India is known as the “country of celebrations.” Numerous holidays are observed here all year long. Festivals are celebrated by all citizens of the nation in harmony and joy. Pongal is a four-day harvest festival held primarily in the country’s southern regions.
In spite of the fact that India is a country with many different religions, what unites us is our common humanity. Regardless of religion, caste, or other distinctions, people all over the nation coexist in peace and harmony and jointly celebrate each other’s holidays.
Pongal is one of the most well-known national holidays, and the Tamil population worldwide celebrates it. From the Tamil word Pongu, the festival’s name Pongal was created.
Happy Pongal 2023 Date and Time
Hindus celebrate Pongal, a multi-day harvest festival, primarily in Tamil Nadu and some regions of Kerala in South India.
The phrase “to boil” or “spillover” is what the term “Pongal” means. It signifies prosperity and abundance. God is honored on this day because he provided a bountiful harvest all year long.
Rice, jaggery, and milk are the ingredients of the sweet dish known as Pongal. Between January 14 and 17, 2023, Pongala will be celebrated.
The History of Pongal
There are numerous proverbs that explain why this event is celebrated, but the two most well-known are as follows:
The bull that belonged to Lord Shiva was formerly responsible for going to the ground and telling people to take daily baths and receive oil massages in addition to eating once a month. Basava accidentally answered the question incorrectly. Everybody was to take a bath once a month and eat every single day, he said.
When Lord Shiva became angry, he banished Basava to Earth to help the locals with their plowing work. Cattle are said to be connected to harvest because of this.
Another is related to Lord Krishna. According to legend, Lord Krishna once advised the citizens of the Gokul to quit worshipping Lord Indra because he was filled with arrogance and pride for being the king of all Gods.
Indra, in his rage, created storms and flooding. Lord Krishna then raised Mount Govardhan on his little finger to provide shelter for the public. As a result, Lord Indra’s arrogant pride was devastated, and he ended up apologizing to Krishna.
Pongal Festival Significance
The idea of Pongal is to welcome new experiences in a lie while letting go of the past. Thai and Tai Pongal are additional names for it. To honor Lord Sun for a successful harvest, a holiday is observed. People pray to god and ask for his blessings.
Each of the four Pongal days has a distinct meaning and name. Which are:
Day 1: Bhogi Pongal
The first day of Pongal is known as Bhogi Pongal which is celebrated on 14th Jan (Saturday). It is a day when people clean the whole house and also discard all the old to symbolize a new beginning. In the spirit of the holiday, people wear new clothes and decore their homes.
Day 2: Surya Pongal
The second day (Sunday- 15 Jan), which is known as Surya Pongal, is the major day of Pongal. Surya Dev or Lord Sun is honored on this day.
People express their gratitude to him for providing a good harvest and ask for his blessing for joy and prosperity. Bananas and mango leaves are used to decorate the main gate and entrance places of the homes.
Each household cooks a pot of fresh rice with milk at favorable times. When the milk is boiling family members shout out happily “Pongalo Pongal”. Once the food is ready first the food is offered to the sun and then to the family member.
Day 3: Mattu Pongal
Maatu Pongal is the name of the third Pongal day which is celebrated on the 16th Jan (Monday). To remember the work that cattle (Maatu) do in plowing the field, this day is dedicated to honoring and worshipping them.
Cows are bathed and decorated with bells, flower garlands, and colorful bead ornaments. A few dairy farms owned by Indians would do thanksgiving prayers for the cattle.
Day 4: Kaanum Pongal
The last of Pongal is celebrated on 17th Jan (Tuesday). A day set aside for rest and enjoyment is known as Kannum Pongal. On this day, friends and family get together and trade treats. In order to represent prosperity and well-being, rangoli is painted outside of homes.