Shree Nath ji UtsavSurendra Singh
Shrinathji is a form of Krishna, manifest as a seven-year-old child (Balak). The principal shrine of Shrinathji is the Shrinathji Temple in the temple town of Nathdwara, 48 kilometres north-east of Udaipur city in Rajasthan.
The Shrinathji temple at Nathdwara celebrates, on an average, three festivals or utsavs in a week. As regards to daily routine, the inner sanctum is opened 8 times a day for the devotees undertake sacred darshan of the deity. Very elaborate and complex rituals have emerged around the worship of Shrinathji due to confluence and inter-mixing of cult of Krishna as well as that of Pushti Margi Shri Vallabhacharya.
The main attractions of Shrinathji are the Aartis and the Shringar, i.e. the dressing and beautifying of the idol of Shrinathji, treating it as a living child, adorning it with the appropriate dresses commensurate with the time of day or night. The style of dress, the items in food, and the jewellery are all prescribed and this is followed since years.
The formal prayers are offered with diya, flowers, fruit and other offerings, with local instruments and devotional songs of the Shrinathji, according to the demand of the time and occasion. The view of the idol after the parda (curtain) is removed is called jhakhi.
Here is a collection of 17 main utsavs and celebrations performed for Shrinathji:
This uthsav gives importance to green colour. Everything is green i.e. the Dress, the Flowers and Jewellery of Shrinathji on this day.
On this day Shrinathji, wears a turban and a pichwai exhibits dark monsoon clouds and rain. Radha also is seen in the Pichwai, showing her love for him.
BAGICHA KA UTHSAV
This uthsav gives importance to Peacock Shrinathji wears a Crown, Ornaments of Peacock, 24 Banyan trees are placed in the Doltibari.
Shrinathji wears Saffron colour dress. Different types of toys are placed in front of him. He is bathed with panchamrat. Midnight is the time of his birth. The band starts playing music and the bells are rung. A 21 Gun salute is fired.
This is the uthsav following Janmastami, Nandlal dances with Gopis and Gopas.
This is the birthday of Murlidhar the son of Girdharji, Gosainjis eldest son. A shield and sword is placed in front of Shrinathji because Ram won over the Ravana.
This Ekadashi reminds us that Lord has awaken after four months and a mandap of sugarcane is made where the marriage of God and Tulsi is celebrated.
Shrinathji puts a crown similar to the ears of a cows. The cows are brought in Puja Choke to play. The villagers from distant places come to loot the rice at night which is in huge quantity i.e. 2300 kg. These villagers are known as Bhil Tribals. They carry this as Prasad.
During this festival the cows are decorated and brought into the temple in the evening. Shrinathji, is royally dressed on this day with exclusive ornaments.
This uthsav is on a full moon night. Shrinathji is mostly dressed in white clothes with white utensils i.e. silver and white jewellery i.e. Diamond
This is considered one of the most auspicious day of the year. One does not have to see an Mahurat for any type of function. Spring has arrived and hence a pot is placed before Shrinathji, with various flowers and branches of the trees. Gulal is sprinkled on Shrinathji.
This Uthsav is after the Holi. Gulal is sprinkled on the devotees. Navnitpriyaji is placed on the swing near Shrinathji. Shrinathji is dressed in white colour so also the pichvai is also white. In the evening, a person dressed as Aurangzeb comes and sweeps the step of Suraj pole with his beard. Shrinathji was pleased with him and blessed Aurangzeb who was one of the Frotunate Mughal Emperor because of Shrinathji’s blessing. In fact he became blind and Shrinathji cured him after he prayed from Dhruv Bari. His mother was a loyal devotee of Shrinathji.
Shrinathji, is dressed with pink and particularly everything offered to him is pink in colour.
This is the uthsav of Yamunaji. Shrinathji wears white light dress.
Shrinathji wears a simple dhoti and and uparna. He is bathed with safron water and offered 1,25,000 Mangoes.
It is the chariot festival. A tiny toy silver chariot with horses is placed. Shrinathji wears white dress with white turban.
CHAPPAN BHOG OF SHRINATHJI
This is celebrated particularly after one month from Dev Diwali i.e. on 15th tithi of Maghshar Shukla Paksha. Ofcourse other Chappan Bhogs are also sponsored in between by the devotees of Shrinathji after having due consent.