Published By: Nibandh Vinod
Last Updated: November 19, 2023, 17:00 IST
Chhath Puja is an auspicious Hindu festival celebrated all over India, especially in the states of Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Odisha, and Jharkhand. Also known as Maha Parv, this festival is dedicated to Lord Surya, the god of energy, and his wife Usha (Chhathi Maiya). During the occasion, devotees worship the deity to promote well-being, prosperity, and progress. Women observe a fast and pray for the welfare of their husbands and families. This year, the festival started on Friday, November 17, and will end with Usha Arghya on Monday, November 20.
Chhath Puja is generally celebrated six days after the festival of lights, Diwali, or the sixth day of the month of Kartik, according to the Hindu calendar. The rituals to mark the festival last for four days. Starting with Nahay Khay, Lohanda and Kharna, Sandhya Arghya, the festival comes to an end with Usha Arghya. Let’s delve into the importance of Usha Arghya, the fourth day of the holy festival.
About Usha Arghya
- Usha Arghya is the fourth and final day of the auspicious festival.
- It is commonly known as Parana Din, where devotees offer Usha Arghya to the rising sun.
- The ritual is done by standing in knee-deep water and praying to Lord Surya.
- After this, devotees conclude their fast and distribute prasad among all.
- People assemble together before sunrise at the holy river banks to complete the puja.
- It is said that the 36-hour-long fast of Chhath is the hardest fast, and it is only completed after Usha Arghya.
- This year, Usha Arghya and Parana Day will fall on Monday, November 20.
Usha Arghya: Sunrise Time
According to Drik Panchang, the auspicious timings of Puja Tithi of Usha Arghya or Parana Day is as follows:
- Sunrise Timing: 06:20 AM
- Sunset Timing: 05:50 PM
This festival is also known as Chhath Mahaparv, Chhath Parv, Pratihar, Surya Shashti, Dala Chhath, and Dala Puja. During the four-day festival, devotees bathe in the holy river, women observe 36-hour long ‘nirjala’ fast, offer prasad and pray to the rising and setting sun standing in holy water for the well-being of their husbands and families. Devotees also perform a procession march as they head for the holy river banks together.
Chhath Puja 2023: Significance
Celebrated with great grandeur across the world by the people of the Bihari community, Chhath Puja devotees worship the Sun God and his wife, Usha (Chhathi Maiya). It is believed that Chhath Maiya, or Shashti Devi, is the Manas daughter of Lord Brahma. Moreover, she is also said to be Maa Katyayani in the Puranas, one of the forms of NavDurga who is worshipped on Navratri on the sixth day.