Kumbh (कुम्भ दर्शन ) - An Introduction

Kumbh Darshan

The Kumbh Festival  at Tirthraj Prayag began on the full moon night (Purnima) of the month of Paush. The Kumbh Festival is held at Haridwar, Ujjain and Nasik every four years, but the Kumbh at Prayag has a special significance. The Kumbh Festival is marked by the fact that it is held at the banks of holy rivers every 12 years. In Prayag it is held on the banks of the rivers Ganga-Yamuna and the mythical Saraswati, in Haridwar at Ganga and in Nasik at the Godavari. A great fair is held on these occasions on the banks of these rivers with a huge congregation of devoted pilgrims.

The Prayag Kumbh

This Kumbh is considered to be the most significant of all as it marks the direction of wisdom or light. This is the place where the sun, symbolizing wisdom, rises.
Creation of the universe is supposed to have originated here and it is supposed to be the center of the earth. Prajapati Brahma, the God of Creation, is said to have created the Universe after conducting the Ashwamedh Yagna at the Dashashwamedh Ghat here. The Dashashwamedh Ghat and the Brahmeshwar Temple still exist here as if as symbols of that holy yagna, and that is another reason for the special significance of the Prayag Kumbh. In fact Prayag and Kumbh are synonymous to each other.

The Meaning of Kumbh

The literal meaning of Kumbh is a pitcher, but its elemental meaning is something else. Even as a symbol of pitcher, Kumbh is synonymous with holy activities as in daily life a pitcher (or kalash) is an integral part of all sacred activities in Hindu culture, and this pitcher is a symbol of Kumbh.
Holy scriptures say that in a pitcher, its mouth (opening) symbolizes the presence of Vishnu, its neck that of Rudra, the base of Brahama, all goddesses in the center and the entire oceans in the interior, thus encompassing all the four Vedas. This itself establishes the significance of the Kumbh as symbolized by the pitcher.

Different Forms of Kumbh

We shall not dwell upon the literary meaning of the word Kumbh, but we would like to mention the synonyms and origins. The Kumbh is a pitcher. Kumbh is the human body, it is the abdomen, and the sea, earth, sun and Vishnu are synonyms of Kumbh. The pitcher, sea, river, ponds and the well are symbols of Kumbh as the water from these places is covered from all sides. The sky has the cover of the wind, the sun covers the entire universe with its light, and the human body is covered with cells and tissues. That is why it is Kumbh. Desire, that is longing, is also Kumbh. God Vishnu is also Kumbh as He pervades the entire creation, and the creation pervades in Him.


Elemental Meaning of Kumbh

Kumbh is the confluence of all our cultures. It is the symbol of spiritual awakening. It is the eternal flow of humanity. It is the surge of rivers, forests and the ancient wisdom of the sages. It is the flow of life itself. It is the symbol of the confluence of nature and humanity. Kumbh is the source of all energy. Kumbh makes humankind realize this world and the other, sins and blessings, wisdom and ignorance, darkness and light. Holy rivers are the symbols of the lyrical flow of humanity. Rivers are indicators of the flow of water of life in the human body itself. In the human body that is an embodiment of home, nothing is possible without the five elements. The elements – fire, wind, water, earth and sky – symbolize the human body. The great sage-poet Sant Kabir has explained this sublime thought in his typical manner.
The Himalaya is the abode of the soul of the gods. The Holy Ganga embarks upon its journey from there, encompassing the forests, the mountain sages and the culture of the villages. The Yamuna is a co-traveler as it puts an end to all sins, and it is known variously as Tripathga, Shivpuri and other names. This is the Ganga that liberated the children of the Suryavanshi king Sagar. Its holy water is considered nectar itself.

Rituals of Kumbh

Kumbh Mela, is the largest human gathering which is attended by millions of people on a earth irrespective of all worldly barriers of caste, creed, region. The Kumbh Mela has wielded a mesmeric influence over the minds and the imagination of the ordinary Indian.

Devotees believe simply by bathing in the Ganga zone is freed from their past sins (karma), and thus one becomes eligible for liberation from the cycle of birth and death. Other activities include religious discussions, devotional singing, mass feeding of holy men and women and the poor, and religious assemblies where doctrines are debated and standardized.
Kumbh Mela (especially the Prayag Kumbh Mela) is the most sacred of all the Hindu pilgrimages. Millions of holy men and women (saints , monks, and sadhus) attend this spectacle of faith.
This holy event with such tremendous faith has gained international fame. Famous ancient traveler. Huen Tsang of China, was the first to mention Kumbha Mela in his diary. His diary mentions the celbration of 75 days of hindu month of Magha (January-February), which witnessed half a million devotee including sadhus, common man, rich & famous & kings.

नासिक-त्र्यंबकेश्वर सिंहस्थ कुंभ मेला आज से शुरू हो गया।

 महाराष्ट्र के मुख्यमंत्री देवेंद्र फडणवीस ने मेले का उद्घाटन किया। #kumbhmela के साथ ट्विटर पर कुंभ मेले की कई तस्वीरें शेयर हो रही हैं। इन कुछ चुनिंदा तस्वीरों पर डालते हैं एक नजर।

मुख्यमंत्री फडणवीस ने नासिक में कड़ी सुरक्षा के बीच पूजा, मंत्रोच्चार और परंपरागत ध्वजारोहण के साथ मेले का उद्घाटन किया।

नासिक और त्र्यंबकेश्वर दोनों स्थानों पर कड़ी सुरक्षा के बीच परंपरागत ध्वजारोहण के साथ मेले का उद्घाटन किया गया।

 *****आज से नासिक कुम्भ मेला***
गोदावरीस्नान, सिंहस्थपर्वकी विशेषता है ! त्र्यंबकेश्‍वर-नासिकमें सिंहस्थपर्वके निमित्त १४ जुलाईसे २५ सितम्बर २०१५ के मध्यकी अवधिमें मेला लगेगा । वहां स्नान, दान, श्राद्ध, पितृतर्पण, सन्तदर्शन, धर्मचर्चा आदिके लिए केवल करोडों श्रद्धालु ही नहीं, अपितु देवता, सहस्रों सन्त एवं तैंतीस कोटि तीर्थ भी आएंगे । यह सब अद्वितीय है !
सिंहस्थपर्वमें तीर्थस्नान, धार्मिक कृत्य एवं साधना करनेसे लाभ
‘सिंहस्थ’पर्वमें गोदावरीमें गंगातत्त्व जागृत होता है । इस कालमें गोदावरीस्नान व गोदावरी (गंगा) पूजन किया जाता है ।
षष्ठिवर्षसहस्राणि भागिरथ्यावगाहनम् ।
सकृद्गोदावरीस्नानं सिंहस्थे च बृहस्पतौ ॥ - पद्मपुराण
अर्थ : ६० सहस्र वर्ष भागीरथी नदीमें स्नान करनेसे जितना पुण्य मिलता है, उतना ही पुण्य गोदावरीमें एक स्नान करनेसे मिलता है, जब गुरु ग्रह सिंह राशिमें होता है ।
‘सिंहस्थ’पर्वके १३ मासके कालमें त्र्यंबकेश्‍वरस्थित कुशावर्ततीर्थमें पितृतर्पण, स्नान, श्राद्धादि कर्म करनेसे पूर्वजोंका उद्धार होता है, यह महर्षि कश्यपने कहा है ।
घृतकुम्भदान अनुष्ठान केवल सिंहस्थ पर्वमें किया जाता है । इसे श्रद्धासे करनेवाला जीवनमुक्त होता है ।
अपनी शुद्धि तथा पितरोंकी मुक्तिके लिए गोदावरी तटपर मुण्डन किया जाता है ।
‘सिंहस्थ’पर्वमें स्नान, दान, जप, श्राद्ध, देहशुद्धि प्रायश्‍चित आदि कर्मोंसे उनका पुण्य अनन्त गुना मिलता है !
तीर्थक्षेत्रोंकी पवित्रताकी रक्षा करना, धर्मपालन ही है !
तीर्थक्षेत्रगमन एक साधना है, अतएव तीर्थक्षेत्रोंमें सैर-सपाटेसमान आचरण न करें !
पर्वस्नानके समय नदीका पवित्र जल प्रदूषित न हो, यह सावधानी रखें !
धार्मिक कृत्योंके पश्‍चात निर्माल्य निर्माल्यपात्रमें तथा वेष्टन (कवर), कूडा आदि कूडापात्रमें डालें !
साधुनिन्दा महापातक है, इसलिए जटाधारी, हठयोगी, नग्न आदि साधुओंका उपहास न करें !
श्रद्धालुओंमें भगदड न हो तथा उन्हें देवताके दर्शन सुलभतासे हों, इस हेतु संगठित प्रयास करें !

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