Friday, September 16, 2016

Thiruvonam celebration at home in Kerala

THIRUVONAM is a major festival, an opportunity to celebrate culture in various levels based on the mental make up of the person celebrating it. In our family home in Kerala, the celebration is an occasion to invite and establish the presence of Lord in our heart and home. Please see a few photos of the Pooja at my sister's home a couple of years back. My brother in law was in charge. Oldest member of the family does the pooja that starts usually at around 4 am. The front yard near the Tulsi is cleaned the night before and lots of thumpa leaves are kept ready to arrange a bed for the visiting dignitaries. Three or four conical shaped moorthy's are also made ready. Usually they are made of fresh clay. We used to have fun making those 'prisms'.

In the morning after his prayers, my father used to sanctify the area with freshly made rice flour milk. Then he makes the bed of thumpa leaves and arranges the moorthy's. Brahma, Vishnu , Siva and Ganapathy are represented with those.
After an elaborate ritualistic pooja, a freshly made ada (rice cake with jaggery) will be offered to the Lord. Once the Lord Vishnu as Vamana has been consecrated there, my father used to come inside the house, and close the door.
Again he will sneak out through the back door without us kids noticing it - then he comes around the house and knocks at the front door. We ask - who is there? He answers - Here is Mahavishnu. Then he asks, who is inside? We take turns in saying all kinds of answers- one may say his name, other may say Hanuman, etc. until he hears 'here is Mahalakshmi', when he opens the door and enters the house symbolizing the entry of the Lord. Mahabali also is supposed to be coming with the Lord Vamana. Usually there will be a large palm leaf umbrella symbolizing Mahabali's presence. The sweet ada is for us to eat - no, not that fast...., only after feeding our cows and cats.

I just talked to my sister a few minutes back. Yes, the Lord has made His appearance this year also without fail.....
Happy Onam to all.

1 comment:

  1. great information.... thanks for sharing... happy Onam to you all.