Wednesday, November 18, 2015

The Kartik Festival of Odisha

In the Hindu Festivals there are a lot of Puja and Parvas are celebrated either individually or with flocks of people. All Hindu Festivals are mean to maintain pleasure and peace among the people itself. If we come across Hindu Lunar Calendar month wise we could find several festivals on several occasions. One of the great festivals among them is ‘Panchuka Brat’ which is observed in between second half of Nov in English Calendar. In Hindu Lunar Calendar it is observed from 11th (Ekadasi) to 15th(Full moon) for five days in Shukla Paksha (Waxing Moon-Last 15 days of the lunar month) in the month of ‘Kartika’.
Reason behind the festival:
While the autumn comes with the dew of mist spreading the message of rejoicing nature with little droplet of water that stick to the top of small grass and drizzling in the golden sun light and the cold air that make feel breathes the beauty of nature inside all the creatures on the earth, that time the people making this festival with the full off believes and rituals make them feel heavenly bliss and put into memory of every people.
The main reason behind this festival is uncertain but as per Hindu ritual and belief most festivals are based on ancient believes that rely upon ‘Puranas ‘(Holy Scripts).
Festival Description:
Panchuka Brata and Dangi Bhasa


 The Full Moon Day or 15th Day of the Shukla Paksha (waxing moon) of the Kartika month is considered as Karitka Purnima. During this month all the pious Hindus refrain themselves from eating fish, meat and egg. All of them take pre-dawn bath and visit temples as a matter of routine habit. The last five days are considered more sacred, in which there is wide participation of devotees. Taken together the days are called 'Panchuka’ (a period consisting of five days). Every day they take food only once in the afternoon which is known as 'Habisha'. And the last day being the "Kartika Purnima" people float toy boats made of colored paper, dried banana tree barks, and cork in the rivers and ponds by saying “Aa ka Ma Boi, Pana Gua Thoi, Pana Gua Tora, Masaka Dharama Mora” to get sacred by themselves. This is called Dangi Bhasa Festival Where the first three word of the rhyme are for three months which constitutes the season ‘Sharat’ (Autumn) i.e. Aa-Aashwina, Ka-Kartika, Ma-Margashira which are three consecutive Hindu Lunar Calendar Months.
Panchuka Brata and Bada Osha

During the full Panchuka five days women wake up in early morning and take sacred bath. After that they make rangoli and flower arts called ‘Chitas’ with some colored powder called ‘Muruja’ in front of their small temple called ‘Chaura’. This colorful morning is worth watching in each and every family of Odisha.
To make the Brata(worship) more sacred some people take holy bath in Puri Sea Beach and worship Lord Jagannath on this holy day and some people make the ‘Bada Osha’.- the day before the ‘Poornima’(Full Moon) that means 14th day of the month commonly observed as ‘Lord Shiva Chaturdashi’ or ‘Bada Osha’. Most of the Shiva temples get crowded with devotees offering prayer to Lord Shiva who is said to have killed the demon 'Tripurasura' on this day. Group singing of 'kirtans' and loud beating of 'Mrudanga' and cymbals continue for the whole day.
Boita Bandana and Bali Jatra – As an Ancient Festival

Another festival that takes place in the “Kartika Purnima” morning is significant to the ancienthistory of Orissa. This reminds the maritime glory of the State. In olden days the 'Sadhabas' (Sea Traders) used to sail off to distant Islands like Bali, Java, Sumatra, Borneo, Ceylon etc. for trade by huge boats (Boita). The days are now gone, but the memory is still alive. Now, people float tiny boats made out of cork and colored paper or bark of the banana tree remembering the past glory. This is called "Boita Bandana". For the memory of this ancient event each year on “Kartik Purnima” day another big festival of Odisha called Bali Jatra is observed on the bank of river Mahanadi in Cuttack. Bali Jatra literally means, "Journey to Bali" and it also suggests a festival connected with Bali Island.
Bali Jatra is usually celebrated in Cuttack and other coastal parts of Orissa annually. It is a large and open air event on the bank of River Mahanadi at Cuttack adjacent to the Barabati Fort and stadium. There are several attractions for children in the fair. Food stalls in Bali Jatra sale Odia delicacies from different parts of the State. The famous delicacies like Rasagola of Salepur, Rasabali of Kendrapada, Mouthwatering Thunka Puri and Dahibara Alooudum of Cuttack, Chhenajhilli of Nimapada, Chenapoda of Nayahgarh, Palua Ladoo of Bhadrak etc. attract the visitors to the Bali Jatra Ground. In this fair vendors from different parts of India sell toys, and varieties of handicraft products.

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