Friday, November 2, 2012
THE SIGNIFICANCE OF "KARWA CHAUTH"
Karwa Chauth is a Hindu custom of fasting observed by women seeking the well-being and prosperity of their husbands. This tradition is very popular amongst married women in the northern and western parts of India like Punjab, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana and many more.
‘Chauth’ refers to the fourth day and the term ‘Karwa’ is an earthen pot with a spout symbolizing peace and prosperity; hence the name Karva Chauth. This festival falls in the ‘Karthik’ month of the Hindu calendar (October - November).
It is considered as the most important and difficult fast observed by Indian women. The fast begins at sunrise and ends only after offering prayers and worshiping the moon. The pooja preparations start a day in advance. Married women buy ‘shringar’ or traditional adornments and other pooja items like the karwa, matthi, heena etc.
Once the moon rises, the women see its reflection in a thali of water, or through a dupatta or a sieve. They offer water to the moon and seek its blessings. They pray for the safety, prosperity and long life of their husbands. This marks the end of the day long fast.