what is onam?
- Onam is a Hindu festival is also known as Vamana Jayanthi celebrated in the Indian state of Kerala.
- The festival commemorates the Vamana avatar of Vishnu and the subsequent homecoming of the legendary King Mahabali.
When it is celebarted?
- Onam is celebrated in the beginning of the month of Chingam, the first month of Malayalam Calendar
- (Kollavarsham). This corresponds with the month of August-September according to Gregorian Calendar.
- Carnival of Onam lasts from four to ten days. First day, Atham and tenth day, Thiruonam are most important of all
How they celebrate?
- The festival is marked by various festivities, including intricate flower carpets, elaborate banquet lunches, snake boat races, Onappottan, Kaazhchakkula in Guruvayoor, Puli Kali, and Kaikottikkali.
- These festivities make Onam a unique festival on the earth which is embellished by most number of cultural elements and it can be undoubtedly said that these elements constitute the colorfulness, diversity and richness that no other festival can claim.
why they are celebrating?
- Story goes that during the reign of mighty asura (demon) king, Mahabali, Kerala witnessed its golden era.
- Apart from all his virtues, Mahabali had one shortcoming. He was egoistic. This weakness in Mahabali’s character was utilized by Gods to bring an end to his reign as they felt challenged by Mahabali’s growing popularity.
- However, for all the good deed done by Mahabali, God granted him a boon that he could annually visit his people with whom he was so attached.
- It is this visit of Mahabali that is celebrated as Onam every year. People make all efforts to celebrate the festival in a grand way and impress upon their dear King that they are happy and wish him well.
The following song is often sung over Onam:
|“||Maveli nadu vaneedum kalam,
amodhathode vasikkum kalam
kallavum illa chathiyumilla
|“||When Maveli ruled the land,All the people were equal.
And people were joyful and merry;
They were all free from harm.
There was neither anxiety nor sickness,
Deaths of children were unheard of,
There were no lies,
There was neither theft nor deceit,
And no one was false in speech either.
Measures and weights were right;
No one cheated or wronged his neighbor.
When Maveli ruled the land,
All the people formed one casteless races
What are the ten days of celebration?
Atham- The first day of Onam Celebrations
Onam starts with Atham day in the Malayalam month of Chingam.
Chithira- The second day of Onam Celebrations
The second day is marked off when a second layer is added to pookalam design with 2 different colours apart from yellow (mostly orange and creamy yellow).
Chodi- The third day of Onam Celebrations
Vishakam- The fourth day of Onam Celebrations
Vishakam is considered to be one of the most auspicious days of Onam.
Anizham- The fifth day of Onam Celebrations
Anizham is one of the most important day in the Onam days as it kicks off the great Vallam Kali (Snake boat) at many parts of Kerala.
Thriketa- The sixth day of Onam Celebrations
By the sixth day, the public frenzy starts going on higher side. Most of the schools and public offices starts issuing holidays from this day onwards and people starts packing their bags to their native homes to celebrate the festival with their dear ones.
Moolam- The seventh day of Onam Celebrations
On the seventh day, the smaller versions of traditional Ona Sadya (Onam special buffet lunch) starts in many places.
Pooradam- The eight day of Onam Celebrations
The day marks off with a major traditional ritual where the small statues of Mahabali and Vamana will be washed and cleaned and taken around the house as a procession.
Uthradom- The ninth day of Onam Celebrations
Uthradom is the ninth and the penultimate day of the festival of Onam. It is considered as Onam eve and celebrated in a very big way.
Thiruvonam- The tenth day of Onam Celebrations
The final day of Onam that culminates the 10 days of Onam Carnival.
I wish you all happy onam!
- Mobile Onam markets launched (thehindu.com)
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