Maha Kumbha Mela is not just a mere festivity like famous Hindu festivals Diwali and Holi, but holds lot of importance for people in India. People look up to Kumbha Mela with highest regard, as this event gives them a golden opportunity to liberate themselves from the miseries and sufferings of life. It enables them to take a holy dip in the sacred water and wash away all the sins they have committed in the past. People come from different parts of the country and world to be a part of this sacred ceremony. It is believed that taking a holy dip in water paves way for attainment of Moksha (Libration).
Sacred Bath in Kumbha Mela
Bathing in the holy river on the auspicious occasion of Kumbha Mela is the most important activity for millions of people in India. A large tented city is erected and pilgrims stay at tents owned by Pandas (religious priests and spiritual guides) and at various ashrams. Others will just camp on the ground or turn up for the actual bathing day. Some of these bathing days are designated “Royal,” and it is on these days that the Naga Sadhus (naked mendicants) parade and bathe. On other days there will still be people bathing and other events and random processions.
Rituals Performed at the Kumbha Mela
The main ritual performed at that Kumbha Mela is the ritual bath. Hindus believe that submerging themselves in the sacred waters on the most auspicious day of the new moon will absolve them and their ancestors of sin, thus ending the cycle of rebirth. Pilgrims start lining up to bathe from around 3 a.m. on this day.
After bathing, the pilgrims wear fresh clothes and proceed to worship by the river bank. They then walk around listening to discourses from the various sadhus.