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Mirror Used In Puja Of Jagannath At Puri Temple

Among the articles used for the daily rituals in the Sri Jagannath temple at Puri, include three mirrors. The mirrors of Jagannath, Subhadra and Balabhadra are made of brass having no part of glass, each about two and half feet high. It is disc-shaped with a stand. Both the surfaces of the disc are well polished.

The mirrors are used during the Abakash ritual. Abakash ritual consists of brushing the teeth and bathe of the deities. This religious rite is performed after Dwaraphita (opening of the temple-doors in the early morning), Mangala Alati (waving of lamps before the Deities) and Mailam (removal of flowers, clothes etc. decked on the deities in the previous night). The ritual is performed at around 6:30 AM.

The Pushpalak Sevaks perform the abakash ritual sitting on the floor down the Ratnavedi (Pedestal) in the sanctum sanctorum of the temple. They sprinkle water mixed with camphor, curd, sandal paste and amla fruit-paste on the three brass mirrors placed on the floor, one each for the three Deities - Balabhadra, Jagannath and Devi Subhadra, symbolizing their bath. Before bath, the Sevaks also show tooth-sticks and tongue-scrappers to the deities symbolizing brushing of their teeth and cleaning of tongues.

During the Pushyaviseka ritual of Bhagavan Jagannath, celebrated on the full moon day in the month of Pausha (December – January) a special mirror is used.

There is a ritual service known as darpania seva in the temple. The Sevak of this service,
Darpania Sevak is in charge of keeping the mirrors ready for the rituals.

Mirror is widely used in Hindu rituals and pujas and it is mentioned in Srimad Bhagavata (Book-Eleven).