Itz Onam WEEK friends…
We the Indians take pride in celebrating our rich culture and heritage in every possible way. India holds a history of celebrating festivals almost every single day of the year – that counts to 365 festivals. To us the significance of ‘festival’ acts as a tool in our life making it cheerful and enthusiastic. Our culture loves to stay in the state of celebration. Say for example, if today is ploughing day, we might leave no stone unturned to rejoice the day. So, let us celebrate today, one of the most popular Hindu festivals of all time – “ONAM”.
Celebrating the Auspicious Festival – ONAM
Onam is in fact the state festival of Kerala that is celebrated during the month of Chingam. As per the calendar this is the Malayalam month (Aug – Sep) when the commemoration of “Vamana avatara of Vishnu” along with the arrival of “the mythical king Mahabali” takes place. It is believed, on this day Mahabali, the king starts his “arrangements to descend from Pathala to Kerala”. This is the festival that lasts for 10 days where both young and old participate with full enthusiasm.
This festival is entirely dedicated to ‘Mahabali’, the king, who was by birth an ‘Asur’ (demon – one with negative thoughts) and by virtue a ‘Sur’ (one with positive thoughts). History says that Kerala never observed a good time until the Mahabali rule dropped in. The king’s dynasty was believed to be the heaven as none came back empty handed from his gate. All his doings and sacrifices are celebrated as a tribute by his followers especially the people of Kerala.
There are several interesting rituals related to this festival, which one must be a part. It is also celebrated as a harvest festival where joy and fervor plays hand in hand. The best part of Onam is its grand feast, popularly known as “Onasadya”. This feast is being prepared with zeal and fervor on Thiruonam- the tenth day as per the festive calendar. Here you will get to see a 9 course meal consisting of almost 11 – 13 dishes. This particular meal is served beautifully on banana leaves with people sitting on mats laid on floor in order to eat the meal.
Onam Delight – Onasadya Treat
You will be delighted to enjoy another enthralling feature of this carnival, which is Vallamkali – “the Snake Boat Race”. This race is organized with full passion on the Pampa River. It is a must watch sight where boats are decorated gorgeously with hundreds of boatmen rowing while chanting songs together. Being one of the major tourist attractions of Kerala, every year Vallamkali Boat Race draws a huge number of tourists from all across the globe.
Vallamkali – “the Snake Boat Race”
Onakalikal, another part of this carnival has almost equal number of tourist from different corners of the planet. People after having sumptuous meal thoroughly enjoys spending their time indulging in Onakalikal.
There are an array of traditional games for all age groups. While the young indulge in the robust and outdoor games, the older ones pamper themselves with indoor games. When men goes for combats like Attakalam & Kayyankali, women loves to stay engaged in cultural activities like designing flower mats popularly called ‘Pookalam’. This is placed in front courtyard of their houses with a belief in mind to welcome the King Mahabali. To list the cultural program list, the women gracefully performs Thumbi Thullalm, Kaikotti kali, Pulikali and Kummatti – the famous dance forms of Kerala.
So, what are you waiting for? Are you planning to be a part of this wonderful Carnival of India? – Book yourself a ticket and fly to Kerala right now before you miss to be a part of this bright and colorful Fiesta.
HAPPY ONAM TO EVERYONE …
…THANK YOU FOR VISITING — Cheers JAAZ 🙂