Makar Sankranti is one of the traditional Hindu festivals that are observed as per the Solar cycle. During this time the Sun transitions into Makar (Capricorn). It marks the end of winter and the new beginning of the harvesting season. Makar Sankranti is celebrated throughout India in some or other way.
Just like the 12 Zodiac signs, there are 12 Sankranti in a year but not all Sankranti is the same as the first Sankranti of the year. On this day, the Sun enters the sign of Capricorn in the nakshatra of Uttarashada. It is a very ancient, sacred, and highly celebrated festival of the Hindus. Sankranti is filled with so much sacredness and even illuminates the life of an individual who is surrounded by darkness and negativity. It is also believed to escalate one’s cosmic intelligence, and the individual attains its full benefits.
Importance of Makar Sankranti
The significance of this festival lies in its towering dedication to the Sun and other natural resources. Everyone offer thanks and prayers to all such natural phenomena which are essential in life. People worship and thank the Sun God (Lord Surya) for all the success and prosperity bestowed on them. Thus the blessings of the Sun-god clear all the hurdles which they may face and will make them move ahead in their career.
Makar Sankranti Rituals
India is a land of many festivals. Like every other festival, Makar Sankranti is also celebrated with lots of decorations. People wear new clothes and prepare delicacies which are usually made of jaggery and til. Types of delicacies depend on the region. For example, in some parts of India, Khichdi is eaten whereas in Tamil Nadu Pongal is eaten.
In Rajasthan and Gujarat, Makar Sankranti is known by the name Uttarayan and is celebrated as a grand festival. Kite flying is the major attraction on this day.
In Jharkhand and Bihar, people plunge in rivers and ponds and feast upon seasonal delicacies as a celebration of a good harvest.
In Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, it’s a four-day festival. A day before the Makar Sankranti people get rid of old things and burn them in the bonfire. This day is called Bhogi. The next day after Sankranti is called Kanuma where people don new colorful attires and offer prayers and traditional food to gods as well as their ancestors.
In Kerala, this festival is known as Makaravilakku i.e. artificial light that is created three times on Sabarimala hills is joyously celebrated in Kerala on this day. Thousands of devotees come to witness this light as it is believed to be a symbol of celestial light.
Astrological Significance of Makar Sankranti
Generally, people consider this time to be a great time for fresh beginnings and letting go of any horrid memories and associations of the past. Also, it has a divine nuance to it as well. This period is believed to be of optimum importance for yogis and sages for a new initiative in their spiritual odyssey. According to Hindu astrology, the Sun comes from the Dakshinayan towards Uttarayan. This is a very auspicious position from a religious perspective. Makar Sankranti 2021 is more powerful and special because not just one or two but four planets will transit in Capricorn in the upcoming month.
On this auspicious day, look at the brighter side of life with new hopes and celebrate this festival with great devotion, fervor, and vivacity.