Isn’t it an amazing
thing that in a country where it is common to shun women from social life when
they are menstruating, a state like Odisha stands out??
Odisha has always
been century ahead in terms of being progressive when it comes to its unique
culture and festival. Raja an Odia festival that celebrates the
menstruating cycle of mother earth....
Manoj Jena, a Social
“Everyone who thinks
women are impure during their periods should see how Odisha celebrates Raja.
Those who believe the menstrual blood to be impure should know that the same
kept a life on for nine months inside the mother’s womb.”
Raja Parba, a
three-day long festival in Odisha, is a celebration of menstruation and
first day is called Pahili Raja, second being Raja Shankrant (Mithuna Shankranti) and third day is called Bhu Daaha or Baasi Raja. In these three days, no
agricultural activity like ploughing or sowing seeds is done as it is believed
that Mother Earth goes through the process of rejuvenation. On the fourth day Mother Earth is given a
ceremonial bath which is called as Vasumati Snana. Till the fourth day women in
the families are given freedom from daily household core, like cooking, cutting
It’s a wonderful festival
celebrated in Odisha where women are given rest from their every day work. Instead
they play games, swings and have fun. New clothes and delicacies are the best
part of the celebration.
Pana and Raja Mauja that includes games, new clothes and happiness
with unique ritualistic observations….are the exclusive specialty of this
festival. And the best part is men take over the household work for these three
days and also celebrate it full spirit.
It’s a festival
beyond usual temple rituals…unique in its own way. It’s just about Celebration
of the value and respect for womanhood.
Once which started as
a tribal practice, this festival has become a mainstream festival in all parts
of Odisha. With time, even though this festival has undergone a lot of changes,
it still revolves around respecting and celebrating womanhood. The essence is
intact as it is…..
Today is the Baasi raja….Third Day....A delayed Post Though.