Pongal is a four-day harvest festival in Tamil Nadu, which is celebrated by the Tamils in the state with enthusiasm and enthusiasm. This festival is dedicated to Mother Nature, and farmers thank her for providing them with abundant crops.
Pongal is a harvest festival in Tamil Nadu, which fell in the month of Thai. The word “Pongal” literally means “boiling” and is the only Hindu festival that follows the solar calendar.
The 4 days of Pngal Celebrated in Tamil Nadu are:
1. Bhogi Pngal
2. Thai Pngal
3. Mattu Pngal
4. Kaanum Pngal
The festival witnesses huge celebrations, including making “Kolams” decorate cattle and preparing Pngal. People also regard Pongal as an auspicious thing because it marks the beginning of Uttarayan– as the sun moves north.
What is the Significance of Pongal?
Pngal is a four-day harvest festival in Tamil Nadu, which is celebrated by the Tamils in the state with fervor and enthusiasm. This festival is dedicated to Mother Nature, and farmers thank her for providing them with abundant crops.
Each day of the four-day festival has a certain meaning. Extensive Pngal ceremonies are performed by people. This is also where people plan to start again by discarding old clothes and useless household appliances on the campfire. This festival is also an important time for family gatherings and gift exchanges.
In South India; the month in which Pngal falls is deemed auspicious for solemnizing weddings. People also worship to the God of light Sun for rich crops. They believe that Pngal brings good wishes, wealth, peace, and prosperity.
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What are the 4 Days of Pngal?
The celebration of the Pngal Festival starts from Bhogi/Bogi and is usually held on January 13. The day before the Bhogi, these families were clean, so the house became religious for the celebration.
People wake up early in the morning, take a shower, and make exquisite Klam patterns on their balconies. On this day, people worship the sun god and the agricultural equipment used for cutting.
After that, they will use the equipment to cut down the rice crops that are ready for harvest. On Bhogi, people throw unnecessary old materials into the fire, which symbolizes the end of old things and the beginning of new things.
On the second day of the Pongal festival, “Thai Pngal” which is also known as “Surya Pngal” is celebrated. This day is to commemorate the sun god Surya. On this day, collect fresh rice and cook in a pot until the water in the rice overflows.
Then, decorate the pots with sugarcane blocks, flowers, and turmeric plants. People sang “Pngal-o-Pngal” and presented the first batch of rice to people. The sun god also provided raw sugar and boiled milk, and the image of the sun god was painted around Kolam.
Afterward, present a puja to the sun god to seek his blessing. The admirer also prepares a dish called “ven Pngal”, which is a mixture of rice, salt, and sugar. There is also a dish made from dal and raw sugar called Sakkarai Pongal.
On the third day of Pngal, Maatu Pongal witnessed the prayers offered to bulls, cows, and other livestock used in agriculture. Farmers bathe the cows, paint the horns, cover the horns with metal caps, and decorate them with colorful beads, jingle beads, garlands, and corn bunches around the neck.
Then, people’s feet and foreheads were worshipped, and cattle were tamed. The striking feature of Maatu Pngal is a festival called Jallikattu, or tame bison. Although such events are held throughout Tamil Nadu, the most popular event is held in Aranganur, near Madurai.
The fourth and final day of Pngal is called Kaanum Pngal. In some areas of Tamil Nadu, Kaanum Pngal is also known as Karinaal. Worshipping the sun god that day, people provided food together with Sakkarai Pngal.
Sugar cane is a symbol of the gods and a symbol of communication between people, and it symbolizes the sweetness and happiness in life.
Kaanum Pngal is when people visit relatives and acquaintances in the distance. On Kaanum Pngal, people perform songs of tamers and folk dances.
What is the Legend associated with the Pngal Festival?
Lord Shiva has many followers in the Himalayas, and they are all bulls. Lord Shiva asked his bull to call Basava to visit the earth and meet humans.
He was asked to convey the message: Humans must perform oil massage and bath once a day, as far as diet is concerned, they can only eat once a month.
Wrongly, the bull mistakenly communicated to people what they must eat every day, and as far as essential oil massage and bathing are concerned, they can only do it once a month.
This act of Nandi’s move made Lord Shiva very angry. As a result, Lord Shiva punished him for living on earth forever and helped people cultivate the land and increase food.
Another legend states that once this happened, Lord Krishna decided to teach Lord Indra a lesson in his childhood because he became too arrogant after becoming the king of the gods.
Lord Krishna went to meet the Cowherd and told them to stop worshipping Lord Indra. This made Lord Indra very angry. He caused a heavy thunderstorm and the rain continued for three days.
Seeing this disaster, people went out loud to Lord Krishna. Then Lord Krishna raised Govardhan Mountain with one finger. This incident made Lord Indra aware of his mistake.
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Why is the Pngal Festival So Important for Tamils in Particular?
Pngal usually ushers in the New Year in Tamil Nadu, so the newly harvested grain is cooked for the first time that day. Festivals and traditional ceremonies mark the celebration of every family, and everything seems to be quite different.
The poor are full of clothes. The next day, cattle were worshipped, birds and animals were fed. In short, you can say that Pngal is about giving. This is a form of gratitude for the entire creation because it is a force that sustains life.
On this auspicious day, the sun is regarded as the embodiment and source of vitality. Without it, our survival is impossible.
What are the Dates of Pngal in 2020?
|Bhogi Pngal||15th January 2020|
|Thai Pngal||16th January 2020|
|Mattu Pngal||17th January 2020|
|Kaanum Pngal||18th January 2020|
The beauty of South India lies in its culture and tradition. The people who belong to these states always ensure that their ancestral traditions are celebrated without any renovation.
It is said that South Indians are the purest, helpful, and hardworking people, as are their customs and traditions. Therefore, this is the Pongal festival, which represents the life of South Indians.
People Also Ask (FAQs)
What is the Pongal festival in Tamil?
Pongal is a four-day-long harvest festival celebrated in Tamil Nadu, which falls in the month of Thai (that is, the January-February season) when crops like rice, sugarcane, turmeric, etc. The term ‘Pongal’ in Tamil means “to boil”, and this festival is celebrated as a thanksgiving ceremony for the year’s harvest.
Why do we celebrate Thai Pongal?
Pongal festival is the harvest festival of Tamil Nadu that falls in the month of Thai (January-February season). The uniqueness of the festival reminds us of the importance of natural resources, especially when the entire world is battling environmental change.
Is Pongal a religious festival?
Pongal is a major Hindu festival that is celebrated on the fourteenth day of January every year. It is a major festival that is celebrated with great religious fervor in the state of Tamil Nadu.
What is the story behind Pongal?
The origins of the Thai Pongal festival may date to more than 1000 years ago. Epigraphic evidence suggests the celebration of the Puthiyeedu during the Medieval Chola empire days. Puthiyeedu is believed to represent the first harvest of the year.
How do you pray Pongal?
Offer to Sun God and do the pooja. Aditya Hridayam or Surya Ashtotaram or Gayatri mantra can be recited Or you can simply meditate and say some simple prayers. After the prayers, some water and flowers are sprinkled on the kolam and Pongal dish. You can also sprinkle some uncooked rice mixed with turmeric (akshata).