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Location : Allahabad
Time : January And February (After Every Twelve Years)
Duration : Six Weeks
Highlights : Holy Dip at Sangam, Confluence of River Ganga, Yamuna and Sarasvati
How To reach : Road and Railways up to Allahabad and Airport at Varanasi, 135 km

Maha Kumbh Mela - The Most Holy Fair

Kumbh Mela
Kumbh Mela

The Kumbh Mela is one of the most sacred pilgrimages in Hinduism. The word Kumbh has been derived from the Sanskrit word Kumbh meaning 'pot' or 'pitcher' and Mela means 'festival' that is why it is known as "the pitcher festival". The history of Kumbh Mela is older as the civilization itself , it is believed the gods and demons fought for the pitcher of nectar, the fight ensued for twelve days and twelve nights during which four drops spilled from the pitcher on on to four places of this earth Prayag (now Allahabad), Haridwar, Nasik, and Ujjain. Kumbh mela occurs four times in twelve years and rotates among these four places. Each twelve-year cycle includes a Grand Mela called Maha Kumbh Mela and is held at Allahabad.

In Nasik, Mela is held during the month of Phalgun and Chitra (February, March and April), at Ujjain in Vaishska (May) and at Nasik in Shravana (July). Participation of the devotees from all over the country as well as abroad has made it world's biggest gathering. The highest religious authorities and the astrologist's determine the appropriate date of Maha Kumbh astronomically after studying the positions of the sun, moon, and the Jupiter.

A Fair That Energizes Your Mind and Soul

Kumbh Mela is attended by millions of people on a single day. The most important part of the mela is to a holy dip on the banks of the rivers to wash away the sins committed in the lifetime and grant an escape from the cycle of reincarnation. Bathing on the new moon day, Amavasya is considered as the most auspicious and attaches the highest spiritual merit. On this day the devotees from all over the country start thronging the riverbanks as early as three-o clock in morning. But before any body could go to bath, first of all the force of Naga Babas or Sadhus of the Snake Sect hit the water at the propitious bathing time or Kumbhayog. These ferocious looking sadhus armed with the tridents and swords consider themselves to be the guardians of faith are naked and cover their body with the ash and wear hair in long deadlocks.

After Naga Babas all the devotees visit the holy ghats to grab the chance of bathing at Sangam (the holy confluence of the Ganga and Yamuna rivers) among the holy chants of 'Jai Ganga Mai Ki". Without caring for the freezing water every one remains ready to jump at his turn to attain the salvation, the utmost gift of the god to its obedient followers.

Naga Sadus Preparing for bath
Naga Sadus Preparing for bath

While most of the people leave the place after the Isnan (Holy Bath) Sadhus, Saints, Monks and Sages stay back. The government makes the arrangement for the shelter and food. Most of the people reside in the tents and pandals and take there food from the government langars. The holy environment involves every one to be engrossed in the thought of gods, some are praying with a rosary in their hand, while others are busy listening to religious discussions and devotional singing.

The devotees with the inspiration to gain the eternal knowledge are given the spiritual advises and the people with confusions are asked to question and clarify there confusions. Tourists who want to pray along t6 the holy men are offered proper help.

A keen watcher can find many surprising things in the Maha Kumbh Mela, a saint who has dumped himself under 10 feet soil, a devotee has an arm lifted from the last 27 years and has come to still similarly one saint has not came out of his one room hut from the long time. These people punish themselves for the sins they have committed in their life and it is believed to increase the faith of the pious devotees.

According to the reports during the last Maha Kumbh Mela in 2001, over the period of six weeks 70 million people visited the holy site and 30 million people on the day of Shahi- isnan (Great bath). The tents where erected on the 18 square miles and 20,000 security persons kept the vigil. The public address system was the largest one used anywhere in the world.

Sangam of Heart And Soul

What will be the happiest moment of a true devotee than coming close to the gods he aspire for. Such an opportunity is offered by the Maha Kumbh Mela -Where the followers of the Hinduism are enjoined to make a pilgrimage, at least once in their lifetime. Plan a trip to this holy land with your friends to examine the lifestyle of the people who are committed to there religion and don't do any thing other than preaching the words of there beloved god. The people from all around the world will be in your company and you will experience completely the new thing. The Government makes the arrangements inside the Mela grounds for all necessities including the food and lodging, security and transport. The special buses ply on the roads from the nearer towns, bus stops and railway stations to the Mela grounds. Come and enjoy, I bet it will be a life time experience for you.

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Top 5 Highlights of Maha Kumbh Mela

Kumbh Mela Bath

A Holiday With Holy Spirits
Spend your holidays at the Maha Kumbh Mela the most sacred fair in the Hinduism at Allahabad. Take the ritual bath on the ghats of Sangam where you can purify yourself from all sins and participate in other religious activities takes place.

Worlds Largest Gathering
Around 70 million people visit the Mela during six weeks time. Plan a trip to Allahabad at that time and you will find the whole world is assembled here. Wow it will be amazing to see the ocean of people at a single place, hope you will find a way back to your reside.

Faith Healers
Watch the Naga Babas, the most revered sect among sadhus who are ferocious looking with the long deadlocked hair, ash covered body and armed with the tridents and swords. They consider themselves to be the guardians of faith.

Eating Out
You will be amazed to know that the food served to all the devotees at Maha Kumbh Mela is strictly vegetarian and is provided by the government free of cost. You are invited to Kumbh to pray, eat and listen and learn what you have never experienced before.

Live It Out
Maha Kumbh Mela is an excellent opportunity for the tourists participate to participate in the religious activities of the Hinduism. The all time religious discussions, devotional songs, religious lectures and debates gives an incitement to the participants to get more and more involved.

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