Lohri 2021: Prayers to Lord Agni, folklore of Dulla Bhatti and harvest season among reasons why festival is celebrated

The bonfire symbolises Lord Agni and after offering food to the almighty, people seek blessings, prosperity and happiness from the God of fire

FP Trending January 13, 2021 11:28:36 IST
Lohri 2021: Prayers to Lord Agni, folklore of Dulla Bhatti and harvest season among reasons why festival is celebrated

While we may envision Lohri being a celebration with bonfire, flashy clothes, fancy foods and dancing to the tunes of songs, the festival is not bereft of a deeper meaning.

Celebrated on 13 January every year, Lohri is about paying gratitude to the almighty and is linked to the Winter Solstice, which is the shortest day and the longest night. Lohri marks the end of the harsh winter and heralds spring, the season of bounty.

It is usually believed that offering food items to the God of Fire on this day helps take away all negativity from life and brings in prosperity. The bonfire symbolises Lord Agni and after offering food to the almighty, people seek blessings, prosperity and happiness from the God of fire. Furthermore, it is also believed that walking around the fire on Lohri helps in bringing prosperity.

Lohri is also associated with the harvest crops. Since, the customary time to harvest sugarcane crops is January, Lohri is seen by some to be a harvest festival, with Punjabi farmers seeing the day after Lohri as the financial New Year.

There is also a folklore behind the celebrations. Punjabi women can be seen circumbulating the bonfire singing 'Sunder mundriye ho!', which is a reference to the tale of a man named Dulla Bhatti, who is said to have lived in Punjab during the reign of the Mughal emperor Akbar. It is believed that Bhatti would steal from the rich as well as rescue poor Punjabi girls being snatched forcibly to be sold in slave markets. He would then arrange marriages of these girls to the boys of the villages and provide them with dowries as well. Among the girls he rescued were Sundri and Mundri, who have become immortalised in the Punjabi folklore.

Originally, Lohri is celebrated on the coldest night of the year. Since the night is extremely chilly, people protect themselves by burning the fire and keeping it fed throughout the night, spending time around it and worshipping the deities of the sun and fire. Apart from sugarcane, the festival also marks the harvest of sesame seeds, jaggery, radish, mustard and spinach.

Lohri is a festival that is directly associated with the elements of nature. Sun represents the life element, while earth represents the harvest and food while fire maintains our health. Since nature offers these to humans, people offer their gratitude and thank nature for protection and prosperity.

Updated Date:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

Punjab BJP leaders Surjit Kumar Jyani, Harjit Singh Grewal face calls for social boycott over remarks on farm protests
India

Punjab BJP leaders Surjit Kumar Jyani, Harjit Singh Grewal face calls for social boycott over remarks on farm protests

In the recent past, Jyani and Grewal have been mediating between the protesting farmers and the Central government

Centre proposes to suspend farm laws for 1.5 years, farmers call internal meet to discuss offer
India

Centre proposes to suspend farm laws for 1.5 years, farmers call internal meet to discuss offer

The next round of talks between the Central Government and the farmers' unions to end the deadlock over the three farm laws has been scheduled for 22 January

Protesting farmer dies after consuming 'poisonous substance' at Tikri border near Delhi
India

Protesting farmer dies after consuming 'poisonous substance' at Tikri border near Delhi

In a purported suicide note, the farmer said that many peasants have taken to the streets to protest, while lamenting the stalemate in talks with the Centre