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Happy Makar Sankranti 2020: Importance and Significance of Makar Sankranti festival

Clear Skies, Rising Sun, Flying Kites Always mark the beginning of the limit!!

The above lines convey a clear message that is spread through our auspicious festival called Makar Sankranti. Makar Sankranti happens to be one of a few ancient festivals celebrated by Hindus as per the solar cycle.

Most of the Hindu’s festivals are celebrated as per the lunar calendar. The Hindu calendar itself happens to be luni solar in nature. As this festival is celebrated as per the solar cycle it falls on the same date on the Gregorian calendar – January 14. In certain years, this date shifts by a day.

 All across India this day is celebrated and is famous for different names among different regions. The Hindus in northern India celebrate this day as Lohri, while in central India it is known as Sukarat. Hindus in Assam say it Bhogali Bihu. Hindus in Tamil Nadu and other parts of southern India celebrate Pongal.

Makar Sankranti is also called as Maghi or Makara Sankranti. This festival is dedicated to Surya, the Sun God in the Hindu pantheon. This year, it is celebrated on January 15, 2020. The festival marks the first day when the sun is passing into the Capricorn, also known as Makara. Makar Sankranti is considered to be the end of the month when the winter solstice, which the darkest night of the year, happens. It also indicates that longer days have arrived. It also marks the beginning of Uttarayana, a six-month auspicious period.

How is Makar Sankranti Festival celebrated?

This festival is celebrated with beautiful decorations. People wear new clothes and serve homemade delicacies prepared from jaggery, gur and til and in some parts, Khichdi is also eaten. During this festival, people recite a prayer that is dedicated to Surya and then bathes. It takes place at a confluence named Prayaga. This is where River Ganga meets River Yamuna. These two rivers are conferred as divine status in the Indian pantheon. It is said that Kumbh Mela was initiated by a sage named Adi Shankara. Makar Sankranti is a valuable festival when people donate items to underprivileged.

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