Kumbha Mela of 2013 is the Maha Kumbh Mela or the Purna Kumbh Mela which comes once in 12 years and is the largest gathering of pilgrims anywhere in the world. Nearly 100 million people are expected to attend this year’s Kumbh Mela to take the holy dip.
In Hindu religious belief, it is believed that taking a holy bath at the Triveni Sangam which is the meeting point of Ganga, Yamuna ans Saraswati rivers, will wash away all the sins and relieve the devotee from the vicious cycle of birth and death.
The gathering of thousands of Sadhus from all over the country only adds to the beauty of the Kumbh mela, the experience of which cannot be expressed in words.
The references to the significance of convergence of Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati rivers at Prayag can be found in the Rig Veda. It is also believed that the ashram of the Sage Bharadwaj, where Lord Ram and Sita lived during their exile was situated at Sangam. Also the great saints of India, Shankaracharya and Chaitanya Mahaprabhu have visited Sangam and taken part in the Kumbh Mela.
Bathing in the holy river during Kumbh Mela is an important ritual for millions of people from across the world. People stay at the tents and ashrams during Kumbh Mela. Some of the days are considered very sacred for having a bath in the Sangam and people come in large numbers for this occasion.
In the event of Sun in Capricorn and entrance of Jupiter in Taurus, kumbh mela is held at Prayag. In the event of entrance of Jupiter in Leo, kumbh mela is held at Nashik on the bank of river Godavari and in the event of entry of Jupiter in Leo and entry of Sun in Aries, kumbh is held at Ujjain. When Jupiter, Sun and Moon enters in Cancer on lunar conjunction (Amavasya – last day of the dark half of a month), kumbh is held on the banks of river Godavari.
When Jupiter enters in Libra and Sun & Moon remain together on Kartik Amavasya (8th month of Hindu year), then also Moksha Dayak (free from all bonds) kumbh mela is held at Ujjain.