Nag Nathaiya Festival Varanasi – An Epitome of Krishna Leela
Nag Nathaiya Festival Varanasi 2022
Nag Nathaiya Festival Varanasi is associated with faith and belief. Amongst the four Lakha fates held in Varanasi, this one is the last and very popular among the people of Varanasi. So what exactly is the festival of Nag Nathaiya?
The Nag Nathiya Festival depicts one of the famous episodes of Lord Krishna’s life. The episode when Shri Krishna conquered a deadly serpent Kaliya. The Nag Nathiya Leela portrays this very episode of Krishna’s life. Read about the uniquness of Bhudwa Mangal.
Nag Nathaiya History & Legend
The history of this festival dates back to the 16th century. The great scholar and saint Goswami Tulsidas initiated this festival in Varanasi.
When we search the pages of history, there is a mention of Shri Krishna’s childhood incident in the epic of Mahabharata. The incident in which He defeated the poisonous serpent Kaliya and emerged out of the water, dancing on his head, victorious.
Once, the lord was playing with his friends on the river banks of Yamuna in Gokul. While playing, their ball fell into the river. To continue the game and bring the ball back, Krishna went inside the river. The fact of river water being poisonous because of King Cobra Kaliya didn’t deter Krishna. He fought with the serpent, and when Kaliya realised the true identity and power of the lord, he surrendered before him. Kaliya also promised that he will not harm the villagers anymore. After this promise, Krishna came out of the water, standing in a dancing posture on the hood of Kaliya. Bharat Milap is one the most famous holy and popular festival of Varanasi.
Cultural significance of Nag Nathiya
The incident of saving villagers from the terror of Kaliya and making the water of Yamuna pure again is Nag Nathiya. This festival symbolises the victory of good over evil. It also depicts punishment of vice and the triumph of truth. What else? This festival brings happiness and joy to people. They believe that it will eradicate their problems.
How Nag Nathaiya is celebrated
To celebrate Nag ke Nathaiya, a young boy dressed in Krishna’s attire performs this Leela. People consider him to be an embodiment of Lord Krishna. Now the boy depicting Krishna jumps into the holy water of river Ganga from the branch of Kadam tree, tied at the edge of the river. The boy jumps over the dummy of Kalia planted under the water. Subsequently, he comes out of the water, standing on the hood of the effigy of Kaliya.
Al last, with the assistant of people, the model of Kalia with the boy depicting Krishna takes a circular sweep in the waters of Ganga. A large crowd gathers at Tulsi Ghat to witness this Krishna Leela. Even Kashi Naresh watches this event from his royal boat. He also gives awards to the participants of this festival.
When and where Nag Nathaiya is celebrated
People of Varanasi celebrate the Nag Nathaiya Festival festival every year, either in November or December. They celebrate this festival on the fourth day of Shukla Paksha of Kartik month. For watching this holy Leela, a huge crowd gathers at Tulsi Ghat, Varanasi.
Q- How to reach Tulsi Ghat?
A- One can reach Tulsi Ghat via Assi road. The address registered is B2/40.
Q- Is this festival celebrated every year in Varanasi?
A- Nag Nathaiya is one of the most popular festivals of Varanasi. It is an approximately 450 years old tradition.