Ugadi is a flabbergasting festival celebrated on Chaitra Shukla Padyami which is an indication of the "New Beginning of the year". The people of Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, and Karnataka call it as Ugadi or Yugadi, the Maharashtra community call the very same festival as Gudi Padwa.
Indians have a wide range of spectacular festivals every year and each one of them is unique in their own way. They describe the country’s rich culture, customs, and heritage to the whole world. Among 50+ religious festivals we celebrate in a year, Ugadi is often considered as one of the prominent celebrations in the Telugu Community. Even before the colors of Holi fades away, here comes the next spectacular festive - Ugadi.
Ugadi is a flabbergasting festival celebrated on Chaitra Shukla Padyami which is an indication of the new beginnings of the year. It is not celebrated country-wide but is considered as the New year in the Deccan region of India. The name Ugadi (also pronounced as Yugadi) is originated from the Sanskrit words.
Yuga - age
Adi - beginning.
Thus, Ugadi represents the beginning of a new age! Unlike English new year, Ugadi comes down on a different day every year since the Hindu calendar is completely a lunisolar calendar. The Indian National Calendar is also known as the Shalivahana Saka Calendar mostly begins in the month of Chaitra. And, according to the Indian calendar, Chaitra is the first month in Panchangam or Panchanga. In our language, it comes down in between March to April in a year.
The people of Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, and Karnataka call it as Ugadi or Yugadi, the Maharashtra community call the very same festival as Gudi Padwa. Along with these two, the Manipuris celebrate the same festival on the same day as Sajibu Nongma Panba, Sindh as Cheti Chand and Marwaris as Thapna.
Unlike the conventional Solar calendars, the lunisolar calendars are prepared by considering the positions of the Sun and Moon. With their positions and celestial objects, the year is divided into months and days. Therefore, the New Year is celebrated with different names, traditions, and times in various regions of the country.
In accordance with the astrological predictions, Lord Krishna’s Niryana, was started off in the premature hours of Chaitra in 18.02.3102 BC. Also, this day is also the beginning of Kaliyuga and henceforth, Ugadi is considered to be the beginning of magnificent Kaliyuga.
As a matter of face, the legendary Mathematician Bhaskaracharya endorsed the historical importance as the beginning of the first month and New Year.
Now, any festival in India have a set of exceptional nourishment arrangements. But Ugadi tops the list because of the ultimate dish that is closely associated with the festival - Ugadi Pacchadi. It is prepared with Neem florets, raw mango sliced off into small pieces, jaggery, and the tamarind juice. The thing about this dish is that each ingredient included in has its own significance.
Neem buds/florets represent bitterness and thus reflect the difficulties we face in life
Jaggery represents sweetness and thus reflect the happiness in life
Tamarind represents sourness and thus reflect the disgust in life
Unripened Mango represents tangy and thus reflect the surprises and challenges in life
Salt represents saltiness and thus reflect the fears in life
Pepper/chilli powder represents spicy and thus reflect the anger in life
The sole reason for including these kinds of ingredients is to realize the fact that every human’s life is a blend of different experiences. Such as happiness, sadness, disgust, surprise, fear, and anger. It is to be understood that we must accept every emotion with equanimity throughout the year.
Since Ugadi is treated as an auspicious festival, it is custom to clean up the homes and decorate with twigs of mango leaves and vibrant shaded flowers along the doorways. Majority of the houses draw rangolis in front of the main door and all men and women dress up in the brand-new clothes to celebrate the new beginning.
One of the beautiful segments on this auspicious day is the Panchanga Sravanam. Panchanga - Pancha + Anga which is an amalgamation of the five astrological details such as Thithi, Nakshatra, Vara, Yoga, and Karma. These five components are the identification of several favorable and not-so-favorable moments in life. It also tells you the weather predictions, fiscal conditions, health and wealth of an individual considering their birth date, time, and zodiac signs.
Like every year, Sri Viswantha Saraswathi - the best astrologer in Hyderabad is going to do Panchanga Sravanam and make predictions for the coming year.
Wishing you and your family a happy and healthy year ahead. Happy Ugadi to one and all!