Janakpurdham . The preparation for the Chhath festival,festival of sun god ,Cleanliness,equality faith and reverence in Mithilanchal has been completed in Janakpurdham.
The people are busy in buying the materials needed for the chhath festival which is celebrated on rule fidelity and lawful observance. Every nook and corner of the state is serenaded by the Chhathi Maiya songs sung, almost every single time, by Padma Shri Sharda Sinha. From …Uga ho Suruj devÚ to …Marbau re sugaba dhanush seÚ, these songs reflect the life and culture.
The festival dedicated to Sun and Chhathi Maiya -Mother Shashti or Usha_ is celebrated with rigorous and strict manners of preparation. The Sun is worshipped as the prime source of energy that sustains all lives on the Earth
The two wives Usha and Pratyusha that are considered as the energy of the Sun God Himself. The first offering, evening Arghya is offered to Pratyusha, the last ray of the Sun and the morning Arghya is offered to Usha, the first ray of the Sun.
Chhath begins right after Tihar festival every year. On the first day, Chhath observers perform rituals while taking bath and then eat only one meal for the day. This day is commonly known as the ‘Nahay Khay din’ -bath and eating day_. This year, people observed ÚNahay KhayÚ on Thursday. The next day is Kharna being observed on Friday this year. The Vratin fasts for the whole day without taking even a drop of water. In the evening, she will cook a meal for the family, Tasmai and Puri. Tasmai is similar to kheer as it is prepared with milk, sugar and rice. In the evening, after the cooking is done, the Vratin, in closed doors does the rituals where she offers Naiwedya to various deities as well as Gram Devta and Kul Devta. The Naiwedya is prepared from chapatis, Tasmai and bananas and spread over a banana leaf.
The evening offering -Saunjh Ka Arghya _is done in the third day which is being observed Saturday this year. It is the toughest day for the devotees. It is roughly 36 hours from her last meal, again without a drop of water the whole day. The Vratin takes a dip and comes out to perform some rituals at the ghat. They offer prayers to Sun God with all the Prasad prepared in their kitchen, like Thakuwa, Bhuswa, Khaja, Mithae and other fruits, including sugarcane and banana.
On the first morning of the fourth day -Paaran_, devotees at the side of their family and friends provide morning offering -Bihaniya Aragh_ at the riverside. Devotees finish their fast having the Chhath Prashad.