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Festivals

Jagannath Rath Yatra

Spanning across nine days, the festival of Jagannath Rath Yatra has been celebrated for approximately 500 years. As much as the festival displays splendour and grandeur, it is first and foremost a lesson on humility and devotion. Jagannath comprises of the words Jaga meaning universe and Nath which means Lord. As one of the incarnations… Continue reading Jagannath Rath Yatra

Festivals

Akshaya Tritiya

Akshaya Tritiya or Akha Teej is celebrated on the third lunar day of Shukla Paksha in the Vaishakh month of the Hindu calendar. The Sanskrit word ‘Akshaya’ comprises of ‘A’ (not) and ‘Kshaya’ (erode). It means that which does not decay, diminish or erode. According to Vedas, the Treta Yug commenced on Akshaya Tritiya. This… Continue reading Akshaya Tritiya

Festivals

Hanuman Jayanti

Call Him by any name – Bajrangabali, Pawanputra, Mahavir, SankatMochan, Anjaneya or Maruti – Lord Hanuman signifies divine strength and devotion that we all carry within. This day – Hanuman Jayanti – is celebrated as his birthday which falls on the 15th day of the Shukla Paksha in the Hindu month of Chaitra. Legend and… Continue reading Hanuman Jayanti

Festivals

Ramnavmi

In the Vedic calendar, Baisakh Sankranti heralds the onset of Chaitra Navratri, which ends with Ramanavami celebrated on the 9th day and Chaitra Navratri Parana on the 10th day. This Navratri, even though less known, has the same significance and follows the same rituals of fasting and observations as the Shardiya Navratri. Along with worshipping… Continue reading Ramnavmi

Festivals

Baisakh Sankranti

Today is the start of the Vedic/Hindu new year. This festival goes by many names in different regions pan-India, however, all of them eventually celebrate the turning of the zodiac sign from Pisces to Aries and is symbolic of new beginnings. Throughout the country, this festival represents different flavours of life such as merriment, energy,… Continue reading Baisakh Sankranti

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Festivals

Holi

The Puranas describe Holi as the celebration of love, aptly calling it Kama Mahotsav or Vasant Mahotsav. With a burst of myriad colour, this festival heralds the onset of spring and is celebrated on the last full moon day of the Vedic lunar calendar. There are deep symbolisms to every aspect of this colourful festival,… Continue reading Holi

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Festivals

Mahashivratri

The night of Lord Shiva – Mahashivratri – is a night-long festival that is held annually in honour of the supreme yogi and the destroyer of illusions. Celebrated on the 14th day of Phalgun month. There are two beliefs around this festival: The first is that this is the night Lord Shiva performed Tandava –… Continue reading Mahashivratri

Festivals

Makar Sankranti

Makar (Capricorn) Sankranti (a goddess) is the festival that honours the Hindu deity, Sankranti, in the month of Capricorn. As legend goes, on this day, Goddess Sankranti overpowered a devil named Sankarasur. The festival goes by many names in various regions, but all eventually celebrate the onset of northward movement of the Sun from Dakshinayan… Continue reading Makar Sankranti

Festivals

Vijayadashami – Maa Durga

Artwork copyright of Ankur Chaudhary/The Fourth Face The tenth day of Sharadiya Navratri is Vijayadashami.  This culminates the 10-day worship of the different forms of the Divine Mother Goddess.  It marks the victory of Maa Durga over the demon Mahisasur, who she later grants a pardon and releases him from his mortal suffering. It is… Continue reading Vijayadashami – Maa Durga

Festivals

Navami – Maa Siddhidaatri

Artwork copyright of Ankur Chaudhary/The Fourth Face The ninth day of Sharadiya Navratri is dedicated to Maa Siddhidaatri.  Significance: In this form, She is worshiped by Lord Shiva to become the form of Goddess Ardhanarishwara.  The Goddess Shakti then appeared from the left side of Lord Shiva.  She is also the symbol of wealth and… Continue reading Navami – Maa Siddhidaatri