Every year during the month of Kartika our two temples arrange for special programs each evening, with kirtana, offering of ghee lamps by all visitors, and distribution of prasadam.
The last day of the month, Kartika Purnima, is one of the most important religious festivals in Odisha, so thousands of devotees attend throughout the day to worship Lord Jagannatha.
Below are some photos and videos from this years special Kartika worship.
The benefits of offering a ghee lamp to the Lord in the month of Kartika is described in the Puranas as follows:
“In the month of Kartika, which is very dear to Sri Hari, one who bathes early in the morning attains the merit of bathing in all places of pilgrimage. Anybody who offers the Lord a ghee lamp in the month of Kartika becomes free from all kinds of sins, such as brahmahatya, and he goes to the abode of Lord Hari, Sri Vaikuntha.”
“If anyone fasts and observes the Kartika vrata according to proper rules and regulations, the Yamadutas (the messengers of Yamaraja) run away from him, just as an elephant runs away by seeing a lion. This vrata to Lord Vishnu is even better than performing one hundred great sacrifices that would take him to heaven because the person who observes the Kartika vrata goes to the spiritual world or Sri Vaikuntha.”
Each day devotees cooked and distributed prasadam to hundreds of visitors who came for the evening worship. On this particular day they prepared puris and sabji for 400 people:
Here are a few more short videos made during the month: