Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Festivals (Jatras) on the Month of Shrawan

The month of Shrawan Lets open the floodgates for jatras in the Valley


Bungamati Kumari waiting to be led out in the streets
The Bugumati Kumari waits to be led out into the streets. Huge crowds greet the annual procession of the Bungamati Kumari on the first day of the month of Shrawan, and onlookers gather to catch a glimpse of the Living Goddess and offer her their respects.


Priest carrying a silver & gold Shiva linga
A priest carries the silver-and-gold Shiva Linga during the Kumbeshwor Mela at midnight on the night before Janai Purnima. Large crowds gather at the Kumbeshwor temple complex in Patan on the occasion.

Tall wooden structures with images of dead family members
Bhaktapur local celebrate as tall wodden structures with images of dead family members are paraded around. During Gai Jatra or the 'cow procession', families who have lost a loved on commemorate their dead by leading a decorated cow or a young male in a walk around the city. The details of the procession differ in the case of Kathmandu and Bhaktapur.

Sacred yellow thread

A young Brahman boy performs the janai (sacred yellow thread) ceremony on Raksha Bandhan. The thread is tied on wrists, signifying year-long protection for the wearer.


Performing elaborate skits for Matya
Residents of Patan perform elaborate skits for Matya. the festivals is celebrated on the day following Gai Jatra, and is characterized by the gathering of locals in main squares, where they put on costumes and perform comic shows that generally satirist social and political issues.


Devotees of Shiva in rituals
On each Monday of Shrawan, devotees undertake a pilgrimage, collecting water from sundarijal in pots and walking with these to the premises of the Pashupatinath temple in a bod to earn good health, wealth and happiness.

Figure of demon/bad spirit burned

Also called Gathe Mangal, this is a day of driving out bad spirit. Effigies of evil creatures are made and burned amidst fanfare in a symbolic end of their reign. Offerings are also placed at cross- roads around localities on the occasion.

Statue of Serpent deity being washed with milk


This is the annual day set aside for the worship of snakes. Pictures of Nags are punt on display over doorways and families gather to perform pujas. Snake Gods are widely worshiped as controllers of rainfall and evoke in times of prolonged drought

Source: The Kathmandu Post

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