Ugadi or Yugadi is the new year as per the Hindu calendar and it is very famous in south Indian states like Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, and Tamilnadu. It is also known as “Gudi Padwa” in Maharashtra and “Nobo Borso” in West Bengal and is celebrated with much fervor and enthusiasm. “Yugadi” is derived from the Sanskrit words “yuga” which means age or era and “adi” means “to start” and so Yugadi specifies its meaning as “New Beginning”. It is mostly celebrated on “Chaitra Shukla Pratipada”. It is also having spirituality associated with this day as it is believed that Lord Brahma himself started creating mankind on this earth and made it habitable to survive and that day is celebrated as Yugadi. To pay him to respect people offer prayers to him and perform “Brahma Puja”.
Ugadi festival is declared by Gowthami Putra Shathakarni, in the 1st century. He is the first Telugu king, he did all small kingdoms into one kingdom that is Bharat Kandam. So that day we all are celebrating as a new year’s day. I.e Ugadi festival for Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Telangana states in India. This festival is celebrated in April. Yugadi is an integration of two words, The first word “Yug” means “age” and the second word “Adi” means “beginning”. On the first day of Chaitra month, we can celebrate the Ugadi festival. In south Indian people are believing that Lord Brahma created the universe on this day.
People apply castor oil or sesame oil to their head and body after a few minutes they will do the bath, then clean the house decorate the entire house and puja mandir with different flowers. Different dishes also prepared on this festival day with the combination of sweet, salty, hot, sour, tangy, and bitter. Finally, they will perform the puja with devotion. This puja will get wealth and prosperity.
This day starts by waking up early morning basically before sunrise and chant the mantras to pray the God. This process is assumed very important and pure which purifies the house and enables positivity everywhere. After this, each and every member of the family will have a ritualistic bath also known as “oil bath” or “Thailabhyangana Snanam”. It’s assumed very auspicious if one bathes majorly with oil and even god photo frames and idols are given oil bath and then puja is organized after cleaning them and making them wear new clothes and as a customer to offer prasad after puja, this puja is also followed by special prasad known as “Bevu Bella” or “Ugadi Pachadi”. There are lots of customs and events during the celebrations like-
Rangoli: Making of rangoli is a custom which is performed in each and every house on this day and people make beautiful rangoli at the entrance of their house in the early morning. This is meant to welcome Lakshmi Maa inside the house and also to invite guests and loved ones. This also signifies the togetherness of people.
Mango Leaves: The hanging of the mango leaves near the home door entrance is known as Toranam and Torana. Especially placing the mango leaves on the entrance will also signify the goddess Lakshmi, and it will help keep out negative energy.
Panchanga Sravanam or Ugadi Panchangam Puja: This is a small ritual performed in each house basically after sunsets. It is in Panchanga puja in which a newly bought Panchanga of a new year is kept and decorated with flowers and kumkum Haldi with some akshatas and the small puja is performed. The puja is followed by reading the Panchanga for making future astrological announcements by the eldest person of the family and is accompanied by other members to listen and plan their schedule for the upcoming year.
Chalivendram: This is one more ritual performed on this day when many people present water to the needy since its the start of summer and many people don’t have access to pure drinking water. This is a very nice gesture and along with a ritual which relaxes our soul too.