The birth of the Vanara God, Hanuman Jayanti, also known as Hanumath Jayanti, is celebrated to worship Lord Hanuman.
The Monkey God or Maruthi, is a devotee of Lord Rama, who is believed to be an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. He is a combination of powerful and courageous, while also being humble.
According to the Hindu calendar, Hanuman Jayanti falls on the 15th day of Shukla Paksha in the month of Chaitra.
In the Hindu culture, where kushti and dangal (bodybuilding and wrestling) is quite common in some places, Hanuman Jayanti is celebrated with even more vigour. Throughout the country, Lord Hanuman, devotees and worshipers have different names for the God, such as Bajrangabali, Pavanasuta, Pavankumar, Sankat Mochan, Mahavira, and many more.
Legend associated with the festival
According to mythology, Lord Hanuman was born to serve Lord Ram. He served Lord Rama, and aided him in helping getting his wife back from the evil Raavan in the epic, Ramayana. To show Lord Rama how faithful he is, Lord Hanuman pulled the skin in his chest apart to show everyone a picture of Lord Rama and Goddess Sita, saying that ‘nothing which does not have Lord Rama in it is of any worth’. Hence, he has a picture of the Lord over his heart.
There is another legend about the Monkey God. According to the legend, Lord Hanuman saw Goddess Sita, Lord Rama’s wife, applying sindoor (red coloured powder worn by married women) on her forehead. When asked, Goddess Sita replied by saying that she did so in an effort to ensure Ram’s immortality. Being such a faithful devotee himself, Lord Hanuman smeared his entire body with the sindoor. This is why, in temples, the idol of Lord Hanuman is made of orange-red sindoor, which worshipers put on their forehead for good luck.
The Gada (a weapon) Lord Hanuman carries in his hand is to fight against evil. In his other hand, he carries a mountain, which he got to save Lord Lakshmana, Lord Rama’s brother. Both of these symbolise his strength and humility.
Customs and Rituals across the country
Most rituals start around sunrise, as the Lord is believed to have been born then. Some people observe fast and meditate, while other devotees chant the Hanuman Chalisa, a special prayer which says how Lord Hanuman fights against evil. Chanting this prayer is said to keep spirits away and keep the devotee safe. Aarti is also done, and as prasad, Lord Hanuman’s favourite sweet, boondi are offered as bhog to the idol.
Many children also wear the Monkey God’s face as masks, along with his evil-fighting Gada.
Hanuman Jayanti is celebrated on Chaitra Purnima, which is the full Moon day in the month of Chaitra. This usually falls in the months of March and April. However, different states in the country celebrate this festival on different days. In Maharashtra, it is celebrated on the Purnima in the Hindu Lunar month of Chaitra. In Tamil Nadu and Kerala, it is observed on the New Moon Day in the month of Margazhi, which usually falls in the months of December and January.
In Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, the festival lasts for around 41 days.
The full moon and new moon day hold special significance in astrology as they symbolise new beginnings and fresh starts to undertake any project or task. During these periods, an individual’s energy is at its peak. Using this time to get insight into oneself can be quite beneficial.Consult our expert astrologers online to learn more about the festival and their rituals.