Tihar and Laxmi Puja Festival
Tihar, also known as Dipawali and Yama Panchaka, is celebrated for five days. Dip means light so that festival is also called the festival of light. All the houses, even the street corners are illuminated by butter lamps and electric bulbs. The five days are called Yama Panchaka because the whole period is dedicated to the worship of Yama the God of Death. The festival begins with worship of crow and concludes with Bhai Puja (worshipping brothers).
The first day of Tihar, also called Kaag bali, is the day of the crow is believed to be the messenger of Yama. Every householder offers various delicacies to this bird. Dogs become the centre of attention on the secondary day. Dogs are worshipped according to the religious rituals, people place Tika a mark of blessing on dogs, forehead, decorates the creature with garlands and feed them various delicacies.
The holy cow is worshipped on the morning of the third day and the goddess of wealth is worshipped in the evening. This is followed by Gobardhan Puja performed to protect his commemorate Krishna’s act of lifting the mountain. Gobardhan to people from terrible rain and flood. The festival comes to the conclusion when sisters pray Yamaraj for the longevity of their brothers and put Tika on brother’s forehead and put garland made of Marie gold on their necks.
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This Article and upcoming posts are extracted from the book, TOURIST INFORMATION DIRECTORY, 1997. by my Late Father Journalist, Sociologist & Anthropologists, Er. Ramesh Chandra Bandhu Bhattarai.