I wish a very happy Lohri, Makar Sankranti and Pongal to all my friends celebrating these festivities. May you be blessed with happiness, Mubarak, Shubh kamnayein.
Lohri marks the culmination of winter, and is celebrated on the 13th day of January in the month of Paush or Magh, a day before Makar Sankranti. For Punjabis, more than just a festival, Lohri is also an example of a way of life. Lohri celebrates fertility and the spark of life. People gather around the bonfires, throw sweets, puffed rice and popcorn into the flames, sing popular songs and exchange greetings.
Makar Sankranti is one of the most auspicious occasions for the Hindus, and is celebrated in almost all parts of the country in myriad cultural forms, with great devotion, fervour and gaiety. It is a harvest festival. Makar Sankranti is perhaps the only Indian festival whose date always falls on the same day every year on. the 14th of January (with just a few exceptions when it is celebrated either on 13th or 15th of January)
Pongal is the harvest festival celebrated in the Southern parts of India of Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. This festival is equivalent to the Makar Sankranti celebrated in North India and is celebrated for three days. In certain parts cattle races still enliven the village festivities. Pongal is a colorful and traditional festival with many ceremonies devoted to various deities.
During the three-day festival, different varieties of Rangoli are drawn in front of the houses early in the morning.
Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer on pluralism, politics, peace, Islam, Israel, India, interfaith, and cohesion at work place and standing up for others as an activist. He is committed to building a Cohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day at www.TheGhousediary.com. Mike has a strong presence on national and local TV, Radio and Print Media. He is a frequent guest on Sean Hannity show on Fox TV, and a commentator on national radio networks, he contributes weekly to the Texas Faith Column at Dallas Morning News, fortnightly at Huffington post, and several other periodicals across the world. His personal site www.MikeGhouse.net indexes everything you want to know about him.