When and Why is Pongal Kolam Celebrated?
Pongal Kolam is the South Indian Tamil harvesting festival and also referred to as Thai Pongal. Pongal means to boil or overflow in Tamil. Kolam is a form of drawing which is illustrated in special formats and gestures out of rice flour. For instance, Kolam begins with dots and joins with gestures, lines, and loops. The majority of the population in India is agriculture-related. As a result, various festivals are agriculture-related. Thus, this festival is one of them.
However, people celebrate the festival in winter, mid of January. According to Hindu calculations when the Sun reaches its southernmost point Indians celebrate this festival. Therefore, people celebrate the festival on the first day of the Thai month in the Tamil calendar. It is a harvesting festival which is a 5,000-year-old tradition.
Farmers celebrate this festival to express gratitude and solidity to the God of Sun, Lord Indra to get the energy for agriculture. Accordingly, farmers believe that celebrating Pongal Kolam will help them to yield better crops. The locals of India celebrate this festival for four consecutive days. People serve the sweet boiled rice mixture to the God of Sun, Surya. To enhance your knowledge and information about this magnificent event read below given details and facts.
History of Pongal Kolam
Pongal traces back to 200 BC to 300 AD, the Sangam Age. Hence, it is an ancient festival and tradition for many years. Sanskrit Puranas says that people used to celebrate this festival during the Dravidian era.
Moreover, there was one other ritual unmarried girls perform at this festival. The ritual is to fast and believe that it would bring a healthy crop and prosperity to the crop ahead the whole year.
Four Days Celebration
This splendid festival takes place in four days. People clean their houses, wear new clothes and make delicious dishes.
Bhogi – The First Day
Bhogi Pongal is the first day celebrated on Pongal Kolam. This day is usually meant for the family to get together, homecoming, and domestic activities. Indians celebrate Bhogi in honor of Lord Indra, the ruler of rains and clouds.
Women draw eye-catching and attractive kolams in the center of their courtyards. Poland Kolams with dots specifically represents the Sun. Furthermore, it is primarily made out of rice flour to feed the insects so they may get their blessings for their household
Pongal – The Second Day
Pongal is the second day of the festival. People consider this day as the most important day of the whole festival. On this day people offer their prayers to the God of Sun early in the morning. People visit their friends and relative’s houses and dine together and eat sweets.
They gather in front yards of their houses and cook Pongal in clay pots. People start out crying Pongalo Pongal when the rice in the pot starts to boil and overflows. This is the symbol that there will be a prosperous farming season and good agriculture throughout the year.
Mattu Pongal – The Third Day
It is the third day and celebrated as a thanksgiving for cows. Hence, the farmer washes the cattle and paints the cattle horns with myriad hues. Farmers honor them because cows give milk and bulls help to plow the fields. Therefore, these cattle are very honorable to them. Accordingly, they believe that it was God Shiva’s bull Basava that helped them at first in agriculture. Besides, Mattu’s word in Tamil means bull. It is the day when people forget their cast discrimination and creed and gather together to celebrate and welcome the new season.
Furthermore, a special dish is made out of moong daal, cooked rice, dry fruits, and jaggery named Sakar Pongal. Sakar Pongal is first offered to cows. Moreover, this day is particularly thanksgiving to cows and bulls. A bull-taming sport also takes place on this day named as Jalikattu or Manji Virattu.
Kaanum Pongal – The Fourth Day
Afterward, Kaanum Pongal, also referred to as Thiruvalluvar day, people celebrate this day for the welfare and good health of the brothers. This festival is similar to Raksha Bandhan and Bhai Doojh. Therefore, this day marks the end of the festival.
On the contrary, there is another ritual people perform on this day. The leftovers such as sweet Pongal, betel leaves, betel nuts, and sugar cane, and any other food items are set on the washed turmeric leaf out in the courtyard.
When Was Pongal 2019?
Indians celebrated Pongal Kolam 2019 from January 15 to 18. Besides, according to the Tamil Solar calendar, the festival is in the month of Tai. The days this splendid festival took place were from Tuesday to Friday. People celebrated Pongal Kolam 2019 with full enthusiasm and religious spirit.
Legend of the Festival
India has many festivals related to myths and legends. There are many legends attached to Pongal as well, the two most famous legends are;
Once Lord Shiva asked his bull to go on earth and ask the people to have oil massage and bath every day and eat once a month. On the other hand, the bull named Basava unintentionally announced that people should eat every day and have oil massage and bath once a month.
Consequently, Lord Shiva banished Basava to live on Earth forever. Therefore, Basava helped people to grow and cultivate more food that would be enough to eat every day. So, this might be the reason that this festival also associates with cattle.
The second legend is about Lord Indra and Lord Krishna. In childhood, Lord Krishna wanted to teach a lesson to Lord Indra because he had become arrogant after becoming the God of deities. He angered Lord Indra by asking cow herders to stop worshiping Indra.
Accordingly, he sent his clouds to cause thunderstorms and floods for devastation. Consequently, Lord Krishna showed his divinity to Lord Indra by lifting Mount Govardhan, and this way he provided shelter to the people. As a result, Lord Indra apologized to Lord Krishna for his false pride.
In diverse regions of India, people make new kolams, it portrays the ceremonial aspect of gratitude, sacrifice, and beauty. Furthermore, it is a divine and spiritual practice when a woman cleans their houses and draws kolams. Moreover, kolams represent the terms of the principle of Sanskrit ‘Satyam-Shivam-Sundaram’ means that we must remember the truth, consciousness, and beauty play an important role in all phases of life.
Happy Pongal Images
People try to make this festival happy and enthusiastic. To get Happy Pongal Images you can use google image search or Pinterest. You can easily share or forward these images to your friends or relatives and wish them Pongal. You will find many colorful and joyful Happy Pongal Images.
In conclusion, Pongal Kolam is one of the spiritual, religious, and enthusiastic festivals in India. Hence, people usually farmers believe that celebrating this event and offering Pongal to God will cause great success in agriculture. Moreover, it is also of great significance because it provides a feeling of unity among the people.
In brief, it is one of the happiest festivals in India and has similarities with Raksha Bandhan, Diwali, and other fasting festivals too. Furthermore, people share the bond of love, brotherhood, unity, prosperity, and devotion through this event. Yearly, this magnificent and grand event takes place. Accordingly, people give their offerings and God helps them to bring prosperity to their country when the crops are grown and cultivated.