Megastar Rajinikanth’s upcoming film ‘Jailer’ is one of August’s most anticipated releases alongside Sunny Deol’s ‘Gadar 2’.
Pongal is a traditional harvest celebration observed in South India, mainly in the states of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and Telangana. Pongal, an important South Indian festival, honours Lord Surya Narayan, the planet’s ruler, and is linked with crop harvesting. In northern India, the celebration is known as Makar Sankranti.
This year’s four-day celebration will be held from January 15 to January 18 and will be distinguished by a number of customs and rituals, such as the giving of milk rice to the sun deity and the well-known bull-taming sport of Jallikattu.
Here is everything you need to know about the four festival days known as Bhogi Pongal, Surya Pongal, Mattu Pongal, and Kanum Pongal.
Pongal 2023: Significance
The Pongal celebrations are quite precious to Tamilians. This month is known as Thai month, and the people of Tamil Nadu believe that it brings positive change to their lives and helps them overcome their problems. This is the time of year when crops like sugarcane, turmeric, and rice are harvested. This month is thought to be auspicious for marriages, engagements, and all religious and spiritual activities.
Pongal 2023: History
According to Hindu mythology, Lord Shiva sent his bull Nandi to earth to exhort the mortals to take a monthly meal, an oil massage, and a bath. However, Nandi advised everyone to take an oil bath once a month in addition to eating taking a meal every day. As a result of Lord Shiva’s rage, Nandi was condemned to live forever on earth. He will mostly be responsible for plough work and assisting others in increasing food production. So this day is celebrated for harvesting crops, new crop and animals.
Pongal 2023: Celebration
Day 1: Bhogi Pongal
As part of the Bhogi festival, the first day of the celebration, which falls on January 14, is dedicated to honouring Lord Indra. Because he is credited with bringing prosperity to the land, Lord Indra is revered as the rain God. It is also known as Bhogi Mantalu because, on this day, people burn their unwanted household items in a blaze composed of wood and cakes of cow dung. The females perform dances around the bonfire and sing songs in praise of God. During the winter solstice, a bonfire is lit in order to stay warm.
Day 2: Surya Pongal
The second day of the Pongal celebration, which falls on January 15, is the main day, known as Surya Pongal. To begin the day, fresh milk is boiled until it reaches the vessel’s edge. One of the main customs of the Pongal holiday, it is believed to bring prosperity. Tamil Nadu residents prepare the traditional sweet dish “Pongal” on this day using rice, milk, and jaggery. This is offered as prasad to the deity. In order to perform the ceremony collectively, women from various regions of Tamil Nadu assemble at a specific site. Bananas, coconuts, and sugarcane are among the additional offerings made to the Sun god.
Day 3: Mattu Pongal
The third day of Pongal, known as Mattu Pongal, is devoted to cow worship and falls on January 16. On this day, agricultural animals like cows and oxen are honoured since they help farmers effectively raise and harvest their crops. For Mattu Pongal, farm animals are artistically decorated after being bathed. When “Pongal” is provided for cows and oxen, their horns are typically painted and garlanded. Bullfights also referred to as Jallikattu, are organised on this day. The bull-taming sport is well-known in the Madurai area of Tamil Nadu.
Day 4: Kaanum Pongal
Kaanum or Knau Pongal, which falls on January 17, is the fourth and last day of Pongal. There are several areas of Tamil Nadu where Kaanum Pongal is also known as Karinaal. People offer Sarkarai Pongal and food as sacrifices to the Sun God on this day. Sugarcane is consecrated to the deity and traded among humans in order to symbolise sweetness and joy in life. People travel to see close ones and far-off acquaintances at Kaanum Pongal. People perform local dances and sing traditional melodies during Kaanum Pongal.