Indian Pongal Festival - History, Significance and Importance and Dates

Written by Paayi Knowledge |16-Jun-2020 | 0 Comments | 28 Views

"Pongal" is about a four-day-long harvest festival celebrated in the South Indian states of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and Telangana. It is likewise celebrated in different parts of the world with the nearness of Tamil Diaspora – Sri Lanka, Malaysia, South Africa, Singapore, the United States, and Canada.

"Pongal" is likewise called "Thai Pongal," alluding to the tenth month in the Tamil Calendar. The multi day-long festivals of "Pongal" have various activities appointed for every day and the most part incorporate expressing gratitude toward God and different components for giving food and vocation.

Even though "Pongal" isn't a gazetted holiday in India, schools and universities stay closed for all four days, and no agriculture organizations stay closed during the festival. 

"Pongal" is seen in different states of India, too, with various names; for the most part as a day festival. In national capital Delhi and neighboring territory of Haryana, it is celebrated as "Maghi"; in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, it is marked as "Khichri," and in the province of Assam it is designated "Magh Bihu."


The Pongal Festival

"Pongal" or "Thai Pongal" 2019 will be celebrated from January fifteenth (Tuesday) to January eighteenth (Friday) 2019.


The Meaning of Pongal

"Pongal" in Tamil intends to over stream or to overflow. It is a reference to the rice dish, which is standard arranged during the festival. A blend of rice, milk, jaggery, lentils, nuts, and so on is permitted to bubble in an earthen pot till the substance gets cooked and spilled outside the pot. The dish is then served to loved ones.

The custom of letting the dish overflow is to show abundance and is accepted to bring flourishing.


Brief History of Pongal Festival

Historical and epigraphic confirmations propose to the presence of "Pongal" in any event, during the Sangam period (fifth Century BCE to third century CE) and Medieval Chola Dynasty (up to thirteenth century CE).

During the Sangam time, it was seen by the ladies by the name "Pavai Nonbu" in the Thai month of the Tamil schedule. Little youngsters petitioned God for downpour in anticipation of a decent harvest and success. For a month, they abstained from expending milk and milk items and practiced alert to not to usher unforgiving words.

Epigraphic confirmations propose that during the Medieval Chola line, the festival was celebrated as "Puthiyeedu." There are additionally confirmations to recelebrate land gifts by Chola lords to sanctuaries as a feature of Pongal or Puthiyeedu festivities.


Legends of Pongal Festival

Even though there are numerous legends identified with the starting point of "Pongal"; two of them are given beneath. One of them is identified with Lord Krishna and the love of "Indra" in the festival. Another is identified with Nandi and remembrance of cows on "Pongal."

It is accepted that individuals began adoring Indra, the God of downpour and thunder. This imparted a feeling of pride in him, making him self-important. Master Krishna, on detecting the pomposity of Indra, chose to show him a thing or two and began revering Mount Govardhan. This incensed Indra, and he started pouring relentless downpour and roar on earth. Presently Krishna assumed the liability of securing individuals and steers by shielding them under Mount Govardhan, adjusted on his little finger for three days.

Following three days, understanding his error, "Indra" moved toward master Krishna and requested absolution. Surrendering to the requests of "Indra" and showing compassion for him, Krishna trained the individuals to adore "Indra"; along these lines, God Indra is loved on the first day of "Pongal" festival.

Another story related to "Pongal" is identified with Lord Shiva and his Mount, - The Bull Nandi. Shiva sends Nandi on Prithvi Loka or Earth with a message that individuals ought to eat once in a month and wash up every day. Be that as it may, sadly, Nandi in scurrying to convey his lord's message committed an error of and instead advised the individuals to eat every day and wash up once per month.

This imprudence by Nandi maddened Shiva, and he reviled Nandi by requesting him to backpedal on earth and help the ranchers in fields. This conviction is showed in "Pongal" is celebrated as a harvest festival and the recognition or embellishment of cows in Pongal.


The Reason Behind Pongal Festival Celebrations

"Pongal" or "Thai Pongal" is a four-day celebration, starting on the day when Sun travels into Makara Rashi. Suns travel into Makara Rash denotes the finish of Winter Solstice and the start of more prolonged and hotter days after a long winter. 

According to the Tamil schedule, "Pongal" starts on the most recent day of month Maargazhi and goes on for three days into the period of Thai; subsequently, the name "Thai Pongal."


Pongal Festival Activities

"Pongal" is a multi-day celebration and offers an abundance of activities to be a part of festivities. From performing pujas to enrichments to setting up a bubbly supper and picnicking, there is something for each age harvesting and inclination. A concise depiction of the activities that could be taken by you during the festival of "Pongal" is given underneath.

Discard: The festival of "Pongal" celebrates flourishing, so it is legitimized to dispose of your old possessions and clear a path for new ones. Don't just dispose of materialistic assets yet, let go of any detestable idea or want or retaliation, outrage, and so on. Consume your old assets in the blaze alongside sentiments of scorn, anger, retribution, and your past severe encounters with somebody, assuming any. Additionally, resolve to be gracious and delicate to everybody you meet.


Decorate: Decoration consists of a significant part of any Hindu festival in India, and "Pongal" is no particular case. Assemble banana leaves, guava leaves, blossoms, and different articles to enhance your home passage, rooms, and so on. Make rangolis if you can or if nothing else help your mom or sister in making it. It is a typical sight to individuals cleaning their vehicles and adorning them with banana leaves and kumkum; go on a clean and enrich the vehicle or bicycle you own.


Worship: Pongal being a harvest season festival and identified with Sun's progress into Makara Rashi, additionally honors two significant Hindu gods Indra (The God of Rain and Thunder) and the Sun God. All the harvest, wealth and flourishing we owe to downpours and Sun. Without any downpours and Sun, there would be no harvest and henceforth no thriving. In this way, it is mandatory to expand your appreciation by expressing gratitude toward "Indra" and "Surya" for giving all the food. Different divinities like Ganesha and Krishna could likewise be venerated on the favorable event of "Pongal."


Cook "Pongal": The festivals of Pongal would be inadequate without "Pongal." The dish implies a decent harvest, yet besides how it is cooked shows flourishing and bounty. So cook "Pongal" with your loved ones and appreciate the dinner. Assemble all the necessities required to cook Pongal – rice, jaggery, lentils, cashew nuts, groundnuts, and so on and a new earthen pot. Do make sure to cook the "Pongal" in wood fire like the old convention. After the substance of the pot get spilled, yell – "Pongala Pongal" and "Thai Pirandhal Vazhi Pirakkum"; obviously with your loved ones.


Feed Farm Animals and Birds: "Pongal" and different luxuries that are readied are for self utilization as well as for dispersing among your neighbors, companions, and family members. It is an approach to share your happiness and show your regard for other people. It is a festival of harvest and honors the homestead steers, so wash your cows and brighten it with shading, kumkum, and haldi as a sign of thanksgiving. Additionally, feed the creatures and feathered creatures, the Pongal, you cooked the day preceding and share the delight with them.


Reward your workers/house help: Pongal is a festival of delight and to thank others for their contribution, regardless of whether to continue you like on account of Sun and Indra or to help you to develop – like your workers. Prize your representatives or the individuals who help you with your home hold chorale. Give them cash and different endowments as a token of their contribution and help. 


Relax and Share The Joy: Relax and appreciate the day with your loved ones. Go out, visit someplace or a recreation center and plunk down talking with individuals you care for. Swear off getting over busy with some work and appreciate the snapshots of fellowship with precious ones and value the holiday.


Pongal 2021 Dates and Types

1. Bhogi Pongal: It is the first day of the main Pongal festivity and in 2021, it will fall on Wednesday, 13 January.
2. Thai Pongal: It would be observed on Thursday, 14 January in 2021, and is the second day of the Pongal festival.
3. Mattu Pongal:  On Friday, 15 January 2021, Mattu Pongal is celebrated.
4. Kaanum Pongal: The last and the fourth day is commemorated on Saturday, 16 January 2021.

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