Janmashtami 2020: Janmashtami, also known as Gokulashtami, is one of the most popular festivals in India. The day is dedicated to celebrating the birthday of Lord Krishna. According to the scriptures, Krishna was born on ashtami (eighth) in the Krishna Paksha or the new moon phase of Bhadrapada (August-September). Devotees of Lord Krishna decorate their homes with flowers, lights and rangoli on Janmashtami. Special milk-based food is made as offerings to the little God they fondly call Nand Gopala. This time, the wildly popular Dahi Handi festival is not being celebrated because of coronavirus restrictions.
Janmashtami 2020: Day, date and puja muhurat
Janmashtami tithi - August, 11
Nishita puja time - 12:21 am to 01:06 am, August 12
Dahi Handi on August 12
Ashtami tithi begins at 09:06 am on August 11
Ashtami tithi ends at 11:16 am on August 12
Janmashtami: Vrat and puja vidhi
Many devotees have only one meal a day before Janmashtami and observe a fast. The time of puja is during Nishita Kaal, which is near about the midnight. On Janmashtami, devotees make beautiful 'jhankis' or tableaux at home depicting the life of Lord Krishna. People create scenes from the village Gokul with miniature houses, animals, the infant Lord Krishna and Yashoda, who raised him.
Janmashtami prasad is mostly prepared with milk and butter. The 'chappan bhog' thali with 56 items of sweet and savoury dishes, including kheer, panchamrit, panjiri and halwa, are offered to Krishna.
Janmashtami: Quotes to remember
Janmashtami quotes and images
The legend of Janmashtammi
According to legend, Krishna was the eighth son of Devaki and Vasudeva. Devaki was the sister of Mathura's cruel king Kansa. When Devaki got married, it was prophesied that her eighth son would kill Kansa. Soon after Kansa learned this, he imprisoned both Devaki and Vasudeva and killed their newborns.
On the night when Krishna was born, a bright light filled the prison, and a divine voice guided Vasudeva to take Krishna across the Yamuna and leave him with his friend Nandraja. That night, Nandraja and his wife Yashoda had a baby girl.
Vasudeva secretly exchanged Krishna with Yashoda's baby girl. Scriptures say Lord Vishnu's Shesh Naag or the snake with eight heads, helped Vasudeva take Krishna safely across the river. Krishna was raised by Yashoda and Nandraja.
Wish you Happy Sri Krishna Janmashtami 2020!