Festivals in India have very close affinity with the nature. Chhath Puja is one of the festivals which are celebrated after one week of Diwali that is riverside rituals in which the Sun God or Surya is worshipped, giving it the name of ‘Suryasasthi’.
Let us know 9 interesting facts about chhath puja.
1. Why Chhath Puja is celebrated?
The festival is dedicated to Sun and Chhathi Maiya (Mother Shashti or Usha). The devotee offers their gratitude to the Sun God Surya along with the Goddesses- Usha (first rays of the morning) and Pratyusha (last rays of the evening) because it is believed that the Sun is a prime source of energy that sustains all lives on the Earth.
2. Rituals and Tradition of Chhath Puja (Four Days Festival)
It is four days festival which is celebrated with rigorous and strict manners of preparation. So, during the period the devotee (those who practice) becomes separate from the main family for maintaining chastity as well as purity. The prasad and food (for devotees) are cooked without salt, onions, or garlic which is accomplished and accompanied by four days of preparation.
3. First Day of Chhath Puja (Nahay khay/Arwa Arwain)
The devotees take bath from the holy water of Ganga and the surroundings of the house purified with Ganga Jal (Water). They take only a one-time meal i.e. Kaddu-Bhat which cooked in the bronze or soil utensils by using mango wood fire over soil stove.
4. Second Day of Chhath Puja (Lohanda and Kharna)
The devotees holds fast for whole day and break their fast after worship of the sun God in the evening with Rasiao-kheer, puris and fruits. After fast breaking they again go for fast without water for the next 36 hours.
5. Third Day of Chhath Puja (Sanjhiya Arghya)
The devotees offer Santhya Arghya at the riverside (bank of the river) then after they wore turmeric color saree. On the night of this day, the devotee celebrates the vibrant event of filling Kosi (Kosia Bharai) by lighting clay diyas under the five sugarcane sticks with the folk song of Chhathi Maiya. This sugarcane stick represents the Panchatattva (Earth, Air, water, fire, and Space).
6. Fourth Day of Chhath Puja
This is a final day of Chhath Puja in which devotees along with family and friends offer Bihaniya Aragh (Early Morning Offering) to the Sun God at the riverside (bank of the river). And at last, the devotees end their fast with Chhath Puja Prasad.
7. Stages involves in the Chhath Puja
Chhath Puja is completed in six stages of purity.
- First– detoxification of Body & Soul;.
- Second– Standing in the water at riverside during araghya (Sanjhiya & Bihaniya), so that half part of the body should in the water and half part out of water for elevating to the Sushumna;
- Third– This stage is known as the Triveni Complex that opens the entrance of cosmic solar energy in the body.
- Fourth– In this stage, Triveni Complex gets activated
- Fifth– The devotees transformed into a cosmic powerhouse and gets the Kundalini Shakti by Triveni Complex.
- Sixth– It is the last process of purification of soul & body that makes the body recycle and pass on the energy into the entire universe.
8. Legacy behind the Puja
Ramayana and Mahabharta both epic book refers that the festival is celebrated by Sita (after Lord Ram’s return to Ayodhya), and by Draupadi. It has also Vedic roots in which Goddesses Usha is mentioned and hence, several mantras are dedicated to her. It is also a folk belief that puja was firstly started by Surya Putra Karn.
9. OTHER FACTS
The devotees, called Parvaitin (from Sanskrit parv which means ‘occasion’ or ‘festival’), are usually women but a large number of men also observe this festival. They pray for the well-being of their family, and for the prosperity of their offsprings. Sacred of the festival could also imagine that Chhath Puja special trains are announced every year by Indian Railway to clear extra festive rushes.
It is celebrated in Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Chandigarh, Gujarat, Bangalore, Mauritius, Fiji, South Africa, Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, Suriname, and Jamaica, United States, United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Macau, Japan, and Indonesia by Bihari aboriginal migrant.
Dates of Chhath Puja 2020
|Chhath Puja 2020 Festival Names||Days||Date of Chhath Puja 2020|
|Day 1 – Nahay-Khay||Wednesday||18 November 2020|
|Day 2 – Lohanda & Kharna||Thursday||19 November, 2020|
|Day 3 – Sandhya Arghya||Friday||20 November, 2020|
|Day 4 – Usha Argh & Paran||Saturday||21 November, 2020|
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