August
- Anant chaturdashi – 1st September
- Indra govinda puja – 2nd September
- Sahasra kumbha mela – 11th September
- Dasahara – September or October
- Kumar purnima – September or October
There are regular buses from Bhubaneswar and other major cities of Odisha to Puri bus station.
There are regular trains to Puri from Bhubaneswar and other major cities of Odisha. Puri is frequently connected to most of the major cities in India.
Nearest airport is Bhubaneswar Airport at a distance of 53 Km. And also Visakhapatnam Airport at a distance of 372 Km.
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