Chhath Puja Quick Facts
|Chhath Puja (छठ पूजा)
|17 November 2023 – 20 November 2023
|Festival Observed by
History of Chhath Puja
Chhath Puja is a Hindu festival celebrated on the Shashthi of Kartik Shukla Paksha.This unique folk festival of sun worship is mainly celebrated in Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Eastern Uttar Pradesh and Terai areas of Nepal. This is the only festival of Bihar or whole of India which has been going on since Vedic period and it has become the culture of Bihar.
The history of Chhath Puja has changed over time, and in modern times it is celebrated as a major social and cultural festival. People traditionally observe a fast during Chhath Puja, take a bath, cook special offerings of food items and worship at sunrise and sunset. In addition, people organize songs, dances and social get-togethers. Chhath Puja has also gained strength through the freedom struggle under Gandhian thinking.
Story of Chhath Puja
Chhathi Mata's happiness with Karna: This story is set in the town of Bandhavgarh during the Mahabharata period. Karna prayed to Chhathi Mata for the growth of his ancestors and organized Chhath Puja. Despite fasting with all his heart and devotion, he had to overcome all difficulties and trials. After his amazing pleading and struggle, he received the grace of the Sixth Mother and was accepted into her high position.
Story of Dronacharya's Daughter's Sankalpa: In this story, Dronacharya's daughter Utsavi was Chhathi Brahmin and wishes for blessings and happiness for her children through Chhath Puja. Due to her devotion and hard work, she succeeded in achieving her desired wish and became Utsavi Chhathi Brahmin.
Story of King Surjan Singh and Nagina: This story is about a king in the state of Jharkhand, whose queen Nagina decided to organize Chhath Puja for her progeny. He observed the fast with full heart and devotion and worshiped Chhathi Mata with devotion and enthusiasm. After his sadhana, his wish for a child was granted and he was born safely.
Significance of Chhath Puja
Chhath Puja is an important and major festival in Hinduism. This puja is primarily celebrated in the states of Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal, where it is given special respect and importance. The importance of Chhath Puja is seen in its depth, religious and cultural importance. This puja is celebrated to worship and please the Sun God, who is believed to be the creator of life and the source of energy. In this puja, devotees organize their fast and worship Chhathi Mata with special diet, penance and purity. Religious events such as offering Arghya at the Ganges Ghats, bathing at sunrise and sunset, and visiting special temples are conducted during Chhath Puja.
Chhath Puja is also organized to get auspicious signs. It is recognized by the devotees to get rid of personal, family and social troubles. Chhath Puja is also famous for its natural significance, as it is held in the months of October-November, when the weather is cool and the amount of sunlight is less. Through this, Chhath Puja reflects the human-natural relationship and gives an ideal place to the delight of the Sun God as a symbol of natural gifts. The significance of Chhath Puja is to maintain religious and cultural traditions, establish harmony and harmony, and increase the sense of devotion and respect among people. Through this, people express their faith and pray for the blessings of the Sun God. Chhath Puja is a symbol of glory, organization, sacrifice, and hard work and gives religious enthusiasm and self-confidence to the people.
How to celebrate Chhath Puja
Chhath Puja is celebrated for four days and during this the fasting person observes special rules. Here is a succinct explanation of the main steps of Chhath Puja:
Take a bath: The celebration of Chhath Puja begins on the first day. On this day, fasting people take a special meal after taking a bath, which includes rice, pulses, and vegetables. After this, they go to the temple and bow down to Chhathi Mata.
Kharna: The second day is called Kharna, when the fasting person fasts for the manufacture of food. On this day, for the sweetness and taste of food, they keep rice balls in pots and cook them in the rays of the sun. These prepared food items are offered to Chhathi Mata after the puja.
Sandhyarghya: The third day is called Sandhyarghya. On this day fasting people go to the temple at sunset and worship the Sun God. They offer their prayers and offerings.
Usha Arghya: The last day of Chhath Puja is called Usha Arghya. On this day fasting people go to the temple at sunrise and offer Arghya to the Sun God. It is an important part of the last puja when the fasting person ends his fast.
Apart from these steps in Chhath Puja, devotees also pay homage to the fasting person, enjoy music and dance, and maintain a union of devotion and joy with the family and community.
Tradition and customs of Chhath Puja
At the heart of the Chhath festival is the Chhath Vrat which is like an austere penance. This Chhath fast is observed mostly by women; Some men also keep this fast. Women observing fast are called Parvaitin. In this fast of four days, the devotee has to fast continuously. Along with food, a comfortable bed is also sacrificed. In the room made for the festival, Vrati spends the night with the help of a blanket or sheet on the floor. People participating in this festival wear new clothes. In which no stitching has been done, it is mandatory to wear such clothes for fasting. Women perform Chhath wearing saris and men wearing dhoti. 'After starting the Chhath festival, it has to be done for years and years until a married woman of the next generation is ready for it. This festival is not celebrated when someone dies in the house. It is a belief that women who fast on Chhath festival are blessed with a son. Generally, women keep this fast for the desire of a son and for the well-being of a son. Men also fast with full devotion to make their desired work successful.
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