Datta Jayanti is a Hindu festival celebrated as the day of the birth of Lord Datta, that is, the day on which the Datta Principle became active on earth.This festival is celebrated on the full moon day in the Hindu month of Margashirsha.He was believed to be the mental son of Brahmadev, because he had been born from the splendour of Brahmadev's eyes. His wife's name was Anasuya, who was a model of conjugal fidelity.
Datta means one who has attained final liberation.Datta Jayanti pooja is a ritualistic worship of Lord Datta similar to the commonly performed ritualistic worship of Lord Vishnu (Satyanarayan).This is done by following the basic steps of Hindu rituastic worship, namely, cleaning the premises and the altar, cleansing oneself, and preparing the holy food items (prasad), etc.
After performing the worship and arati of Lord Datta, prasad is distributed to the attendants. Instead of Lord Datta's statue, "Wooden Sabots (Paduka)" and the "Oudumbar Tree" are used for the ritualistic worship.
On Datta Jayanti, devotees are advised to perform Japnam of six Malas(Rosery) ie (6 x 108 = 648 times) by chanting the Mantra, 'Om Shri Gurudev Datta'. The worship of Lord Datta resolves the problems and prevents the bad effect of the negative energy due to the unsatisfied souls of ancestors.
In ancient times there was a sage called Atri. He was believed to be the mental son of Brahmadev,because he had been born from the splendour of Brahmadev's eyes. He had a wife by the name Anasuya,who was an idol of fidelity.In heaven Devarshee Naradmuni used to tell the gods very interesting stories about Anasuya's fidelity towards her husband.This created jealousy in Sarasvati, Laxmi, and Parvati who decided to spoil Anasuya's reputation.
They sent Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh to earth with a plan to defame Anusaya.Accordingly,Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh became three guests and in the absence of Sage Atri ,they knocked at the door.Anasuya received them with honour and got the food ready and requested them to have a meal.However,they laid a condition to her ,that they would eat only if Anasuya served them the food by remaining naked.
Anasuya was stunned and confused but soon she thought of a solution.With her will power she tranformed the three guests into small babies,kept them in a cradle and began to rock them with great love.The goddesses were stunned and confused by this incident and soon approached Anusaya and asked for an apology.But Anasuya refused to return the babies.