INDIA FESTIVAL RATH YATRA




 
History Behind Rath Yatra
 

 

According to popular legend, Lord Jagannath is said to have expressed his desire to visit his birthplace--Gundicha Ghat. Some Hindus believe that Jagannatha is an incarnation of Vishnu. Since Vishnu has four arms, Balabhadra, Subhadra and Sudarshana represent Vishnu's four arms. Each deity has its own massive chariot, which are replicas of the temple. Jagannatha's chariot, Nandighosha, is yellow in color, 45 ft high and has 16 wheels, each one seven feet in diameter. About 4,200 devotees draw the chariot. Balabhadra's chariot is called Taladhvaja, is blue in color and has 14 wheels. Subhadra's chariot is the smallest, with 12 wheels and is called Deviratha.

According to the Bhagavad Purana, it is believed that it was on this day that Krishna and Balarama went to Mathura to participate in a wrestling competition, at Kansa's invitation.

Many believe that the custom of placing idols on grand chariots and pulling them is of Buddhist origin. Fa Hien, the Chinese historian, who visited India in the 5th century AD, had written about the chariot of Buddha being pulled along public roads.

 

All About Rath Yatra Festival

Ratha Yatra : Rituals and Celebrations

 

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