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Jagannath puri temple

The Jagannath Puri Temple, also known as the Shree Jagannath Temple, is a famous Hindu temple located in the city of Puri, in the state of Odisha, India. It is one of the Char Dham pilgrimage sites for Hindus and is dedicated to Lord Jagannath, a form of Lord Krishna.

Here are some key features and facts about the Jagannath Puri Temple:

1. Importance: The Jagannath Puri Temple is considered one of the holiest shrines in Hinduism. It is one of the four major pilgrimage sites (Char Dham) for Hindus, along with Badrinath in the north, Rameshwaram in the south, and Dwarka in the west.

2. Deities: The main deities worshipped in the temple are Lord Jagannath (a form of Lord Krishna), his sister Subhadra, and his elder brother Balabhadra. The deities are made of wood and are replaced with new ones every 12 or 19 years in a grand ceremony called Navakalevara.

3. Rath Yatra: The temple is famous for its annual Rath Yatra, also known as the Chariot Festival. During this festival, the deities of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra, and Subhadra are placed on giant chariots and pulled through the streets of Puri by thousands of devotees.

4. Temple Architecture: The temple complex is vast and covers an area of over 400,000 square feet. It is built in the Kalinga style of architecture with a distinctive pyramid-shaped roof. The temple’s spire, known as the “Shikhara,” rises to a height of about 58 meters (190 feet).

5. Temple Kitchen: The temple has a massive kitchen known as the “Anand Bazaar” or “Mahaprasad Bhandar.” It is one of the largest kitchens in the world and feeds thousands of devotees every day. The temple is also known for its unique food offerings and the sacred food called Mahaprasad, which is believed to be highly auspicious.

6. Non-Hindu Entry: The temple traditionally allowed only Hindus to enter the inner sanctum and touch the deities. However, in recent years, the temple authorities have opened the doors to non-Hindus, allowing them to enter certain parts of the temple complex.

7. Legends and History: The temple has a rich history and is associated with several legends and myths. According to one legend, the original wooden deities were carved by Lord Vishnu himself. The temple has also witnessed various invasions and reconstructions over the centuries.

8. Preservation: The Jagannath Puri Temple is a protected monument under the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) and is subject to strict preservation and conservation efforts to maintain its historical and cultural significance.

Visiting the Jagannath Puri Temple is a significant pilgrimage for devotees, and it attracts millions of visitors every year who come to seek the blessings of Lord Jagannath and experience the grandeur of the temple and its festivals.

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