Stories of Pongal

The first big festival of the year is here! Pongal marks the end of the winter season and the commencement of a new harvest season. Surya, the Sun God transitions into the zodiac sign Capricorn (Makaram) and thus begins his northward course called Uttarayana. The four days of Pongal are spent worshipping and thanking nature for its bountiful blessings. There are a few fascinating stories behind the tradition of celebrating this festival. Two such interesting stories are narrated in this blog.

The story behind Bhogi Pongal

Once Lord Krishna saw the villagers getting ready to perform pooja for Lord Indra - the God of Rains. Filled with curiosity, Krishna asked his father the reason behind the prayers. Nanda Maharaj told him that the pooja was performed to please Lord Indra so that he continues to grace the village with rain. Upon learning this, Krishna convinced his villagers to worship the Govardhan hill instead of Lord Indra because the hill offered natural resources for the villagers' sustenance.

The villagers gave in to Krishna’s persuasions and decided to perform pooja to the Govardhan hill. Seeing this, Lord Indra became enraged and sent torrents of rain and thunderstorms to flood the village. Devastated by the turn of events, the villagers approached Krishna for help. Lord Krishna lifted the Govardhan hill with the pinky finger on his left hand and the villagers and their cattle took shelter under the hill. After 7 days, Lord Indra accepted his defeat seeing the extraordinary power of Krishna. He understood that it was his duty to provide rain for the people without expecting anything in return. When Krishna saw that Lord Indra had realised his mistake, he told him that every year a festival called 'Bhogi Pongal' would be celebrated to honour him.

The story behind Mattu Pongal

Nandi is the sacred vahana and gatekeeper of Lord Shiva. According to a legend, Lord Shiva ordered Nandi to go down to Earth and ask the people to take an oil bath every day and eat only once a month. However, Nandi misheard the instructions and instead asked humans to eat daily and take an oil bath once a month. Shiva was displeased with Nandi’s mistake as it would lead to a food deficit on Earth now. Hence he ordered Nandi to stay on Earth and help humans grow their food. As a token of gratitude, the agricultural cattle will be celebrated and worshipped on a dedicated day called ‘Mattu Pongal’.

These tales tell us about the importance of honouring and taking care of Mother Nature.

At Sundari Silks, we seek to bring forth the essence of India through our handcrafted collections and by opening up a platform for our community to learn more about our culture. This Pongal, we present to you our exclusive collection of pavadai sets and kurtas which reflect the rich tradition and cultural heritage of our land.