As we all know, that Uttarakhand is called the Land of God and God is present in every part of it. Uttarakhand is Lord Shiva's own as well as in-laws' home. The Vedas and Puranas also consider the Himalayas, which lie in Uttarakhand to be the abode of all the Gods and Goddesses. There is a saying about Uttarakhand which goes, ' As many pebbles, as is Shankar.'
All these Gods and Goddesses have a special place in our culture and tradition. It is believed that in Uttarakhand, the Gods and Goddesses come forth to solve all our problems in the form of a pure body, and this process is known as Jagar. It means, to revive an invisible spirit (Gods and Goddesses) and to call upon them to take over the body of a particular person. For this, the Jagariya uses Jagar, which consists of describing the life and works of the God. In the process, the musical instrument hudka and brass plates are the main components.
Jagar can be of many types. The one which lasts for a day is called Jagar. Chauras lasts for four days. Baisi lasts for 22 days.
There are three main people in the process:
1. Jagariya or Dhaunsaiya
This is the person who revives the invisible soul. His work is to recount the life, main incidents of life and the human qualities of the God by singing in a special way with a musical instrument, to revive the spirit and get it in the body of the Dangariya. He makes the God circle the blazing flame four times and asks him to fulfil the wishes of the one who has put the Jagar. This task is done mainly by Harijans and he is a respectable person of society. For this task, the person who puts the Jagar, wears new clothes and a white safa. Jagariya also has to take care of his eating and habits.
This is a person in whom the spirit of the God gets incarnated. This person is considered the one who shows the way. When God’s spirit gets incarnated in the dangariya, his body shivers and he begins to give the solutions to the problems of the aggrieved. During this time, he is considered to have powers equal to God.
Dangariya is considered to be an important person in society and is respected by all. The daily routine of this person is different from that of normal people. He has to take a bath and do all the rituals for performing the puja every day. He also has to take care of always eating pure. Even the tea he drinks should be from a special place. If he makes a mistake, the God may be angered and punish him. In the Jagar too, he participates only after consuming and purifying himself with cow’s milk, gangajal and cow’s urine.
The owner of the house in which jagar, chauras or baisi is held is called syonkar and his wife is called Syonnai. They vent out their problems to the God and place rice grains in front of Him. The God takes these grains in his hands and tells them the solution to their problems.
Dhuni for Jagar
It is important to make a Dhuni for Jagar. For this, people take a bath and purify themselves under the vigilance of a Pandit. Then they choose a pure place and donate a cow there. Then, a circular pit is dug there and logs of wood are placed. Around this, cow dung and soil having termites( if this is not available, then pure red clay can be used) is placed. This is lighted before the Jagar when the conch shell is blown. Any impure person and shoes are prohibited in this Dhuni.