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  Festivals
Kerala's natural resources are rich and varied. No less important is her rich and diverse human material. The state enjoys the benefit of the south west and north east monsoons, Good climate and fertile soil. The agricultural production are highly diversified, with the spot light on rice cultivation.

   
Onam : Onam is a time for sports, festivities and ritual celebrations in "God's own country", Kerala. The Keralites celebrate this festival in memory of the golden era King Mahabali whose spirit is said to visit this state at the time of Onam. After three months of heavy rain, the sky becomes clear and the forests a deep green. The brooks and streams come alive, sprouting a gentle white foam, the lakes and rivers and lotuses and lillies are in full bloom as if to welcome the spirit of King Mahabali. It is time to reap the harvest, to celebrate and rejoice.Depending upon positioning of the stars and the moon, the festival is held at the end of August or beginning of September, less than a fortnight after the Malayalam New Year Chingam begins. This is the biggest festival of the state of Kerala  All over the state rituals along with new clothes, traditional cuisine, dance and music mark this harvest festival.  
 

 

 
Vishu : This festival falls on the first day of the Malayalam month Medam (April) which is the astronomical New Year day when the sun crosses the equator. Though Vishu is identified with the Hindu religious beliefs, it is not in any way a religious festival. As per popular belief, the first thing people see on Vishu , the "Vishukkani" is decisive of the year's prosperity.
Thus the Vishukkani has over the years become a ritual arrangement of auspicious articles like raw rice, fresh linen, golden cucumber, betel leaves, arecanut, metal mirror, the yellow flowers "konna" (cassia fistula), a holy text and coins in a bell metal vessel called "uruli". A lighted bell metal lamp called "nilavilakku" is also placed alongside..
As Vishu ushers in a New Year dawn, people wake up to behold this ritualistic arrangement. Giving a handsel (kainettam) to the younger members of the family is part of this celebration. 
 
Thiruvathira : This is another important  festival of Kerala, which lasts for a day in Dhanu (Dec-Jan)  in which women alone, particularly unmarried ones, take part. It is associated with Kamadeva, the God of "love". The girls after a bath in the temple bank, adorn themselves, offer prayers, take a light meal followed by a sumptuous lunch, relax on swings which are specially hung from trees on this day.
 
 
 
Mahashivarathri :Means the great night of Lord Shiva and is celebrated in the month of March by fasting. Strict vigil is kept during the the night by ardent worshippers to stay awake and offer prayers to  Lord Shiva through out the night. The celebration of this festival on the banks of river Periyar  which is attended by thousands of devotees is comparable to the Kumbhamela of Prayag.
 
Thrikkarthika : This festival is celebrated in honor of Goddess Bhaghavathi. It falls on the day of the third lunar asterism The houses of devotees are well illuminated  and lights are left burning in the verandah, front yard and at the entrance. Offerings are made at the temple of the Goddess and women turn out in the evening for worshipping the Goddess.
 
 
 
Ashtamirohini :  It is celebrated as the birthday of Lord Krishna and it falls on the forth lunar asterism rohini and the eighth quarter of the moon asthami. Krishna was the son of Vasudeva and Devaki, the sister of the reigning king Kamsa who was warned that he would meet with his death by the hands of his sister's son.
 
 
Trissurpooram : It takes place in the month of Medam (Mar-Apr). It is the Utsavam procession from the Vadakkunatha  temple of Lord Shiva in Thrissur The celebration is marked by an impressive procession of richly caparisoned elephants and a remarkable display of pyrotechnics. Thousands of devotees gather here on this day to witness this spectacular display. It commences one morning and continues till late in the morning of the next day.
   
Ramzan: Islam is based on five principles viz., the oneness of Allah, establishing prayers, paying of Zakat (charity), fasting in Ramadan and pilgrimage to Mecca. Ramadan is the month in which Quran was revealed with clear guidance and differentiation between good and bad. It is the considered opinion of all Muslims that devotees fasting during this month with faith, seeking the blessings of Allah will be forgiven their past sins and it would also ensure both their spiritual and physical improvement.  Fasting is to commence when one sees the new moon of Ramadan and finish when one sees the new moon of Shawal. 
 
 
 
Mohram : The Shiya  Muslims observe this festival of mourning on the 10th and 11th day of the month of  Mohram. Processions from different places gather at one place and people mourn here by beating their breasts. The significance of this ceremony is to remember the shahadat (matrydom) of  Imam Hussein, the grandson of the Prophet who died in the Karbala  Maidan while fighting for the cause of Islam. 
   
Dasra : this festival known as Navarathri in Kerala, falls in the month of Kanni (Sep-Oct). It is a nine day festival observed in honor of Goddess Saraswathi, and on the last day every one worships implements of her craft. The last three days of the festival are more sacred than the rest of the days as the belief is wide spread that by worshipping devi or divine mother. On these days one can secure the full benefits of observing the festival rites for the whole period. In Kerala, the people performs the saraswathi pooja (Worship of the Goddess of learning), Ayudha pooja (Worship of weapons) and Vijayadhasami (The day to begin any new ventures including learning to achieve great success.  
 
 
Christmas : The word Christmas originated as "CRISTES MAESSE" or "Christ's Mass. This is celebrated by Christians all over the world as they believe that Jesus Christ, the son of God was born on that day. Most historians conclude that the the first Christmas celebrations were held in Rome in 336 AD. Christmas is both a holy day and a holiday, The Christians in Kerala also celebrate Christmas in a very grand way.
   
Makaravilakku :This 41 day festival held in the famous  Sabrimala  Ayappan temple attracts devotees not only from India but also from abroad  
   
 
Good Friday and Easter: Good Friday, a day of reverence among Christians everywhere, including those in India, is observed to mark the crucification of Jesus Christ. It is the culmination of 'Lent', a 40 day period of fasting and prayer from February to March beginning with Ash Wednesday. The Sunday following Good Friday, Easter, marks the resurrection of Christ. The rituals for Good Friday begin on the preceding Thursday. A feast symbolising the last supper of Jesus Christ is held on the preceding Thursday which is known as Maundy Thursday.
   
Navarathri : This is one of the most memorable of all Hindu festivals because it is brought by endless days of good times and rich food. During Navrathri or nine days preceding Dussehra, people worship the Mother Goddess or 'Devi Ma'. She is worshipped in al her three forms- as Saraswathi  (the Goddess of all creative art and speech and consort of Lord  Brahma, the creator), Lakshmi  (the Goddess of fortune, granter of peace and the consort of Lord Vishnu, the preserver) and Parvati (the most powerful and complex of all Goddesses and the consort of Lord Shiva, the destroyer). During this period, people also worship the tools of their trade.
 
   
 
Bakrid: This festival stands for fortitude of for-bearance in order to gain proximity to Allah and win his favor. This is the occasion for all Muslims to march forward on the path of progress and development with a spirit of self-sacrifice and devotion to to uphold the right and just cause of self determination and independence. On this day,  special prayers are conducted in all the mosques the world over, after which, an animal is sacrificed to show faith, allegiance and sincerity towards Allah. In India, the animal sacrificed is normally the goat which is why this festival is named as Bakrid in this part of the world. After the sacrifice is performed, meat is served to all the families dependant on the mosque for their faith and thereafter, meat is also distributed in the neighborhood.
   
Deepavali: India is a land of festivals. Deepavali, the festival of lights is celebrated with fervor and gaiety, This festival is celebrated by young and old, rich and poor through out the country to dispel darkness and light up their lives. The festival symbolizes unity in diversity as every state celebrates in its own way The celebration of the four day festival commences on Aswayuja Bahula Chatrudasi and concludes on Kartika Shudda Vijiya. The first day of the festival Naraka Chatrudasi marks the vanquishing of the demon Narka by Lord Krishna and his wife Satyabama.
 
   
 

 

 

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