Chhath puja will be celebrated on November 19-20 this year
What is Chhath Puja?
- It is a Hindu festival which is mainly observed by the people of Bihar, Jharkhand, eastern Uttar Pradesh and the Madhesh region of Nepal
- During this puja Puja, devotees worship Surya Dev (Lord Sun), the god of energy and of the life-force, and Shashthi Devi (Chhathi Maiya) to promote well-being, prosperity and progress.
- Chhath Puja is also known as Surya Shashti, Chhath, Chhathi, Chhath Parv, Dala Puja and Dala Chhath.
- It is believed that the main sources of Sun’s powers are his wife Usha and Pratyusha.
- During Chhath puja, in the morning, devotees worship the first ray (Usha) of the Sun and the last ray (Pratyusha) of the Sun in the evening.
Four days of Chhath Puja
- Day1: The first day of Chhath puja is called Kaddu Bhaat or Nahai Khai. On this day, parvaitin (the main worshiper who keeps fast) cooks the most Satvik Kaddu Bhaat and serves it to the deity in the afternoon as Bhog. This marks the beginning of the Chhath festival and is the last meal of the Parvaitin during Chhath Puja.
- Day 2: The 2nd day of Chhath puja is called Kharna. On this day, the parvaitin cooks a rice kheer with Roti/Poori, other seasonal fruits and dry fruits and offer it to the deity as naivedya (bhoga). Later, the prasada is distributed among family and friends.
- Day 3: The third day of Chhath puja is called Pahli Arag. On this day, devotees prepare fruits and food offerings basket and visit the Chhath Ghat (river/pond) in evening to offer arag to the Surya dev. The Pahli Arag is offered to the setting Sun. Devotees also sing Chhath Puja folk songs in the evening. After returning from ghat to home the vratins perform the ritual of kosi bharai and lights diyas (earthen lamps).
- Day 4: The fourth and final day of Chhath Puja is called Dusri Arag. On this day, devotees again prepare the Surya Arag basket with fruits and offerings and visit the Chhath Ghat before sunrise. The Dusri Arag is offered to the rising Sun. This marks the completion of Chhath Puja rituals