5 Fact about Jagannath Temple, Puri

The Jagannath Temple in Puri, Odisha, is a sacred Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Jagannath, a form of Lord Vishnu, along with his siblings, Lord Balabhadra and Devi Subhadra. This temple holds immense significance for devotees, not only in India but around the world. Here are five key points about this revered temple:

  1. Ancient Origins: The temple has ancient origins, believed to have been constructed in the 12th century by King Anantavarman Chodaganga Deva of the Eastern Ganga Dynasty. It stands as a testament to Odisha’s rich cultural and religious heritage.
  2. Iconic Rath Yatra: The annual Rath Yatra of Puri Jagannath Temple is one of the most famous religious processions globally. During this festival, the deities are taken out of the temple in grand chariots and pulled by devotees through the streets of Puri. This tradition dates back centuries and attracts millions of pilgrims.
  3. Unique Wooden Deities: The temple is renowned for its distinctive wooden idols of Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra, and Devi Subhadra. These idols are carved from sacred neem trees and are replaced in a special ceremony called Nabakalebara every twelve or nineteen years, signifying renewal and rejuvenation.
  4. Spiritual Significance: For devotees, a visit to the Jagannath Temple is considered highly auspicious and spiritually fulfilling. It is believed that a glimpse of the deities or receiving prasad (blessed food) from the temple can grant salvation and blessings from the divine.
  5. Spirit of Service: The temple is not only a place of worship but also a center of community service and devotion. The Ananda Bazar, or Mahaprasad kitchen, is one of the largest in the world, where thousands of devotees are served daily, irrespective of caste, creed, or religion. This tradition of serving food to all visitors is deeply ingrained in the temple’s ethos and represents the spirit of Jagannath devotion.

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