Snana Yatra - Jagannatha's bathing festival
Snana Yatra or the Lord Jagannatha's bathing festival which takes place 14 days before Sri Ratha Yatra Festival. During the 14 days period, the temple remains closed for Darshana on the plea that Jagannatha Swami has caught a cold. It also enables the Deities to be repainted, or renewed. Bathing isdone on Jyestha Purnima. The main Deities along with Sudarshana disc are bought to the snana mandapa (a platform in front of the temple). Around mid-day 108 pots of water are poured on the Deities from a sacred well which is dear to the goddess Sitala. An emissary of the king of Orissa ceremonially sweeps the platform. Then elephant-head masks are put on the Deities.
This 15 day resting and renovation period is also called Nibhrita, in honor of the solitary place where the Supreme goddess of fortune lives. Lord Jagannatha lives there in seclusion enjoying svakiya rasa in the company of His wife, Lakshmi. Then He asks Her permission lo leave and comes out for His Rathayatra chariot festival. The renovation festival is also called Nava-Yauvana, which indicates that the Jagannatha Deity is being fully restored to youth. Netrotsava (Reappearance) is when after two weeks absence, Lord Jagannatha reappears. They have been totally repainted, except their eyes. At this time the eyes of the Deities are painted by their respective priests and the normal worship in the temple is resumed, except the Deities are still reclining.