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Bedha Parikrama-Part 1 ||  Bedha Parikrama-Part 2 ||  Bedha Parikrama-Part 3 ||  Bedha Parikrama-Part 4 ||  Bedha Parikrama-Part 5

Lord Jagannath Temple is a massive temple spreading over 10.7 acres. The temple is surrounded by two big and high rectangular walls. The outer wall of the temple is known as Meghanad Prachir and the inner wall is known as Kuruma Prachir. Each wall has four gates in four directions. The area between the outer wall and inner wall (highlighted in green colour) is called "Bahara Bedha" (Outer Compound) and the area inside the inner wall (highlighted in orange colour) is called "Bhitara Bedha" (Inner Compound). Apart from the main Jagannath temple, both outer and inner compound contains several other temples, gardens, mandapas (pandals) and museum to visit. Devotees can enter the temple via any gate, cover up the entire compound in whatever direction they want and after the darshan of Chaturdha Murti (Four Deities in the Sanctum Sanctorum), can go back as per their own suitability.

Jagannath Temple Bedha Parikrama reference
Jagannath Temple Bedha Parikrama reference

There are various prescribed methods for Jagannath Temple "Bedha Parikrama" (Compound Circumambulation), but the most common one is to start from the Lion's gate and end at the Lion's gate. Devotees have to enter the temple via Lion's gate after worshipping Aruna Stambha (Sun Pillar), see the Deities inside Lion's gate gumuta, cover the temples of East gate Bahara Bedha (outer compound), climb the Baisi Pahacha (22 steps) to reach the Kurma Bedha or inner compound. Devotees have to move in their left side as shown by the green arrows in the above image, keeping the main temple to their right. Devotees can complete the parikrama (circumambulation) of both outer and inner compounds as shown in the above image. Orange arrows represent the outer compound circumambulation and green arrows represent the inner compound circumambulation.

Let's start our Bedha Parikrama from Arun Stambha. Jai Jagannath....

Arun Stambha

In front of the entrance of Lion's Gate/Singhadwara there is a beautiful tall black-stone Sun Pillar. It is also known as 'Aruna Stambha' or 'Aruna Pillar'. The pillar is a monolithic shaft of chlorite with sixteen sides, a pedestal and a capital. On the top of the polished chlorite pillar, Aruna, the charioteer of Sun God is sitting with folded hands, praying the Lord of the Universe. Devotees wants to enter the Jagannath Temple via Lion's gate must start their temple circumambulation after worshipping the Aruna Pillar. Detailed information on Aruna Pillar.


Fate Mahavir/Fate Hanuman

For the protection of Jagannath Temple, Mahavir/Hanuman guards the four gates at four directions of the temple. At the eastern gate/Lion's gate (Singhadwara), is Fate Mahavir. On the left side wall of the Singhadwar Gumuta (entrance arch) a small stone idol of Fate Hanuman is installed; he is the protector of Lion's Gate.


On the right-side corner of Singhadwar Gumuta (entrance arch), the east-facing representative of Lord Jagannath is mounted on the wall in a four feet square size temple. He is popularly known as 'Patitapabana', 'Patita' means sinner and 'Pabana' means the purifier, hence Patitapabana means one who can purify the sinner. As per the temple rule, only orthodox Hindus are allowed to enter the Jagannath Temple, so thousands of Jagannath lovers, non-Hindu devotees, either locals or outsiders, can stand near the Aruna Stambha Chakada (in front of the Lion's Gate) to view the image of Patitapabana and avail the blessings of Lord Jagannath. Detailed information on Patitapabana.

Kashi Vishwanath

Kashi Vishwanath Temple is situated to the left of Baisi Pahacha (22 steps). It is the temple of Lord Shiva. The temple is facing towards the west. Idols of Nava-grahas are mounted on the top of the temple's door frame. Nandi and Bhrungi are the Dwarpals (door keepers), Kartikeya and Ganesh are the Parswa Devatas (side Deities). A small Trishula is mounted on the temple top. A black-coloured Brishava (Bull) has been established on a small pillar in front of the temple. This small temple represents Lord Vishwanath of Kashi, worshipped in Jagannath Temple. It is customary to have a darshan of Lord Kashi Vishwanath and worship Him before proceeding on to have a darshan of Lord Jagannath.


A small temple of Lord Shri Ram lies adjoining to the Kashi Vishwanath temple. Adorned here are the images of figures of Lord Rama, Lakshmana, Sita and Hanuman.

Abhaya Narashimha

Adjoining to Ramachandra temple, there is another small temple dedicated to Lord Narashimha. Adorned here are the idols of Abhaya Narashimha and Sidha Vinayaka.

With this, devotees need to climb the remaining steps of Baisi Pahacha (22 steps) to reach the inner temple enclosure known as 'Kurma Bedha'.

Baisi Pahacha

Just after the Singhadwar Gumuta (entrance arch), devotees have to climb 22 steps to reach the inner enclosure (Kurma Bedha) of the Jagannath Temple. These 22 steps is known as 'Baisi Pahacha'. Great respect is given to these 22 steps because of their religious significance. Here devotees pay homage to their forefathers. Parents roll their children on 22 steps in anticipation of their long life. Detailed information on Baisi Pahacha.

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