Tamil Nadu festivals
Tamilnadu is famous for its strong tradition and rich culture. We can see here the magnificent temples which are world famous, and the people of Tamil Nadu show their devotion towards the Gods and Goddess make us astonish. Here the people celebrate festivals with colours and joy. The food items served during the festival celebrations make one mouth wonder. Here some festival celebrations are narrated for you…
The Tamil people celebrate this harvest festival on a grand scale. The festival is celebrated for four days, starting on the 13th of January and ending on the 16th of every year. On the festival day, the people, especially the farmers, worship the Sun God for his blessings for good crops by giving energy towards agriculture. The households made rice with the first paddy crop to pay tribute to the Sun God. They also prepare a particular dish, Pongal, a famous dish in South India. The households make patterns at the house entrance one month before the festival with rice flour and colours. These patterns are favourite as Kolam.
The people celebrate the first day as Bhogi. They make the Bonfire and drop the old materials in the fire, which signifies a new beginning. The day is celebrated to honour Indhra, the heavenly God who gave better crops—the second day celebrates the main ‘Pongal’ festival. The houses are decorated beautifully with flowers and sugar cane on this day. All the people wear traditional dresses and offer sugar cane and coconut to the deities. On the third day, the people decorate the cows with new bells and flowers and garland its neck.
Tamil New Year
This festival, also known as the Puthandu celebration, is a new year for the Tamil people. This festival falls in April and is the first month of the Tamil calendar year. On the festival day, all the women of the household make beautiful Kolams at the entrance of their houses. The devotees also hang bunches of Mangoes on the Mango tree and decorate the Neem tree with bloomed flowers. These rituals are the symbols of prosperity in their lives. People look at Gold ornaments, betel leaves, fruits, and nuts on New Year’s day. The Tamil People believe that this made a fortune throughout the year. On the festival day, people wake up early in the morning, take a head bath, wear new dresses, go to the temples, and take blessings from the priests and elders. The day’s special dish is ‘Maanga Pachadi’, which tastes sweet and sour. The taste is the symbol of happiness and sorrow in life. This is made with Jaggery, Neem flowers, and mango pieces.
Natyanjali Dance Festival
This is the festival celebrates to honour Lord Nataraj. On the festival day, all the dancers perform their dance to pay tribute to Lord Nataraja. The celebrations were held at Nataraja Temple in Chidambaram. Generally, the festival falls in February or March. This is a five-day long festival, starting on Shivaratri day. Famous classical dancers from all over the world dress up in traditional outfits to represent the rich culture of Tamil Nadu. The dance performance is the symbol to show ‘Unity in Diversity’.
According to the Tamil Calendar, ‘Thai’ is the festival celebrated on the full moon day to honour Lord Subramaniam on his birth anniversary. The devotees pray the God for help. The devotees follow the penance and take the ‘Kavadi’ on this day. They carry two pots filled with rice and milk attached to a long stick. The devotees brought to the temple and offered rice and milk to Lord Subrahmanyam. Some devotees have empty pots and fill them with begging materials. Some devotees pierce their bodies with sharp knives and feel no pain. The wounds are also not blended; the devotees believe they are very close to Lord Subrahmanya. During the festival celebrations, the devotees offer the Agni Kavadi, a sacred ritual. During this activity, the devotees carry the Kavadi and walk on burning coals. Nearly 10,000 Kavadees reached the temples in Tamil Nadu. This is an indication of the firm belief of the devotees and makes a surprise to the rest of the world.
Kumbakonam is famous for its bronze sculptures. Mahamaham is celebrated in Kumbakonam once every 12 years. On this day, devotees from all over India visit this village and dip in the famous ‘Mahamaham Tank’. According to Tamil Calander, the festival fall in Masi month[February to March]. When Jupiter enters the Leo sign, the devotees celebrate on a grand scale. Here the tank occupies 6.2 acres and is surrounded by shrines and wells. The devotees dipped in the tank, went to the Kumbeswarar temple, and worshipped Lord Shiva. The devotees believe that the bath made them purify from their sins. Nearly 10 lakh people visited this place on the festival day and took a bath in the tank.
This musical festival is celebrated to honour the great composer Thyagaraja in the small town of Thivuvaiyaru in the Thanjavur district. The festival is celebrated on Pushya Bahula Panchami day in January month. On the same day, Thyagaraja attained Samadhi. Many musicians from all over India gathered near the Samadhi, at the banks of river Cauvery and celebrated the festival by showing their skills in music. The festival is celebrated for two days to promote Carnatic and Classical music. The devotees perform the rituals, Poojas, and music during the festival celebrations.
The festival is famous as the ‘Festival of Lights’. The festival falls in November. The people celebrated this festival for ten days in the significance of keeping away the wrong things and welcoming the good ones. The devotees believe that on this day, Lord Shiva appeared on the hills of Thiruvannamalai. So to mark this, the devotees are fighting a massive fire on the top of the mountain. On this day, people wear new clothes, go to the Shivalayam and glow the lights. Later exchange the sweets. There is also a fair, attracting many Tamil Nadu people.