|Puri Jagannath rath yatra. andhrawatch.com|
|Lord Jagannath temple, Puri, Odisha. booking.com|
Among the rituals associated with rath yatra, the fascinating one is Chera Pahara. Gajapati King (ruler of this land) with a golden-handled broom will clean the street - path of the rath yathra. It implies the ruler is a humble servant to the lord. Pahandi Vijay ritual is about installation of the small idols on the Chariots.
During the festival certain rituals are held such as Brahma Paribartan (changing of soul): creation of new wooden idols and destruction of old ones. Only neem wood is selected for this purpose. Vedic mantras are chanted while making the idols. Then they are taken inside the sanctum where old idols are kept face to face with the new ones and this is done in the midst of mantras, implying transfer of power and sanctity from the old ones to the new. This is done in privacy with the idols wrapped in clothes. Koili Baikuntha Burial: This ritual involves installation of new idols on the throne and removal of old ones. The latter are taken to Koili Baikuntha Burial where they will be buried by the temple priests only. Others are not allowed to witness it.
Ritual Bath (Snana Yatra): The idols will be given a ritual bath 18 days before the festival on the full moon day of Jyeshtha month. They use 108 pitchers of fresh water to bathe the idols. After the bath the idols are kept in a separate place away from public until the Ratha Yatra festival.
|Three wooden idols of Jagannath and others hindi.webdunia.com|