Janmashtami, also known as Krishna Janmashtami or Gokulashtami, is a significant Hindu festival celebrated with great zeal and enthusiasm across India and by Hindus worldwide. This auspicious occasion marks the birth of Lord Krishna, one of the most revered and beloved deities in Hinduism.
The Birth of Lord Krishna
According to Hindu mythology, Lord Krishna took birth as the eighth son of Devaki and Vasudeva. As Devaki and Vasudeva were captured by Devaki’s brother – Kansa the evil king of Mathura, the birth of the Lord took place in the prison. The birth of Lord Krishna is marked with the dawn of truth and righteousness.
Janmashtami Customs and Traditions
- Fasting: On this day Krishna devotees observe the whole day fast and break it at midnight by consuming the bhog prasad offered to Lord Krishna. During the fast people eat only fruits and milk products.
- Birthtime celebrations: During midnight when it is believed that the Lord took birth on the planet, all devotees sang bhajans (appreciation songs). Temples get reverberate with the sounds of bells and conch shells.
- Dahi handi: This game cum celebration is the soul of this festival. People make human pyramids to break an earthen pot filled with curd and butter and hung at a considerable height. A good amount of prize money is also offered to the winning team.
- Jhankis: Elaborate processions showcasing the birth and life of lord Krishna are carried out. These are the main attractions of the Janmashtami festival.
- Reading the Bhagavad Gita: Bhagavad Geeta – the Sacred Book of Hindus is seen as the only guidance for the way to live life. It is recited by devotees around the globe on this special occasion. All these chantings fill the atmosphere with purity.
Common Krishna Janmashtami Bhog Prasad Offerings
- Makhan Mishri: A favorite of Lord Krishna, Makhan (butter) mixed with mishri (crystallized sugar) is a classic Bhog Prasad item. It represents the sweet and playful nature of the Lord.
- Kheer: Rice pudding made with milk, rice, and sugar, and flavored with cardamom and saffron is a popular offering. It symbolizes the richness and sweetness of devotion.
- Fruits: Fresh fruits like bananas, apples, and mangoes are often offered as part of Bhog Prasad, representing nature’s bounty and simplicity.
- Chappan bhog: In some places, mainly temples, a variety of 56 dishes of all flavours i.e., sweet, savoury, spicy etc. are prepared and offered to the Lord. This elaborate feast is called Chappan Bhog. This practice represents the hardest and deepest devotion of a devotee towards his Lord.
Makhana Kheer – Healthy Recipe for Janmashtami
Makhana kheer also known as Fox Nut kheer or lotus stem seeds pudding is a delicious Indian pudding made with Makhana, ghee, jaggery, and spices. It is a healthy Janmashtami fasting recipe that you can enjoy with your loved ones.
Gokulashtami Dhaniya Panjiri Prasad Recipe
Dhaniya Panjiri is a traditional Indian sweet prepared during Janmashtami as Prasad to celebrate Lord Krishna’s birth. It’s a nutritious and delicious offering made from makhana, coriander seeds, ghee (clarified butter), sugar, and various nuts and spices. Dhaniya Panjiri is not only a tasty Prasad but also a nutritious one due to the presence of coriander seeds, nuts, and ghee. It’s a beautiful way to celebrate Janmashtami and share the blessings of Lord Krishna with others.
This Janmashtami, the entire team of Fitness with Nidhi prays for everlasting health and happiness for our fitness family, all across the globe. We pray to the Lord to fuel everyone’s heart with the zeal and enthusiasm to lead a fit, active and productive life.