Rahul Sharma

Mahamastakabhisheka

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Observed by  Jains
Type  Religious
Mahamastakabhisheka
Also called  Translation: Head Anointing of Gommateshwara
Significance  Completion of the statue of Gommateshwara
Celebrations  Anointing the statue of Gommateshwara with milk, saffron, flowers, etc.
Observances  Prayers, Religious rituals

The Mahamastakabhisheka (lit. grand consecration) is an important Jain festival held once every twelve years in the town of Shravanabelagola in Karnataka, India. The festival is held in veneration of a 17.3736 metres (57.000 ft) high statue of the siddha Bahubali. The anointing last took place in 2006, and the next ceremony is going to take place in 2018.

Contents

As the Mahamastakabhisheka begins, consecrated water is sprinkled onto the participants by devotees carrying 1,008 specially prepared vessels. The statue is then bathed and anointed with libations such as milk, sugarcane juice, and saffron paste, and sprinkled with powders of sandalwood, turmeric, and vermilion. Offerings are made of petals, gold and silver coins, and precious stones. Most recently, the ceremony's finale has included an enormous shower of flowers from a waiting helicopter.

Procedure

Purified water and sandalwood paste is poured over the statue from a scaffolding. This event continues for weeks.

Other Mahamastakabhishekas

Apart from the Gommateshwara statue at Shravana Belgola, all the other Gommateshwara statues in Karnataka are also honoured with a Mahamastakabhisheka festival every 12 years.

  • Dharmasthala Mahamastakabhisheka
  • Karkala Mahamastakabhisheka - The last Mahamastakabhisheka was held in February 2002, and the next will be in 2015.
  • Venur Mahamastakabhisheka - The last one was from 28 January 2012 to 5 February 2012. The next one will be in 2024.
  • Kumbhoj Mahamastakabhisheka - The last Mahamastakabhisheka was held in 2015, and the next will be in 2027.
  • References

    Mahamastakabhisheka Wikipedia


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