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Dashain - (Pronounced Dasai, or Badadasai and generally known as Bijaya Dashami) is the longest and the most auspicious festival in Nepal. This festival is mainly celebrated by Hindus of Nepal and ethnic people from Sikkim, Assam, and Darjeeling. Most of Hindus people return to their home on this auspicious festival.
Dashain is usually celebrated in the month September and October and is celebrated for 15 days. Each day has its own significance and meaning. As being the greatest festival for Hindus, Dashain honors a great conquest of the gods over the evil demons. This Festival symbolizes Goddess Durga also known as the symbol of power. The festival starts from the bright lunar fortnight (Shukla Paksha) and ends on the day of full moon(Poornima).
Goddess Durga is worshipped as one of the Hindu myths reveals the victory story of ‘Goddess Durga’ over a demon named ‘Mahisasur’. Mahisasur who spread horror and terror in the Devaloka (the world where God lives) was killed by goddess Durga. So, the first nine days of Dashain represents the long battle between the different manifest of ‘Durga’ and ‘Mahisasur’. While the tenth day symbolizes the victory of the goddess ‘Durga’ over ‘Mahisasur’ the demon. Theirs is also another mystical story representing the victory of good over an evil which explains the victory of ‘Ram’ over ‘Ravan’ as recounted in the Ramayana.
Ghatasthapana – the beginning of the Dashain. On this day, we fill a Kalash (Small Pot made of metal – copper) with holy water mixed with cow dung, barley seed, and maze seed. Then the Kalash is provided to the priest for the blessing of goddess Durga. After that, the Kalash is taken to place where there is a lot of sand and soil seeded with the grains. This whole ritual is carried out on the certain auspicious time determined by astrologers.
Phulpati – is the major celebration occurring on the seventh day (Saptami) from the day of Ghatasthapana. On this day, it’s a tradition in Nepal to bring nine types of Phulpati into the room where Goddess Durga and the pile of sand was worshipped. Therefore, the seventh day of Vijaya Dashami is also called Phulpati in Nepal.
Myth reveals bringing Phulpati brings all the nine goddesses to your home. All nine plants represent the goddess and every goddess represents Health, Wealth and prosperity. Entering Phulpati to home signifies entering health, wealth and prosperity in your home.
There is also a major event on this day, which is celebrated at the center of Kathmandu, Tundikhel where canon is fired for celebration. The Brahmins would carry royal Kalash, holy Jamara, banana stalks and sugar cane tied with red cloth from Gorkha to Kathmandu.
Maha Asthami – is the eight days of Dashain. This is the day when the fiercest of Goddess Durga manifest to the bloodthirsty Kali and is appeased through the sacrifice of buffaloes, goats, hens, and ducks in temples throughout the nation. Blood, symbolic for its fertility, is offered to the Goddesses. Appropriately enough, the night of this day is called Kal Ratri (Black Night). It is also the norm for buffaloes, goats to be sacrificed in the courtyards of all the land revenue offices in the country on this day.
Maha Navami – is the ninth day of Dashain. According to myth, this was the day when all the demons were slaughtered by goddess Durga. The ceremonies and rituals reach the peak on the ninth day of Dashain. On this day, God Vishvakarman – the god of creation is worshipped with the belief of making the things we used happy and prosperous. Most of the tools are worshipped by sacrificing and offering animals. The Taleju Temple gates are opened to the public on only this day of the year. Thousands of devotees go and pay respect to the goddess this day. The temple is filled with devotees all day long.
Bijaya Dashami – the tenth day of Dashain. On this day Tika – a mixture of yogurt, rice, and red color, which the elder stick on the forehead of young ones and provide them with a blessing to grow bigger and successful. Nepali and Hindus people from all around gather on this day to get Tika from their elder ones. On this day most of the family are united who have been far for long. This is one reason why the festival is celebrated with so much enthusiasm.
Dashain is, in fact, a festival in Nepal which reunites the families and is the ceremony of reunion and joy. Every house is filled with happiness and delicious foods. The sky is filled with the Kites – eagle shaped paper which flies when the wind is directed towards it. And the people are filled with joy and memories.
If you want to witness the celebrating vibes of Nepali people, want to explore the happy faces of Nepali children and taste the delicious Nepali foods with the most exciting Nepali culture. Then, this year the first day of Dashain festival Ghatasthapana is on 10th October, followed by Asthami on 17th October, Navami on 18th October and Bijaya Dashami on 19th October. So, you can join Himalayan Scenery Treks and Expedition for the amazing trip to Nepal on this special festival occasion.