Saturday, 31 May 2014

Yamuna Pushkaram festival in Mathura

Meaning of word Pushkaram is  "the one who purifies". Pushkaram is the time during which the rivers are worshipped. It is a festival in India which occurs in a year with respect to one of twelve important rivers; the river for each year's festival is based on which zodiacal sign Jupiter ( Puskara Devta Brihaspati or Guru) is in at that time.

Each zodiac is believed to be associated with one river (12 zodiacs are associated with 12 rivers )  as follows: Ganges River with Aries; Narmada River with Taurus; Saraswati River with Gemini; Yamuna River with Cancer; Godavari River with Leo; Krishna River with Virgo; Kaveri River with Libra; Bhima River or Tambaraparni with Scorpio; Brahmaputra River with Sagittarius; Tungabhadra River with Capricorn; Indus River with Aquarius; Pranahita (tributary of Godavari) River with Pisces.

Pushkaram in Yamuna Waters, Mathura
The Pushkaram for each river come once every twelve years and lasts so long as the Jupiter remains in the corresponding Zodiac sign (generally, for one year). For example this year in 2014, Pushkaram is celebrated as Yamuna Pushkaram because Guru is entering into the house of Zodiac Cancer ( Kark Rashi in Hindi ) from 19th June 2014 to 30th June.

During these 12 days Yamuna water is considered very powerful since it is believed that Pushkar Dev “ Brihaspati ( also known as Guru or Jupiter ) along with all devas reside in the Yamuna river. Therefore performing Puja, bathing ( holy dip ), rituals , pind daan will fetch good results to the performer as well as to the person for whom the prayer is held.

A holy dip taken in the Yamuna waters of the rivers during Pushkaram will wash away all our sins. This is a very strong belief in Hinduism. Along with prayers, people also do rites to the ancestors on the banks of the rivers during the time of Pushkaram. It is believed that they will reach ultimate heavens emancipated from cycle of life and death because of these rites.   

more information about pushkara festival ( Suggested Readings )


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