Datta Jayanti is a celebration of the birth of the Hindu God Datta. Lord Datta is the combined form of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh. Dattatreya Jayanti is celebrated on the full moon day of Margashirsh month of the Hindu calendar.
Dattatreya Jayanti Date
Datta Jayanti 2019 Date – Wednesday, 11th December
Datta Jayanti 2020 date – Tuesday, 29th December
Legend of Lord Dattatreya
According to legend the virtuous wife of Sage Atri that is Anasuya did penance to get a son who is like the three supreme lords Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. Saraswati, Laxmi and Parvati asked the Trimurti to go and test the virtuousness of Anusaya. Accordingly, the three Gods went in the disguise of sanyasis and asked Anusaya to give them alms naked. Anusaya sprinkled water on the sanyasis and turned them into babies and then breastfed them. She then narrated the incident to her husband who took the babies into his arms and turned them into one body with three heads and six arms. When the Gods did not return the goddesses rushed to Anusaya and requested her to return their husbands. The Trimurti came back in their original form and blessed Atri and Anasuya with a son Dattatreya.
Rituals on Dattatreya Jayanti
On the day of Datta Jayanti, the devotees observe a fast. They decorate the Datta idol with flowers and light Diya and essence sticks. The devotees will recite prayers like the Abadhoot Gita, and mantras dedicated to Lord Datta. They will also read holy books that are dedicated to the lord. In the Datta temples, this festival is celebrated with lots of fanfare. The temple is decorated with flowers. Early in the mornings the pooja and Aarti are performed and Prasad is distributed. In some places, the Palkhi or Pallaki of Lord Datta is taken around the place.
The most important places to worship Lord Dattatreya
Ganagapur in Karnataka near Gulbarga, Narasimha Wadi in the Kolhapur district, Pithapuram in Andhra Pradesh near Kakinada, Audumbar in Sangli district and Girnar in Saurashtra. In the Manik Prabhu temple in Manik Nagar, a 7-day festival is held on the occasion of Datta Jayanti. Manik Prabhu is said to be the incarnation of Lord Datta and he was born on the day of Datta Jayanti. The celebrations are carried out from Ekadashi to Poornima.
This is one of the most important festivals in India. It has special significance in Maharashtra where it is celebrated with lots of devotion.