Across the country, people celebrate Makar Sankranti every year with great pomp. Unlike most Hindu festivals, which depend on the Moon’s changing position and the lunar calendar, Makar Sankranti 2023 date and timing also depend on the solar calendar. Every year, Makar Sankranti marks the movement of the Sun in Makar Rashi or Capricorn zodiac sign. In fact, the literal meaning of the word ‘Sankranti’ is ‘movement’. Hence, such a name.
Also, on the day of the Makar Sankranti festival, the day-night duration is equal. Also, this festival officially marks the beginning of spring or the Indian summer. After this day, the Sun stays up a little longer than on previous days, making the days longer than the nights. Along with this, the festival of Makar Sankranti has great importance in Indian culture. Being a solar phenomenon too, it falls on the same date every year in the Gregorian calendar. In different parts of the country, people know it by different names. It is Pedda Panduga in Andhara Pradesh, Pongal in Tamil Nadu, Magha Bihu in Assam, Uttarayana in Gujrat, and much more.
Let us discuss know more about the vibrant festival of Makar Sankranti in 2023.
|Makar Sankranti 2023||Date, Day, and Time|
|Makar Sankranti Date||15 January 2023, Saturday|
|Punya Kaal||07:15 AM to 05:46 PM (10hr 55min)|
|Mahapunya Kaal||07:15 AM to 09:00 PM (1hr 49min)|
The festival has immense religious and cultural significance. According to the Puranas, the festival symbolizes the healthy bond between a father and a son. Also, according to popular beliefs, Makar Sankranti celebrates the victory of Lord Vishnu over the Asuras. The legend further narrates how Lord Vishnu ends the menace caused by the Asuras on the earth by cutting off their heads and burying them under Mount Mandara. Hence, it symbolizes the victory of Dharma over Adharma.
There are many types of Sankranti, out of which two are major. One is known as Makar Sankranti, and the other is known as Kark Sankranti. Makar Sankranti marks the beginning of a promising phase in the year. The festival of Makar Sankranti dedicates to the Sun God, a symbolic representation of divinity, wisdom, and life. Moreover, it brings out the best in you. May the grace of the Sun remove all the obstacles you face and propel you forward in your career.
In some places, it is Pongal, and in some, it is Uttrayana. Here are different versions of Makar Sankranti, which the nation celebrates with joy and happiness.
Thai Pongal, celebrated in Tamil Nadu, is a four-day festival to pay homage to Lord Indra. The festival is a means of thanking Lord Indra for bountiful rains. Hence fertile land and good harvest. The Thai Pongal 2023 celebration is incomplete without making offerings to Lord Surya and Lord Indra.
On the second day of Thai Pongal, freshly cooked rice is boiled in milk and served in an earthen pot to the Sun God. On the third day, Mattu Pongal, cattle get decorated with bells, garlands of flowers, beads, and paint to honor ‘Basava’ – the bull of Lord Shiva. Speaking of the fourth day after Pongal, Kaanum Pongal is the occasion in which all the women of the house come together to perform various rituals.
It is another name on this list. Uttarayan is specially celebrated in Gujarat to celebrate the harvest season. Vasi Uttarayan is celebrated on the next day of Uttarayan 2023. It is marked by flying kites, eating jaggery, and peanut chikki. Undhiyu is a spice and roasted vegetable dish made on the occasion of Uttarayan.
The next name is Lohri, a harvest festival of Punjab celebrated on January 13. It is known for the bonfires, lit in the evening. People present offerings like peanuts, sesame seeds, gajak, jaggery, and popcorn. As a part of the puja ritual, folks offer these food items to the sacred fire before being eaten.
This list also includes Magh or Bhogali Bihu, a week-long harvest festival of Assam. It falls on January 13 and lasts for about a week. The festivities of this festival include a bonfire and a feast of rice cakes called ‘shunga pitha’, ’til pitha’, and coconut sweets called laru. The people of this place also indulge in sports like ‘tekli bhonga,’ which involves breaking utensils and buffalo fights.
It is a ten-day-long festival to honor the annual journey of the demon Mahabali from Patal Lok to Prithvi Lok to meet his kin. Asura Mahabali is one of the most benevolent and influential kings that humanity has ever seen. Tableaux and processions showcasing the culture of Kerala are also at this festival. During this period, the people of the state and culture engage in traditional dance. The most famous activity during Onam is the boat race, which puts on the most spectacular performances during this period.
On Makar Sankranti, it is customary to eat ’til-jaggery’ and enjoy a joyous kite flying. People eat til-gur or sesame and jaggery in the form of laddoos or chikki. On this day, natives move forward with a positive attitude towards others, leaving behind the past of unpleasant relationships and sour-sweet memories. Also, on Makar Sankranti, people consume sweets to bring sweetness to their speech and behavior, which helps them to reduce enmity and praise the love and happiness around them.
Sweets are also distributed on this festival to celebrate the journey of Lord Surya to meet his son, Lord Shani, keeping away the wrath of Lord Surya. Similarly, kite flying on Makar Sankranti also has its importance. In earlier days, kite flying was usually done in the morning, just after sunrise, when the Sun rays were not unbearable.
The weather is usually quite cold during Makar Sankranti, so basking in the Sun for a bit while indulging in a joyous session of kite flying would be a good way to stay warm and stay away from infections and harmful bacteria.
The celebration varies from state to state and region to region. The celebrations are varied, the dishes prepared are different, and the ways of celebrating the festival are varied, yet the spirit and enthusiasm among the people remain the same. Such is the beauty and wonder of this festival associated with our most beloved Sun God.
Makar Sankranti has great importance both from the point of view of astrology. Sun and Saturn have been called enemy planets. However, on this day, Sun enters the house of Shani (lord of Capricorn). It stays in this zodiac sign for a month. During this phase, it forgets its anger towards the planet Saturn, thus showing the importance of relationships. Relationships depend on how your planets align with your partner’s planets.
Moreover, Makar Sankranti also has a divine significance. This period is of the utmost importance for sages and yogis in their spiritual and long time, which is a new beginning. In general, natives consider making a fresh start and letting go of terrible memories and ties from the past. Many aspects of a Yogi’s life depend on the divine bond between the human and the cosmic system. The life of a Yogi develops keeping in mind the universe and all the activities of human life.
In many parts of India, people celebrate this event to acknowledge the fresh harvest of the season. Mattu Pongal is celebrated on the next day of Makar Sankranti to appreciate the hard work and labor the farm owners put in for a successful harvest. In remote villages, when farmers sow the next crop, it is considered a part of the meeting. There are many harvest festivals in India, and Makar Sankranti is the oldest of them all.
The day of Makar Sankranti holds great importance in Hinduism. Donating stuff on this day fulfills all the wishes of a person’s life. Moreover, it is also beneficial for achieving happiness, peace, and economic prosperity. So let’s know about those simple and surefire measures by which you can make your life happy.
Aries: Donate mosquito nets and sesame seeds. It helps in the fulfillment of wishes as soon as possible.
Taurus: Donate woolen clothes and sesame seeds. This time will prove to be fruitful for the natives of this zodiac.
Gemini: Natives should donate mosquito nets. It will prove beneficial for them.
Cancer: The people of this zodiac can donate sesame, soap, and woolen clothes. It will give them positive results.
Leo: Donate mole, blanket, and mosquito net.
Virgo: Donate sesame, blanket, oil, and urad dal.
Libra: People of this zodiac should donate oil, cotton, clothes, and mosquito nets according to their financial capacity. It will prove fruitful for them.
Scorpio: Donate rice and lentil porridge to the needy.
Sagittarius: The people of this zodiac can donate sesame seeds and gram pulses. It will prove beneficial for them.
Capricorn: Capricorn men and women must donate oil, sesame, woolen clothes, blankets, and books on Makar Sankranti in 2023. By doing this remedy, all the wishes in life will fulfill.
Aquarius: According to your financial capacity, donate oil, clothes, soap, etc., to the needy. It will help you to favour your destiny.
Pisces: You can donate sesame, grams, a blanket, and a mosquito net. It will help you to get rid of all the sins of life and get happening results.
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