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Thursday, March 22, 2012

UGADI ( TELUGU NEW YEAR NADANA) and their Importance

UGADI (Telugu New Year)

          According to beliefs, Lord Brahma, who is credited as the creator of the existence in Hindu mythology, started creating existence on the day of Yuga Aadi or Ugadi or Telugu New Year, and alongside decided a frame for time, days, nights, dates, hours, weeks, months, seasons, and years. Being highly relevant to the Hindu beliefs, everyone in the Hindu fraternity enthusiastically observes Telugu New Year. According to Chandramana system, it falls on the day of Chaitra Shuddha Prathipade or Padya. The day is also marked as the first day of the lunar calendar, with a change in the lunar orbit. Telugu New Year also marks the initiation of the spring season, or Vasant Ruthu.

          As a part of the celebrations of Telugu New Year, several customs an traditions are followed by Hindu followers. Chanting of Mantras and making predictions for the coming year are some of the most important traditions, associated with this festival. Being considered as a symbol of blooming of a new pleasant season, with an environment filled with fresh flowers, green cultivations, fruit laden trees, and lovely sounds of birds chanting; people rejoice it with equally delightful celebrations.

            On the day of Telugu New Year, people wake up early in the morning, apple coconut oil over their bodies, take a bath, and then wear new clothes for the day. People make sure to make a visit to the temples along with their families. There, they offer prayers to the God for happy and peaceful times ahead, apart from fulfilling all required traditions for the day such as reciting the Mantra, listening to Panchanga Sravanam, and participating in the predictions making process carried out by the priests of the temple.

         In the evening time, special feasts are organized. Sometimes, people also call close friends and relatives of the extended family to be a part of it. As a part of the feast offering, people prepare a traditional sauce, which is referred as ‘Ugandi Pachchadi’. His traditional sauce has an entire recipe, as part of which different ingredients such as neem leaves, jiggery, raw mango, and tamarind juice are used. Consumption of this sauce is considered to symbolize for a smooth journey in the year ahead.

           Telugu New Year is a time, when people give equal amount of significance to good times as well as bad times. The moments of failures, disappointments, and sorrows are considered as the moments of learning new experiences of life. One learns from them, and optimistically hopes for a better future ahead. At the end, one makes a resolution for the coming year, and prays to God to confer one with success, health, wealth, and prosperity for the coming time. Telugu New Year is considered as an auspicious time to initiate anything new in personal life or professional life. Doing so is considered to ensure success in the initiated work. Thus, one finds many people doing so on the day..

Impoprtance of UGADI:

Grandma is at the forefront of all celebrations. We turn to her to know more about what should be traditionally done or eaten on that special day. Her reservoir of knowledge, experience and practice is what we rely on. Today, living in nuclear families, most often far away from home, we know Ugadi is round the corner, but how many of us know what we should do on that day, why we celebrate it and why we eat what we eat on that day?

The Importance….

The Telugu and Kannadiga new year is called Ugadi. Literally translated, it means “ the beginning of an era”. The Saka calendar begins with the month of Chaitra and Ugadi is celebrated on the first day of this month.

It is believed that Lord Brahma created the Universe on this day, it marks the beginning of the new Hindu lunar calendar, with a change in the moon’s orbit. Lord Brahma is believed to have created the days, nights, weeks, months, seasons and years to count time.

Ugadi heralds the beginning of spring: the season of joy, plenty, growth and prosperity. Spring ushers in new life on earth.

Vasanta Navratri ( the nine day spring festival) commences on this day and ends on Ramnavami, nine days later.

Ugadi is an auspicious time to start new ventures. Around this time, New Year’s day is also celebrated in Maharashtra, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Punjab.

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