Saturday, November 6, 2010

Diwali Padwa Govardhan Puja Traditions Legends Rituals

The fourth day of the Diwali Festival is celebrated as the New Year, known as Kartik Shuddh Padwa, or simply as Padwa. 

Bali Pratipada

Legend of Bali Pratipada: As per a Hindu mythological legend, King Bali, a good and generous King, at one time was at the mercy of a demon. Lord Vishnu came to his rescue in the avatar of the dwarf Vaman and destroyed the demon. The happy King Bali promised to grant Vaman whatever he would ask for, so Vaman said he would take 3 steps and whichever areas were covered would be his own. King Bali agreed. Vaman immediately put one foot on the earth and the other on the sky. Then he asked King Bali where he should put down his third step. King Bali immediately bowed down his head and told Vaman to place his foot on it. Lord Vishnu did so, thereby pushing King Bali to the netherworlds. However, pleased with King Bali’s devotion, Lord Vishnu granted him a boon that he would emerge into the real world on the fourth day following the amavasya period. 

It is thus that the fourth day of Diwali is referred to as Bali Padyami or Bali Pratipada.

Govardhan Puja

In the northern States of India, the day of Padwa is also the day when they perform a puja of Mount Govardhan. This mountain is the focal point of the Hindu mythological legend which narrates this story: The residents of the town of  Gokul always worshipped Lord Indra to bless them with a good monsoon so that they could have a good harvest. Lord Krishna, however, convinced them that the mountains which surrounded their town were the true harbingers of rain. When the people stopped worshipping Lord Indra, they invited his wrath and he sent down a huge downpour that flooded the entire town, with homes, people and cattle all going beneath the waters. Lord Krishna came to their rescue by lifting Mount Govardhan on his little finger and all the town’s residents and animals took shelter beneath the raised mountain. In gratitude, the people create small mounds of cow dung to resemble Mount Govardhan, place flowers on it, and make special prayers to Lord Krishna seeking His blessings for prosperity.This ritual is known as Govardhan Puja.

This year, Diwali Padwa is on October 24th 2014 and Bhau Bheej is on October 25th, 2014.
Know all about Diwali Bhau Bheej Ceremony

1 comment:

  1. It's really nice to know more about diwali legends. Thanks for sharing these info.