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2023 Malayalam New Year: Know the Importance, Rituals, Ceremony

Malayalam New Year: Know the Importance, Rituals, Ceremony

Vishu is called the New Year of Malayalam. On this day people begin the first day of the new year by seeing Lord Vishnu in the temples. This day is celebrated with great enthusiasm in Kerala, Karnataka, and other cities of the country. According to the Hindu calendar, this day is very auspicious. Malayali is said to worship Lord Vishnu. A special event is organised on this day at the Sabarimala temple in Kerala.

On this festival, Lord Krishna keeps Krishna in a basket and decorates the fruits and flowers in it. Lord Vishu is worshiped thereafter. The day of Vishu is also called Malayali New Year Vishu. This day is considered holy and auspicious for marriage, entry into a new house, purchase of the new vehicle, and starting new work.

About Vishu

The auspicious day of Vishu marks the beginning of the new year for people living in Kerala and some areas around Tamil Nadu. The predominant language of these regions is Malayalam, Vishu is also known as Malayalam New Year.

In Sanskrit, the festival of Vishu means 'equal' and thus sends a clear message that it is not just a festival celebrated by Malayalis. In fact, the day is celebrated as a new year in different states of the country with different rituals and customs under a different name. Assamese celebrate it as Bihu, Punjabi as Vaisakhi and the people of Odisha celebrate it as Vishva Sankranti.

Importance of Vishu

This widely celebrated festival marks the passing of the sun on the Aries zodiac as the Southern New Year. According to astrology, it represents the spring-Vishu, and therefore, this day is also considered as one of the spring Vishu days. According to Hindu mythology, Lord Krishna died on this day. This is why Vishu is also called Lord Vishu Day. Also, the day on the day of vishu's, both day and night are equal, which again shed light on the meaning of venom in Sanskrit.

The main message of this festival is to start better. This festival is associated with the day of fortune, prosperity, and hope. It is believed to be a day that will open the entrance to the auspicious New Year.

Rituals and ceremonies

There are many rituals associated with this day and the most prominent of them is ‘Vishukkani’. Visiting 'Vishukkani 4' first in the morning of New Year is considered very auspicious. Vishukkani is a collection of ֹ flowers, fruits, vegetables, gold, coconut, mirrors, grains, lamps, and sacred Hindu books such as Bhagavadgita, Ramayanam, and many more auspicious things. All these items made of five metals are placed in a round shape in a large vessel and kept in the puja room. The idol of Lord Krishna is also kept in the pot. The entire arrangement is done by the owner of the house on the eve of Vishu Day.

Raw mango, golden-colored cucumber, jackfruit, etc. are used in special things used in Vishu. A special flower blooms at the time of the Vishu festival. The Sundara cassia fistula flower, also known as Conappo, has a special place in the ritual of Visukkani ֹ.

After performing the Vishukkani ֹ, all the family members bathe and wear new clothes. Also, it is custom to distribute coins to children, neighbors, servants in order to get prosperity in the future. Along with this, people release candles and crackers to welcome the new year. To this day, a common sight of people visiting temples is seen in Kerala.

Apart from following the traditional rituals, the Vishu festival is also celebrated by feasting on specially made dishes. Dishes are prepared using seasonal fruits and vegetables including mango, gourd and jackfruit. An interesting thing about the dishes made on this day is that sweet, sour, salty and bitter dishes are made in equal quantities which give meaning to the meaning of 'equanimity' of the venom. Some of the popular dishes prepared on this day include mampazpachadi (mango sour soup), kanji (a drink made from spices, rice and coconut milk), and veppampuramsam (bitter dish of neem).

The vishu festival holds far more important than the beginning of a new year. It is a religious festival, which provides an opportunity to bring a good fortune and spend time with loved ones. It is celebrated by both the youth and the elders of the family alike.

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