Guess we are not the only ones who fall sick due to changing weather and extravagant summer baths. Next time your mom calls you out for falling sick and being an irresponsible kid, tell her: And so, who are we? Mere mortals.
It’s been an old tradition in Jagannath Puri, Odisha to have Lord Jagannath fall sick every year during late summers. It’s believed that this is the only place where God still exists in his human form. Naturally, like humans, he experiences all worldly pleasures and problems – and so, falling sick is a part of his human life.
The tradition continues in Lord Jagannath temples of Kashi, Vrindavan and Udaipur.
Starting on a full moon night of 19 June, God Krishna was given an extravagant, luxurious bath (mahasnan) followed by a royal treat of chilled seasonal fruits and juices on his magnificent throne.
All devotees enthusiastically came to offer their love in the form of luscious juices, milk and holy water.
Now, what does too much pampering do? Poor Lord, he fell sick.
And now, for a good fifteen days, his caretakers have kept him on a strict diet. No more treats, okay? Simple, bland khichdi
for lunch, orange juice four times a day and doses of Ayurveda medicines — this will be his life till July 5. Also, during this time, he won’t be entertaining any meetings whatsoever. The devotees are sent back from the gates with a message that he is too sick to meet anyone right now.
Folklore says, Krishna fell sick after Rukmini left the palace to go back to her aunt’s place. Apparently, she was furious by Subhadra sitting between Balbhadra and Krishna.
It’s said that 15 days later, the trio sets out on a rathyatra
to get Rukmini back in the palace.
The caretakers say that they’ve told Lord Jagnnath to patiently follow his sick diet, because after all these days, he will be back to work.
By work I mean, he will be taken for a rath yatra
with his sister Shubhadra
and brother Balbhadra
to bless the souls of thirsty humans.
Of course, not before he’s treated with 21 scrumptious delicacies.
Humans, what all we do to entertain ourselves!