Goverdhan Puja

Goverdhan Puja is performed on the 16th day of the Hindu month of Kartik, that is on the day consecutive to Diwali.

The festival is also known as Anna Koot, Padwa and Gudi Padwa and the traditions, rituals and legends associated with it vary from region to region across the country.

On this day, devotees build and decorate hillocks of cow dung, which symbolise Mount Goverdhan in Braj, which was once lifted by Lord Krishna to protect the residents of Braj from the incessant rains. In the evening, people gather around these hillocks to worship Lord Goverdhan and offer prayers while perambulating around the hillocks.

The day is observed as Anna Koot in a few regions. Annakoot literally means mountain of food. In temples of Mathura and Vrindavan, deities in the temples are bathed in milk, dressed in new, festive clothes and decorated with precious ornaments. Devotees prepare 56 varieties of delicacies (Chhappan Bhog) and offer these ceremoniously to the deities in the form of mountains.

In the year of 2017, Goverdhan puja is on 20th October.



Goverdhan Puja Legend

As the legend goes, the residents of Braj, where Krishna grew up, used to worship Lord Indra, God of rain, to express their gratitude for the adequate rains, until Lord Krishna told them that it was not Indra but Goverdhan which showered rains on them.

When people started worshipping Goverdhan instead, Lord Indra was furious and caused incessant rains on Braj to the dismay of ‘Brajwasis’.

The locals then sought Lord Krishna’s refuge who offered prayers to Lord Goverdhan and then lifted the mountain on his little finger to provide shelter to his devotees from the wrath of Indra. Since then, Lord Krishna became to be popularly known as Goverdhan Dhari or Giridhari.


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