(Image credit: Times Now)
Karwa Chauth 2022:
The auspicious festival of Karwa Chauth will be celebrated on the 13th of October this year, in 2022. The occasion is dedicated to Hindu married women, who hold nirjala vrat, or fasting without even water, for their husbands’ longevity.
During Karwa Chauth, women apply mehendi on their hands (preferably a day before), fast from dawn to dusk, wear traditional jewelry, and clothes, and apply makeup. Prior to the festival, they buy new dresses to blend with the jewelry pieces, to deck up like a new bride fulfilling Solah Shringar on the D’Day.
Following are the prominent rituals observed, and they are especially significant for women who are keeping Karwa Chauth fast for the first time.
1. Offering Sargi:
The meal served to the daughter-in-law by her mother-in-law is called Sargi, which includes traditional mathri, sweets, phirni, milk, fruits, dry fruits, subji, and parathas. Traditionally, this food is to be eaten before daybreak, after taking a bath, and having first morning prayers. Sargi mainly entails diets that will enable a woman to remain energized till the time the moon is visible.
(Image credit: BP Guide India)
Engaged or married ladies also accept presents from their mother-in-law’s side, that contain makeup, jewelry, clothes or other items which can be used on the day. A woman can consume the sargi alone at dawn, or participate in it with other women in the house. It’s one of the most valuable rituals and not to be missed.
2. Offering Baya:
Baya is the gift offered by the daughters-in-law to their mothers-in-law and seeks their blessings. They include clothes, jewelry, utensils, food, and other traditional donations. In some parts of India, Baya is also given to other female family members.
3. Karwa Chauth puja and katha:
After the Sargi, being present during puja and hearing the popular katha (folklore) is a vital ritual of the festival. Before moonrise, the puja should be fulfilled. According to the timings of the Shubh Muhurat, the puja is to be performed and prayers delivered.
(Image credit: The Cultural Heritage of India)
Fasting ladies come together at a spot, worship Maa Parvati and attend Karwa Chauth Katha. After the puja gets over and the moon becomes visible, a fasting lady can finish her vrat. A distinct thali is prepared, under the direction of one’s mother-in-law or a family elder.
4. Ending the fast:
The fast is broken when the moon starts to appear. The thali carries a traditional sieve, diya, a traditional karwa lamp, sweet and prasad. Women employ the sieve utensil to view the moon, then see a glimpse of their husband and suggest water. After this, they can accept food and water. It’s to be pointed out that thali should be revolved three times clockwise, and again in an anti-clockwise move.
5. Do’s and don’ts:
At the event of Karwa Chauth, the women put on bright-colored outfits, looking like new brides. While it’s not a conventional code, ladies are dissuaded to wear black and white colors that are supposed to be inauspicious. Red and pink colors are recommended more. Also, applying mehendi on hands and sometimes even feet, and donning jewelry are the essential customs identified on the day. In some provinces, fasting women are told not to cook, cut or do any household chores which can exhaust them.
(Image credit: Blog Vertex)
Significance of the festival:
This festival of Karwa Chauth normally comes in the month of Kartik, according to the Hindu Panchang. It is predominantly celebrated in the Northern areas of India, where women fast for the whole day and pray for happiness, good health, and a lengthy life for their husbands. Even some unmarried and engaged women keep the fast for their future husbands. Nowadays, husbands too observe a fast to return their loving emotions for their wives.