Chhath Puja has been celebrated with a great attendance of the devotees at Ranipokhari in Kathmandu on Monday.
The Sun has been revered since very early times of the recorded history of mankind. Ancient Greeks worshipped the Sun as “Helios”, the Greeks and Romans worshipped it as “Apollo”.
The Sun was called “Ra” by ancient Egyptians, who considered the powerful Pharoah as reincarnation of the Sun. The Sumerians called the Sun “Utu”, the Nordics worshipped the Sun as “Sunna” or Sun Goddess, the Chinese called it “Yan-Di” or the God of Fire, and the Hindus have worshipped it as “Surya”.
It is clear, therefore, that the early man understood the celestial powers of our great and glorious star, and looked up at it as the ultimate source of strength, fertility, abundance, and divine energy.
“Surya” or the Sun God is worshipped by Hindu devotees on Chhat, the sixth day of the month of Kartik, Kartik Shukla Shashti. The Puja and fast of Chhat are mostly observed in the Terai of Nepal and North India. Chhat Parva, attracts thousands of pilgrims to the holy town of Janakpur in south-eastern Nepal. Chhat celebration fairs are held in Birgunj, Biratnagar and other cities and towns in the Terai region.
It is also celebrated in other parts of Nepal, including Kathmandu where people from the Terai gather along the banks of water bodies to perform special Pujas offering fruits, sweets and nuts to the Sun God, praying for physical and spiritual purity. Thekuwa, a sweetmeat made of rice flour, is prepared, offered to the Sun God, and distributed among friends and family members as Prasadi.
Text Source: Nepal Tourism Board
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