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Ratha Saptami: Paying ode to Sun God

Hundreds of devotees throng Mysuru Palace to have darshan of the deities

Mysuru, February 19:- Among the many festivals celebrated in the Hindu month of Magha, the Ratha Saptami finds a special mention. Ratha Saptami day is dedicated to the Sun God.

The Sun God is hailed as a deity who is visible to the human eye. Interestingly, Surya is one of the gods who finds a mention in the Vedas. He plays a pivotal role in the lives of people. Ratha Saptami day is also known as Surya Jayanti.

Devotees worship the Sun God and pay ode to him for sustaining life on Earth. They rise early and take a bath. This ritual is one of the most essential aspects of Ratha Saptami. Belief suggests that one can get rid of the sins they may have committed intentionally or unintentionally by taking a bath in a sacred river during sunrise. Besides getting rid of sins, one can also maintain good health by keeping diseases at bay by worshipping the Sun God on this day.

Sun God’s chariot with twelve wheels and seven horses is driven by his half-brother, Aruna. The 12 wheels represent each zodiac sign that the Sun God covers in one year, and the seven horses symbolise the seven colours of the rainbow. According to the other school of thought, the seven horses signify the seven days of the week.

Apart from being the day that commemorates Sun God’s first appearance, Ratha Saptami also marks seasonal changes. It is of great significance to the farmers who look forward to an abundant yield.

Presiding deities of various temples in the city on Friday (February 19) have been placed at Mysuru Palace for darshan by the public.

The royal family of Mysuru has been following the ritual for times immemorial and the same has been continued even today. Hundreds of devotees thronged to the Palace to take darshan of the deities. (MR/KS)

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