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One of the most popular Hindu festivals, Hanuman Jayanti, is a special occasion which celebrates the birth of Lord Hanuman. This day is usually celebrated on the first Full Moon day or Purnima night of the Hindu month of Chaitra. Per the Gregorian Calendar, Lord Hanuman Jayanti falls in March or April. While the Hanuman Jayanthi date 2023 was 6 April, Hanuman Jayanti 2024 will be celebrated on 23 April. The Hanuman Jayanti date and time for 2024 is 23 April, with the Purnima Tithi beginning at 03:25 AM and ending at 05:18 AM.
On this day, Lord Hanuman's devotees channel all their energy and prayers in invoking and praying for good times, protection, prosperity, and happiness. Moreover, it is also believed that Lord Hanuman is the ultimate protector and will always provide grace and security to everyone who prays to him with pure intentions and utmost devotion.
On the day of the Hanuman festival, devotees make their way to Hanuman temples and involve themselves in remembering Lord Hanuman and praising him for his utmost devotion to Lord Rama and Mata Sita, his strength, grace, and love for all his devotees. Moreover, devotees also observe a fast on this day, engage in charity work, and pay their respects to Lord Hanuman.
Hanuman Janmashtami has an elaborate and divine legend linked to it, and according to Ramayana and other texts such as the Valmiki Ramayana, Hanuman Jayanti is celebrated twice a year. While Hanuman Jayanti is observed two times a year, Hanuman Janmotsav is observed only once. The legend behind the Hanuman festival tells us about Hanuman’s rebirth and why Hanuman Jayanti is celebrated twice yearly. Here is the story associated with the Hanuman festival:
According to the story behind Hanuman Jayanti, Lord Hanuman was born on a Tuesday on the Chaturdashi Tithi of Krishna Paksha in the month of Kartik, and this is his birthday. However, this festival is also observed in the month of Chaitra because of his rebirth. Per this legend, Lord Hanuman had swallowed Lord Surya, or the Sun, thinking of the Sun as a mango. Right at this moment, Rahu too arrived to swallow the Sun, but when he witnessed Lord Hanuman eating the Sun, he quickly informed Lord Indra of this activity.
Angered by Hanuman Ji's act, Indra punished Him severely and struck Him with a thunderbolt. This caused Hanuman to fall, which made Lord Pawan furious, and he stopped his winds from blowing. This decision meant that the entire world’s life force had come to a stop, and it caused much chaos amongst the deities. Seeing this, Lord Brahma went to Lord Pawan and brought Hanuman back to life. This is considered Lord Hanuman's rebirth and is considered to have happened on the Full Moon night of the Chaitra month. Thus, people celebrate Hanuman Jayanti on this day.
The significance behind this special day is to remember Lord Hanuman, his devotion and loyalty to Lord Rama and Mata Parvati, his strength and power, his protection and love for his devotees, and his courage. Lord Hanuman was one of the primary figures in Ramayana and has been remembered as the God of Protection and strength. His actions towards Lord Rama and his consort, Goddess Sita, are living proof of his selflessness and dedication. This festival marks a remembrance of this dedication and inspires his devotees to lead a life as he did.
On this day, devotees find themselves engrossed and busy seeking Hanuman Ji's blessings and asking him for his grace and protection. His blessings are believed to help overcome obstacles and blockages, ward off evil and its manifestations, and gain mental and physical strength. Hanuman Jayanthi date is the perfect time for devotees to chant the Hanuman Chalisa and gain ultimate strength, clarity, and bravery.
Per the importance of this festival, Hanuman Ji is invoked on this day to shower his grace on people and relieve them of any negativity that might be manifesting in their lives. Anjanaye Putra Hanuman is the deity who banishes ghostly presences and surrounds people with positivity and happiness.
Different places in India follow various rituals and traditions when celebrating Hanuman Janmotsav. For example, devotees from some areas of India, such as Northern India, observe a strict fast on this day and end their fast by consuming only fruits and milk. Similarly, devotees from Southern India start their rituals by performing an Abhishekam or auspicious bath, where Hanuman Ji's idol is given a bath with milk, honey, water, vermillion (sindoor), and sandalwood paste.
Furthermore, some devotees may perform elaborate Yajnas or Homas and vow Vratas as an act of divine devotion and love for Pawan Putra. However, despite the cultural differences with regard to celebrations, there are certain Puja Vidhis which are essentially followed on this sacred day.
Most devotees of Lord Hanuman follow these Puja Vidhis and remedies on Hanuman Jayanti, and the rituals may only differ minutely from one region of India to another.
Known as the saviour of the world and destroyer of enemies, Lord Hanuman is a beloved deity all over the world, with countless people instilling their faith in Him. He's mentioned as a protector who cares for his devotees and never disappoints those who love Him. Hanuman Jayanti is a day celebrating not just the birth of Hanuman but also His love and grace for His devotees. The Hanuman festival, or Hanuman Janmotsav, is an essential day for devotees of Lord Rama and Lord Hanuman.