The legend behind Govardhan puja is an interesting leela (story) of lord Krishna. Lord Vishnu incarnated in Dwapar Yuga, as a son of Vasudeva and Devaki. However, Nandji and Yashoda fostered him to keep him safe from his evil maternal uncle Kansha. It is believed that, Lord Krishna lifted Mount Govardhan with his little finger to protect ‘Brajwasi’ from downpour. Devotees also perform ‘Gou- puja’ on this day where they worship Cows and feed them.
This puja is also recognized as ‘Annakut Puja’. Devotees offer food made of wheat, rice, gram flour, and vegetables in a huge quantity, so it takes the structure of a mountain. This year Govardhan Puja will be celebrated on 12 November, on Thursday. The most significant Govardhan Puja takes place in Mathura. On this promising day, thousands of devotees execute Govardhan Parikrama on the day.
Preparation and Ingredients:
Devotees should put together all the Govardhan puja samagri before the main puja date. Some people van observe complete or partial fast depending on health condition. One should get all these following puja samagri for this puja.
1) Decorative items for Lord Krishna
2) Sugarcane Sticks, Two
3) Batasha, Chawal, Grains, Ghee, Dhal
4) Roli, Moli (Sacred Thread)
5) Brass/Copper Kalash, Earthen Lamp
6) Cow Dung or Mud
7) Payesam & Naivedyam
8) Akshata (Raw unbroken rice mixed with turmeric)
9) Paachamrita (Milk, Sugar, Ghee, Honey, Curd)
10) Betel Leaves, Betel Nuts, Mango Leaves
11) Different types of sweets including Puri, Halava, Sandesh, Rasagulla and Laddu
12) Silver Coin, Money for Dakshina
13) Krishna Puja Book
How to do Govardhan puja at home?
i) This puja is mainly performed in the morning. Using garden soil, devotees make a dummy/structure of Govardhan parvat (mountain). You should decorate it as if you are embellishing lord Krishna. After invoking the lord offer two sticks of sugarcane, curd, milk, and sweets followed by akshata, roli, moli, kumkum, and naivedyam to the Lord Vishnu.
ii) Initiate the aarti with earthen lamps, incense, and camphor. Perform minimum three parikrama around the form of mountain. After the puja is done, devotees should read the story of Lord Krishna and Govardhan Parvat and distribute prasad.
iii) Offer money as dakshina to the Bramhins who performed the puja.
iv) Significantly, the women of the residence eat the payesam first and consume the fresh cooked food.