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Sankranti – Pongal Celebrated


HPI
KAPAA, HI, USA, January 15, 2011: All over the world, Hindus celebrate and offer gratitude to nature, mother Earth and the Sun.
Makara Sankranti ia a festival when Hindus take four days to give thanks to four great forces of influence and protection: Indra, the giver of rain; Surya, the Sun; gracious cattle and beloved ancestors. This happy occasion is known as Pongal by Tamils, Pedha Panduga among the Telugus and Lohri by Punjabis. It begins on the day the Sun enters Makara (Capricorn), between January 13 and 15. This is a special time of giving blankets, pumpkins, sugarcane and other items to the poor. Married women are honored, and gifts are given to newborn children.
Hindus acknowledge the sacredness of Earth and all life. Nature is a creative force worthy of respect, even veneration. Each year at harvest time, agrarian communities all over India celebrate this festival with enthusiastic abandon. They dance, fly kites, sing and exchange gifts in a grand thanksgiving celebration.
Your can read more about this festival (and many others) at www.hinduismtoday.com/festivals.

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