In Hindu mythologies and rituals Gods and Goddesses are revered and loved just as family. Probably belonging to the bhakti yoga culture popularized by Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu – they wake up to strains of music, are offered prasadas, bathed, anointed with fragrances, dressed in finery and jewelry and fall asleep to lullabies. You can either view it as humanization of a deity or the acknowledgement of the Lord’s omnipresence.
In the Sree Mandir tradition of Sree Lord Jagannath, Puri there are altogether 24 beshas or Holy Attires or Ritual Costumes or the Vastra Shringar of which 22 are used regularly while two beshas are used rarely. The Nagarjuna and Raghunath Besha. In all the attires or bhesas, Sree Lord Jagannath is the focal point except for the Pralambasurabadha Besha used to commemorate slaying of a demon of same name by Sree Lord Balabhadra.
The bhesas or the holy attires are:
- Abakasha or Tadapa Uttari Bhesa
This is done daily, after mangala arati. Abakash is the tooth brushing and bathing ritual.
- Badasrunghara Bhesa
It is the nightly retirement dress. This is mostly made of different kinds of flowers and silk clothes.
- Chandana Bhesa
This bhesa is done for 42 days, beginning on Akshaya Trutiya.
- Hati Bhesa or Gajanana Bhesa
On the full moon day of the month of Jyestha, after the bathing ceremony is over, the Deities are dressed to resemble Lord Ganesha.
- Suna Bhesa
When the Deities return from the Gundicha Mandir on their chariots, they appear in the Golden dress. It is said that a darshan of the lord in Suna Bhesa frees one from the cycle of rebirth.
- Raja Bhesa
The Lord dresses up in this attire on the 10th day of the bright fortnight of Aswina, the full moon of Pousa and the full moon of Phalguna.
- Banabhoji Bhesa
On the 10th day of the dark fortnight in Bhadra, the Lords are dressed for a picnic, like the cowherds.
- Kaliyadalana Bhesa
On the 11th day of the dark fortnight of Bhadra the Lord is dressed as Krishna the slayer of serpent Kaliya.
- Pralambasura Badha Bhesa
On the following day, the 12th day of the dark fortnight of Bhadra the Lords are dressed to commemorate Lord Balaram’s slaying of the demon Prahlamba. his is the only beshas when Lord Jagannath’s elder brother Lord Balabhadra occupied the central place.
- Krishna-Balarama Bhesa
On the 13th day of the dark fortnight of Bhadra, the Lords are dressed as Krishna and Balarama.
- Bali Vamana Bhesa
On the 12th day of the bright fortnight Bhadra, the Lord is dressed in the image of his reincarnation as Vamana, the slayer of demon Bali.
- Radha-Damodara Bhesa
From the 11th day of the bright fortnight of Ashwina to the 10th day of the bright fortnight of Kartika, the Lords are dressed with a rope around his waist in reminiscence of his bal-leela with mother Yashoda.
- Thiakia or Laxmi-Narayana Bhesa
This bhesa is used on the 11th day of the bright fortnight of Kartika.
- Bankachuda Bhesa
The curly haired make-up. Used on the 12th day of the bright fortnight of Kartika.
- Adakia or Trivikrama Bhesa
Attire used on the 13th day of the bright fortnight of Kartika.
- Dalikia Bhesa or Laxmi Nrisimha Bhesa
Used on the 14th day of the bright fortnight of Kartika.
- Raja Rajeswari Bhesa
Attire on the full moon of Kartika.
- Chacheri Bhesa
From the 9th day of the bright fortnight to the full moon of Jyestha except the 14th day, this dress is used.
- Nagarjuna Bhesa
In honor of Parasurama. It is used only occasionally – during the month of Kartika, when there are six days of Panchaka. This was done six times in the last 30 years on 11/3/95, 11/16/94, 11/26/93, 11/3/68, 11/16/67 and 11/26/66.
- Ghodalagi and Jamalagi Bhesa
From the 6th day of the bright fortnight of Margasira (Odhan Sasthi) to the 5th day of the bright fortnight of Magha (Basanta Panchami) to Dol Purnima – the Deities wear winter clothes.
- Padma Bhesa
On Saturdays or Wednesdays between the new moon of Magha and Basanta Panchami. The dresses are made from lotus, sola lace and paper.
- Gaja Uddharana Bhesa
On the full moon day of the month of Magha. It commemorates the story of Gajendra, the king of the elephants, and the alligator.
Toshali Sands, Puri has exclusive arrangement to take you on visit to the “Sree Mandir” – The Lord Jagannath Temple, Puri Orissa ‘now called as Odisha”. To Know more, leave your comment or contact travel desk ‘firstname.lastname@example.org, we will get back to you.
I would be glad to hear more about the Holy Ritual Costume or Attires or Bhesas, please post if you feel any information’s in the blog is missing. And would be gald to have you as their guest at Toshali Sands.
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