People celebrate Onam, a popular harvest festival, in Kerala, India, with great enthusiasm and devotion. The people commemorate the homecoming of the legendary King Mahabali, who is believed to have ruled Kerala during ancient times.
The festival falls during the Malayalam month of Chingam (August-September), and people celebrate it for ten days. They observe an important ritual during this festive occasion. In this blog post, we will discuss the significance of this and its various aspects.
History of Onam Puja
During the harvest festival of Onam in Kerala, India, people observe an important ritual known as Onam Puja. They celebrate the festival to mark the homecoming of the legendary King Mahabali, who is believed to have ruled Kerala during ancient times.
The history of Onam can be traced back to ancient times, and it is steeped in legend and mythology. According to Hindu mythology, King Mahabali was a powerful and just ruler who was loved by his subjects.
He was so powerful that the gods began to fear that he would become more powerful than them. To put an end to his reign, Lord Vishnu, in the guise of a Brahmin boy, approached King Mahabali and asked him for three feet of land to live in.
King Mahabali agreed to the request, but the Brahmin boy grew in size and covered the entire earth and sky with his two steps. When he asked King Mahabali where he should put his third step, the king offered his head, as he was a man of his word.
Lord Vishnu, pleased with King Mahabali’s devotion and sacrifice, banished him to the netherworld but granted him a boon that he could visit his kingdom once a year during Onam.
The legend of King Mahabali and his annual visit forms the basis for the Onam festival and the puja. People believe that by performing this puja, they can actively welcome King Mahabali and seek his blessings for prosperity and happiness. People perform the Puja with great devotion, considering it an integral part of the Onam celebrations.
Significance of Onam Puja
During the harvest festival of Onam in Kerala, India, people actively observe this puja as an important ritual. People celebrate the festival to actively mark the homecoming of the legendary King Mahabali, who they believe actively ruled Kerala during ancient times.
The significance of this puja lies in its ability to connect people with their culture, tradition, and history. The puja also actively holds social significance as it brings families and communities together.
People decorate their houses with floral carpets, known as Pookalams, and prepare traditional meals, known as Onam Sadhya, to share with friends and family.
People actively celebrate the festival with great joy and enthusiasm, coming together to enjoy traditional dances, music, and cultural activities. This puja also has spiritual significance as it encourages people to cultivate gratitude and thankfulness.
The festival is a celebration of the harvest season, and it reminds people of the abundance and prosperity that nature provides. By performing the Puja, people actively express their gratitude to King Mahabali, who they believe brought prosperity to his kingdom during his rule.
Furthermore, this puja is a symbol of unity and harmony. People from different castes and communities come together to celebrate the festival, and it promotes a sense of brotherhood and oneness among them.
The festival also promotes environmental awareness, as people use natural materials like flowers, leaves, and coconut shells to make the decorations and offerings.
Astrological significance of Onam Puja:
This puja holds significant astrological importance as people actively perform it during a time when several astrological events occur. Hindu astrology actively considers the festival of Onam to fall during the auspicious month of Chingam in the Hindu calendar. During this time, people actively believe that the Sun enters the zodiac sign of Leo, and they consider the energy of the Sun to be at its peak.
The astrological significance of this puja lies in its ability to harness the positive energy of the Sun and channel it toward prosperity and well-being. People actively believe that the Sun serves as the source of life and energy, governing the soul and the vital force within the human body.
Hence, by performing this puja during this time, people seek to align themselves with cosmic energy and attain spiritual and material abundance. Additionally, several astrological events actively associate with the Onam festival, including the occurrence of the lunar eclipse.
According to astrologers, they actively consider the lunar eclipse as a time for introspection and self-reflection. They believe that it actively holds a powerful impact on the psyche of individuals.
Hence, by performing this puja during the lunar eclipse, people seek to gain insight into their inner selves and overcome any negative influences.
Benefits of Onam Puja
People believe that actively performing Onam Puja brings several benefits to individuals, both on a spiritual and material level. Here are some of the benefits of performing Onam Puja:
By performing Onam Puja with devotion and sincerity, individuals actively cultivate a deeper connection with their inner selves and the divine. It encourages people to express gratitude, practice selflessness, and attain spiritual growth.
During Onam Puja, people actively use natural materials like flowers, leaves, and coconut shells, believing that they possess positive energy and vibrations.
The Puja helps in channeling positive energy toward individuals and their surroundings, which creates a peaceful and harmonious environment.
During the harvest festival of Onam, people actively believe that performing the Puja attracts the positive energy of the universe and brings material abundance.
They actively believe that by performing the Puja with devotion and sincerity, they can overcome obstacles and attain success and prosperity.
Onam Puja brings people together, and it promotes social harmony and unity. It is a time for people to come together, share meals, and enjoy traditional dances and music, which helps in strengthening bonds and fostering a sense of community.
Onam Puja promotes environmental awareness, as it encourages people to use natural materials for decorations and offerings. It helps in creating a sustainable and eco-friendly environment and raises awareness about the importance of preserving nature.
Onam Puja involves the preparation and consumption of traditional meals, which are healthy and nutritious. The Puja also encourages people to lead a balanced and healthy lifestyle, which helps in promoting physical and mental well-being.
Date & Tithi of Onam Puja in 2023
People actively celebrate Onam Puja as an important festival in the southern Indian state of Kerala. It actively falls on the Malayalam month of Chingam, which typically falls in August or September according to the Gregorian calendar.
In 2023, people expect to actively celebrate Onam Puja on Sunday, September 10th.
The tithi or lunar day for Onam Puja in 2023 actively corresponds to Anizham, which represents the day when the moon actively transits the Anizham Nakshatra or star.
People actively consider Anizham as a highly auspicious day for performing the Puja. They actively believe that the blessings of King Mahabali, who actively symbolizes prosperity and abundance, are more readily available on this day.
Samagri required and their cost for Onam Puja
A variety of fresh flowers, especially the traditional Onam flower, “Thumbapoo” (Golden Shower flower).
People actively use clean and fresh banana leaves as a base for the puja setup and serving food.
People actively use raw rice for various rituals and offerings.
A whole coconut is an essential item for Onam puja, representing purity and prosperity.
People actively light traditional oil lamps or diyas to invoke positive energy and light during the Puja.
People actively use incense sticks to create a fragrant atmosphere during the Puja.
Kumkum (vermilion) and turmeric:
People actively use these for applying tilak (mark) on the forehead and for offering to deities
People actively offer a selection of seasonal fruits as a symbol of abundance and gratitude during the Puja.
Payasam (sweet dish):
Preparing and offering a special sweet dish like Palada Payasam is an integral part of Onam puja.
These include a thali (plate), bell, water vessel (kalash), and spoon for offering prayers and performing rituals.
Puja book or mantra book:
People often actively use a book containing the relevant puja rituals and mantras as a guide during the Puja.
It is important to note that the cost of Samagri can vary depending on the quality and availability of the items. Additionally, some households may have their traditions and customs, which may require additional or different items for the Puja.
Vidhis involved in performing Onam Puja
Families in the southern Indian state of Kerala actively celebrate Onam Puja as an important festival, performing it typically at their homes. The Puja actively involves several rituals and customs.
Here are some of the common Vidhis or steps involved in performing Onam Puja:
Preparing the Puja Area:
Before starting the Puja, the area where the Puja will be performed is cleaned and decorated with flowers and other decorations. The area is then sanctified with a mixture of turmeric powder and water.
Invoking the Gods:
The Puja begins with the chanting of mantras and the lighting of incense sticks. The family members then offer prayers to the gods and seek their blessings for a successful Puja.
Installing the Idol:
A small idol or picture of King Mahabali is then installed on a raised platform. The idol is adorned with flower garlands and other offerings.
Offering Fruits and Flowers:
The family members then offer fruits, flowers, and other food items to King Mahabali. These offerings are believed to symbolize the abundance and prosperity that the king represents.
During Aarti, family members actively light a lamp and wave it around the idol of King Mahabali, symbolizing the triumph of light over darkness and good over evil.
Finally, family members actively distribute prasad, which refers to a food item that has been blessed during the Puja. They actively distribute this prasad among themselves, believing that it brings them good fortune and prosperity.
In conclusion, people actively celebrate Onam Puja as a significant festival in the southern Indian state of Kerala to honor King Mahabali and actively seek his blessings for prosperity and abundance.
The Puja involves several rituals and customs, including preparing the Puja area, invoking the gods, installing the idol of King Mahabali, offering fruits and flowers, performing Aarti, and distributing prasad.
Performing Onam Puja with devotion and sincerity is believed to bring good fortune and prosperity to the family. Families also have to come together and celebrate the spirit of Onam.
With each passing year, the significance and popularity of Onam Puja continue to grow, bringing people closer and spreading the message of peace, prosperity, and unity.
Q1. What is the significance of Onam Puja?
A. Onam Puja is performed to seek the blessings of King Mahabali, who is considered the epitome of prosperity and abundance.
Q2. What are the common Samagri items required for Onam Puja?
A. Some of the common Samagri items required for Onam Puja include flower garlands, coconut, betel leaves, banana leaves, rice, turmeric powder, Kumkum, sandalwood paste, camphor, incense sticks, ghee, fruits, jaggery, and coconut oil.
Q3. When is Onam Puja celebrated?
A. Onam Puja is typically celebrated on the tenth day of the Malayalam month of Chingam, which usually falls in August or September.
Q4. Can Onam Puja be performed by anyone?
A. Yes, anyone can perform Onam Puja, regardless of caste, creed, or religion.
Q5. What are some of the benefits of performing Onam Puja?
A. Performing Onam Puja is believed to bring good fortune and prosperity, promote unity and harmony, and strengthen familial bonds. It is also an occasion to celebrate the spirit of Onam and spread the message of peace and love.