Teej is the Nepalese famous fasting festival of Hindu women in Nepal. This festival falls in the month of August or early September. Married women celebrate this festival for well-being of spouse and children and purification of one’s body and soul. Dedicated to the goddess parvati, commemorating her union with lord Shiva, the celebration is considered to be worship of married woman to her husband’s long life and firm relationship between them. Unmarried girls also observe this festival fasting whole day for getting a good husband in future.
The three day long festival has a great significance in the culture and festival of Nepal with the unique activities like singing, dancing and eating delicious foods. Red color is considered auspicious for women observing Teej fast and so most of the married woman dress up in red clothes. Women gather in the shiva temple and circumnavigate the Lingam adorned with flowers, sweets and coins.
Traditionally, Teej used to be the festival of reunion of married women with their maternal families and the festival used to be the medium to express the feeling that they have had in their husband houses through the lyrical melodies which she sing and dance. But nowadays, the way of celebration has been changed and it has become a little bit modernized. The women in the city areas celebrate this festival a month before the actual date, there are different programs having feast and singing and dancing. The songs are now published 2-3 months before in television, radios and online media like Facebook, twitter and youtube. Every year hundreds of songs are released targeted to the Teej festival, nowadays folk songs have been popular among the Nepalese ladies.
When Teej Festival is Celebrated?
After the vibrant festivals like Janai Purnima and Gai Jatra, teej festival falls either in late August or in early September according to Gregorian calendar. This year it is in September 12, 2018 (Bhadra 27, 2075 according to Nepali calendar).
How to Celebrate Teej Festival?
Day 01: Dar Khane Din – The first day of Teej Festival
This is the first day of celebration and Dar Khane Din symbolizes the grand feast and observes heavy delicious feat on the eve of festival till to midnight.
Day 02: The Fasting Day – The second day of Teej Festival
This is the second day of Teej festival and women dress up in beautiful red sari, adorned with ornaments and go for rigid fasting whole day. The fasting is done without a drop of water but nowadays water and fruits are prefered as per the health condition.
Day 03: Puja (Rishi Panchami) – The final day of Teej Festival
This is the last day of Teej festival and on this day women wake up early in the morning, do some ritual activities. On this day, the seven sages of Hindu pantheon are worshiped by women in a belief that it will cleanse all sins of the previous year. They take a bath with the holy red mud and revered leaves of Datiwan.The bath signifies that women are forgiven from all the sins they have committed. After this they sit in a semicircle while a priest sitting in the middle chants devotional prayers.