Puri: Lord Jagannath and the sibling deities are in the Anasara or secret hideout to recover from an illness following a grand bath on Debasnana Purnima - the precursor to Rath Yatra. The traditional healers who have the hereditary duty of curing the deities have begun a special treatment with ‘phulri tela’ from Wednesday for the effective healing of the ailing deities.
The traditional healers use herbal methods to cure different ailments of the deities like cold and strong fever. The ‘phuluri tela seva’ in which a special lotion is applied to the deities for fast recuperation. After massaging them with this oily lotion daily, it is believed the divine Trinity get cured sooner.
“We use only traditional healing methods and hence all medicines and lotions to heal Lord Balabhadra, Lord Jagannath and Goddess Subhadra use herbs, roots and flowers in the preparation. We collect the necessary flowers from private gardens as well as from among the collection of herbal plants in the ‘mathas’ (monasteries) in the city and people gladly help us,” a healer said.
During treatment of deities in the anasara fortnight, the healers use ‘phuluri oil’ prepared one year before and left to brew till the coming year when the deities fall sick again. The medicine is prepared at the Bada Odia matha.
All the ingredients used in the medicine are natural elements, mainly flowers like Ketaki, malli, boula, champa, kia; barks and roots like benachara, sesame oil, sandalwood powder, camphor, rice grains and so on.
Apart from the ‘phuluri tela’, other medicinal lotions are also applied for the recovery of the deities that are collectively termed as ‘Osa lagi’.
Once the deities completely recover on Netra Utsav, they will go on a vacation to the Gundicha temple on Rath Yatra.