Maharashtra Festivals – Symbol Of Cultural Unity

Maharashtra Festivals

Maharashtra is famous for its tradition, culture and Heritage. Chhatrapati Shivaji founded the Maratha kingdom in this state. Many festivals celebrated in Maharashtra with great pomp and processions. Here the culture is unique and the city people are in advance and modern. But in the countryside, the people are stick to their traditions and culture. However, the festivals are bringing same enthusiasm among the people of cities and villages.

Nag Panchami

The festival celebrated on the fifth day of Shravan Mas to honour Snake God Shesha Nag. The devotees made the clay Shesha Nag and venerated at the house the festival celebrates for the blessings of Nag for fruitful life and to keep the crops from rats and rodents. The devotees offer sweet and milk to the Naga deity. People visit Nag deity seated temples and Lord Shiva temples for the blessings.

Gudhi Pawda

The Marata people celebrate this festival as the new Maratha year. Hindus believe this day as the most auspicious day and everyone start the new works for success. The devotees decorated the house beautifully with garlands and rangolis. A Gudhi kept at the entrance of the house to welcome prosperity and good health into the family. Gudi made with a bamboo stick and silk cloth and decorated with garland. Here Gudhi is a symbol of success. The people worship the Gudhi and distribute the sweets to the relatives and neighbours.

Narali Purnima

The festival celebrated in the month of Sravana. During the monsoons, the fishing on the sea is not sage. Narali Purnima is the symbol of the end of the monsoon season. Then the fishermen felt very glad to go to fishing safely. So the fisher men decorate their boats beautifully and sail into the sea. Before going to fishing, the fisher men offer coconuts and pray to the sea God for His blessings to prevent untoward incidents. They dance to the folk songs to show their joy.

Gokul Ashtami

This festival celebrates on the birth day of Lord Krishna. The devotees celebrate the birth anniversary in the mid night. The next day celebrated as the Gokul Ashtami. The devotees sing the bhajans about the themes of how Lord Krishna was fond of butter and stealing of the butter with his friends from the Gopika’s houses. Dahi Handi is the main ritual performed on this day to honour Lord Krishna. The Clay Pot string high up and filled the pots with curd, milk and puffed rice. The group of youngers formed as a human pyramid and broke the pot. This is the resemblance of how Lord Krishna and his friends sneaked into the houses of Gopikas to steal butter. Later enjoy with dances and songs.

Makara Sankranthi

This festival celebrated in the month of January all over India. This festival is also known as Pongal or Uttarayan. On this day the sun leaves the Southern hemisphere and enter into Northern hemisphere. This festival celebrates three days. The first day is Bhogi, the people lit the bonfires and wish with each other. They forget differences among them and decide to lead a fresh lease of life. They build up the mutual love and respect among themselves. On the second day, do the puja to Goddes Lakshmi for their prosperity. They distribute the sweets and enjoy the dance and songs. The newly wedded couple dressed in black and distribute sweets to enjoy their new journey. On the last day, the youth fly the kites, the sky covered with colourful kites in different styles.

Bhau Beej

This festival celebrates on the fifth day of Diwali. This celebration is the symbol of strong bondage between brothers and sister. On this day sisters invite their brothers to their home. Traditionally the brothers are the protesters of the sisters. At the entrance of the house, the sister gives Marathi to her brother and seeks his protection in the future. Then the brother gives his blessings and gives gifts to his beloved sisters.

Elora Festival

Elora is a UNESCO world heritage sites in Maharashtra. This is one of the great historical sites in India and shows the cultural unity. Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation organising this festival to show the culture and heritage of the Ellora caves to the rest of the world. During the festival celebrations, many artists perform classical music and dance. The local artisans display the homemade beautiful arts and crafts. This is the festival of strong culture, a variety of crafts and tradition.

Ashadhi Ekadashi

This festival celebrates with great pomp in Pandharpur, the adobe of VIttla, a local form of Lord Vishnu. Ashadhi Ekadashi celebrates to honour Lord Vishnu. Pandharpur is a sacred village in Maharashtra on the banks of river Chandrabhaga. In a large number of devotees begin a pilgrimage to visit Pandharpur on foot. During the journey, the pilgrims sing the praying songs of Lord Vishnu. On the festival day, the people end their pilgrimage after the Dharshan of Vittla.