Showing posts with label Hindu Festival. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Hindu Festival. Show all posts

Hinduism - What Is The Hindu Festival Of Makara Sankranti?


Makara Sankranti is the Hindu New Year.

A religious celebration that occurs on the day the sun enters the zodiac sign of Capricorn (sankranti) (makara).

This happens around December 20 according to Western astrology, but January 14 according to Indian astrology (jyotisha).

This is one of the rare times throughout the festival year when the solar calendar is used rather than the lunar calendar.

The sun is said to be starting its "northward trek" on Makara Sankranti (uttarayana).

This will last for six months, until Karka Sankranti, when the sun enters Cancer and starts its "southward journey" (dakshinayana).

Because the uttarayana is seen to be more fortunate than its counterpart, the day of its transition is considered especially auspicious.

Makara Sankranti is predominantly a bathing (snana) celebration, with large crowds flocking to rivers, particularly the Ganges, on that day.

The greatest bathing festival on the Ganges is held on Sagar Island (also known as Ganga Sagar) in West Bengal, where the Ganges empties into the sea in the Bay of Bengal.

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Hinduism - What Is The Hindu Festival Of Ganesh Chaturthi?


Ganesh Chaturthi is a Hindu festival commemorating the birth of Lord Ganesha.

Festival devoted to the worship of the deity Ganesh on the fourth (chaturthi) day of the bright or waxing half of the lunar month of Bhadrapada (August–September).

This holiday is celebrated all around India, but it is especially popular in Maharashtra.

Clay Ganesh idols are sanctified and adored throughout this event.

The figures are carried in procession to be ceremonially immersed in bodies of water at the festival's conclusion, whether the sea, a river, or the town pond.

Although Ganesh is a minor god in the Hindu pantheon, his function as Lord of Obstacles (Vighneshvar) makes him significant in daily life, since his presence may either help or impede one's endeavors.

As a result, Ganesh is always worshipped at the commencement of every attempt, as well as at the opening of all religious rites.

While Ganesh is revered in people's daily lives, Maharashtra's Ganesh Chaturthi celebration rose to popularity for political reasons.

During the British imperial reign, Bal Gangadhar Tilak, one of the most influential actors in the nineteenth-century Hindu renaissance, pushed Ganesh Chaturthi as a visible manner to proclaim and celebrate a Hindu nationalist identity.

Outright revolt was unthinkable given the British government's strength, and all kinds of political opposition were severely controlled by the British government.

Because the British had a longstanding policy of not meddling with religious observances, the Ganesh celebration offered a method to get around these prohibitions.

In Maharashtra, the celebration of this event, particularly the processions to immerse the pictures in the sea, became a major stage for demonstrating and affirming Hindu cultural and political identity.

You may also want to read more about Hinduism here.

Be sure to check out my writings on religion here.