Friday, October 30, 2015

Happy Karwa Chauth

                                                           Image Source: Google

The festival of Karwa Chauth is celebrated nine days before Deepawali, the festival of lights. According to the Hindu calendar, it falls on the fourth day of the Karthik month (one of the months of Hindu calendar). This festival is mostly observed by married Hindu woman of the North India but due to globalization & it’s promotions on daily soaps on idiot box, it has gained populace and it is been observed by womenfolk of other places too. It’s no more confined to the homes of North Indian folks.

This fast is observed for the welfare, longevity & well-being of their husbands. It has cultural and social importance attached to it and it is observed with gaiety and show. The best part is the dressing up in colorful red, maroon or other bridal colors, heavy jewellery, adorning their hands & feet with beautiful intricate designs of mehendi, colorful bangles along with the tedious fast. The women have the weakness for heavy clothing and make up so it is one of the best occasion to pamper themselves and allure their husbands with their beauty and the male counterparts readily part with a good sum allowing their wives to indulge in shopping spree of their choice. The womenfolk are the best ones to indulge into it and they enjoy in the process. Nowadays, the role of beauty salons and spa is also there in this festival season & they come up with great offers and discounts and the ladies leaves no chance in over indulgence.

Even in markets, heavy sarees, cosmetics and jewellery in great designs in vogue are in display to allure the customers. The restaurants are gaining popularity in this festival as people throng with their families for the occasion, so they too gear up with special offers with specialties of dishes in high demand at exorbitant rates, so there is a commercialization of the festival too.
This festival is an expression of love. There is a tradition of gift in this festival by the husbands, mother-in-laws and the elders of the family. It is a golden chance to receive expensive gifts and items of indulgence, so married woman welcomes this festival with great fervor and enthusiasm and look forward for the gifts. The markets come up with special gifts catering the demands of each set of customers.

Sargi is one of the important ritual of this fast in which the ladies prepare food before sunrise and eat before sunrise. During the day, the ladies are in fast and in the evening when the moon rises, it is worshipped and the enticing part is that the observers break their fast with water their husbands offer after moon worship, this emotional touch adds wonderful hues to it.

In daytime, after getting decked up in colorful and bridal wears (newly wedded), the woman gather up in temples, garden or at someone’s place with puja thali decorated with pious items. An elderly lady narrates the story of the Karwa Chauth legend and the thali is rotated in the group. It is more of fun and frolic associated with Karwa Chauth.

In evening, the woman gather on their roofs, balconies or ground and wait for the moon to rise in the sky and they see the reflection of it in the water of the thali or through sieve or through their dupattas and they offer water to the moon and seek blessings praying for the well-being of their life partners and the husbands offer water to their wives to break their fast.

In evenings, special vegetarian dishes, sweets etc are made to relish with family and friends with great pomp and show. Singing and dancing on the occasion are also one of the best thing of this festival.

There are many legends or tales associated with  its origin & significance of Karwa Chauth.

  1.      The Story of Satyavan & Savitri.
When Lord Yama came to fetch Satyavan’s soul, savitri pleaded him to grant life. When he refused, she stopped eating & drinking and followed Yama who carried her dead husband. Yama asked her to ask some other boon except for the life of her husband. Savitri asked to be blessed with and Yama agreed. Being a devoted wife, she wouldn’t allow anyone except for her husband to touch her and Yama had to bow down and restore the life of Satyavan.

   2.      The Legend of Karwa
A woman named Karva was deeply devoted to her husband. Her intense love and dedication towards him gave her shakti (spiritual power). While bathing at a river, her husband was caught by a crocodile. Karva bound the crocodile with a cotton yarn and asked Yama (the god of death) to send the crocodile to hell. Yama refused. Karva threatened to curse Yama and destroy him. Yama, afraid of being cursed by Pati-vrat (devoted) wife, sent the crocodile to hell and blessed Karva's husband with long life. Karva and her husband enjoyed many years of wedded bliss. To this day, Karva Chauth is celebrated with great faith and belief.

It is a joyous occasion and the over indulgence adds beauty to it and the silver screens has added more significance to this great festival.
Wish all the ladies, “A very happy, colorful and enjoyable Karwa Chauth, pamper yourself in the best possible and enjoy the day to its fullest amidst family and friends and a special day for the couples to strengthen their bond in a circle of emotions with the strands of love”

( Information's shared by my experiences and the facts have been validated by the online data on the web. The image source are the Google.)

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