Nagapanchami is a Hindu holiday when everyone is cajoling snakes instead of work

Nagapanchami is a Hindu holiday when everyone is cajoling snakes instead of work

Categories: Animals | Asia | Holidays and Festivals

At the end of July, Nagapanchami is celebrated in India and Nepal. On the fifth day of the holy month of shravan, Hindus worship snakes, which they consider to be earthly incarnations of nagas. Nagas are such mythical snake—like creatures with a human torso and head. With the beginning of the month of shravan, the monsoon season begins, and the snakes are forced to get to the surface from their flooded homes. At the top, they are greeted with open arms by people.

Nagapanchami is a Hindu holiday when everyone is cajoling snakes instead of work

Nagapanchami is a Hindu holiday when everyone is cajoling snakes instead of work No one works on Nagapanchami day. The culprits of the celebration are brought from the forest and released directly into the streets and courtyards. People consider themselves beholden to snakes, because they devour rodents that encroach on the harvest. Therefore, snakes are warmly welcomed everywhere, showered with flower pollen, treated with milk, melted butter, honey and fried rice. Oleander, jasmine and red lotus flowers are placed to the snake holes.

Nagapanchami is a Hindu holiday when everyone is cajoling snakes instead of work

Nagapanchami is a Hindu holiday when everyone is cajoling snakes instead of work To meet a snake on the way is considered a great success, especially for unmarried girls — it is a sure sign to find your happiness soon.

Nagapanchami is a Hindu holiday when everyone is cajoling snakes instead of work Especially magnificent ceremonies are awarded to the most dangerous of snakes — the cobra. A beautiful Hindu legend is associated with it. One day a brahmin on the day of Nagapanchami forgot about the ancient custom and went to his field. While making a furrow, he accidentally crushed the cobra cubs. The mother snake decided to take revenge. She crawled into the brahman's house at night and killed all the sleepers. Then I remembered that one of the brahmin's daughters had married and was living in a nearby village. The cobra crawled there, but saw that the young woman had completed all the preparations for the holiday with Nagapanchami, putting treats for snakes outside the door.

Nagapanchami is a Hindu holiday when everyone is cajoling snakes instead of work The cobra was touched by the attention of the well-behaved girl and changed her anger to mercy. The hostess, seeing that she pleased the snake, asked her to resurrect her father and other relatives, which the cobra did. Therefore, in many Indian states, women worship the stone image of the mother cobra, praying that the gods will grant them children.

Nagapanchami is a Hindu holiday when everyone is cajoling snakes instead of work The Nagapanchami festival continues until late at night. Snake charmers enjoy great honor on this day and demonstrate their art to everyone: they take venomous snakes in their arms, throw them around their necks. Some of the braver viewers are also trying to follow their example.

Nagapanchami is a Hindu holiday when everyone is cajoling snakes instead of work

Nagapanchami is a Hindu holiday when everyone is cajoling snakes instead of work Cases when snakes bite someone are very rare. Maybe they guess that this is their holiday, and on a holiday they don't want to upset anyone.

Nagapanchami is a Hindu holiday when everyone is cajoling snakes instead of work

Keywords: Snakes | India | Legends | Nepal | Traditions

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