Rama Navami is observed as the birth anniversary of Lord Rama. It is very significant day and devotees of Lord Rama keep a day long fast and worship Him with all rituals. Lord Rama is considered the seventh incarnation of Lord Vishnu.
At some places, mainly in North India, the day coincides with the last day of Chaitra Navratri. Many people conduct Homa on Rama Navami and conclude nine days festivities of Chaitra Navratri. Hence Navratri Puja during Chaitra month is also known as Rama Navratri.
Rama Navami Origin | Significance
Rama Navami is observed since the Era of Lord Rama. Hindus are celebrating Rama Navami since ages and no historic records are kept to count the exact years of the birth anniversary of Lord Rama. However, as per Vedic time keeping, Lord Rama was born about a million years ago during Treta Yuga.
Rama Navami Deity(s)
Lord Rama is the main deity who is worshipped during Rama Navami.
Along with Lord Rama, the mother of Lord Rama i.e. Mata Kaushalya, the father of Lord Rama i.e. King Dasharatha, the wife of Lord Rama i.e. Devi Sita, three younger brothers of Lord Rama i.e. Bharata, Lakshmana and Shatrughna and the ardent devotee of Lord Rama i.e. Bhakta Hanuman are also worshipped on the auspicious day of Rama Navami.
Rama Navami Date and Time
As per Amanta as well as Purnimanta Hindu Calendar - Shukla Paksha Navami (9th day) of Chaitra (1st month)
performing ceremonial wedding of Lord Rama and Goddess Sita
conducting Rama Navami procession
conducting Hawan i.e. Homa before breaking the fast on the next day
Rama Navami Regional Variance
Rama Navami is a very significant day and it is observed throughout India.
Rama Navami in Uttar Pradesh
Ayodhya is the most significant place to celebrate the birth anniversary of Lord Rama. It is considered highly auspicious to take bath in sacred river Sarayu on Rama Navami. Thousands of devotees take a holy dip in the river of Sarayu before they visit famous Kanak Bhawan temple in Ayodhya. Being the birthplace of Lord Rama, Ayodhya during Rama Navami is similar to what Mathura is during Krishna Janmashtami.
Rama Navami in Andhra Pradesh
Tirumala celebrates the Rama Navami with great fervor. The administration of Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) observes religious event of Shri Rama Navami Asthanam on the significant day of Rama Navami.
Rama Navami in Telangana
Bhadrachalam Temple in Telangana is dedicated to Lord Rama and Goddess Sita. The wedding anniversary of Lord Rama and His consort Sita is celebrated each year with much fanfare on the auspicious day of Rama Navami.
The event is popularly known as Shri Ramanavami Kalyanam Utsava.
Rama Navami in Tamil Nadu
In South India, especially in Tamil Nadu, devotees of Lord Rama perform Kalyanotsavam. During Kalyanotsavam, the symbolic marriage ceremony of Lord Rama and Goddess Sita is conducted and deities are taken to the streets through a ceremonial procession.
In South Indian temples, a special recipe named Panakam, is prepared on the auspicious day of Rama Navami. The Panakam is sweet liquid made of ginger powder, jaggery, peppercorns and cardamom. The Panakam is known as natural body coolant and served to devotees in palm similar to Gangajal in North Indian temples.
Rama Navami in ISKCON
The day of Rama Navami is also very significant for ISKCON temples and its followers. Most ISKCON temples celebrate Rama Navami by organizing special events. Procession of Lord Rama and Goddess Sita, Abhishekam of Lord Rama and performing Homa are some of the rituals which are performed in most ISKCON temples. Lord Rama, being the incarnation of Lord Vishnu, is as important as Lord Krishna for the followers of ISKCON.
Rama Navami Public Life
Rama Navami is an optional gazetted holiday in India. However, in North India government offices, schools and colleges might keep one day off during Rama Navami.