Nepal has the second-largest number of Hindus in the world after India.
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Dashain is the biggest festival of Nepal known as Bada Dashain, Vijaya Dashami, as well as Dashera (by Indian People). As per Nepali Lunar calender dashain falls in the month of Ashwin and Kartik(September and October). Dashain is a 15 days festival celebrated as the most longest and most auspicious festival of Hindu people in Nepal and India. Indian people celebrate dashain as Navaratri. There are so many historical and religious reason behind celebration of dashain festival. Hindu religion believes dashain is celebration of victory of god over evil.
Durga Festival of Dashain in Nepal
In the auspicious occasion of dashain all the government and private sector office gets vaccation of 5 days i.e from the 7th day of dashain (Phulpati) to 11th day of dashain. Also dashain is the festival of Bonus distribution in every workplace to the staff working there. In some large business organization along with bonus some other gifts are also distributed to their staffs so that love and loyalty for the organization increase among staff. School and college students get holiday of 15 days from Ghatasthapana ( 1st day of dashain) to Purnima (15th day of dashain) .
Talking about sharing happiness and fixing the weak relationship dashain plays the most important role in Nepali community. Dashain is the festival of taking blessings from elders in return of love and respect spread by juniors. People form city and abroad return to their own birth place to celebrate dashain with their family. People visit to their relatives, nearest and dearest ones to celebrate dashain.
Dashain is also known as festival of kites, children and adults flies kite as a symbol of letter to lord Indra God of water to stop rain. It is believed that lord Indra does rain fall in rainy season so that farmer can plant and grow rice as Kartik and Ashwin (September, October) is the month of harvesting, rain fall in this month will damage the crop. So it is believed that flying kites send message to heaven to stop rain for rice harvesting by farmers.
People also play swing in the occasion of dashain which is made up of local products like bamboo, thick string, wood etc. The hidden belief behind playing swing is at least once in a year our feet will leave the surface of this earth cause we get birth on earth, grow here, work here let’s say we are in touch with earth whole year. Playing cards, Langurburja, Okhal, Kuda with family and friends is another most important and entertaining part of dashian.
Dashain is the festival of shopping new clothes, making roads and community clean, eating delicious foods and meeting long distance relatives and friends as a whole. Now let’s know about religious prospect of dashain.
Dashain is celebrated for 15 days but the first 10 days of dashain is most important, It is also celebrated as Navaratri in India . Hindu tradition says that long time ago there was a demon called mahisashur who use to suffer people and Gods at heaven a lot. Due to his destructive activities there started a war between god and Demon. No any God were able to kill him as he was so strong and blessed with so many powers. After getting defeated from demon Lords went to Mata Parbati and asked for help and Mata Parbati started a war with mahisasur in the avatar of Durga. The war went 10 days long where Mata Parbati took 9 different avatar and killedthe demonon the tenth day. So the 10 the is Known as Vijaya Dashami . Victory of God over evil. These 10 days each days are celebrated as different avatar of Goddess Durga.
Main Days of Dashain Festival In Nepal
Ghatasthapana- First Day
It is the very first day of dashain, where people bring sand from nearby river or any holy place , make a rectangular place at the clean and dark place inside home and sow mixture of maize, wheat, barley on it to grow ‘Jamara’ also ‘Ghada’ a holy pot made up of mud/ copper is filled up with clean and pure water and kept at same place, cow dung is used to make the rectangular place pure and Ghada is place over cow dung. These things are worshipped as temple of Goddness Durga Thapana at our own home. Reason for sowing Jamara at dark place is to make is yellow .The most important First day of Dashain festival starts with Ghatasthapana .
Ghatasthapana Dashain Festival in Nepal
All the six days from Ghatasthapana to Fulpati, Jamara sowed on the day of ghatasthapana is worshiped as a different avatar of Godness durga ever day. And the important days of dashain starts from Fulpati.
Fulpati- Seventh Day
In this day a big ceremony is made at Tudikhel of kathmandu. Fulpati from Gorkha durbar is brought toKathmandu by the royal Brahmin priest of along with royal army. Once Fulpati of Gorkha durbar reaches Hanuman Dhoka Nepal Army does ‘Harsha Badhai’ at Tudikhel by blasting 21 canon one by one along in honor of fulpati with parade and all the people of kathmandu bring Fulpati at their home after listening to this sound. Fulpati consists of Banana Stalks, Jamara and sugar cane tied with red clothes.
Maha Astami Dashain in Festival Nepal
Maha Astami- Eighth day
Maha Astami is the day of worshiping Kali Mata(the most angry avatar of Durga Mata). In this day Kali Mata is worshiped, so many animals like goat, buffalo, hen, ducks are sacrificed in the different temple of Durga Mata and at home of people as a symbol of fertility and in the belief that she has power to protect the world form evil.
Maha Navami- Ninth Day
Ninth day of dashain is celebrated by worshiping Godness Durga of different temple. Bishworkarma Puja is another celebration of this day, all the machinery items at home and work are worshiped in this day and they are kept in rest for whole day after completing puja.
Maha Navami Dashain Festival In Nepal
Vijaya Dashami- Tenth Day
The last day of dashain is known as Vijaya Dashami victory of Goddess over evil, the day when Durga Mata Killed Mahisashur. This day is celebrated as tika in Nepalese community, the day of putting tika on forehead as blessing of Mata Durga and Jamara of nine night ten days on head( sowed on the day of Ghatasthapana). Elder people put tika to small member on forehead and gives so many blessing, money is given as dakshina in this day while putting tika. So many delicious foods are cooked. After putting tika at own home people visit to relatives for tika by taking gifts and fruits for relatives. The celebration of visting relatives for tike continues to 14th day.
Vijaya Dashami Dashain Tika Nepal
Kojagrat Puja- Fifteenth Day
The last day of Dashain is known as Kojagrat Puja. In this day the Ghada and Jamara sowed at the day of Ghatasthapana is worshipped and done ‘Bisarjan’ (taken away from home to nearby river or holy place). Kojagrat puja falls in full moon. It means “who is awake”. A myth told about this day is if someone remains awake whole night then Mata Laxmi Goddness of wealth prosper their life with full of wealth and happiness.
Playing Linge Ping in Dashain
In this way main festival of Nepalese people Vijaya Dashmani is celebrated with full of love and Joy.