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Tuesday, September 10, 2013

 "Teej" Special  - Nepalese Women's Day

Teej (तीज ) is a festival celebrated in many states of India and by women of some castes in Nepal. It is observed by women for wellness of their husband.
Literary "teej" means "third". Therefore Teej falls on the third day after the moonless night (Amavasya) and the third day after the full moon night of every month. However, the third day after the new moon or Amavasya of Shraavana (श्रावण) month is the most important Teej. As Shraavana (or Saawan) month falls during monsoon or rainy season when the surroundings become green, the Shraavana Teej is also called Haritalika Teej.
 It falls on the third day after the new moon of the Shraavana or Saawan month of Hindu calendar in late July to early August. Dedicated to the Goddess Parvati, commemorating her union with Lord Shiva, the festival is celebrated for romantic bliss, well-being of spouse and children and purification of own body and soul. The festival is a three-day-long celebration that combines sumptuous feasts as well as rigid fasting.The second day is the fasting day. Some women live without a morsel of food and drops of water while others take liquid and fruit. On this day, they gaily dress and visit a nearby Shiva temple singing and dancing on the way. The Pashupatinath Temple and Bageshwori Temple(Nepalgunj) gets the highest number of devotees. At the Shiva temple, women circumambulate the Shiva Linga, the symbol of the lord, offering flowers, sweets and coins.

The main puja (religious ceremony) takes place with offerings of flowers, fruits, etc., made to Shiva and Parvati, beseeching them to grant their blessing upon the husband and family. The important part of the puja is the oil lamp which should be alight throughout the night.
The third day of the festival is Rishi Panchami. After the completion of the previous day's puja, women pay homage to various deities and bathe with red mud found on the roots of the sacred datiwan bush, along with its leaves. This act of purification is the final ritual of Teej, after which women are considered absolved from all their sins. The recent years have witnessed an alteration in the rituals, especially concerning the severity, but its essence remains the same.
Teej is celebrated just before the first day of Ganesh Chaturthi. Women do 24-hour nirjala fasting (without water or fruit) for the wellness of their spouse and their married life and unmarried would be praying to get a nice husband.

The first day of Teej is called Dar Khane Din(दर खाने दिन )
. On this day the women, married and unmarried, mainly of Khas ethnicity, assemble at one place, in their finest attire and start dancing and singing devotional songs. Amidst all this, the grand feast takes place. The jollity often goes on till midnight, after which the 24hour fast starts.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

A girl swinging at Central Zoo,Jawalakhel,Lalitpur,Nepal.One of my favourite shot.
Shot with Canon 550D,50-250mm f4 II

Shot on the way to Harre,Surkhet.One of my best place to hangout with my homies...
Ingredients: easy speed,beers,chills,rains,wheelie,stopie... safety !

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Surya Darshan (Gufa Nikaleko)

In Nepalese hinduism, The ceremony that marks the first day of the barah ceremony, begins with a puja to help find an auspicious time for the barah to formally begin. During barah, female relatives as well as friends visit the young girl inside the barah room (euphemistically called the gufa, or cave). And although in older days, perhaps because there was no television, the idea was that the young girl would not see any member of the opposite sex for the entire duration of the ritual. Today, however, the confusion caused by whether or not watching a member of the opposite sex on television should be considered as breaking the rule, is for the family to decide. And as obsessed as most young girls at that age are with the ‘idiot box’ it is no surprise then that most families allow having a television to keep the girl company. On the second to the last day of the ritual, there is a special occasion where cotton dolls, or khyak in Newari, sort of a Nepali version of a voodoo doll, are made and are placed with pebbles. It is believed that these khyaks come to life inside the room on the last night and play with the pebbles! Since the 12th day of the ceremony requires the girl to fast until she views the sun god, the last meal of the ceremony is fed to the girl in the wee hours of the final night.

On the final day of barah, and similar to the bel-vivaha, the girl is dressed up in red and gold colors with jewelry. This may be the appeal for little girls who enjoy this tradition enormously, while being married off traditionally and in all seriousness to the sun. The idea behind such absurd sounding marriages is actually quietly romantic. By marrying a little girl to a bel fruit and then to the sun, Newar traditions ensures that even in the unfortunate death of the girl’s husband in life later on, because of her prior marriages, the girl will not be deemed a widow, a title that was looked upon with great disdain and intolerance by older societies. These traditions may therefore have been designed by the Newars to save their little girls from scornful treatment by the community. From what I have heard, most Newar girls do not complain, even today.
                                                                                                                                                                                           Src: ECS.COM.NP