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Essay on Makar Sankranti
Turn away from the darkness of disbelief and move towards the light that shines within us.
Makar Sankranti is a harvest festival which is celebrated in all parts of India, especially and more dominantly by farmers. It is known by different names in different geographical regions.
It is known as Khichdi in Bihar and Jharkhand, Uttarayan in Gujarat, Maghi in Punjab and Pongal in Tamil Nadu. It is celebrated on the day in which the daytime is the same as night-time.
That is, the day and night duration is equal. It is one of the first festivals celebrated at the beginning of a year. The date is mostly 14th January. This festival marks the end of chilly winters and the beginning of lovely and vibrant summers. The days start becoming longer and nights shorter.
This festival is dedicated to the sun god Surya and is celebrated with much enthusiasm. It symbolises the sun, which is considered as God in the Hindu religion, is moving from the tropic of Capricorn towards the tropic of cancer.
The festival has eternal significance as well as spiritual importance. The festival is celebrated in a phase ranging from 1 to 3 days.
Makar Sankranti Celebrations
In Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, it lasts for a span of full three days. The first day all households are cleaned thoroughly, and women are seen making Rangolis in front of their homes with flowers and cow dung. They also make bonfires in which they throw old household items and then buy new ones.
This marks the beginning of change. On the second day, everyone enjoys feasts which are prepared using fresh and recently harvested jaggery, wheat, til and milk. Families and friends gather together to celebrate, and everyone wears new clothes.
The third day is when they thank their cattle for providing them with so much. They bathe and decorate them. Tika’s are also put on them. After this, children and adults climb up to their terraces to enjoy the event of kite flying and are seen dancing to and singing their traditional folk songs.
In Delhi and Haryana, this festival is celebrated for one day. Rewari, Gajjak along with Peanuts are enjoyed during kite flying. There are various rituals that take place. The brothers of married women come to visit their sisters with gifts. The married women give gifts such as clothes, makeup and sweets to their mother and father in law.
In Maharashtra, this festival goes on for three days. They prepare an authentic dish known as Puran Poli to be exchanged among family, friends and neighbours. On the first day, all of the people get up early to thank the sun god and resort to kite flying later.
The second day follows a ritual in which married women put Kumkum and haldi on each other’s forehead. The final day, the third one signifies the defeat of the demon, the evil.
In Bihar and Jharkhand, it is celebrated as a two-day festival. It spans from 14th January to 15th January. People in the morning take a dip in lakes and ponds and then resort to worshipping God.
Special delicacies like Chokha, khichdi and Chura are prepared. Women cook in groups, and people feast on dahi, papad and pickles. People also throw seeds and popcorn into the bonfire.
In Assam, this festival is known as Bhogali Bihu. People eat fests inside huts made of bamboo and leaves and burn them the next day. This is followed by playing traditional games such as bullfighting.
Makar Sankranti Festival – A day of Charity
On this day people take a bath in the holy waters of the Ganga and Kashi. They also donate. It is considered useful to give food and other items to needy people on this day. All this donation should be done with faith and selflessly.
One should never have any selfish purposes behind donating to the needy. You should never think that one good deed of donating to the ones that require it will wash away all your sins. If you do so, the fruitfulness behind the spirit of giving will reduce.
Makar Sankranti is a day which is celebrated with much grandeur and pomp in the whole of the country. Human beings of all ages play a part in it. Most importantly, it is a festival of coming together, being thankful and giving.