Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Important festivals in September 2009

2 Sep - Onam
I have posted about Onam many times in the past of course. This year I am preparing a grand lunch at home since both my handsome and charming sons are at home.
11 Sep - Ashtami Rohini
As I explained in an earlier post about Janmashtami, this year Ashtami Rohini is being celebrated at a different time in Kerala than other states in India.
19 Sep - Start of Navaratri Pooja
Sharath Navaratri as it is known in the south, Durga Pooja as it is known in the east, Ram Lila in the north is an important festival in the hindu calendar extending for nine days starting on the Prathama after the Mahalaya Amavasya. Though the last three days Durgashtami, ahanavami and Vijayadashami are the more important days of the festival, south Indians start the navaratri pooja starting from Prathama. A display of dolls known as bomma kolu is kept in a specially decorated presentation and all neighbourhood ladies are invited to participate in the daily poojas. All the invitees are given tambulam (betel leaves, nuts, turmeric, kumkum) along with coconut and a small packet of the day's neivedyam.
26 Sep - Durgashtami
On the evening of Durgashtami, after the usual pooja, all the books are kept in preparation for the next day's Saraswati pooja. They are covered with a silk cloth where they will remain for two days. This is known as adachu pooja (close pooja). During this time, nobody reads any books.
27 Sep - Saraswathi Puja
Special pooja is done to the book pile kept and the neivedyam is palpayasam and parippu vada.
28 Sep - Vijaya Dasami / Vidyarambham
Vijaya Dasami or Vidyarambham (as it is known in Kerala)
is the day when the books are taken out after ofering the pooja. This is also the day when many children are initiated to writing and reading by making them writing the alphabet in a plate of rice. The neivedyam usually is vella payar (sweet cow peas), neyappam, vadai and payasam.