Chhath Puja 2021: Four-day festival begins with nahay khay ritual; know all about its origin and significance

Chhath Puja is celebrated a few days after Diwali and considered an important festival in north India, especially in  Bihar and Jharkhand. T...

Chhath Puja is celebrated a few days after Diwali and considered an important festival in north India, especially in  Bihar and Jharkhand. The celebration for the four-day-long festival begins with Nahay Khay (the first day of Chhath Puja) which is being marked today, 8 November.

To celebrate Chhath Puja, women keep a nirjala fast of 36 hours. The festival is dedicated to the Sun God (Lord Surya) and Chhathi Maiya (the sister of the Sun God), who are worshipped on this day.

Chhath Puja rituals

The first day of Chhath Puja is known as Nahaye Khaye. A bath is taken in the morning on the first day that is followed by wearing new clothes and praying. Next, devotees consume rice and gram dal as prasad.

The second day is called Chhath Kharna. On this day, kheer prasad, a pudding made of jaggery, is eaten at night. The pudding is made on an earthen stove. After offering arghya to the Sun God, women consume prasad and fast for 36 hours.

The third day is known as Sandhya Arghya. On this day women wear new clothes and go to the river or pond to offer arghya to the setting sun. The fast continues for the entire night of the third day. The Sandhya Arghya will be observed on November 10 and the sunrise will take place at 06.40 am while the timing for sunset is 05.30 pm.

The fourth and final day of Chhath is known as Usha Arghya. On this day fasting women offer arghya to the sun while standing in water. Women then break their 36 hours fast with prasad. This year, the Usha Arghya will be observed on November 11. The sunrise and sunset timings are predicted to be 06.41 am and 05.29 pm respectively.

History

According to mythology, Chhath Puja was performed by Goddess Sita on the day of the establishment of the kingdom of Lord Ram. The festival also has a reference in Mahabharata, when it was performed by Kunti, the mother of Pandava after they escaped Lakshagrih, the place which was razed to the ground.

Date and Timings

The festival started today, 8 November, with people worshipping Lord Surya — sunrise was at 6.40 am.

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India World News: Chhath Puja 2021: Four-day festival begins with nahay khay ritual; know all about its origin and significance
Chhath Puja 2021: Four-day festival begins with nahay khay ritual; know all about its origin and significance
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