SANKARANTHY:

Birth of tamil month thai: For each birth of tamil month pithru tharpanam will have to be performed by the persons who have lost their fathers. In the month of thai

uthiraayanam starts and in the month of aadi dhakshinaayanam starts. In the month chithrai chithra vishu and in the month of aipasi thula vishu starts. Tharpanam should be done

after the birth of thai month. tharpanam should be done before dhakshinayanam starts; that is in uthiraayanam itself before aadi maadha pirappu.

During this tharpanam day no kolam only in the frontage of the house. In all other places kolam can be drawn. before sankaranthy it is customary to have white wash

done,for the entire house. The front gate also will be decorated with mango leaves.In The compound wall in some districts in tamil nadu neem leaves and poolai poo plant will be

placed in all sides of the house.

Pithru tharpanam must be done first and then only sun pooja must be done.

If there is an open courtyard in the house,the pooja can be done. otherwise, the pooja could be performed in the regular pooja room itself. Wash and clean the floor where

pooja is to be performed.draw a big square in rangoli applying kaavi (red oxide) in the middle.Within that square draw a circle with eyes etc; on the northern side of the

square.(to depict the sun god surya). ande then on the southern side draw a half circle with eyes etc;(to depict the moon god chandran)

In villages white and yellow pumpkin flowers will be arranged on these drawings and pooja performed.

Items required for this pooja: sandal paste, kumkumam, betel leaves , betel nuts, flowers, fruits, sugarcane,ginger bunch, turmeric bunch, turmeric paste ,sambrani,

camphor, unboiled cow,s milk, turmeric paste coated raw rice, coconut.

In madurai and coimbatore district ginger bunches will not be available, so it will not be included in pooja.Just apply a finger length of white lime around the brass

vessal, which is to be placed for preparing pongal. Place sandal and kumkumam dots on four sides of the vessel.Pour a liile milk water in to the vessel and keep the vessel on

the oven.slightly tilted towards eastern side. There should not be rahu kalam, yama kandam at this time.


In some houses ginger and turmeric bunches are tied around the mouth of the brass vessel at the time of placing the vessel on the oven. In some houses these will be tied

when removing the pongal vessel from the oven. preparation of swett pongal is a must. In some houses white pongal and blackgramdhall vadai qare also prepared for this

function.soak raw rice and fried green gram dhall in water mixed with milk. discard the water for first and second time and put it on the oven.

When thw water, milk, are boiled p-lace green gram dhall and rice.. heat and boil.when boiled well add jaggary and, ghee, dried grapes and cashew nuts. .

In madurai district the menu will include 6 varieties of porial,two kootoos,fried applam and sambar with seven vegetables. In thanjavue district They will first prepare

''thani kootu"5 or 7 or 9 different vegetables will be cooked with salt separately and kootu will be prepared. In addition sweet potatoes porial, pumpkin kulambu will be

prepared.

The important vegetables that should be included for sankaranthy menu are; white and yellow pumpkin, plantains, sweet potatoes, beans, potatoes. brinjal, . In addition to

that boiled dhall,pachadi, rasam, curd .

Prepare the neivedhyams as above, and keep ready the pooja articles and perform pooja, after pooja and meals, , take a little of the rice offered as neivedhyam add salt

and curd and a little ginger and knead it into curd rice , to be used for' kanu' next day keep some sweet pongal also for kanu, add some kumkumam and tuemeric powder on the

h
curd rice separately and make small rice balls for kanu.

The remnances of porial,and kootu and rasam etc; may be heated again daily twice,aand prepared into a thick receipe called 'eritha kulambu' can be kept for a few days

more. Those who have performed tharpanam must take snacks and others can take food as usual--regular meals.

KANU PANDIKAI: This festival falls on the next day after sankaranthi festival.This is also called kanu peedai. On this day also all the house should be washed and rangoli

kolams are drawn.in frontage and within the house. To get rid of the bad effects of "kanu peedai" it is customery for even male members of the house to take bath immediately

after getting up from bed and then take coffee etc;

On sankaranthy day evening or on kanu pandigai day morning , the girls of the house will remove the tender turmeric from the bunch that was tied around pongal vessel clean

it, take that and then approach the elderly ladies in the house and in the neighberhood.They will get the turmeric symbollically applied to their forehead.

Those who are living near in places having rivers tanks etc/ will go there and offer kanu pidi.there, take bath and wear new clothes and then return home after eating the

curd bath prepared on the previous day and eritha kolambu. Those who are living in big cities the kanu pidi will be kept in the open courtyard of the house or at the

balcony.then they will have bath, wearing new clothes and taking coffee etc;

METHOD OF KEEPING 'KANUPIDI':Select two turmeric leaves for each girl.Take out a little of curd rice prepared on the previous day. and mix with it, a pinch of turmeric

powder.keep also curd bath separately.sweet pongal will also be used for kanu pidi in some houses. In the curd bath mix with it a pinch kumkumam and put it separately. now they

are having 3 different colours of cooked rice. white, yellow, red and brown. In some houses yellow and white colour varities will be there.

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Seven or nine marble sized balls in each variety will be placed on the turmeric leaf.At the end portion of the leaf , keep 2 betel leaves,2 betel nuts, one plantain fruit,

and 2 small pieces of sugarcane bits. offer all these as neivedhyam. The rice balls will be eaten by the crows and the betel leaves, betel nut and plantain fruit will be taken

by poor class people if this is done in river beds or in tank beds.

If it is done in the balcony of your house give all these in the evening to the servant maid or to beggers.

Generally, the purpose of this festival is to pray for the welfare of their brothers. That is the reason why it is customery for the girl's brother/brothers to send

sankaranthy gift to their sisters. Even widows will have to observe this system if they have brothers.they will also receive sankaranthy gifts from their brothers. After the

kanu pidi is kept the girls must take bath and then they can take food and coffee , previous day's curd rice with eritha kootu.

For this function the girls can visit their parent's house if they are in the same city.sons-in-law are also invited for lunch. rasam will not be prepared on this day.

sambar will not be prepared on sankaranthy day.

FOR LUNCH: variety rice; coconut rice. lime rice. tamirand rice, curd rice will be prepared.fried chips, wafers, vadagam, vattral, fried applam and morekulambu . vadai and

payasam will be there.

MAATTU PONGAL: People who have cows in the house, on the day following sankaranthi must wash the cow and calf and apply turmeric paste ,sandal paste and kumkumam.and

will be garlended with netty maalai.sweet pongal will be prepared and it is offered to cow and calf. offer pooja to the cow.in the morniing hours itself. some people will offer

pooja in the evening.

The cow and calf will be taken out for a short walk. and while returning to the house a long wooden pestle called "ulakkai" will be placed on the frontage and the cow and

calf led over the pestle inside the house.