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Heart of Sri Krishna Is In The Lord Jagannath Idol Worshipped In Puri Jagannath Temple

There is a widespread belief that the murti (idol) worshipped in the Puri Jagannath Temple has the heart of Sri Krishna.

 It is stated that the great Niladri Temple of Lord Jagannath was once on a huge blue hill surrounded by a dense forest. During the fag end of Dwapara Yuga, Sri Krishna came to the present area of Jagannath Temple and was resting under a tree. Jara Sabara, a hunter who was searching for the day’s kill, saw the two feet of Sri Krishna and thought it to be the ears of a deer – the feet were so soft and red in color.


He shot an arrow and it struck the feet. As desired by Sri Krishna, this led to the end of the Dwapara Yuga and the departure of Sri Krishna from earth.

When the hunter realized that he had killed a human being, he tried to burn the body. But it was the body of Sri Krishna; and the heart remained as it is.

So the hunter took the heart of Sri Krishna to the sea and left it at Banki Muhana near Puri.

(There is another belief that the body was cremated by Arjuna.)

Thousands of years passed and the heart became a fossil wood known as Nilamadhava. The blue-hued piece spread light all around and was kept hidden in a cave by the tribes of the area.

King Indradyumna had a dream and in the dream, he was told to find Nilamadhava, and install it in the great Jagannath Temple of Puri.

Thus Sri Krishna became Lord Jagannath for the Kali Yuga – Present Age.

During Nabakalebara, when Jagannath gets a new body, the heart is transferred to the new boy.  This ritual is known as Brahma Paribartan.

Brahma Paribartan is the changing of the soul from the old Lord Jagannath murti to the new murti. The change of Brahma takes place at midnight. No one is allowed to watch the ritual. In fact electricity is cut during the ceremony in the city of Puri. The ritual takes place in pitch darkness.