News Karnataka
Friday, September 30 2022

Devotees of coastal district worship Nagara Panchami

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Naga Panchami or Nagara Panchami is an important all-India festival and is celebrated on the fifth day of the moonlit-fortnight in the month of Shravan (July /August). This is the time when serpents invariably come out of their holes that get inundated with rain-water to seek shelter in gardens and many times in houses. As such they pose a great danger to man.

Snakes are worshiped on this day. Right from the times when mankind started acquiring some sort of culture, Sun and Snake have been invoked with prayers and ritual worship in most of the countries. In India even before the Vedic times, the tradition of snake-worship was in vogue.

The prominent Cobra snakes mentioned in the Puranas are Anant, Vasuki, Shesh, Padma, Kanwal, Karkotak, Kalia, Aswatar, Takshak, Sankhpal, Dhritarashtra and Pingal. Some historians state that these were not snakes but Naga Kings of various regions with immerse power.

The thousand-headed Shesh Nag who symbolises Eternity is the couch of Lord Vishnu. It is on this couch that the Lord reclines between the time of the dissolution of one Universe and creation of another.

Nag Panchami, one of the most auspicious festivals  in the Hindu Celender  is  celebrated on Sunday Aug 11 this year. The coastal belt and Western Ghats have been a traditional habitat of serpents since times unknown and thus Nagara Panchami is one of the most ancient and sacred festivals of this part of the coastal region.

Early morning devotees gathered in large numbers to perform various pujas on the occasion of Nagara Panchami.

According to the Bhavishya Purana, when men bathe the snakes Vasuki, Takshaka, Kaliya, Manibhadra, Airavata, Dhritarashtra, Karkotaka and Dhananjaya with milk, on the fifth day of the bright fortnight of Shriven, they ensure freedom from danger for their families. As per a legend, on the day of Naga Panchami, ploughing a field is forbidden. It is believed that in reward for worship, snakes will never bite any member of the family. In order to stop Naga Dosha (effect from snake), (it is believed that snakes will take revenge for hurting or disturbing them and it will effect the family) Indians worship Naga on the special day by giving bathe to it.

On the day of Nagara Panchami Hindus worship snake with milk, flowers, tender coconut water, ghee and offer pooja.

In order to prepare for Naga Panchami, devotees were shopping for the things required for the pooja. The scenes of selling Kedage, (Gendali) tender coconut and (sampage) flower, were found in city market.
The people of Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and Kasargod districts worship the serpent god Subrahmanya. People offered their prayers early in morning at Kudupu Shri Anantha Padmanaba Kshetra, Malagadevi, Kukke Subramanya Temple and Shri Sharavu Mahaganapathi Temple.

Naga Panchami is also observed in various parts of the country with full pomp and gaiety.

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