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Do you know that on the next day of Deepawali, Lord Krishna is offered chappan bhog (fifty-six different food items)? The next day of Deepwali is known as Govardhan Puja. Well, chappan bhog is offered to deities on almost every festival but it has a great significance on Govardhan Puja. This year the Govardhan Puja will be celebrated on 28 October 2019 and people will be worshipping Lord Krishna.
Scroll down to know more about the chappan bhog.
After the day of Diwali festivities, a few communities in India observe the ritual of 'Annakoota'. The word 'Annakoota' means mountain of food. Well, if you are thinking that it is just an expression, then you are wrong. People do offer 56 types of different foods to Lord Krishna, which is no less than a mountain of food!
Let us have a look as to why the ritual of Chappan Bhog is followed and what is the significance of this ritual.
Story Of Govardhandhari
According to the legends, there was a practice among the people of Braj to offer lavish meals to Lord Indra. In return, Indra promised good rain to nourish their crops. Lord Krishna believed this was a harsh price that poor farmers had to pay. Moreover, he wanted the people of Gokul and Braj to acknowledge the importance of Govardhan Parvat (mountain). So he explained the importance of the mountain to the villagers and hence, the villagers felt the need to worship the mountain as the mountain safeguarded the village from extreme climate conditions.
Angered by this gesture of the villagers, Indra flooded the village. He brought heavy rain and soon the village was destroyed. People prayed to Lord Krishna to save their lives. Then Krishna came to their rescue and lifted the huge Govardhan mountain on his little finger. The people took refuge under the lifted mountain and thus, were saved from the wrath of Indra. The rain continued for seven days and Krishna kept on holding the mountain. Thus, he came to be known as Govardhandhari, the one who held Govardhan.
It is said that Lord Krishna ate 8 meals a day. So, after the Govardhan incident, the villagers brought 56 types of food to compensate for the seven days while Krishna held the mountain. Thus, the concept of 56 or Chappan Bhog emerged.
Significance Of Chappan Bhog
The word 'Chappan' in Hindi means 56. So, the offering consists of 56 different food items. Starting from the sweets made out of milk to rice items, dal, fruits, dry fruits, vegetables, snacks, drinks and cereals. These items have to be placed in a particular order with the milk items placed closest to the idol of Lord Krishna.
The significance of this ritual is that people invite the Lord to their houses and offer him all his favourite food items. In return, people seek Krishna's protection against all odds in their lives. Hence, the ritual of Chappan Bhog during the Govardhan Puja is of great importance for the Hindus.
On Govardhan Puja, people after giving bath to their cattle, offer the chappan bhog to their cattle. They even decorate their cattle with saffron and garlands.
We hope you understood the importance of chappan bhog during Hindu Festivals.
Wish you a very Happy Govardhan Puja.