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Thamil(Thai) PONGAL wishes to all

Discussion in 'Festivals & Special Days' started by Yashikushi, Jan 12, 2010.

  1. Yashikushi

    Yashikushi Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    [​IMG]


    Pongal is overflowing in abundance
    Weed out the unwanted
    speed up the wanted
    On this joyous day
    let thoughts be translated to deeds.


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    [​IMG]



    HAPPY PONGAL WISHES TO ALL MY NEAR AND DEARS
     
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  2. Padmini

    Padmini IL Hall of Fame

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    Anaivarukkum Iniya pongal nal vaazhththukkal!!!
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    with love
    pad
     
  3. Yashikushi

    Yashikushi Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Hi Pad Ma

    [​IMG]
     
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  4. Sudha Kailas

    Sudha Kailas IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Saroj, Padmini mam and all other dear friends,

    Wishing you all a Happy Pongal !!!
    [​IMG]
     
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  5. gsaikripa

    gsaikripa Gold IL'ite

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    Dear friends,

    இனிய பொங்கல் நல்வாழ்த்துகள்!!!
     
  6. Arunarc

    Arunarc Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Ilites
    wish your all Happy Pongal
    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  7. veni_mohan75

    veni_mohan75 Platinum IL'ite

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    Pongal Festival:

    Pongal is a four-days-long harvest festival celebrated in Tamil Nadu, a southern state of India. For as long as people have been planting and gathering food, there has been some form of harvest festival. Pongal, one of the most important popular Hindu festivals of the year. This four-day festival of thanksgiving to nature takes its name from the Tamil word meaning "to boil" and is held in the month of Thai (January-February) during the season when rice and other cereals, sugar-cane, and turmeric (an essential ingredient in Tamil cooking) are harvested.

    Mid-January is an important time in the Tamil calendar. The harvest festival, Pongal, falls typically on the 14th or the 15th of January and is the quintessential 'Tamil Festival'. Pongal is a harvest festival, a traditional occasion for giving thanks to nature, for celebrating the life cycles that give us grain. Tamilians say 'Thai pirandhaal vazhi pirakkum', and believe that knotty family problems will be solved with the advent of the Tamil month Thai that begins on Pongal day. This is traditionally the month of weddings. This is not a surprise in a largely agricultural community - the riches gained from a good harvest form the economic basis for expensive family occasions like weddings.

    The First Day
    This first day is celebrated as Bhogi festival in honor of Lord Indra, the supreme ruler of clouds that give rains. Homage is paid to Lord Indra for the abundance of harvest, thereby bringing plenty and prosperity to the land. Another ritual observed on this day is Bhogi Mantalu, when useless household articles are thrown into a fire made of wood and cow-dung cakes. Girls dance around the bonfire, singing songs in praise of the gods, the spring and the harvest. The significance of the bonfire, in which is burnt the agricultural wastes and firewood is to keep warm during the last lap of winter.

    The Second Day
    On the second day of Pongal, the puja or act of ceremonial worship is performed when rice is boiled in milk outdoors in a earthenware pot and is then symbolically offered to the sun-god along with other oblations. All people wear traditional dress and markings, and their is an interesting ritual where husband and wife dispose off elegant ritual utensils specially used for the puja. In the village, the Pongal ceremony is carried out more simply but with the same devotion. In accordance with the appointed ritual a turmeric plant is tied around the pot in which the rice will be boiled. The offerings include the two sticks of sugar-cane in background and coconut and bananas in the dish. A common feature of the puja, in addition to the offerings, is the kolam, the auspicious design which is traditionally traced in white lime powder before the house in the early morning after bathing.

    The Third Day
    The third day is known as Mattu Pongal, the day of Pongal for cows. Multi-colored beads, tinkling bells, sheaves of corn and flower garlands are tied around the neck of the cattle and then are worshiped. They are fed with Pongal and taken to the village centers. The resounding of their bells attract the villagers as the young men race each other's cattle. The entire atmosphere becomes festive and full of fun and revelry. Arati is performed on them, so as to ward off the evil eye. According to a legend, once Shiva asked his bull, Basava, to go to the earth and ask the mortals to have an oil massage and bath every day and to eat once a month. Inadvertently, Basava announced that everyone should eat daily and have an oil bath once a month. This mistake enraged Shiva who then cursed Basava, banishing him to live on the earth forever. He would have to plough the fields and help people produce more food. Thus the association of this day with cattle.

    The Fourth Day
    The Fourth day is known as Knau or Kannum Pongal day. On this day, a turmeric leaf is washed and is then placed on the ground. On this leaf are placed, the left overs of sweet Pongal and Venn Pongal, ordinary rice as well as rice colored red and yellow, betel leaves, betel nuts, two pieces of sugarcane, turmeric leaves, and plantains. In Tamil Nadu women perform this ritual before bathing in the morning. All the women, young and old, of the house assemble in the courtyard. The rice is placed in the centre of the leaf, while the women ask that the house and family of their brothers should prosper. Arati is performed for the brothers with turmeric water, limestone and rice, and this water is sprinkled on the kolam in front of the house.
     
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  8. veni_mohan75

    veni_mohan75 Platinum IL'ite

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    Regional Significance:

    The harvest festival of Pongal has its unique regional significance. The festival of Pongal is celebrated all over India on the same day, but has different names in each region. However, being a harvest festival, bonfires and feasts are the main thing common to all the celebrations of this festival. Almost all the states of India celebrate this festival with varied festivities including singing and dancing. In northern India, the festival is known as Lohri while in Assam it is called Bhogali Bihu, in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar it is known as Sankranti, and in Andhra Pradesh it is celebrated as Bhogi, when each household puts on display its collection of dolls. Following is the state wise regional significance of the Pongal festival.

    Pongal in Maharashtra
    In Maharashtra, January 14 is celebrated as a festival of Makar Sankranti and is marked by the flying of kites. The entire sky becomes a showcase of colorful kites of various sizes and shapes. On this day, people exchange homemade delicacies like til and gur laddoos and wish each other the sweetness of speech, throughout the year just the way the gur tastes.

    A newly wed woman gives away oil, cotton and sesame seeds to mark the auspicious day of Makar Sankranti. This is believed to bestow upon her and her family long life and prosperity. The women wear new clothes, new glass bangles, and relatives are invited to attend the Haldi Kumkum celebration to welcome the new bride into their family.

    Pongal in Gujarat
    In Gujarat, Pongal day is celebrated as Makar Sankranti. Here, kite-flying is a major event for this day. Traditionally celebrated on the 13th or 14th January, it is a day when every family can be seen outdoors 'cutting' each other's kites. Kites of myriad hues, shapes and sizes decorate the skies from dawn to dusk during this festival. The vast panorama of the sky dotted with thousand of kites becomes a wonderful sight to see.

    The International Kite Festival is held at the capital city Ahmedabad on January 14 to coincide with the festival of Uttarayan or Makar Sankranti. The people of Gujarat celebrate Uttarayan with a lot of enthusiasm and all business comes to a grinding halt for 3 to 4 days. It is also a celebration to mark the end of winter. The excitement does not end with nightfall, which is the time for illuminated box kites, often in a series strung on one line, to be launched into the sky. Known as "tukals", these add a touch of splendor to the dark sky.

    Pongal in Uttar Pradesh
    In Uttar Pradesh, the day of Pongal is celebrated as Makar Sankranti. Here, taking a ritual bath in the river is considered mandatory on this day. According to a popular belief in the hills of Uttar Pradesh, a person who does not take a bath on this auspicious day will be born as a donkey in his next birth. Apart from this ritual bathing, donating khichri (a cooked mixture of rice and lentils) is also one of the important aspects of the Makar Sankranti celebration in Uttar Pradesh.

    To mark the occasion of Makar Sankranti, a big mela or fair is also organized at the Triveni Sangam in Allahabad. As the mela is held in the beginning of the month of Magha, this fair is named as Magha Mela. Apart from Triveni, ritual bathing is also organized at places like Haridwar and Garh Mukteshwar in Uttar Pradesh. Many kite-flying competitions are also held in various localities to mark the occasion.

    Pongal in Andhra Pradesh
    In Andhra Pradesh, Pongal celebrations start a month in advance. Bhogi is the day preceding Sankranti and Kanumu is the day after. On Bhogi day, in the early morning, a bonfire is lit up with waste before the traditional special bath. Pongali (rice pudding with milk) is an important item during this festival. Special dishes, like ariselu (sweet rice cakes), are prepared. On Kanumu day animals are decorated and races are held, sometimes the banned cockfights, bullfights and ram fights are included. Sun, Mahabali (a mythological Dravidian king) and Godadevi (Goddess Goda) are worshiped during this harvest festival.

    Pongal in Karnataka
    In Karnataka, the festival is called 'Sankranti', and cows and bullocks are gaily decorated and fed 'Pongal'- a sweet preparation of rice. Special prayers are offered in the temples and houses. In the evening, the cattle are led out in procession to the beat of drums and music. In the night a bonfire is lit and the animals are made to jump over the fire.

    Makar Sankranti is marked by men, women and children wearing colorful clothing; visiting near and dear ones; and exchanging pieces of sugarcane, a mixture of fried til, molasses, pieces of dry coconut, peanuts and fried gram. The significance of this exchange is that sweetness should prevail in all the dealings.

    In Karnataka, an interesting tradition is followed. After the pujas, white sesame (ellu) mixed with pieces of jaggery, peanuts, dry coconut and sugar blocks (shakkare achchu) are exchanged. At Gavi Gangadhareshwara (Siva) temple in Bangalore's Gavipuram, a rare phenomenon is witnessed in the evening. The Sun's rays pass through the horns of the Nandi briefly to fall on the Lingam in the sanctum. It is an architectural marvel.

    Pongal in Tamil Nadu
    Pongal in Tamil Nadu is celebrated to mark the withdrawal of the southeast monsoons as well as the reaping of the harvest. Pongal is strictly a rural festival. The Sun is worshiped for its rays are responsible for life on earth. It is the biggest harvest festival, spread over four days. The name of the festival is derived from Pongal, a rice pudding made from freshly harvested rice, milk and jaggery.

    The first day, Bhogi Pongal, is a day for the family. Surya Pongal, the second day, is dedicated to the worship of Surya, the Sun God. The third day, Mattupongal is for worship of the cattle. In Chennai (Madras), a rath yatra procession is taken out from the Kandaswamy Temple. In Madurai,
    Tanjore and Tiruchirrapalli, where Pongal is known as Jellikattu, bundles of money are tied to the horns of bulls and villagers try and wrest the bundles from them. Community meals are made from the freshly gathered harvest and enjoyed by the entire village.

    Pongal in Kerala
    In Kerala, on Makar Sankranti evening, at the hill shrine of Sabarimala, lakhs of pilgrims witness a star-like celestial light of incredible splendor appearing on the horizon. Known as Makara Jyothi, this miracle occurs at the time of the evening Deeparadhana. Pilgrims consider it a great moment of fulfillment. Lord Ayyappa is adorned with special jewels known as Thiruvaabharanam. Legend has it that these jewels were donated to the Lord by the erstwhile Pandalam Maharaja, considered the foster father of the Lord.
     
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  9. veni_mohan75

    veni_mohan75 Platinum IL'ite

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    Regional Names:

    Since India is mainly a land of agrarian society, the festival of Pongal is observed in different regions, under different names with different rituals in different parts of India.

    There are many harvest festivals celebrated here. This festival is celebrated all over India on the same day, but has different names in each region. However, being a harvest festival, bonfires and feasts are the main thing common to all the celebrations of Pongal festival. Discussed here are the various names of Pongal prevalent in India and their unique way of celebration.

    Other Names of Pongal
    Pongal
    In the south, people have the festival of Pongal, which is celebrated over four days. The newly harvested rice is cooked and this preparation goes by the name Pongal.

    Makar Sankranti
    In the North Indian states of India, people celebrate this day as Makar Sankranti. The most exciting thing about this festival is the kite flying. People believe that the direction of the wind changes on that day, and so they all come out into the streets to fly colorful kites and capture as many as possible.

    Kanumu
    On Kaanum Pongal, elaborate powdered chalk designs of the sun god, Surya are drawn. As soon as the auspicious month of Thai is underway, Surya is worshiped.

    Lohri
    In Punjab, people celebrate Lohri in January on what they believe is the coldest day of the year. With the cold winds blowing they celebrate by dancing the bhangra around a fire, which is fed with sugarcane, rice and sesame seeds. People sing folk songs that tell of a good harvest, which is a blessing from the gods.

    Bihu / Bohaggiyo Bhishu
    This is the greatest festival of the Assamese people, who observe three Bihus. The three Bihus, constitute a festival complex and are celebrated at various stages of the cultivation of paddy, the principal crop of Assam.

    Bhogi
    The first day is Bhogi and is in honor of Indra the god of rain. There are many legends told about this day. The day begins with a til (sesame) oil bath and in the evening there is a bonfire in which all the rubbish in the house is burnt.

    Thai Pongal
    This is a harvest festival - the Tamil equivalent of Thanksgiving. It is held to honor the Sun, for a bountiful harvest. Families gather to rejoice and share their joy and their harvests with others.

    Poki festival
    The first day is the Poki festival during which old things are removed and discarded. Since rain plays a very important part in our lives, naturally rain is revered and the first day's celebration is appropriately called Poki festival.

    Hadaga Festival
    The Hadaga festival in Maharashtra is to pray for a good monsoon and a good harvest. As Indra is the god of rain, people sing songs to Indra and pray for rain. Pictures of the elephant which is Indra's vehicle are drawn everywhere to invite the God

    Since India is mainly a land of agrarian society, the festival of Pongal is observed in different regions, under different names with different rituals in different parts of India.

    There are many harvest festivals celebrated here. This festival is celebrated all over India on the same day, but has different names in each region. However, being a harvest festival, bonfires and feasts are the main thing common to all the celebrations of this festival. Following are the various different names and their unique way of celebration of Pongal festival.

    International Names

    Harvest festival is celebrated internationally with their own distinct names and rituals.

    Throughout the course of mankind's history, the bountiful harvest has been celebrated with ceremonies of giving thanks. Prior to the establishment of formal religions, many believed that the crops contained spirits which caused the crops to grow and to die. For everyone, a good harvesting season brings with them joy, happiness and contentment.

    So cultures all over the world including Japanese, Indians, Romans, Chinese and Korean have special day when all give thanks for a bountiful harvest. The names, rituals and the tradition of these festival may differ in their forms and presentations. But their spirit is same, ie, a day set aside to reflect on nature's blessings. Following are some of the international names of harvest festival, that depict the spectra of celebration as practiced by these different cultures.

    Korea - Chu'sok
    Usually held in the month of September or October, this Korean harvest festival is marked by the rising of a full "Harvest Moon." Ch'usok is usually described as a kind of Thanksgiving for a good harvest, but it is really an ancient holiday dedicated to the ancestors. Families gather from all over the country and from overseas for the great holiday.

    Japan - Tori no Ichi
    "Tori-no-ichi" is a festival of Japan held in the month of November. The festival is also called "Otori-sama.". The festival is lively with handclasp and shouts for deals. It starts at midnight with a sound of Japanese dram and continues for 24 hours. The festival becomes livelier as the night goes on. You may not interest in rakes but will enjoy the lively festival of "Tori-no-ishi."

    Sri Lanka - Pongal or Ulavar Thirunaal
    The rituals of Pongal celebrated in Sri Lanka is almost similar to the Indian Tamils and it refers to boiling rice in a pot for consumption. The sun gives life to the rice. The instruments of this transmutation are the pot and the oxen who assist the farmers in preparing the rice fields and threshing the grains.

    United States - Thanksgiving
    Thanksgiving is a holiday celebrated in America, generally observed as an expression of gratitude to God. It is an occasion to give thanks to God for the bounty of the autumn harvest. In the United States, the holiday is celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November.

    China - August Moon Festival
    The August Moon Festival or Mid-Autumn Festival is one of the most celebrated Chinese holidays. It is held on the 15th day of the 8th lunar month. Chinese families celebrate the end of the harvest season with a big feast. Unlike the American Thanksgiving dinner, the Chinese have mooncakes instead of grandma' apple pie. Friends and relatives also send mooncakes to each other as a way of giving thanks.

    Vietnam - Tet Trung Thu
    Tet Trung Thu is a wonderful, ancient festival of Vietnam that revolves around children. The Festival dates back as far as 15-20,000 years ago in Southeast Asia, and is traditionally held on the 15th day of the 8th Lunar Month. An important to families in Vietnam for many years, originally this Festival came about as a way for parents to make up for lost time with their children after harvest season.

    Israel - Succoth
    The week long holiday of Succoth begins on the 15th day of the Hebrew month of Tishri. It is usually held in September and October. Succoth occurs at harvest time, and has elements of a harvest festival. Thus, it is also the Jewish Thanksgiving because it is known as the "Festival of the Harvest". Other names of this festival are Sukkot, Festival of the Booths, Jewish Harvest Festival and Feast of Tabernacle.

    Africa America - Kwanzaa
    Kwanzaa, which means "first fruits of the harvest" in the African language Kiswahili, is a popular harvest festival and has gained tremendous acceptance among the African American people. Since its founding in 1966 by Dr. Maulana Karenga, Kwanzaa has come to be observed by more than18 million people world wide. This festival runs from December 26 to January 1 and over this seven days, people of African descent come together to celebrate family, community, culture and the bonds that tie them together as a people. They also remember their heritage, give thanks for the good things they have and rejoice in the goodness of life.

    Africa - Yam Festival
    The yam festival marks the end of an abundant food-producing harvest. African people have always had festivals at the time of the harvest. In Ghana the Yam Festival (Homowo) lasts three days. The festival begins with a cleansing ceremony to honor family members who have died. Farmers give thanks to the gods who ensure a good harvest. Twins and triplets are honored during this time as a special gift from God.
     
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  10. sharanyadevi

    sharanyadevi Gold IL'ite

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    Hope we rejoice in the charm of our tradition! Wishing all my friends a very Happy Bogi Pongal, Surya Pongal, Mattu Pongal!!![:D]
     

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