The Gangasagar Mela is held annually around Makar Sankranti in Jan. It is essential to the Hindu religion and spirituality. Every year, people from all over the world come to Gangasagar Mela to pray. A few days before Makar Sankranti, the Gangasagar Mela starts. Many religious people visit Sagar Island for a holy dip in the Ganga on Makar Sankranti. Gangasagar Mela is happening from Jan 8, 2023, until Jan 15, 2023.
What is a Gangasagar mela?
During the Gangasagar mela, which takes place every year in mid-January, people from all over the country gather where the Ganga meets the Bay of Bengal to take a holy dip. West Bengal Tourism says that Gangasagar is an island in the Ganges delta. It is on the continental edge of the Bay of Bengal, about 100 km (54 nautical miles) south of Kolkata.
The Kumbh Mela is said to be India’s most significant religious event. The mela is said to be the second largest. This year, the mela will be held from January 8 to 17, with Makar Sankranti on January 15. About three million people are anticipated to attend the mela to take the holy dip.
Gangasagar Mela 2023: Importance
Gangasagar scan is a rite that is very important to Hindus. The state of Bengal celebrates this event with much energy and excitement. A few days before Makar Sankranti, Ganga Sagar Snan starts. People think that a holy dip in the Ganga River will wash away any sins they have done in the past.
People enjoy this day with a lot of pomp and show. They give food and clothes to Brahmins and people who are poor. People from all over the country come here to take a holy dip. The celebrations may differ from place to place, but the spirit of this holiday stays the same.
Astrology says that the Sun moves from the sign of Sagittarius to the sign of Capricorn today. According to Hindu tradition, this day marks the start of good times. After this, all good things can be done, like getting married, getting engaged, starting a new business, etc.
Gangasagara Mela 2023: A Story
According to the Hindu texts, the great King Sagar once did Ashwamedha Yagya to show that he had won over the whole world. The Lord of Heavens, King Indra, stole the horse meant to be sacrificed. Out of jealousy, he tied the horse up in the spatial lok near Kapil Muni’s Ashram.
When King Sagar’s sons went to get the horse and saw it near Kapil Muni’s ashram, they thought he had stolen it. Kapil Muni, who was thought to be a reincarnation of Lord Vishnu, was angry about this, so he cursed the boys and burned them to death. King Sagar’s grandson Bhagirath spent years meditating and praying for the holy Ganga river to flow over the ashes of his ancestors.
Holy Ganga agreed to this request and came down from the sky to wash over the ashes of King Sagar’s boys. The souls of his forebears went to heaven. Because of this, millions go to the Sagar Islands and take a holy dip in the Ganga to find forgiveness and be freed from their past sins. On Makar Sankranti, people pray to Lord Surya by giving him water.
Why is Gangasagar Mela happening?
Hindus think that King Sagar once did Ashwamedha Yagya. King Indra took the horse that would be sacrificed and tied it up in the spatial lok. Later, when King Sagar’s sons went to get the horse, they found it near Kapil Muni’s ashram and thought he had stolen it. Then Kapil Muni cursed the boys and burned them up.
King Sagar’s grandson Bhagirath thought for a long time and asked the Ganga River to flow across the ashes of his ancestors. Ganga agreed to do what they asked, so she came tumbling down from the sky and washed through the ashes of King Sagar’s sons. The lives were saved. Today, millions of people go to the Sagar Islands to carry a holy dip in the place where the sea and the Ganga meet. They do this to find forgiveness and get rid of their old sins.
Rituals for Gangasagar Mela 2023
- On the day of Ganga snan, Hindu followers get up early (at Brahm muhurat) and collect to bring a holy dip in the Ganga River. They give Lord Surya Arghya and sing the Lord Surya Mantra.
- After the practices, people pray to Kapil Muni and use desi ghee to light a diya.
- On the day of Ganga Snan, some people even do yajna and Dhawan.
- On the day of Ganga Snan, some followers even go on a strict fast.
- People pray to the teacher at the nearby Kapil Muni Temple, which is close by.
- On the happy day of Ganga Snan, people thank Goddess Ganga and ask for forgiveness for any bad things they may have done, whether they did them on purpose or not.
Important Information about the Gangasagar Mela
- Gangasagar is West Bengal’s most prominent and oldest live practice or holiday.
- Since 400 BCE, it has been performed for a week during Makar Sankranti on the island of Gangasagar in the 24 South Parganas District of West Bengal.
- Gangasagar, also called Sagar Island, is on the continental edge of the Bay of Bengal, about 100 km south of Kolkata. It is in the Ganges delta.
- Both the Ramayana and the Mahabharata talk about it.
- The pilgrimage began when Queen Satyabhama built the temple for the First Kapil Muni in 430 AD.
- Gangasagar is an island where the Ganga meets the Bay of Bengal. Devotees go there to take a holy dip.
- After the Kumbh Mela, it is India’s second most significant journey.
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