Pongal Festival, India

The Pongal festival is observed four days during the winter equinox in Tamil Nadu around the time of harvest in January-February (Thai) when rice, sugarcane, and turmeric are harvested. Pongal is the term used in Tamil literature to mean 'to boil'. South Indians - particularly Tamils - celebrate it every year.

The Pongal festival is a continuation of the Dravidian Harvest Festival, which dates back to the Sangam Age. However, historians believe the festival dates back hundreds of years. In ancient times, it was called Thai Niradal. Margazhi is a Tamil month that marks the beginning of the agricultural harvest season. During this period, unmarried girls are said to have observed penance for the benefit of the country and its farmers. During the month, they did not consume milk or milk products, nor did they oil their hair. The harsh language was strictly prohibited. And a religious bath was taken early in the morning as a part of it.

The Hindu Mythology says that Lord Shiva once ordered Basava, a bull, to go to the Earth and send Humans to bathe and massage every day. Despite this, Basava (Bull) announced eats daily and takes an oil bath once a month. Because of this, Lord Shiva became furious and cursed Basava (Bull) to stay on Earth forever and said that the Bull must plough fields to increase food production. This is why farmers and cattle breeders celebrate this festival after harvesting. India is primarily an agricultural country and the majority of its festivals are nature-centric. The Pongal is also called Uttarayan Punyakalam, a festival with special meaning in Hindu mythology. It is considered extremely auspicious.

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