We read in our previous post that how Kumbh Melaa has a very old background and is related to it. In this post we will see how it is celebrated, when it is celebrated, where it is celebrated, and how many types of Kumbh are there.
How Kumbh Melaa is celebrated
The major event of this festival is taking bath in those rivers wherever it is being held, for example in Gangaa River in Haridwaar, in Sangam in Allaahaabaad, in Kshipraa River in Ujjain and in Godaavaree River in Naaasik. Naasik has recorded the maximum number of pilgrims till now - 75 million people. By the way this year, in 2013, 100 million people are expected to attend Kumbh Melaa at Allaahaabaad. Yahoo reports that on the opening day, on January 14, 2013, on Monday, 10 million people took bath in the Sangam.
Besides taking bath in the river, its other activities include religious discourses, discussions and devotional singing. It should be noted that sage Yaagyavalkya Jee told Raam's Kathaa to sage Bharadwaaj Jee and other Rishi at Sangam, Allaahaabaad, on an annual Kumbh Melaa time in Maagh month.
Where Kumbh Melaa is Celebrated?
It is held at four places where Garud Jee took rest while carrying Amrit - Prayaag at the confluence of the Rivers Gangaa, Yamunaa and mythical Saraswatee; Ujjain at the River Kshipra, Naasik at the River Godaavaree and Haridwaar at the River Gangaa. That is why Kumbh Melaa is always celebrated at these places only.
When Kumbh Melaa is Celebrated?
Its timings as when it will be celebrated and where, depend upon the positioning of Brihaspati (Jupiter) and Soorya (Sun) planets on the Zodiac belt.
--When the Sun is in Aries (Mesh Raashi) and Brihaspati (Jupiter) is in Aquarius (Kumbh Raashi) it is celebrated in Haridwaar
--When the Sun is in Capricorn (Makar Raashi) and Jupiter is in Taurus (Vrishabh Raashi) and it is celebrated in Ujjain
--When both the Sun and the Jupiter are in Leo Sign (Sinh Raashi), it is held in Tryambakeshwar, Naasik.
--When both the Sun and the Jupiter are in Scorpio (Vrishchik Raashi), it is celebrated in Ujjain.
Types of Kumbh Melaa
There are five types of Kumbh --
(1) Annual Maagh Melaa - It is annual. Every year people go for the above said rivers to take Snaan. That is called Annual Kumbh Snaan.
(2) Kumbh Melaa - It is held every 3 years.
(3) Ardh Kumbh Melaa (Half Kumbh Melaa) - This is called Ardh Kumbh Melaa. It is held every 6 years in Haridwaar and Allaahaabaad only.
(4) Poorn Kumbh Melaa - Poorn (Full Kumbh Melaa) is celebrated once in 12 years at four places - Allaahaabaad, Haridwaar, Naasik and Ujjain. It begins on Makar Sankraanti, the day when the Sun enters Capricorn and the Jupiter enters Aries.
(5) Mahaa Kumbh Melaa - Mahaa Kumbh Melaa is held at the completion of 12 Poorn Kumbh Melaa, means every 144 years. This is only a lifetime event. The last Mahaa Kumbh Melaa was held in 2001 at Allaahaabaad. About 60 million people attended it.
Kumbh festival is regarded in Hindu Dharm a very big and important event and is attended by millions of people.