Every Hindu festival and ritual has a story behind it. They are celebrated with zeal and enthusiasm, along with having a strong scientific, historical and thoughtful basis attached with it. All these attributes combine and create a reason to celebrate a festival or perform a ritual. These customs are made to lead an individual on a spiritual path where they can experience complete psychological balance, rejuvenation and relaxation.
The dates of the Maha Kumbha are determined in accordance with such scientific methods which majorly include the planetary positions. When the planet Brihaspati (Jupiter) enters the astrological sign Vrishabha (Taurus), it coincides with the Surya (Sun) and Chandra (Moon) being in Makara (Capricorn), these changes affect the water and air which results in a totally positive atmosphere at the holy city of Prayag (Allahabad). By simply being present at that divine place, and taking a holy dip in the Ganges can enlighten a soul spiritually, making their life physically and emotionally stress-free.
Different planets take different amount of time to complete one revolution around the sun. Jupiter completes this revolution in around eleven years and ten months (approximately twelve years), that indicates the fact that in every twelve years the Jupiter moves into the same position. This decides the occurrence of Purna (Full) Kumbha Mela which is held once in every twelve years. The position of Sun, Moon and the planet Jupiter in different astrological signs determine the site at which Kumbh will be held.
The Kumbh Mela is held in Haridwar when the Sun enters the Aries and the Jupiter enters the Aquarius. According to another series of astrological calculation, the event of entrance of Jupiter in Aries circle and Sun & Moon in Capricorn, the festival takes place at Prayag (Allahabad) on the day of Amavasya (Lunar Conjunction). Just like, Prayag there are astrological options available for the sacred city of Nasik and Ujjain too. When the Jupiter enters in Leo and also when Jupiter, Sun and the Moon enter in Cancer on Amavasya day, the Kumbh festivals held on the banks on river Godavari in Nasik. Ujjain is one of the most ancient and holy places on earth and the Kumbh Mela occurs here on the banks of river Kshipra when the Sun is in the zodiac sign Aries and Jupiter is in the Leo. “Leo” means Simha or the Lion in Sanskrit, the Ujjain Kumbh Mela is often called as Simhastha Kumbh.
Also, when the Jupiter enters the Libra and the Sun and the Moon stay together on Kartik Amavasya (8th month of the year according to Hindu calendar) the holy Moksha Dayak ( free from all the bonds) Kumbh Mela is held in Ujjain. This spectacular celebration of faith initiates from Haridwar in the interval of every three years, following which the mela is celebrated in Prayag (Allahabad), Nasik and Ujjain. After three years of Kumbh Mela at Haridwar, the festival is celebrated at Prayag and there is gap of three years between the occurrence of Kumbh at Prayag and Nasik. The fact that has to be noted is that the Maha Kumbh Mela at Nasik and Ujjain can be celebrated within the same year.
To sum it up, it is the position of different planet that have effect on the water an air of our planet earth. At certain planetary positions, the positive energy levels of that particular place during a particular time, increases to its peak, thereby providing a perfect atmosphere for the spiritual growth and enlightenment.
Ujjain Yoga Life Society – Yogalife