KALIPUJA

KALIPUJA

  • Planet Odisha
  • Planet Odisha
  • Planet Odisha
  • Planet Odisha

How powerful is the cult of Shakti worship in Odisha, both in the Tantric and non-Tantric forms, call be realized from tile festivals or Durga Puja (September-October) and Kalipuja (October-November) which are celebrated with utmost solemnity, gaiety and eclat. The great Mother as the ten-handed Durga is believed to come down from her husbands home on Mount Kailash to her parents abode on the Himalayas every year for three days, tile 7th , 8th and 9th days of the bright fortnight in the month of of Aswina. There site is Parvati, the daughter of king of mountains, but in her incarnation as Durga she is worshipped as the destroyer of the buffalo-demon Mahisasura. In Odisha richly decorated and beautiful made images are installed all over the state and the festival instils a spirit of holiness and sancity into the whole community so much so that people of other faiths participate in it with abundant warmth and sincerity. In Odisha the special feature of Durga Puja is that in the temples it soreads ovet sixteen days unlike on other parts of the country where it lasts for three to none days at most. It is the same story in regard to Kali Puja which is preceded by Lakshmi Puja on the full moon day after Durga Puja. Lakshmi Puja in public is celebrated in grandeur in places like Kendrapara and Dhenkanal but in the homes she is worshipped on that day for wealth and prosperity. Kali Puja has another dimension in Odisha. Kali is the destroyer of time or Kala, she too is the goddess of death and destruction having her abode in the cremation grounds. But to the Shaktas she is Parambrahma swarupjni (identical with the Supreme Brahman), creator of the universe, its sustainer and ultimately its detroyer The Markandeya Purana, Devi Bhagavata, Kalika Purana and othrer books describe her as the ultimate Mystery of the Universe. If she is the desroyer of Mahisasura (as Durga), Shumbha, Nishumbha, Chanda, Munda, Raklavirya, she is also the compassionate Mother. The two mudras in her right hands, abhaya (protection from fear) and vara (granting of boons) and the raised blood-smeared sword in one her left hands with the freshly severed head of a demon dangling from the other hand, with three eyes standing for the sun, the moon and fire (Agni) make her a most complex symbol of love, compassion and terror. Like the Durga Puja, Puja is observed all over the stale though not to the same extent. The Hindu festivals are numerous no doubt, but they do not diminish the importance of the festivals of the Muslims, Christians and Sikhs all of which are celebrated in Odisha in a spirit of camaraderie, almost unmatched elsewhere. Easter, Good Friday and Christmas; Id-ul-Fitre, Id-ul-Zolla and Muharram and Guru Nanaks birthday are observed by the respective communities with active public participation. It is the contemplation of the beauty, meaning and significance of these festivals both local and national, and the wide response evoked by them among the people that show how the stream of religion continues to flow as a subterranean in the collective life of the Odia people. The significance becomes overwhelming when one thinks of the perils of dehumanization brought about by a mechanistic view of the universe supplemented by a technotronic culture.


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