Sri Datta Navaratra and Magha Utsavam (Celebration of Shrishailyagamana of Shri Guru Narasimha Saraswati Maharaj) at Sri Kshetra Ganagapur
This Festival is quite Famous in the States of Karnataka, Maharashtra and Andhrapradesh and the Pilgrimage to Ganagapur during these Days is therefore called “Ganagapur Yatra” and the Festival (Jatra Maha Utsav) too is Considered to be the Biggest of its Kind. The Jatra Mahotsavam takes place in a Large Scale as the Devotees from Various Parts of the Country rush to Ganagapur on this Holy day. The Magha Utsav is the Same to Ganagapur as is Ashada Ekadashi to Pandharpur.
The Celebration of Datta Navratra begins on Magha Shuddha Pratipada and is celebrated till the Pournima for 15 Days. During these Days Special Pooja and Deeparadhana is performed in the Temple by the Hereditary Priests. The Jatra Mahotsavam begins on the Day of Magha Pournima. The Festival is celebrated for 5 days then.
On the 1st Day i.e, Pournima there will be No Poojan of the Padukas after the First Early Morning Worship and at the evening there will be Special Aarti performed to the Lord Datta. This was the Day Shri Guru Kept his Holy Nirguna Padukas at the Math and assured his Presence forever at Ganagapur Kshetra in the form of Nirgun Padukas. He insisted his Disciples to Perform Trikala Pooja and Aarti to the Padukas. We the Pujaris / Archakas of Ganagapur Nirgun Math are the Descendants of the Bhaskara Brahmin mentioned in Adhyay 38 of Shri Guru Charitra. The Activities of the Temple are thus followed by us since Hundreds of Years as per the instructions of Shri Guru Narasimha Saraswati Maharaj himself.
This year the Pornima falls on 19th of February (2019).
The 2nd Day (The Day of Avatara Samapti) , the Magha Vadya Pratipada is the Important Day of Celebration and there will be Yati Poojan (Worship of Saints and Sanyasis) held in the Maha Mantapam at around 3pm indicating the Pooja done by the Disciples to Shri Guru on the Banks of Patala Ganga (Shrishailam) while he was leaving for Kardali Vanam on a Flower Seat. This Day in Particular is considered the Day of “Ganagapur Yatra” because it was on this Day that Shri Guru Narasimha Saraswati Dattatreya Maharaj ended up his Avatara. On this Day there will be Annadanam and Distribution of Prasada at the Keshava Temple nearby Nirgun Math. Guru Pratipada is being celebrated at Ganagapur on 20th of February 2019.
On the Next Two Days also there will be Annadanam and Prasada Distribution at the Keshava Mandir.
On the 5th Day is Celebrated the Gopal Kalwa (Gopala Kala) marking the end of the Jatra Mahotsav at Ganagapur. On this Day at around 12pm, the Palakhi of Shri Guru Narasimha Saraswati will be taken to the nearby Rudrapada Teerth where all the Pilgrims take a Holy Dip (Avabhruta Snana). The Palaki returns back to the Temple by 4pm and there will be Prasada Distribution at the Keshava Temple.
The Palaki Utsav at Ganagapur is celebrated on 23rd of February 2019.
There will be No Palakhi Seva conducted during these Festive Days.