The Jagannath temple is an important pilgrimage destination located at Puri in Odisha, on the eastern coast of India. The temple was constructed in the 12th century by King Anantavarman Chodaganga Deva of the Eastern Ganga dynasty. The temple is part of the Char Dham pilgrimage and is famous for its Annual Rath Yatra. The image of Jagannath worshipped here is in wooden which makes this temple very distinguishable.
According to the legends, Lord Jagannath was worshiped as Lord Neela Madhaba by his devotee, a tribal or Savar king named Viswavasu. King Indradyumna sent Vidyapati, one of his trusted priests to the jungle to meet Viswavasu and convince him to relocate the God from the caves to the city where the king lives. Though he couldn't convince Viswavasu, he married Viswavasu's daughter and after few days he convinced the tribal lord to show him the plac...View more
where the cave is. Viswavasu took his son-in-law blind folded on their way to the cave. The priest left mustard seeds on the way so that after a couple of days the seeds will germinate and he can easily trace his way back to the cave. The priest found the cave but when the king reached the caves, the idol had disappeared. Actually, the deity was hidden somewhere under the sand. The perplexed king started fasting unto death. Pleased with King's devotion, a celestial voice told the King that "thou shalt see him". The king made the Jagannath Temple and consecrated the idols of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra, Subhadra and Chakra Sudarshan made out of wood just as he was ordered by the Lord. As per the Legend of Jagannath Temple it is said that Lord Vishnu Himself appeared as a carpenter to make the idols on condition that he shouldn't be disturbed until he finished the work. However, the queen couldn't resist herself from entering the room where idol making was in progress. The queen suddenly entered the room thus breaking her promise of not entering the room until and unless the work is done to find that Shree Vishnu is encrypting the idols himself. The Lord immediately disappeared leaving behind the unfinished idols and so hands of the trinity still remain unfinished. This temple is part of the famous Char Dham Yatra and Shaktipeethas
For its enriched architecture and grandeur, the Puri Jagannath Temple stands among the most rich and largest Hindu shrines across the whole world.The premises covers more than 400,000 square feet and is protected by the fortified stone walls/ the 6.1 m tall wall is known as Meghanada Pacheri and that of the main temple is known as Kurma Bedha. There are around 120 shrines and small temples across the temple premises of Shree Jagannath Dham. Mix o...View more
Kalinga architecture, Hindu temple architecture, Dravidian architecture are predominant here. The magnificent structure has four separate section - the Sanctum sanctorum or the Garbha Griha where the triad deities are consecrated on the Ratnavedi Throne; the front porch or the Mukhashala; the Nata Mandir that is also called as Jagamohan where dance is performed for the deities and the Bhoga Mandapa.Bimala Temple as Shakti PeethOne of the four Adi Shakti Peethas in India, The Bimala Temple dedicated to Goddess Bimala is located in the south west corner of the inner enclosure. The temple is built in Deola style architecture and its origin dates back to 6th Century. The temple enshrines a four armed idol of Goddess Vimala seated on a lion throne surrounded by her two attendants. Picture Courtesy: commons.wikimedia.org
There is no specific Dress code at Jagannath Temple.
The rich culture of Puri reflects the true spirit of the Odisha Society. Puri, the temple town of the state is the pious place where the Jagannath cult and the different other Indian cults, especially Vaishnavism are synthesizing. Besides the strong religious aspects, the temples of Puri are the assets of India that tells us the long lost century old stories. Pilgrims from other states and abroad visit the Shreekhetra all throughout the year and especially during the Ratha Yatra festival, Nabakalebar (executed in every 12 years), Chandana Snana and for different other religious zests.
The second most striking thing of their culture to witness is the enriched art. The art and crafts of Puri district is simply breathtaking. Catching a glimpse of the handloom silk and cotton sarees to the pipli handicrafts can be an enticing exploration.
Puri is well-connected with rail, air and by road throughout the country. Traveling by train is the most prevailing option for pilgrims. Devotees from Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore, Chennai and other places can avail direct train to Puri. From elsewhere they have to change trains at Bhubaneswar. Jagannath Temple is well connected by roadways too. Pilgrims traveling by air, have to land at Biju Patnaik Airport, Bhubaneswar
At Shreekhetra or the Puri Jagannath Temple the rituals are known as Sanskrit Niti means rule. Here the rituals are segregated in three major forms- the daily nitis, the special nitis and the festival nitis observed on special occasions. The daily niti or ritual include- Mailama, Tadapalagi, Abakasa, Vesa, Sahana Mela, Rosa Homa, Surya Puja and the Dvarapala Puja, Sakala Dhupa, Madhyahna Dhupa, and the Sandhya Dhupa.
The Bhoga or Prasadam at Shree Jagannath Temple is called the Mahaprasad. Gopala Vallabha Bhoga, Bhoga Mandapa Bhoga, Pahuda etc are some of the worth mentioning bhoga offered to the Lord. The deities are offered with the food offerings 5-times a day.