It’s been a after a very long time since, I am writing a non-technical post in my blog. But still I wanted the title to be technical 😀 :P. I wrote this thing (something about pongal ) :D, just because I am pushed by my favourite teacher :D. Well anyway, enjoy struggling if you are interested in reading this! Have fun! Happy pongal! 😉
Today is a day, the sun enters the zodiac sign of Makara or Capricorn. We call this day by various names as Thai Pongal or Makara Sankaranti or Perum pongal – The first day of the tamil month Thai. This day is dedicated to the Lord Surya or the Sun god.
We all know South India’s population is largely engaged in agriculture. In this auspicious day, the farmers performs pooja to some crops signalling the end of farming season. The farmer is depending on his cattle, timely rain and the Sun for cultivation. Once in every year he expresses his gratitude towards all the resources ( Water, Wind, Sun, Earth) and the animlas which helped in harvest and thus by celebrating the harvest.
Pongal was originally for the farming community, but still it is celebrated by all. In this day, we cook rice in the mud-pots and we will say ” Pongalo pongal ” when the pongal boils over the mud pot ( The Pongal Overflow ). Sugar-cane will be placed at the two sides of the Pongal Pot, Turmeric (Manjal) plant (as a whole root) are tied to the neck of the mud pot and the surrounding will be decorated with beautiful patterns of Rangoli (Kolam). We go to temple, chant prayers, offer vegetables, sugar canes and species to god.
The festival is celebrated in 4 days and each day we call them by different names. Day one is Bhogi pongal, the last day of the Marghazhi month ( mid-December to mid-January ). In this day old clothes and materials are thrown away in fires, marking the removal darkness from our life and to begin a new life. The second day is the most important one – The Thai Pongal. In this day we offer our prayers to the sun god and we make the pongal in mud pots ( like I mentioned in the 3rd paragraph ).
The 3rd day is called as Mattu Pongal. We offer thanks to the cows and buffaloes for helping in ploughing the land. Usually Mattu pongal is celebrated in a very grant manner in villages. They make the cows bath, decorate their horns and we will worship them; as cows are considered holy for hindus. Also in this day especially in districts like Thanjavur and Madurai, the Jalli Kattu game is played. The bull will be given vodka ( Kalla charayam ), and it is made run in the streets and young-men have to take the money bag tied to the horns of the ferocious bulls. And there is one more game, where the young men have to chase and stop the running bull. The person who stops the bull will bag a title as “Kaalai adakia veeran”. The fourth day is called as Kaanum pongal, we don’t celebrate it much, like the other 3.
Let me wish everyone, that this festival brings good luck and prosperity to everyone and their family. Pongum Mangalam Engum Thanga! En, Inia Pongal Nal vazhtukkal!