If you are searching for “what is Pongal and when is Pongal celebrated” you have landed in a right place. In this post, we shall discuss the topic. The term Pongal is used in India, and it means “overwhelming”. I have provided the full details of Pongal to make you understand details about the word “Pongal”
What is Pongal?
The Term “Pongal” denotes two major different things. One is
Pongal Dish ( Type of dish Prepared in India )
We shall discuss first the Pongal Festival, it is one of the most important and popular Hindu religion traditional festivals.
It is a four-day long festival celebrated in Tamil Nadu state, India. And it is celebrated as Makar Sankranti and Uttarayan in other regions of India. It is celebrated by Tamil people all over the world.
The origins of the Pongal festival may date to more than 1000 years ago. Historical evidence suggests the celebration of the Puthiyeedu during the Chola empire days.
Puthiyeedu is believed to represent the first harvest of the year. Tamil people refer to Pongal as “Tamizhar Thirunaal,” the festival of Tamil’s.
“Pongal” in the Tamil language means “overflowing” which signifies abundance and prosperity. The purpose of Pongal festival is thanksgiving to nature,
They workship sun as a god and devote their thanks for helping them to harvest.
When is Pongal festival celebrated?
Its celebrated during the month of January. In Tamil calender its celebrated on “Thai” month, hence its known as “Thai Pongal”. During this month they harvest Rice, Sugarcane, and turmeric to gather during their workship.
Popular quote of Pongal is ‘Thai pirandhaal vazhi pirakkum’, which means their problems will be solved while the birth of “Thai” month. Thai is the tenth month of the Tamil calendar.
The First Day of Pongal: Bhogi festival
The First day is celebrated as “Bhogi Pongal”, the festival to honor the Lord Indra, the supreme ruler of clouds who gives us rain. Homage is paid to Lord Indra for the abundance of harvest, thereby bringing prosperity to the farms and land. During Bhogi, people throw away and burn the old household things and go to buy the new ones. It signifies the beginning of a new cycle. Peoples dance around the fire, singing songs to praise the god, the spring and the harvest.
The Second Day: Pongal
The second day is celebrated as “Pongal”, they carry out puja, and worship is performed. During Worship, they boil rice with milk in an earthenware pot. During the boil, they say the quote “Pongalo Pongal” “Pongalo Pongal”, Which denotes the term “Boil”. Its offered to the sun-god along with sugarcane and turmeric. All family people wear traditional dress and markings, During workship, the ritual is carried out with turmeric plant tied around the pot in which the rice will be boiled. The offerings include two sticks of sugarcane, coconut, and bananas in the dish.
The Third Day: Mattu Pongal
The third day is celebrated as “Mattu Pongal”, the day of Pongal for cows. Multi-colored beads, tinkling bells, sheaves of corn and flower garlands are tied around the neck of the komatha (cow) and they are worshiped. They are fed with Pongal and taken to the village centers. The resounding of their bells attract the villagers as the young men race each other’s cattle. The entire atmosphere becomes festive and full of fun and revelry.
The Fourth Day: Kannum Pongal
The Fourth day is celebrated as “Kannum Pongal” the day of enjoyment. During this day, a turmeric leaf is washed and is placed on the ground.
On this leaf, they keep sweet Pongal, Venn Pongal, ordinary rice, red-colored rice, yellow colored rice (They mix turmeric for yellow and Kumkum for Red), betel leaves, betel nuts, two sticks of sugarcane.
In Tamil Nadu, women perform this ritual before bathing in the morning. All the family people assemble in the courtyard.
The rice is placed in the center of the leaf, Arati is performed for all with turmeric water, limestone and rice, and this water is sprinkled on the kolam in front of the house.
Pongal is celebrated as ‘makar Sankranthi’ in the other parts of India, (mainly southern)and all over India with different names.
In Gujarat, it is kite flying festival and is called “Sankranti’, in Punjab it is ‘ Maghi’. In Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, it is celebrated colorfully as an invitation to the spring season. It is also celebrated even in Nepal.
So, now you have come to conclusion about “what is Pongal and when is Pongal celebrated”. I think your query is solved, and if you need more details about please comment and I will reply back.
If you want to know about Pongal Dish, please read my other post.
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