Indian New Year is like the invisible silk thread that ties East and West Asia......Here's to wish all Indian friends Happy New Year, and for all a peek into Indian and Asian new year celebrations today!
Iniya Puththandu – Vishu - Baisakhi - Naba Barsa -
Poila Baisakh - Maha Vishuva Sankranti - Rongaali Bihu
(Iniya puthandu vazhtugal !!! Shubho nobo borsho !!! Vishu ashamsakal !!!.......)
By the way, The Singapore newspaper, Tabla, published my article on significance of different Indian and Asian new year celebrations over the weekend, (11 Apr). It is the cover story and is continued on page 11, 12 &13. The link is http://www.tabla.com.sg/jr/jrpc.php?param=2014-04-11
The newspaper, Tabla, published the article today, 11 Apr. The link is http://www.tabla.com.sg/jr/jrpc.php?param=2014-04-11
. It was a cover story and was continued on page 11, 12 &13.
Indian New Year is like the invisible silk thread that ties East and West Asia. Iranians are the first to kick off the festivities on the day of Spring Equinox which falls around 21 March. Balinese New Year, Nyepi, is celebrated as the day of silence in end March. Nyepi coincides with New Year (Ugadi and Gudi Padwa) celebrated by Indians from parts of India around Bangalore, Hyderabad and Mumbai. Two weeks later, people of Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka also herald the new year along with the Bengalis, Punjabis, Tamils, and others in India, in mid-April. As we move to the east, beyond Bangladesh, Myanmar’s Maha Thingyan, Thailand’s Songkran, as well as Cambodia’s Chaul Chnam Thmey, and Lao’s Pee Mai are all celebrated in mid-April. One can easily see the similarities between the names “Sankranthi” (in Odisha, eastern India) and “Songkran”(in Thailand). Songkran and Maha Thingyan are “water festivals” like Holi festival of North India, which is however celebrated in third week of March, around the same time as Iranian New Year.
A surprise common ingredient in many Indian New year traditions is the humble Neem (Azadirachta indica). It is used as a flower, or paste to remind that in the year, like in life, all experiences will not be sweet. The deep philosophical message of the traditional Indian New year celebration is - life will be full of varied experiences, not all of them will be happy and one must accept all of them with equanimity.