Sunday, October 6, 2013

Navaratri Traditions and Bathukamma

Navaratri Traditions and Bathukamma :
There is a tradition to see the little bird known as Blue Jay or Indian Roller at the time of Vijaya Dasami festival. This is considered as a good omen. In Telugu language it is called as "Palapitta' and it is Andhra Pradesh state bird. Not only for AP it is also state bird for Karnataka ,Bihar and other states in India. It is helping bird for formers it will eat all insects and worms which destroys farms. In olden days there are 50 birds for 1 square kilometer but now the count was waning. Usage of pesticides and chemical fertilizers on farms are the main reason for decreased count.

This tradition in Devi Navaratri known as "Simolanganam" Need to visit boundaries of village or city. In boundaries of a place they exist trees, forest. Need to do worship for trees especially (Prosopis Cineraria) Shammi Tree and to see the bird and need to take lunch near a tree.Children who come along with family will came to know about different types of trees,birds and animals from elders and they get respect on it which helps future biodiversity. Children will see the reality of nature and it is useful than they learn in books.

Importance of Shammi Tree (Prosopis cineraria) worship:
According to Mahabharata, Pandavas kept their weapons on this tree. This tree hided those weapons and made them unseen for others. After finishing their Agnyat Vas(Hiding from enemies) they worshiped this tree on the day of Vijaya Dasami. Scientifically this tree is ever green tree and helps to keep underground water. This tree can grow even in desserts and increases nitrogen in environment. This tree will give green leaves to mammals in the time of summer. Ancients used to create fire with this wood. The holy smoke which emits by burning this tree wood or leaves will heal eye related diseases and the bark is anti-bacterial. This tree flowers were given to pregnant ladies to eradicate abortions. Formers plant this tree on boundaries of farms to protect from sand cyclones. This tree will stop the spreading of desserts. Ancients describe this tree with fire and they considered the fire god (Agni) and Lord Shiva resides in this tree.

In this durga navatratri goddess Parvathi who is daughter of Parvath Raj is worshipped. Parvath means hills or mountains. Many Trees exist at Hills or Mountains. This indicates the name Parvathi as nature. Indirectly we are worshiping Nature. This tradition came into existence as there will be more bacteria and virus taking birth in between the season change (from rainy to winter) which occur in these 9 days period.

Bathukamma Festival:
Bathukamma Festival celebrated in many regions of Andhra Pradesh.

this festival will begin at Mahalaya Amavasya to Ashtami almost 7-8days in the month Aswiyuja(Sept-Oct). People wear new cloths on this special day. They arrange leaves of Ash gourd, flowers of mature tea tree, Indian beech, INDIAN MARY GOLD, Chrysanthemum flowers, Western Ghats blue nail dye flowers; ridge gourd flowers, etc were used as decoration. Indian beech flowers have anti-bacterial, anti-diabetic and INDIAN MARY GOLD acts as repellent to insects, mosquitoes.Chrysanthemum flowers used for heal burns, eye diseases, wounds, fevers and indigestion. This flowers used in this festival will absorb benzine, ammonia gases in air and purifies the environment.

These flowers are arranged as a tower and Ash gourd flower will be kept as umbrella on top of this flower tower. Bathukamma Goddess will be created using turmeric and placed on beetal leaf by lightening the lamp behind goddess. Turmeric is anti bacterial and anti viral. Oil Lamp purifies the air. People will keep all these arrangement in-front of houses or temples or lakes and they sang songs of bathukamma festival at the last day. In evening they will mix this arrangements in water. These medicinal properties of leaves and flowers will purify water and eliminates bacteria and virus in the water. While making this arrangement in the house for 9days these flowers and leaves will spread there fragrance in house. This fragrance will purify the air by killing bacteria and virus in the house. The food they offer to god, was prepared with sesame seeds, jaggery, cereals, dry Neem seed powder and rice, etc will increase immunity in the body.Cleaning houses with cow dung and urine will protect from radiation. Applying turmeric in entrance will kill bacteria before entering into house. Decorating house entrance with Indian Mary gold flowers will act as insect repellent. The air which enters by touching these flowers will kill bacteria and virus in house. Usage of Mango leaves acts as anti viral and absorbs carbon-dioxide and release more oxygen into house.

Read More about Dasara