Bhadra Purnima is one of the biggest festivals of Gujarat, popularly known as the Ambaji Bhadra Purnima. This is because the festival is celebrated at Ambaji, a village which derives its name from the shrine located here. The village is situated at the foothills of Mount Aravalli. Ambaji shrine is dedicated to Goddess Ambaji, held in great regard by the people of the region. It is the main shrine of the Goddess in Gujarat. The place finds reference in as early as 746 AD, but its actual origin is still unknown.
The most fascinating fact about the shrine is that there is no idol
inside it. The deity is represented in the form of a triangle, inscribed
with figures and with the syllable 'Shree' in the center. This is called
the Vishwa Yantra. This emphasizes the fact that the temple is antique,
since idol worship became popular much later. It is also regarded as one
of the original Shakti peeths. According to the scriptures, when the
body of Goddess Amba was dismembered, her heart fell onto this place on
the earth. Another belief regarding the place is that the tonsorial
ceremony of Lord Krishna was held here.
This has added to the religious significance of Ambaji. The festival is
organized on the full moon day of the Bhadrapad, according to the Hindi
Calendar. A number of farmers and agriculturists assemble here to
worship at the shrine. Bhavai, the folk drama of the state, and Garba
performances are organized to celebrate the occasion. Saptshati, the
seven hundred verses in the praise of the Goddess are read in the
temple. Devotees attend these assemblies and worship the Goddess to seek
Her blessings. A huge fair is also held here at this occasion.