Samayika Niti (Periodical Rituals)

LIVING TRADITION >> Samayika niti (Periodical Rituals)

Bedsides the daily rituals, a few rites are performed on some specific days and occasions.


The Majana and Ekanta rites are scheduled to be performed usually on every Thursday after the morning dhupa. The Mahajana sevakas bring Shreedevi and Bhudevi from the throne and MadanaMohan from the Dakrinaghara and place the deities on the Majana Mandap. Some special rites such as Majana, Chandanalagi, bhoga, alati, Bandapana etc performed by various sevakas such as Mahajana, Bhitarchha Mahapatra, Pujapanda, Sudhasuar etc.


It is performed at night on Thursday. After the evening dhupa, the Mahajana sevakas take MadanaMohan from the ‘Dakshinaghar’ to the Ratnasinghashan. Then the Pujapanda offers one ‘ajnamala’ (garland of order) from Shree Jagannatha to MadanaMohan and another plain ajnamala to Shreedevi (Lakshmi). Thereafter the servitors carry the deities to the Jagamohana of the Lakshmi temple and they place the deities on a cot lying there. Bhitarchha performs the ritual of ‘Prasadlagi’ (offering of little sandal paste). The Pujapanda also offers ‘Kora Bhoga’. Alati follows the Puja and thereafter the ‘Bandapana’ (Ritualistic adoration or greeting). According to Record of Rights, the ‘Majana’ or ‘Ekanta’ are not observed if the Thursday falls on the Ekadasi (11th day of the fortnight).

Nakshatra Bandapana

The Nakshatra Bandapana rite is performed after the midday dhupa on the day in which the star of birth stellar day of any deity falls. The following are the zodiac signs and asterism of the three deities:

Shree Balabhadra: Sravana, Makara (Capricorn)

Shree Jagannatha: Rohini, Brusha (Taurus)

Devi Subhadra: Jyestha, Bichha (Scorpio)

On the stellar day of Lord Balabhadra, one more ‘Bandapana’ is done for him. Similarly the same procedure is followed in case of Shree Jagannatha.

At the time of the midday dhupa, the Mahajanas take MadanaMohan inside from the ‘Dakshinaghara’ after the dhupa, the Pujapanda perform karpur alati and bandapana for Shree Jagannatha, Patimohapatra for Devi Subhadra and Mudirasta sevak for Balabhadra. On that day some more special rights are performed and then MadanaMohan returns to the ‘Dakshinaghara’.

Ekadasi Rites

On every ekadasi (i.e. the eleventh day of both the fortnights), the entire bodies of the deities are smeared with ‘Chandan’ (Sandal paste), called ‘Sarbanga Chandan lagi’. MadanaMohan receives the ‘ajnamala’ at the Ratna Singhasana and goes round the compound of the temple in the palanquin. Then ‘Alati’, ‘Bandapana’ and ‘Bhoga’ are performed at the Jaya Vijaya door.

The ‘Mahadeepa alati’ (the great lamp offering) is performed on the night of every ekadasi. After the evening dhupa, the Pujapandas first perform the ‘Mahadeepa alati’ near the Ratnasinghashan, then go round it and then passing the Jaya Vijaya door go to the front of Vimala temple with Mahadeepa inside the ‘Kalasa’ (earthen pot). They give three kalasas and some Tulasi & Chandan Prasad to the ‘Chunara’ sevakas. Three Chunara sevakas climb up the temple with the Mahadeepas, standing below the ‘dadhinauti’, they offer the Tulasi and sandal paste to the NeelaChakra and then go round it thrice with the Mahadeepa and the Chandra udias. While moving round they pray aloud “May the Lord save the King of Puri sheltering him inside the conch shell and shielding him by the disc”.

Amabasya Rite (Sagar Bije ritual)

If Amabasya (new-moon day) extends to Pratipada (first day of the fortnight), this rite is performed after the morning dhupa. Mahajana sevakas bring the metal image of Shree Narayan from the ‘Dakshinaghara’ and place it on the Ratnasinghashan. The Pujapanda gives the deity the ‘ajnamala’ from Shree Jagannatha. Thereafter the palanquin bearers carry him to the Swargadwar on the seashore. The Garabadu sevaka fetches water from the sea in a silver pot and gives it to the Pujapanda, then the Pujapanda sanctifies it and offers it to the deity. Pana bhoga, alati, bandapana are also performed by the Pujapanda. Then after the deity is taken to the Yameswar Mahadev temple, sheetala bhoga and bandapana are done there. Then the deity returns and goes back to his ‘Dakshinaghara’.

Rites on the Lunar and Solar Eclipses

No rituals are conducted for the deities during the lunar and solar eclipses, after ‘Paka tyaga’ (suspension of cooking activities) other special rites such as ‘Mahasnana’, sheetala bhoga (Khai, Kora etc) and offered to the deities.

Rites performed in case of Defilement or any Accident

If a dog enters the temple or if a dead body or a bone is found on its premises, the rites of the deities are suspended and ‘Mahasnana’ of the deities is to be conducted.

If anyone defecates, urinates or spits in the area lying between the wooden bar and the Ratnasinghashan, the inside and outside are thoroughly washed and cleaned and then sprinkled with lime water. ‘Mahasnana’ Puja will be conducted by Pujapanda sevaka.

Banakalagi or Shreemukha Sinhara

This rite is scheduled to be performed on every Wednesday or Thursday. Three Dattamahapatra sevakas after grinding the ‘Banaka’ climb up the throne taking the paste and start the “Banakalagi” (painting the images). At the time of performing this service to the middle ‘Bada’, the palia Mekap shows the baitha (Lamp) taking it from the Akhanda. After the ‘Banakalagi’ is over, the Dattamahapatras get down from the throne.