Goverdhan Puja : Significance , Story and Moral

14 November 2023

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Govardhan Puja is also known as Annakut. This is a popular festival that falls during the five day long Diwali celebrations. Govardhan puja is dedicated to Lord Krishna and carries a spiritual significance for the Hindu community worldwide. It is based on an interesting tale from the Hindu epic, the Bhagavata Purana. The residents of the village of Vrindavan, where Lord Krishna spent his childhood, used to perform grand sacrifices to please Lord Indra, the god of rain. They believed that such a mode of worship can win Indra’s blessings and bring abundant rainfall and prosperity for their community. However, young Lord Krishna suggested that they instead worship Govardhan Hill, who deserved their gratitude by providing them with fertile land and grazing pastures for their cattle.

The villagers accepted Krishna's advice and enthusiastically organised a massive feast of various food items, forming a mountain-like offering. This feast was known as Annakut. When Lord Indra realised that the villagers had stopped worshipping him, he got furious and sent torrential rains to flood Vrindavan. In response, Lord Krishna lifted the entire Govardhan Hill with his little finger to provide shelter to the villagers and their cattle from the persistent rain. This act of divine protection is the central theme of Govardhan Puja, which symbolises the importance of nature and gratitude.

Since this episode, Govardhan has turned into a pilgrimage and devotees’ worship and offer prayers and food to the mountain. Hindu devotees around the world come to worship Govardhan mountain, which is located near Mathura in Uttar Pradesh. On this auspicious day, devotees offer 56 kinds of sweet dishes to Lord Krishna which are collectively called “Chhappan Bhog”. Devotees worship Lord Krishna as well as ‘Govardhan Parvat’ with full devotion and they perform kirtans, aarti, bhajans, etc. Devotees with their utmost faith and love for Lord Krishna, offer prayer and seek his blessing for a life without hurdles.