Pongal : An introduction

குழந்தைகளுக்கு ஆசிரியர்கள் பொங்கல் திருநாள் குறித்து கூற வேண்டியவை

Pongal Thirunaal

Pongal is a harvest festival celebrated by Tamils all over the world. It is called “Thamizhar Thirunaal” meaning a festival of Tamils as it is celebrated by all Tamils all over the world. It typically falls on the first day of the Tamil month “Thai” and hence known as “Thai Pongal”. It usually comes in the middle of January and is a four-day-long festival. 

The festival is celebrated to mark the end of the harvest season and is hence also known as Harvest Festival. Pongal is a time for giving thanks to nature, the Sun, and all the living beings who helped the farmers in their produce, and hence it is traditional to prepare dishes such as Sweet Pongal and Ven Pongal made from newly harvested rice, sugarcane, and other crops. The festival is also a time for family gatherings, traditional games, and colorful decorations. Traditional sports such as Jallikattu (Eru Thazhuvuthal), Silambam, and other sports are played during the Pongal.

The Pongal festival is celebrated for four days. The four days of the Pongal festival are:

  • Bhogi Pongal – Celebrated on the first day of the festival, it is a day to discard old possessions and focus on new beginnings.

  • Thai Pongal – celebrated on the second day it falls on the first day of Tamil Month “Thai”, it is a day to honor & thank the Sun God and nature for the bountiful harvest.

  • Mattu Pongal – celebrated on the third day, it is a day to honor cattle and other farm animals for their contributions to the harvest.

  • Kaanum Pongal – celebrated on the fourth and final day, it is a day for families to gather and enjoy the food and exchange festival wishes. It is also the day for various sports such as Jallikattu and other events such as Pattimandram. 

Each day has its rituals and customs and is celebrated with great enthusiasm. People dress in new clothes, prepare Pongal and other dishes, clean their homes and give fresh paint, and participate in traditional games. Pongal is celebrated all over the world by Tamils suc as Tamils homeland of Tamil Nadu & Ilankai and wherever Tamils live such as Singapore, Malaysia, South Africa, Mauritius, Canada, USA and various other European countries.

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