Ram Raja Temple – A festive journey in Orchha.
Ram Raja Temple is situated in the state of Madhya Pradesh, in Orchha, India. The temple is devoted to Lord Ram, and the Raja Ram temple is the only temple in the country where Lord Ram is worshiped as the King & that too in a Palace. The Ram Raja temple is a sacred Hindu pilgrimage to thousands of devotees of Lord Ram, moreover the annual number of tourists here is around is seven lacs in total.
On some Hindu festivals such as Ram Navmi, Vasant Panchmi, Shivratri, Vivah Panchmi, and Kartik Purnima, one may find himself in between a huge of crowd of devotees, where thousands of people come to visit this sacred place and worship here with all their hearts.
History of Ram Raja Temple, Orchha
The tale from the times of Ayodhya.
The story as told by several locals, revolves around the time when the King of Orchha Madhukar Shah. The king was a devotee of The Lord Krishna, while his wife who was Ganesh Kunwari dedicatedly worshiped Lord Ram.
One day the King and the Queen went together to a temple which was devoted to Lord Krishna. But the temple was closed back then. The Queen tried to persuade the King to go back, but as the King wanted to stay they both stayed back there. In that instance, when the King and the Queen both joined the prayers and began dancing, it is believed that the Lord Krishna and Radha personified and danced along with them and golden flowers were showered upon them symbolizing their presence.
After this incident the King asked the Queen to accompany him to the Land of Lord Krishna which is to the city of Braj–Mathura, but the Queen denied insisting on staying back, as the Queen wished to go to Ayodhya. The King got really annoyed then, and told her to her face that she stops worshiping the child form of Lord Ram.
But both the King and the Queen’s opinion clashed to each other contradictory, and so the King told the Queen that if she really wishes to go to Ayodhya then she better come back only when she brings the child form of Lord Ram.
The Queen went to Ayodhya. She went there with a vow that either she will bring back the child form of Lord Ram or else she will drown in the Sarayu River of Ayodhya. She left the Palace without informing the King and instead she ordered the servants to build the Chaturbhuj temple for Lord Ram to reside at when she comes back to Orchha with him. Her belief and devotion was strong indeed.
The Queen reached the city of Ayodhya, which is lost as of the present day. She prayed near the Laxman fort next to the Sarayu River, at first she survived on fruits later she satisfied her hunger by the consumption of leaves and just like that she gave up on food and fasted for days. After a month of fasting and praying the Queen was disappointed as the Lord Ram didn’t appear, so she drowned herself into the River Sarayu. But then suddenly something magical happened and the child form of Lord Ram appeared into the lap of the Queen.
Lord Ram was impressed with her prayer and asked her to grant her a wish and she politely asked her to accompany her Orchha, he agreed to this on a few conditions. He asked the queen to let him travel to Orchha in her lap, and that when they reach the city of Orchha he would like to become the King instead of her husband and that he will only travel in the Pukh Nakshatra (a time where the stars are aligned specifically) and this was the reason why it took them almost a year to reach Orchha.
While the king had a dream when the queen was still away that, Lord Krishna was scolding him for discriminating between the Lord Ram and himself and making him know that there is surely no difference between him and Lord Ram.
Later when the Queen returned, she denied the apology of the King along with all the comforts. As a child form Lord Ram was exhausted by the long journey, he rested at the Chaturbhuj temple and the very next day he took over as the idol as per the conditions set with the Queen and the Raninivas which was the palace of the Queen was turned into Ram Raja temple.
Ram Raja Temple Darshan Timings
The worshiping hours.
Timings of prayer- sunrise to a little later after sunset.
- Morning: aarti to aarti rajbhog.
- Evening: Shyam aarti to Biyari ki aarti.
- Mahabhog: packed sweets costing 20INR
- Rajbhog: packed lunch costing 500INR
- Bal bhog: in this several children outside the temple are being served with food.
- Behariji bhog: it is the dinner distribution outside the temple after the shyam aarti.
- Poshak: offering new clothes to the Lord Ram, A ritual followed for days.
Festive season at the Ram Raja Temple
Significant events and occasions celebrated in the temple.
- Rath yatra, Sawan ie teej, Ganga Dussehra, rahesya puranmashi, Ganesh Kunwari jayanti, Vivah Panchmi, Holika festival, Lord Ram’s wedding are some of the festivals celebrated at a huge scale in the Ram Raja Temple.
- Besides that, one of the festivals that serve that of to be the most significant event here is the Ram Navmi. The ninth day of the month Chaitra as per the Hindu calendar is celebrated as this festival and it is said that on this auspicious day the Lord Ram’s idol was moved from inside the temple to a throne in the veranda. This festival is the Lord Ram’s nativity. An exhibition of Lord Ram’s birth is showcased during the period of time and people come to witness the beautiful plays from all over the world.
And incredible journey from a folk tale to the present day.
The nearest airport to the destination is that of the Gwalior airport which is well connected via the flight Air India to the two major cities directly that is Mumbai and New Delhi.When it comes to rail, the nearest railways station is of Jhansi, from where you can drive for 30 minutes before you reach your destination. Jhansi is well connected with several cities and many different regions of the country. Orchha is close to a lot of major cities in the state of Madhya Pradesh and that of Uttar Pradesh as well. One can easily reach the city via road by their private vehicle or via contacting several private travel services that may provide you with a taxi or a traveller. Moreover, one may find that The Orchha Rajmahal and the V resorts are pretty good places providing an individual with good hospitality and a luxurious experience side by side under a favourable budget to most of an average public.Hotel Ramdham is also an option for those looking for low budget good places to reside at Orchha. If one do not find the above options as convenient one may rather stay at Jhansi or at Gwalior as Orchha is only a few miles away from both these major cities from where you can easily access the city and reach your destination; the Ram Raja Temple.