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Deva Snana Puja of the Lords at the Char Dham Temple

CharDham_IN01THE WOODLANDS: As part of the 7th Annual “Greater Houston Rath Yatra” celebrations, “Deva Snana Puja”, bathing ceremony of Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and Devi Subhadra was celebrated at the Char Dham Temple in the Woodlands on Wednesday, June 27 with much pomp and ceremony. Deva Snana is the first occasion in the year when the deities are brought out from the sanctum sanctorum at Puri and taken in a procession to Snana Mandap (bathing altar), where they are ceremonially bathed with 108 pitchers of water from a well inside the Jagannath Temple.

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Deva Snana Puja

After the bathing rituals, the deities are decorated in Gaja Vesha or elephant headgear. In keeping with this tradition, the deities, were bathed with 108 pitchers of water in a ceremony led by the head priest of Char Dham temple, Sri Srikiran Narayam. Devotees present in the temple participated in the bathing ceremony by pouring water on their beloved God. After the bathing ceremony, the deities were dressed in Gaja Vesha. All the while, soulful bhajans were being performed by Char Dham devotees. This was followed by Maha Arati and Prasadam.

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This is what devotees will see when they visit Jagannath temple till Rath Yatra.

After the ceremony, the deities were placed in Anabasara, where the devotees can’t see them until Rath Yatra, which will be celebrated on July 14, at the Char Dham Temple from 5pm to 10pm. This event is being organized jointly by Char Dham Hindu Temple, SKAI Foundation, and ISKCON Houston and is being supported by various other organizations. The organizers are anticipating a big crowd packing the temple premises and surrounding streets to see and seek blessings from Lord Jagannath, Lord of the Universe. Festivities will include procession of 3 chariots in Jagannath Puri style, Cultural entertainment, Indian bazaar, Food booths and Maha Arati. Admission is completely free.

For more information, visit http://chardhamhindutemple.org or call 832-299-5172.

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