Pongal is a four-day harvest festival that takes place in Tamil Nadu. It is India’s most popular holiday, held over four days across the southern parts of the country to express gratitude to nature. It is traditionally consumed during the Thai month of January – February, when crops including as rice, sugarcane, turmeric, and other spices are harvested.
Pongal, the most important Tamil festival, is expected to happen on the 14th or 15th of January. Tamilians believe that family issues will be settled during the Tamil month of Thai, which begins on Pongal day. The popular statement Thai Pirandhal Vazhi Pirakkum, which translates to “Along with joy and gladness, the month Thai will also bring fresh possibilities,” is frequently stated in connection with the Pongal holiday. This month is thought to be favourable for weddings.
Legend behind celebrating Pongal:
According to tradition, Lord Shiva sent his bull, Nandi, to the earth to beg the mortals to have an oil massage and bath every day, as well as a feast once a month. Nandi, on the other hand, recommended that everyone take an oil bath once a month and eat a daily meal. Lord Shiva was enraged, and he condemned Nandi to live on the soil forever. His responsibilities will include ploughing fields and assisting others in the production of more food. As a result, this day is associated with cattle and crop harvesting for new production.
Ceremonies performed in the festive carnival:
The First Day
The Bhogi festival is held on the first day of the celebration in honour of Lord Indra. Lord Indra is known as the God of Rain, which explains why he is revered for bringing prosperity to the region.
People throw their unwanted home things into a bonfire composed of wood and cowdung cakes on this day, which is why it is known as Bhogi Mantalu. The females perform dance around the bonfire while singing songs in God’s glory. During the winter solstice, a bonfire is lit in order to keep warm.
The Second Day
On the second day of carnival, some ceremonies are performed alongside worship. The rice is boiled in milk outside the house in an earthenware pot, and then presented to the Lord Sun together with other gifts. People dressed up in their traditional garb and accessories. The husband and wife dispose of the ritual objects used in the rites. A turmeric plant is tethered to the pot that will be used to boil rice. The following services are also included:
- In the background, two sugarcane sticks are ornamented.
- The coconut and bananas add flavour to the dishes.
The most typical Puja ritual is to trace a traditional Puja pattern in front of the house using white lime powder. The woman of the home bathes first thing in the morning and then performs this procedure.
To Know More about its Date, Muhurat, Tithi, Third Day, Fourth Day and its Significance visit https://www.mypandit.com/festivals/pongal/