Puri: The Land of Lord Jagannath
Just like the Supreme Lord Vishnu is the greatest among the greatest personalities in all worlds, the place where Sri Purushottama resides is the best among all the holy places of pilgrimage. In that place the Lord Himself, the Supreme Personality of Godhead and the most worshipable Person, awards liberation to the very fortunate souls who live there under His protection.
It is said that among all countries, Bharata Varsha or India is the best, within Bharata Varsha the region of Utkala (Odisha) is the best. Therefore there is no better place in the whole world than Utkala(Odisha).
In the greatest of the holy places, the unparalleled Supreme Lord manifests in a Deity that was carved by the Lord Himself. Any human being who contemplates this Deity attains My abode.
Sri Jagannatha in Puri as Purushottama is certainly the King, as He is the Lord of Purushottama kshetra, proprietor, and beneficiary of all, lavishly worshiped with sumptuous food offerings and royal rituals, attended by a great family of servants, including a number of maidens called Devadasis(now after the death of the last Devadasi Sashimani devi, this tradition is no longer followed, i.e Devadasi’s used to dance and sing for the deities during their food offering and Pahuda ritual). All the activities in the temple are performed for the benefit of Jagannatha – from the Mangala Arti to the morning Homa celebrated in his name to worship Surya, to the daily horoscope read by the jyotishi, to the financial report read by the accountants (karanas). In this sense, Sri Purushottama Jagannatha is the true King, in fact, the Supreme Ruler of the entire Universe, sitting in his throne room, daily giving darshan to the people for their well being.