Nepal is a country well-known for having hundreds of festivals celebrated around the nation, each year with more than hundreds of ethnic groups and castes residing in harmony. Among all the festivals celebrated throughout the year, Vijaya Dashami or Dashain is one of the significant and biggest festivals celebrated by every community in Nepal. Along with being the biggest festival, it is also the longest one, which lasts for 10 days. The celebration of Dashain began thousands of years back when goddess Durga won the war over the evil named, 'Mahisasur' after nine long days. On the tenth day, the victory over evil by good was praised and celebrated, making the celebration of Dashain ten days long.
Dashain A Festival of Reuniting With Loved Ones
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The festival officially begins with ' Ghatasthapana', the first day of celebration when barley seeds are sowed in a pot, growing into a grass called Jamara, which is used on the tenth day of the celebration. After Ghantasthpana, another important day of the festival is Fulpati, which is the seventh day of the festival. Generally, it is a day when the office and institutions around the country provide leave for the celebration of the festival. The eighth day is Maha Ashtami followed by Maha Navami when people worship Goddess Durga and Lord Vishwakarma, the god of creation. As they worship tools, vehicles, and agricultural equipment with a belief in being protected from wounds and accidents. On the tenth day of the festival, the main and final day of celebration, the elders put tika on the younger ones giving them Jamara along with blessings, money, and gifts.
With a very significant cultural and historical value to the festival, throughout the years, the way of celebration for different people has modified. If we are to look in the present context, the celebration of the Dashain festival can widely be seen as a time for reuniting with close and loved ones. People are seen going shopping, buying gifts for their family back home scattered around different parts of the country. During the days of Dashain, people leave their work and academic pressure behind and just focus on spending quality time with their families. We can see people playing cards, cooking delicious varieties of foods, flying kites, and having quality time with their loved ones. It is a time of healing and celebration that reflects on the entire country as the roads of the city that used to be so full can be seen empty during Dashain.