Durga Temple Hosts Jagannath Rath Yatra

Rath Yatra

Geetha Patil

BURLINGTON MA: Shree Vijaya Durga Temple of Sri Siddha Lalitha Peetham at Burlington, MA organized Sri Jagannath Rath Yatra on 6th July 2024, from 5:00pm to 8:00PM covering 1.6 miles with Bhajans, Kirtans, and Puja of Lord Jagannath, brother Balabhadra and, Sister Subhadra along the way. Many enthusiastic devotees from the Burlington and surrounding towns participated with full zeal and zest.

The temple head Priest, Pandit Bhavani Tejasvi Athmaram Ji prepared Lord Jagannath (Lord Krishna), his sister Subhadra Ma and his elder brother Lord Balabhadra ready for procession. The procession started after setting up the temple deities in a chariot specially decorated with various designs, colors, and flowers while chanting Vedic Mantras by following all the Vedic rituals. The Ratha Yatra proceeded on Wilmington Road towards Cambridge Street, Burlington with much devotion and fervor. Pandit Srinivas Shastri Ji and his son Nagendra Shastri Ji filled with pure devotion chanted Vedic Mantras and the holy name of ‘Jai Jagannath’ while the devotees were pulling the chariot. The chariot, the wheels, and the horses all symbolize the divine journey of the Lord. Pandit Bhavani Ji rode a live horse as God’s Sarshtee in the front of the parade chanting Vedic Mantras.

Pandit Bhavani Ji gave a brief discourse about the significance of Ratha Yatra, and connection between Ma Kali and Lord Vishnu. He said, ‘Ma Kali with Her wisdom takes away the darkness of the external world. Then She bestows the True Light of the inner world.

Devotees enjoyed classical dance programs by Darashana Gujjar who performed a beautiful Odissi dance with much devotion and spiritual fervor and Pandit Bhavani Ji presented two Bharatanatyam pieces and mesmerized the audiences with his intricate footwork, expressive hand gestures (mudras), and soul-stirring music while relishing Maha Prasadam outside in the open air.

The Rath Yatra concluded with the Niladri Vijay, where the deities are ceremoniously returned to the sanctum sanctorum of the temple. This marked the end of the grand festival, leaving the devotees with a sense of fulfillment and divine blessings.

The Burlington police had put in place elaborate security and traffic arrangements for the smooth conduct of the grand annual festival. Temple president, Sheshu Ji thanked all the priests, devotees, volunteers, horse grooms, and police team for making this event a grand success.

Shri Vinod Chawla Ji told the reporter, ‘Rath Yatra is a revered festival where devotees flock to witness the divine journey of Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra, and Devi Subhadra. The elegant preparations, chanting of Vedic Mantra and rituals, and especially the inclusive nature of the festival make it a significant cultural event bringing people from all backgrounds together.’

Also Read: Annual grand Jagannath Rath Yatra in Boston

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