The land of Odisha is famous for the holy temple of Shree Jagannath Puri. Puri Jagannath mandir is one of the Char Dhams declared by Adi Shankaracharya. This temple is associated with Lord Jagannath, Sister Subhadra, and brother Balabhadra. This world-famous temple of Puri has various stories and many devotees. The Puri Jagannath temple is also famous for its Rath Yatra, which takes place annually. Devotees from far land come to witness the most incredible and magnanimous Rath Yatra.
Today in this blog article, we will uncover the Jagannath Puri story, share the history of Puri Jagannath temple, and discuss other places which you can visit while traveling to Puri.
Puri Jagannath Temple History
Jagannath Puri Temple was a 12th-century temple constructed by the king of the Ganga Dynasty, Ananta Varman Chodaganga Deva. The temple’s construction was completed around 1174 AD, under the reign of Anangabhima Deva. The temple was subject to invasion by many invaders. Almost 18 times, different emperors invaded the temple and looted it.
Puri Jagannath Temple Architecture
Jagannath Puri Mandir is a huge temple spanning 4,20,000 square feet of land. Meghananda Pacheri is the name of the outer wall of the temple. This wall covers the whole temple. The height of Meghananda Pacheri is 6 meters approx. The central area of the temple is surrounded by a wall called Kurma Bheda.
The temple is based on Oriya architecture. There are around 120 shrines and temples inside the main temple of Jagannath Puri. There are 5 main structures inside the temples:
- Garba Griha – It is a place where all 3 deities are sitting on a throne made of pearls. This throne is also known as Ratnavedi.
- Natamandapa – It is an audience hall
- Bhogamandapa – This is another hall made for offerings.
- Nila Chakra – Another noteworthy structure of the Puri Jagannath temple is Neelchakra or Nila Chakra. It is an 8 spoked wheel of Lord Vishnu. The Nila Chakra is located at the top of the temple over its dome structure. The Nila Chakra is made of Ashtadhatu (made of eight metals) This Chakra is considered sacred to Hindus.
Jagannath Puri Story – Story Of Krishna’s Heart At Puri
A very intriguing story is associated with the Puri Jagannath temple. The story goes back to the times of the Mahabharata yuga. After the war of Mahabharata, Gandhari cursed Krishna. The curse was that Yadav clans would putrefy fighting each other the way her children died in the war. Krishna accepted the curse. After 36 years of war, the curse came true. All Yadavs died fighting each other. After that, one fine day, Krishna was sitting under a tree and playing his flute. A hunter named Jara misunderstood Krishna’s foot as a lurking deer and shot his arrow at Krishna’s foot. As soon as Jara got to know his mistake, he asked for penance. Krishna, before dying, forgave Jara. Arjuna performed the last rites of Krishna. During the last rites, the whole body of Krishna turned into ashes except his heart. It is said that Arjuna immersed the heart in the sea near Dwarka (Gujrat). The heart turned immediately into a blue stone. With the passage of time, the heart traveled to the coast of Orissa. King Indradyumna carried the heart and places it in a log of wood. Later the temple of Jagannath was established, and King placed a log of wood carrying the heart of Krishna inside the temple.
After every 12 years, the selected priests change the heart from the old idol to the new idol made up of wood. This ritual is considered sacred, and the priest who does this is blindfolded first. So, this is the story associated with the origin of Lord Jagannath.
Jagannath Puri Temple Facts To Surprise You
- The flag atop the Jagannath Puri Temple flies against the course of the wind. No scientific explanation has yet been found for this amazing phenomenon.
- Priest every day climbs the top of the temple without any protective gear to change the flag. The height of the temple is almost equal to 45 story building.
- The temple does not have any shadows. This means when sunlight falls on it, the temple does not create any shadow on the ground.
- The Chakra on the top of the temple is almost a tonne in weight. This is considered as Sudarshan Chakra of Krishna. It appears the same from all directions.
- Nothing can fly over the temple, not even a bird or any flight.
- The prasadam is made every day for almost 2 lac people. The astonishing fact is that not even a single bite gets wasted here.
- The ocean of Odisha creates a lot of noise, but the moment you step inside the temple from Singhadwar, you won’t hear any noise from the ocean.
- Breezes from the opposite in the Jagannath Puri temple. On every part of this planet, in the daytime, breezes flow from sea to land, and in the evening, the breezes flow from land to sea. But, here at Puri Jagannath Temple, breezes in the daytime flow from land to sea, and the opposite happens during the nighttime.
- The food here is cooked in 7 pots. Priest place the pots over one another, and food cooks over the wood fire. Surprisingly, the topmost pot cooks the food and then the second pot likewise, it follows.
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