Thursday, July 18, 2024
Andhra Pradesh

Fairs and Festivals


Pitru Amavasya or Mahalaya Amavasya

This is celebrated on the Amavasya day in the month of Bhadrapada.  When the sun is in the zodiacal sign of Kanya or virgo and in conjunction with the moon.  It is a very auspicious day for offering oblations to the pitris that is names of the departed ancestors. The whole fortnight called pitri pakshas i.e. the fortnight preceding Amavasya is sacred for propitiating departed souls.  People go to sacred rivers like Ganga in North India, Godavari and Krishna in Andhra and Kaveri in South India to offer oblations and pindas to their ancestors. 

All Hindus take it to be an auspicious day, the twice born  that is dwijas and particularly Brahmins perform the rituals on an elaborate scale according to the rules laid down in religious manuals.  The lower castes and particularly the poor people remain content with the offer of a day's ration called Sahityam or Swayampakam (food cooked one self) to their family priest in the name of their departed ancestors.  The eatables and special dishes are prepared according  to the means of the family.  Non vegetarians drink liquor and eat meat for the satisfaction of the departed ancestor.