“May Goddess Parvati shower Prosperity, Happiness and bless healthy long life to all husbands on Women’s favorite Hariyali Teej Festival”
Teej festival is celebrated with great enthusiasm and devotion by the women in India. Since Teej falls at the outbreak of the monsoons, it is also popularly known as the ‘Sawan Festival’. Teej is usually celebrated in the month of July-August, when the rain falls on the thirsty land and the pleasing fragrance of the wet soil spread into the air. There are three different variations of Teej- Hariyali Teej, Kajari and Hartalika Teej.
All the three Teej falls in different times and are celebrated colorfully by womenfolk in India. There are special rituals and customs associated with every Teej. These traditions hold great importance for women celebrating the festival of Teej.
Festival of Teej is dedicated to the divine couple – Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. Though Teej is celebrated at various places in India, North Indian states, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Bihar and by Khas women of Nepal but major Teej celebrations take place in the highly cultural city of Jaipur. Here day-long processions and celebrations create a vivid atmosphere.
As the name says, Hariyali Teej relates to greenery. As Shravan month falls during monsoon when the surroundings become green, the Shravan.
Teej is also called Hariyali Teej. On this day, many women clad themselves in green coloured clothes and wear green bangles. A special puja is performed to worship moon. One could be the witness of fairs at various places on the occasion of Hariyali Teej. The long decorated procession of Mata Parvati could be seen on the roads.
It is celebrated with extreme mirth and devotion by womenfolk. Teej is the festival of swings & is a symbol of happiness, prosperity and love. It is observed by women for wellness of their husband.
Haryali Teej is celebrated in a grand way in the ancient ‘Banke Bihari’ temple of Vrindavan. Thousands of devotees gathered to worship Lord Krishna and Radha. Holy water is sprinkled over the devotees to welcome the monsoon season.
When is Hariyali Teej Observe
Literary “Teej” means “third”. However, the third day after the Amavasya of Shravan month is the most important Teej & known as Hariyali Teej.
Hariyali Teej falls on Shukla Paksha Tritiya in Shravana month and usually falls two days before Nag Panchami. Hariyali Teej is also known as Chhoti Teej and Shravani Teej. Kajari Teej which comes fifteen days after Hariyali Teej is known as Badi Teej.
Hariyali Teej also known as Shravani Teej, Teejen, Hari Trithiya, Singara Teej and Madhusrava Trithiya.
Hariyali Teej is on Wednesday 30th July 2014.
Legends behind Teej
Teej celebrations originated from an age-old legend of Goddess Parvati. Hindu mythology states that Goddess Parvati reunited with Lord Shiva on this day. She went through hard-core tapasya or penance and took 108 births on the earth. The myth also states that she failed to have Lord Shiva as her husband till 107th birth. In her 108th birth, Lord Shiva realized her devotion and love for him and accepted as his wife. It is said that Goddess Parvathi fasts on this day to impress the lord Shiva. It is believed that on this very day, Goddess Teejmata or Parvati celebrated union with God Shiva in pleasant green monsoon time after a long period of separation. Therefore, it is also known as Madhursravani.
It is said that whosoever invokes and worship Gowri known as Teej mata on this day, will get divine blessings of Mother. A common belief is that women observing Nirajara Vrat on Teej are said to be blessed with long and healthy life of their husband by Teej Mata Parvati.
Significance of Teej
Rooted deep in Indian religious and cultural ethos – Teej plays a significant role in defining the true nature of relationship between married couples.
One of the foremost significance of Teej is that it helps in strengthening relationship between married couples. Women who observe fast for the long life of their husband in earnest devotion feel closer and more committed to their husband. While watching their wife straining themselves, husbands feel more special. They reciprocate by being more loving and caring towards their wife. Husbands usually express themselves by presenting gifts to their wife and being more sensitive towards their doting wives.
On this occasion girls visited their mother’s house. After marriage on the first Sawan girls should not stay at in-laws-house. A day before Hariyali Teej, women celebrate ‘Sinjara’. It is a significant day for newly wed brides. On her first ‘Sinjara’ after marriage, it is customary to receive clothes and ornaments from her Mother-in-law. On Hariyali Teej, women gather to worship moon. The puja performed on this occasion is done with milk, curd and flowers.
Women adorn their hands with beautiful ‘Mehandi’ patterns. All women who has husband offer ‘Suhagi’ after touching feet of mother-in-law. If this is not possible it could be performed with any elder (sister-in-law) in family. Women also apply ‘Aalta’ which represent that they have a ‘Suhagin’.
Hariyali Teej Celebrations
Married women and young girls celebrate the festival with great zeal and earnest devotion. At some places, womenfolk offer prayer to moon on the first day of Teej i.e. Haryali Teej.
According to their believe Goddess Parvati, the wife of Lord Shiva, worshiped on the day for her wedlock with Lord and swung on a decorated swing. Swings are an intricate part of the festival. Beautifully decorated swings are hung from trees on which the women folk swing and sing the traditional Teej songs.
On this day married women and girl observe a strict fast for 24 long hours and worship Goddess Parvati or ‘Teej Mata’. It is the most rigorous fast in which women neither drink nor eat. They later break the fast after praying to the Moon
At the time of Teej, women dress up like a newlywed. They wear green, red and yellow attires, decorate their hands and feet with fascinating mehndi designs and sing devotional songs on Goddess Parvati and Lord Shiva. Women express their happiness, thank and pray God for marital bliss.
Hariyali Teej Celebrations in Vrindavan
Vrindavan is the site of an ancient forest which is the region where Lord Krishna spent his childhood days. There are great festivities in Vrindavan which goes on up to Janmashtami Lord Krishna devotees celebrate Hariyali Teej with great enthusiasm and excitement in the holy place of Vrindavan. At the time of Hariyali Teej, swings are laid down in the shrines of Vrindavan for the deities to swing upon. This religious ceremony is called ‘Jhullan Leela’. Religious songs and hymns are chanted in the famous ‘Banke Bihari’ temple. Even leelas of Radha and Lord Krishna are narrated. Hariyali Teej is the most auspicious occasion as on this day idols Lord Krishna and Radha comes out of their ‘pat’ (place where idols are kept in the temple) to give their devotees a single vision. Idols of Lord krishna and Radha are adorned with fine clothes and jewellery.
The main attraction of Hariyali Teej in Vrindavan is the gold-ornamented swing of Lord Krishna which is taken out for public once a year. After offering prayers in the temple, holy water is sprinkled over the devotees to give a feeling of the advent of the monsoon. Many devotees come from India and abroad to Vrindavan to attend the special Hariyali
Teej Customs & Rituals
Women either gather at a nearby temple or a garden where the puja is arranged. The main puja takes place with holy offerings of flowers, sweets and coins. A semi-circle is created and an idol of Goddess Parvati is kept in the middle. A pujari or all the ladies together narrate the holy Teej Katha. While listening to the katha, women are expected to put their mind and thoughts towards their soul mate. When the puja gets over women offer fruits, flowers and other holy items and seek blessings of Goddess Parvati for marital bliss.
Another very important part of Teej Puja is the oil lamp which should be kept alight throughout the night as it is bad omen if it dies away.
At some places, after paying homage to Goddess Parvati, women bath with red mud found on the roots of the scared Datiwan bush. This is an act of purification. It is believed that a woman is absolved from all sins after taking this holy bath.
At the end of the day, women share their happiness and joy by dancing and singing traditional songs in praise of Lord Shiva and her consort Parvati. After the day-long fast for longevity of their soul mate is over, women drink water and eat some healthy food. Many husbands make their wife drink water with their hands.