Bishwa Nath Singh :
A week after the festival of lights, Diwali, is the festival Chhath. For one night and day, the people of Bihar literally live on the banks of the rivers, ponds & canals when a ritual offering is made to the Sun God. The word Chhath denotes the number six and thus the name itself serves as a reminder of this auspicious... day on the festival almanac. The venue for this unique festivity is the river bank and since the rivers& canals where the rising and setting sun as witnessed on the banks of them are presumed be the ideal place for prayers to the Sun God of locales. The married women of the household become major demos of this preparation and emerge as shining examples of what they set out to preach. There is complete abstinence from performing household chores, as younger women and even children are encouraged to take over these mundane tasks.. The usual kitchen chulha with the telltale marks of spilt over food are removed by a meticulous application of liquid cow dung and clay. The frying pan, cooking wok, and the ladies, are purified with a brisk cleaning with coconut husk and ash till they shine like silver.
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Bishwa Nath Singh:
In India every where specially in Bihar, Jharkhand ,Uttar Pradesh & part of Madhya Pradesh and all other places ,the holiest of holy Chhath festival begins from today Chhath festival is the holiest one amongst all festivals of Hinduis...m where Sun God is worshipped with all devotion and sincerity. All purity & cleanliness are maintained during this festivity and Braties remain on complete fast for over thi...rty six hours after Kharana(new rice is cooked well in cow's milk and molasses known as Khir along with bread prepared out of flour of wheat in ghee that Braties take as Prasadam after offering to the Almighty God and distribute Prasadam of Kharna amongst nearest & dearest ones..In Bihar, Braties have their Kharna this evening. After taking Prasadam,they remain on complete fast for over thirty six hours..After Kharna, on the following day in the evening, they will go with their offerings to offer their prayers to the setting Sun God on the bank of river or pond where after taking dip ,the Sun God is worshipped with great devotion. It solely depends on Braties,if they feel ,can stay there for night or can return. From Ghat specially made for them.Again ,they will be required to go to the next following morning when after taking dip in the water, they offer their hand made Thekuas with all kind of fruits to the rising Sun and after that ,they perform havan and then return .After ,they return to their houses, they give away Prasadam to all who come across besides their nearest & dearest ones. It is a very sacred & pious festival that requires complete purity & devotion. Luckily, last year on the eve of Chhath,I was in Ukrain where perhaps, I was the first person to perform this Chhath Pooja with all devotion .Different kind of fruits were offered to the Sun God as my reverence. And those fruits were distributed amongst people there as Prasdam and later on, some fruits were carried to Iskcon temple that were handed over to their Priest to offer him as Prasdam with request to distribute rest amongst disciples .It is of common belief that one who observes & carries this festival remain hale & hearty for ever. Let us join to offer our humble prayers and respectful obeisance’s to the lotus feet of the Sun God and seeks His bliss for well-being of all living-being of this universe!