This Mela consists of month long festivities that are held every 12 years by the banks of Kshipra River situated in Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh. This small city near Indore, the industrial capital of the state is known for its cultural diversity and rich historic sites. A lot of times people associate Ujjain with Mahakal Temple since the divine glory of this Shiva temple is the most talked about but the city has more to offer. It not just satisfies the religious appetite of a visitor but also their curiosity for past stories and interest for architectural wonders. Its neighbours such as Indore, Dewas, Bhopal and Mhow provide extra incentive to the tourist to visit the place. However, the attention is attracted by the upcoming event of Mahakumbh, which every Sadhu in the country is looking forward to attend. The story started with the “Churning of the Oceans” when the Demigods and the Demons supposedly fought for the elixir, a solution to immortality. A fight which got ugly and lasted for 12 days (12 years in human time) when both the parties to the agreement breached the conditions and went for each other’s halves. During this intense war, few drops of the elixir fell in 4 rivers on earth resulting in availability of a minimal share for the humans as well. We organize a bath in these rivers to claim our right to the nectar in a span of every 12 years. This year, the same has been scheduled in Ujjain from April 22nd, 2016 to May 21st, 2016. It is a common conviction among the believers that due to position of the sun and the planets during this time, there is a flow of spiritual energy in the water. The elixir activates the power of the rivers creating a direct link to heaven which is used by the Sadhus as a connection to their spiritual selves. Millions of devotees show up to reap benefits of this event, to feel close to their ancestors and attain peace. The power of meditation on the banks of Kshipra are known to profit the soul as well as the body. The major baths are followed by the infamous “Panchkroshi Yatra” where the visitors get a once in a lifetime opportunity of living life with the Sadhus, learning the secrets of a long life while they experience the pull of this transcendent energy.
Tourist attractions in and around the place include various temples with intricate histories and apparent positive energies such as Harsiddhi Devi, Chintamani Ganesh etc. One such temple is Mahakal, one of the twelve Jyotirlings, the devotees of Lord Shiva believe that this is one of the Shakti Peeths as well. Legends say that Lord Shiva decided to stay here when he came for the rescue of King Chandrasena and that his presence can still be felt by many lucky followers. Another famous temple from Ujjain is of Kaal Bhairava, the manifestation of Lord Shiva whose idol is known to drink alcohol offered by the followers. Other than temples, there are many monuments that hold remarkable accounts from the old days, such as Bhartihari Caves, Jantar Mantar and Sandipani Ashram that allows tourists to explore their options. Near buy cities also allures a person to visit, the Khajrana temple in Indore and the street food definitely is a factor. So is another Jyotirling in Omkareshwar and forts in Mandu. All in all, Kumbh Mela presents an opportunity to a tourist to experience the divine power, raw living of the Sadhus and meditation that helps attain peace. The spiritual guidance provided during this time can help people focus in their lives but it also helps them gain a different perspective in life. People who attend the event due to reasons others then devotion get their hearts filled with the joy that organized chaos painted around beautiful history can provide.
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