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 Chhath festival is an important festival celebrated after Diwali, so why come and when Chhath festival is made?

Introduction of Chhath festival

Chhath Parv, Chhath or Shashthi Puja is a Hindu festival celebrated on the Shashthi of Kartik Shukla Paksha. This festival is mainly celebrated in many areas of Bihar, Jharkhand, Eastern Uttar Pradesh and Nepal. This festival is the biggest and popular festival of the people of Bihar. Chhath festival is the only festival which has been going on in Bihar or all over India since the Vedic period. This festival celebrated by the Hindus of Bihar has been observed by people of other religions along with Islam. This festival has become popular in the world. This festival shows a small glimpse of the Vedic Aryan culture of Bihar. This festival is mainly celebrated here in Bihar according to Surya Pujan, Usha Poojan and Arya tradition in Rigveda written by rishis.

This sacred Chhath Puja is dedicated to Surya, Usha, Nature, Water, Air and his sister Chhathi Maiah. Chhath does not include any idolatry.

Name of Chhath festival

Chhath festival, Chhath or Shashthi Puja is a Hindu festival celebrated on the Shashthi of Kartik Shukla Paksha. The most difficult and important night of this four-day fast observed after celebrating Diwali on the new moon day of Kartik month is Kartik Shukla Shashthi. Kartik Shukla Paksha's Shashthi was celebrated as Chhath Vrat due to this fast.

This festival is celebrated for family happiness and prosperity and getting desired results. Women and men celebrate this festival equally.

Mythological and folk tales of Chhath

There are many mythological and folk tales which show the tradition of Chhath Puja and its importance, which is the following:

1. In the Ramayana period

According to a belief, Lord Rama and Mother Sita fasted and worshiped Suryadev on Kartik Shukla Shashthi on the day when Ram Rajya was established after the victory of Lanka. Saptami was recited at sunrise and was blessed with Suryadev.

2. In the Mahabharata period

According to another belief, Chhath festival started in the Mahabharata period. We all know that Karna was an ardent devotee of Lord Surya. First Suryaputra Karna started worshiping Suryadev. He used to offer arghya to Suryadev daily by standing in his waist for hours. By the grace of Suryadev, he became a great warrior. Even today, this method of arghya donation is prevalent in Chhath.

According to a folk tale, when the Pandavas lost all their royalty in gambling, Draupadi kept Chhath Vrat on being told by Shri Krishna. Then their wishes were fulfilled and the Pandavas got the Rajpat back.

In some folk tales, the worship of the sun is also mentioned by Draupadi, the wife of the Pandavas. She wished her family good health and performed regular Surya Puja for long.

3. In the Puranas

According to a folk tale, King Priyavad had no children, then Maharishi Kashyap made a Yogeshuti yagya and offered his wife Malini a pudding made for Yagyahuti. Due to this effect, he was born a son, but he was born dead. Priyavad went to the crematorium with a son and the son started dying in isolation. At the same time, Devasena, the psyche of Brahmaji appeared and said that I am called Shashthi because of the sixth part of the original tendency of the universe. Hey! Rajan, you should worship me and inspire people to worship as well. The king fasted the goddess Shashthi with a son's will and he received the son Ratna. This puja was performed on Kartik Shukla Shashthi.

It is believed that Goddess Aditi performed Chhath Puja. According to a legend, when the gods were defeated by the Asuras in the first Devasur Sangram, Dev Mata Aditi worshiped the sixth Maiya in the Dev Surya temple of Devarnya to attain the glorious son. Pleased, the Sixth Maiya gave him the boon of being the perfect son of all-encompassing glory. This was followed by Aditya's son Trudev Rupa Aditya Bhagwan, who led the gods to victory over the Asuras. It is said that from that time the name of this dham became Dev and the practice of Chhath started in the name of Dev Sena Shashthi Devi.

According to the folk tradition, the relationship of Suryadev and chathi Maiya is  brother and sister. Surya was the first worshiper of Lok Matraka Shashthi.

Scientific view of Chhath festival

From the scientific point of view of Chhath festival, there is a special astronomical change on the Shashti Tithi i.e. Chhath, at this time, the ultraviolet rays of the Sun, collect more than normal on the surface of the Earth. Because of this, the ability to protect humans as much as possible from its possible ill effects is attained by Chhath festival. It is possible to protect organisms from the harmful effects of sunlight ultraviolet rays from observance of the festival. Earth's creatures get a lot of benefit from this. Along with sunlight, its ultraviolet rays also hit the Moon and Earth. When the sunlight reaches the earth, the atmosphere first meets. Upon entering the atmosphere, it gets an ion system. Using ultraviolet rays, the atmosphere synthesizes its oxygen element and converts it into its allotropic ozone. By this action, most of the sun's ultraviolet rays are absorbed into the Earth's atmosphere. Only a negligible part of it reaches the surface of the Earth.

Under normal conditions, the amount of ultraviolet rays reaching the surface of the Earth is in the range of tolerance of humans or organisms. Therefore, it does not have any special harmful effects on humans in the normal state, rather the harmful germs die by that sunlight, which benefits man or life. The celestial position of Chhath, reflected by the sun's ultraviolet rays, reflected from some lunar surface and refracted some spherical, reaches the Earth again in greater quantity. Recurring from the atmosphere levels, at sunset and sunrise it becomes even more dense. According to astrological calculations, this event comes after six days of Amavasya of Kartik and Chaitra month. Being based on astrological calculations, it has been named Chhath festival.

Method of celebrating Chhath festival

This festival is actually four days. Right from the third day of brotherhood, it starts. On the first day, Sendha salt, Arva rice made of ghee and a pumpkin vegetable are taken as prasad. Fasting starts from the second day. The fast, after sacrificing food and water throughout the day, makes pudding from about 4 o'clock in the evening and, after worshiping, receives prasad, which is called kharna. Arghya means milk to the sun on the third day. Arghya is offered to the rising sun on the last day. During this period, fasters keep a fast of 36 hours. During this time, they do not even receive water. In worship, special care is taken of purity; Garlic and onion are prohibited. Devotional songs are sung in the houses where this puja is performed. Finally people are offered puja. Let us now know in detail.

1. Bathing and eating

The first day of Chhath festival, known as 'Nahay-Khay', begins with Kartik Shukla Chaturthi, the fourth day of Chaitra or Kartik month. Firstly the house is cleaned and consecrated. After that, the Vratis go to the river Ganges, a tributary of the Ganges, or take a bath in a pond. On this day, people take bath after washing their hair thoroughly with clean water, cutting Nakhanu and so on. While returning, they bring with them the Ganges water which they use for cooking. They keep their surroundings clean and tidy.

On this day, Vratis eat only once. Vratis use pumpkin vegetable, mung chana dal, rice in food. Fried puris, parathas, vegetables etc. are prohibited. This food is cooked in bronze or clay utensils. Mango wood and clay stove are used for cooking. When food is cooked, the first fasting meal is eaten, only then other members of the family eat it.

3. Sandhya Argh

The third day of Chhath festival, known as Sandhya Arghya, is celebrated on Chaitra or Kartik Shukla Shashthi. On the whole day everyone prepares for worship. Special offerings such as thekua, rice laddus, also known as kachavanias, are made for Chhath Puja. For Chhath Puja, a basket made of bamboo called Daura is put in the pujari, fruits of the puja, and placed in Devakari. After doing pooja there, in the evening, after taking coconut, five kinds of fruits, and other items of worship in a soup, keep it in Daura and take the man of the house to the Chhat Ghat. It is not impure, so keep it on the top of the head. On the way to Chhat Ghat, women often go to sing the song of Chhath.
Going to the banks of the river or pond, the women sit on a platform made by a member of the house. After removing the soil from the river, the chaura which remains of Chhath Mata is placed on it and by placing all the items of worship, we use coconut and light the lamp. Shortly before sunset, after taking all the items of worship of the Sun God, he goes to the knee and stands in the water and goes round five times by offering Arghya to the drowning Sun God.

The materials include 'Thekua' made from wheat flour made by the Vratis. This is called thekua because it is made to stumble the pulp of flour on a special type of design firm of wood. In addition to the above dish, all the new tubers, fruits, spices and Annaadi such as sugarcane, hay, turmeric, coconut, lemon, ripe bananas etc. are offered in Kartik month. All these things are offered whole. Apart from this, to light the lamps, they light new lamps, carrying new lights and ghee and lighting the lamp at the ghat. The most important food in this is that Kusahi is the donations of Keerao which are brought in the crate but are not offered to Suraj Dev in the evening Arghya. They are kept safe in the crate to offer to the rising sun tomorrow morning. Many people stay overnight at the ghat, some people come home with all the things singing the song of Chhath and keep it in Devkari.

4. Usha arghya

Arghya is offered to the rising sun on the morning of Kartik Shukla Saptami on the fourth day. Even before sunrise, fasting people arrive at the ghat to worship the rising sun god and their family members are present in the evening. The dishes offered in Sandhya Arghya are replaced by new ones, but the tubers, the origin, the fruits remain the same. All rules and regulations are like evening arghya. Only the fasting people stand in the water facing the east and perform sun worship. Worshiping of the ghat is done after worship. Vratis come home by distributing prasad among the people present there and also distribute prasad to their family etc. at home.

The Vrati comes back home and worships the Peepal tree of the village, which is called Brahma Baba. After the Puja, the Vrati completes the fast which is called Parana or Parana by drinking a syrup of raw milk and eating some prasad.

Fasting people eat salted food this morning only after fasting from day to day. At the center of Chhath festival is Chhath Vrat which is like a difficult penance. This Chhath Vrat is mostly performed by women; Some men also keep this fast. The fasting women are called Parvatin. The fast has to be fasted during this fast of four days. Along with the food, pleasant beds are also discarded. In the room made for the festival, Vratis spend the night with the help of a blanket or a sheet on the floor. People attending this festival wear new clothes. In which no stitching is done, it is mandatory to wear such clothes on the fast. Women wear saris and men wear dhoti to do Chhath. After starting the Chhath festival, years have to be done till a married woman of the next generation is ready for it. This festival is not celebrated when someone dies in the house.

It is believed that women who fast on Chhath festival receive son Ratna. Generally, women keep this fast for the sake of their son and for the skill of the son. Men also keep a fast to fulfill their desired task with success.

Chhath festival is basically a festival of worship of the sun, which has a special place in Hinduism. Among the gods of Hinduism, Surya is such a deity that can be seen directly.

The main source of Sun's powers is believed to be his wife Usha and Pratyusha. In Chhath, both powers are worshiped simultaneously with the Sun. In the morning, the first ray (Usha) of the Sun and the last ray (Pratyusha) of the Sun in the evening are offered to both of them.


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