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Rai Shyam
Aug 16, 202212 min read

Krishna Janmashtami | Historical Significance | How is Janmashtami celebrated

An annual Hindu celebration called Krishna Janmashtami, which means "Occasion of the birth of Krishna," is held to commemorate the birth of Krishna, the eighth manifestation of Vishnu. The eighth tithi (Ashtami) of the Krishna Paksha (dark fortnight) in Bhadrapada Masa is when it is celebrated, according to the Hindu lunisolar calendar. This falls during the Gregorian calendar months of August or September.Particularly in the Hindu Vaishnavism tradition, it is a significant festival.  

As described in the Bhagavata Purana, the practise of upavasa includes fasting, a night of vigil (Ratri Jagaran), a festival (Mahotsav) the next day, and dance-drama reenactments of Krishna's life (such as Rasa Lila or Krishna Lila).The Janmashtami celebrations include midnight devotional chanting when Krishna was born, fasting (upavasa), a night vigil (Ratri Jagaran), and a festival (Mahotsav) the next day. Aside from the major Vaishnava and non-sectarian communities found in Manipur, Assam, Bihar, West Bengal, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, and all the other Indian states, Mathura and Vrindavan are where it is celebrated most vigorously.

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Krishna Janmashtami

Following Krishna Janmashtami is the celebration Nandotsava, which commemorates the occasion when Nanda gave presents to the neighbourhood in honour of the birth of Krishna.

Historical Significance of Janmashtami:

Gokulashtami or Krishna Janmashtami are other names for Janmashtami. According to the Hindu calendar, it is observed on the eighth day of the Krishna Paksha, which corresponds to a dark fortnight in the month of Bhadrapada. Do you know why Ashtami, the eighth day of the celebration, is observed before the story begins? Since it is thought that Krishna is Devaki's eighth child, Krishna Janmashtami is observed on the eighth day.

Krishna is the son of Devaki and Vasudeva Anakadundubhi, and Hindus celebrate his birthday as Janmashtami. This is especially true for followers of the Gaudiya Vaishnavism school, who view Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The Hindu holiday of Janmashtami commemorates the time at which Krishna is said to have been born, which is at Mathura at midnight on the eighth day of Bhadrapada month (overlaps with August and 3 September in the Gregorian calendar).

Krishna Birth

In a chaotic environment, Krishna was born. His life was in danger from his uncle King Kansa at a period of widespread persecution, restricted freedoms, and pervasive wickedness. Following Krishna's birth in Mathura, his father Vasudeva Anakadundubhi transported him across the Yamuna to his foster parents, Nanda and Yashoda, who happened to be Vasudeva's brother and sister-in-law who lived in Gokula. Along with Krishna, the serpent Shesha Balram, who was the son of Rohini, Vasudeva's first wife, also assumed human form as Krishna's elder brother. On Janmashtami, devotees observe a fast, sing devotional songs to Krishna, and keep vigil till the wee hours of the morning to commemorate this legend. Forms of the infant Krishna appeared after his midnight delivery.

How is Janmashtami celebrated?

The Hindu majority celebrates this event throughout India. This celebration was also known as Krishna Janmashtami, Sree Jayanti, Gokilashtami, and Srikrishna Jayanti. Lord Krishna was born in order to eradicate evil from the world and disseminate the message of brotherhood and love. Lord Krishna was the eighth child born to Devaki and Vasudeva, and he fulfilled the prophecy to slay Kind Kansa. When Bal Krishna was very little, King Kansa made numerous unsuccessful attempts to assassinate him.All Hindus consider the holiday of Krishna Janmashtami to be of utmost importance, and they observe a day of fasting on this occasion. The next day, after midnight, the devotees break their fast. Additionally, they offer aarti and songs to Lord Vishnu and Krishna as well as worship them. The worshippers sing a few of the Lord's slokas as well. Krishna's idol is embellished with mukut, other jewellery, and brand-new, shining attire.Numerous Hindu temples are also decked with lights and flowers to mark this day. The temples host a variety of bhajans and kirtans. The dance and drama of Krishna's life are presented in many spiritual settings. Even the schools participate in this auspicious festival celebration by having dance performances and dressing the young students as Lord Krishna.

The Dahi Handi event, which takes place on the day of Krishna Janmashtami, is another significant event that occurred during this festival. This tradition, which is performed on every Krishna Janmashtami, commemorates the fact that Lord Krishna was known as Makhan Chor when he was a youngster. To puncture the Dahi Handi, one must form a group of individuals and scale them.

Many locations where a sizable crowd congregates on the occasion of Krishna Janmashtami are beautifully decorated, including the Iskon Temple in Delhi and Vrindavan, the Prem Mandir in Vrindavan, the Shri Nathji Temple in Rajasthan, the Jagannath Temple in Odisha, and the Govind Dev Ji Temple in Jaipur. Additionally, certain elaborate Khakis are staged in important locations to highlight some particular festival elements. Where the entire Krishna life revolves—Mathura, Vrindavan, Gokul, and Dwarika—the festival is particularly noteworthy. Numerous temples host the Rasa Lila performances, which draw a sizable number of worshippers.

Janmashtami pooja 2022 Details:

Krishna Janmashtami puja timings:

Laddu Gopal puja is done on Ashtami tithi. This year, Ashtami tithi runs from 9:20 p.m. on August 18 through 10:59 p.m. on August 19, 2022.

Janmashtami puja celebration vidhi:

During the Janmashtami Puja festival, a Krishna deity is put in a cradle and worshipped. Butter and sugar are offered as prasad to the Lord. Devotees observe a daylong fast that is only broken with prasad after the puja. It is known as paran to break the fast. To commemorate Krishna's birth, people also perform aarti, kirtan, and bhajan. Children perform on Lord Krishna melodies, and women dance to songs about Radha. The ceremony of dahi-handi is also followed in various areas of Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh. To shatter the curd or butter bowl, people form a human pyramid all around the nation. It is noted that good and truth prevails over evil on that particular day.

Janmashtami Pooja Procedure:

The residence is adorned and cleaned in preparation for Krishna Janmashtami. Devotees take a sacred bath the morning of Krishnashtami after rising early. The puja altar is then positioned. The puja altar should ideally be constructed inside the puja space itself. If an elaborate puja is in your plans, you can also set up the altar there.The focal point of the Krishnashtami puja is the idol of Sri Krishna. Some folks utilise the typical idol or image that they have in their puja area. Every year for the puja, some individuals purchase a new image of Krishna. Depending on the material the Krishna idol is constructed of, you can either arrange for a holy wash for the idol or you can just dress it up with flowers, garments, and accessories. Drawings of tiny footstep patterns leading from the front door to the puja room are common in Hindu houses. 

This custom alludes to Sri Krishna entering the home to bless the puja and the occupants, figuratively, with his tiny feet. Every home receives prosperity and happiness when Krishna visits during the puja, according to legend.Incense is offered to the Lord while the lamp is lit. dispense kumkum and chandan. Offer a unique homemade prasad. It is very appropriate to serve Lord Krishna curd/yoghurt, ghee, butter, and other dairy products and milk-based desserts. Berries and other fruits should also be remembered. Chant some shlokas and mantras about Krishna and sing Krishna's songs. Complete the pooja by waving camphor. To demonstrate Krishna's blessings, share the prasad with the group and your family.

Janmashtami Bhog:

Mawa (khoya), milk, sugar, ghee, and cardamom powder are cooked together to make the famous Mathura peda aka mawa peda, and it is offered to Lord Krishna as bhog on the occasion of Janmashtami.

Janmashtami Bhog

Janmashtami Celebration all over India:

Janmashtami is celebrated all over India. But we will cover the states where Janmashtami is most popular.

1. Janmashtami Celebration In Mathura, Uttar Pradesh:

At Krishna's Janmabhoomi in Mathura, Janmashtami is mostly celebrated. The excitement here is definitely worth seeing because it is the birthplace of Krishna. A fantastic atmosphere is created, especially in this region of the country, with temples decorated with flowers, streets bustling with worshippers, the air infused with the scent of roses, and special delicacies being cooked at every turn. Many engaging plays are performed to depict Krishna's life, from his butter-stealing incident to the Ras Leela with the Gopis. Throughout Mathura, his Balgopal roop is cradled on Janmashtami in every home and even in the temples. In many other regions of India, people still hold the newborn Krishna in their arms.

Janmashtami Celebration In Mathura, Uttar Pradesh:

2. Janmashtami Celebration In Vrindavan, Uttar Pradesh:

The Uttar Pradesh town of Vrindavan, which has a close connection to Krishna's life, is another location after Mathura where Janmashtami is observed with tremendous devotion. Only 11 miles from Mathura, Krishna spent his early years stealing butter and performing the Raas Leela with his Gopis in Vrindavan. In temples, a number of ceremonies are carried out on this holy day. A noteworthy highlight of this location is the artists' performance of raas leela and plays based on Krishna's life. The entire town of Vrindavan comes to life for ten days during the celebration of Janmashtami with the serenading music of bells, mridang, and bhajans. There are a lot of devotees visiting this sacred place since Krishna's appeal has extended around the world.

Vrindavan Janmashthmi

3. Janmashtami Celebration In Maharashtra:

Janmashtami in Maharashtra is more about having fun and celebrating than Mathura and Vrindavan. Huge pandals are set up to host Dahi Handi competitions as part of this celebration's distinctive style. People gather to form enormous human pyramids to smash an earthen pot that is hanging from a great height and is loaded with curd and white butter. People throw water towards the group attempting to smash the pot in Dahi Handi to increase competition. A sizable crowd gathers each year to witness this show, which is said to have been inspired by Krishna's deed of stealing butter with his buddies. An enormous monetary award is offered to the victorious team, and this event is typically organised and sponsored by businesses and regional political organisations. Mumbai, where the Janmashtami celebration is absolutely intriguing, is one of the preferred locations to witness the electric Dahi Handi.

Janmashtami Celebration In Maharashtra

4. Janmashtami Celebration In Dwarka, Gujarat:

When it comes to the Janmashtami festivities in Gujarat, the home of Lord Krishna, they are worth seeing because this is where he spent almost five thousand years of his life. After he departed for his heavenly abode, legend has it that the entire city of Dwarka sank beneath the Arabian Sea. During Janmashtami, conch shells and ringing bells erupt around the modern city, bringing it to life. Many followers of Lord Krishna travel to Dwarka each year to fully immerse themselves in his devotion.

Janmashtami Celebration In Dwarka, Gujarat

5. Janmashtami Celebration In Odisha:

A classic temple of Lord Krishna is Jagannath, which is located in Odisha. Legend says that Lord Krishna's heart was fastened to a log and dropped into the sea. The location of Krishna's heart is the Jagannath Temple in Puri. All of Odisha's important temples are exquisitely decked, and a special prasad called Jeuda Bhog is prepared with the idea that it will relieve Lord Krishna's mother's delivery pains. Ladoo Gopal is kept in a cradle covered with flowers at midnight, and the deities are dressed in exquisite jewellery and clothing. To commemorate the anniversary of Krishna's birth, mantras are repeated, processions are held, devotional songs are sung, poems from the Bhagavad Gita are recited, and a number of sweets are prepared.

Janmashtami Celebration In Odisha:

6. Janmashtami Celebration In Goa:

Goa is well-known for Janmashtami celebrations despite being a Portuguese town. As this beach town has a connection to the Yadavas, the clan to which Krishna belonged, the temples there are as important as its lovely churches. In this unusual temple, Krishna and Devaki are revered side by side. The Devaki Krishna cult's sole temple in India is actually this one. In this temple, there is an image of Devaki standing with young Krishna wedged between her legs. Janmashtami is also enthusiastically observed here in addition to everyday worship. Major Janmashtami celebrations in Goa may be seen at a temple in Marcel (approximately 17 km from Panaji), which is characterised by long lines of worshipers.

7. Janmashtami Celebration In Jaipur:

The celebrations of Janmashtami are well-known at the Krishna Balaram and Govind Devji temples in Jaipur. The primary image of Krishna was transported to the famed Govind Devji Temple inside the City Palace by Raja Sawai Jai Singh II from Vrindavan, and it is thought that Bajranabh, Krishna's great-grandson, made it. The Krishna Balaram temple in Jaipur is identical to the Krishna Balaram temple in Vrindavan. Both of these Jaipur temples are exquisitely decked because decorations are a need during Janmashtami. The temples are constantly crowded, particularly during the festival, and you can observe lengthy lines of devotees coming here to pray and ask for blessings.

8. Janmashtami Celebration In Manipur:

Manipur celebrates Janmashtami with the same fervour as the rest of the nation, including fasts, temple visits, Raas Leela performances, singing of bhajans, and traditional dance performances. Almost every hamlet in Manipur has at least one Krishna Temple, where Janmashtami is celebrated with tremendous zeal due to the Vaishnavism that is extremely prominent in this northeastern state. Large crowds of worshippers to Krishna can be seen at the well-known Mahabali and Sri Govindjee temples.

manipur

9. Janmashtami Celebration In Andhra Pradesh:

The Janmashtami celebration in this region of the country is particularly distinctive, including wearing Krishna costumes and engaging in numerous rituals. Andhra Pradesh residents celebrate Janmashtami by worshipping paintings of Krishna rather than idols because there aren't many temples in the state. When performing pooja, a variety of sweets and fruits are provided. The celebration of Janmashtami in Andhra Pradesh also includes reciting bhajans and slokas.

10. Janmashtami Celebration In Kerala:

One of the important temples in Kerala where Janmashtami celebrations are great is the Guruvayur Sri Krishna temple, popularly known as Bhuloka Vaikunta. This temple in Guruvayur town is also referred to as the "Dwarka of South India" and is thought to be the "Holy Abode of Vishnu on Earth." During Janmashtami, devotees from all over Kerala come to this temple to pay respects to the statue of Vishnu, who is shown as the newborn Krishna as seen by Devaki and Vasudev. In Kerala, the celebrations of Janmashtami include pooja, mantra chanting, and the giving out of prasadam.

To witness live Janmashtami Puja from home and offer online pooja offerings, darshan:
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