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Vishu – Celebration and Rituals

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A description of Vishu, the story, celebration and rituals.

In Indian culture we give importance to the well beginning of everything. Well beginning is the concept of vishu also. This is the astrological new year day. This day is considered as the best day to start any new venture. Vishu is celebrated by all Keralites irrespective of religion. Vishu is a celebration of Prosperity. People celebrate this day by wearing new dresses (Kodi), gifting money and new dresses (Kaineettam), having delicious lunch (Sadhya) , using fire crackers, etc.

Story Behind Vishu

There are a number of tales related to Vishu. One of the interesting stories is related to Sun. Sun is considered as one of the gods in Hinduism. Load Ravana, the ruler of Lanka did not allow sun to rise straight to earth. After Load Rama Killed Ravana , it is on a Vishu day Sun raised straight to (On the line of Equator), first time. It is also believed that the lord Vishnu killed Narakasura in this day.



Vishu Kani

At the night before the vishu day, the elder lady of home prepares for the vishu kani. She arranges some vegetables, kani konna flowers, gold and coins in a vessel in the prayer room (pooja Muri), along with a lighted bell lamp(Nila vilakku). At the early morning of vishu day, all the members of the family come to the prayer room and have a look at Vishu kani. It is believed that the first scene at the first day of a the new year makes prosperity throughout the year. The celebration of vishu without kanikonna is not perfect. The flower of konna has a significant role in vishu kani.

Vishu kaineettam

After vishu kani, the next ritual is vishu kaineettam. Kaineettam means the gifts given by the elder member of the family (Graha Nathan) to other members of the family. The main gift items are cash and new clothes (Kody). Gifting money and clothes, shows the wealthness of a person. It is believed that by giving and receiving the kaineettam, the family's economical status will be better during the whole year.

Vishu Sadhya

In this day the ladies is the family prepare a delicious lunch (Sadhya). In this sadhya, banana leaves are used instead of plates. There will be pradaman (sweet)to make the sadhya richer .
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