29 November, 2020

The Pilgrims’ Progress

Lord Jagannatha’s Ratha Yatra is one of the great ritual showpieces in Hinduism. This meticulous study lists all, but leaves out the fascinating history.

Photograph by PTI
The Pilgrims’ Progress

This book is all about the celebrations, legends, rituals, festivities and practices of the chariot festival of Lord Jagannatha in Puri. A coffee-table book, it is embellished with many colourful photographs on various facets of the celebrations, with suitable illustrations. Readers interested in the temple, its age-old rituals and ceremonies will feel enlightened and rewarded.

A seasoned civil servant, Subas Pani dwelt on all aspects of the Ratha Yatra of Jaga­nnatha Temple at Puri. Indeed, he has live broadcasted the Ratha Yatra over Doordarshan for two decades. Besides, his dissertation for his PhD was on medieval poet Jayadeva’s Sanskrit classic Geetagovinda and Jagannatha. The deity, add­­­ressed as Lord of the Universe, dominated the social, religious and cultural life and aspirations of the people of Orissa for ages. Cel­ebrations of the yatra in particular and other festivals showcase the culture and creativity of Orissa. The deity is believed to be omniscient, omnipresent and omnipotent. His Naba Kalebara, celebrated...



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