Ugadi, also known as Yugadi falls on Sunday, March 18. It is a festival celebrating New Year’s Day for Hindus from the Karnataka, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, and Telangana states of India. Clear with its name Udagi, which is literally translated as the start of the new calendar Yug (new) and adi (the beginning), falls on the first day of Chaitra- the first month in Hindi calendar. This colourful, musical and celebration is a feast for the senses, but some other denominations of Hindus don’t recognise this date as their new year. As India is known for its versatile culture and the way it is celebrated, even the New Year fest has different names and times in different parts of the country.
A festival that is known by the name of Gudi Parva in Maharashtra, is celebrated as Ugadi in some other states. Preparations for the festival begin a week before due to the amount of food and decorations involved. Homes are also cleaned thoroughly. Fresh mango leaves go up around front doors for good luck. People also buy themselves new clothes for the festival, daub the front of their houses with colourful designs and use coconuts as decorations.
The significance of Ugadi stems from mythological times when Lord Brahma, the creator of the universe, began a series of wonderful creations, including that of the earth and all the life forms that live in it. The festival of Ugadi is celebrated to acknowledge that very day on which Lord Brahma started with the task. It is not only a New Year according to the Hindu calendar, but also sets the new astronomical cycle into motion. The celebrations and prayers that follow fill people’s hearts with joy and contentment. Leaving the past behind and starting afresh with positive expectation is one of the key aspects of Ugadi. The day also marks the beginning of spring season, which is considered to be the first of all seasons, with plants, shoots, and leaves coming to life and therefore, the day is believed to set things rolling for a fresh and successful new beginning.
Ugadi is celebrated with much preparations for it begin days before when people clean and paint their house for the New Year. To mark the festival, people first take a traditional oil-bath followed by prayers. As suggested by scriptures, oil bath and eating of neem leaves are some rituals followed by the people. Though, the North Indians does not celebrate Ugadi but holds a nine-day long Chaitra Navratri Puja on the same day. There, the Chaitra Navratri Puja is celebrated by eating Neem with Mishri on the very first day. Ugadi celebrations end in the evening when people gather around to listen to the religious panchangam or almanac of the New Year.
Here we have the auspicious Muhurat and Puja timings of Ugadi 2018
Telugu Samvatsara 2075 Begins
Pratipada Tithi Begins = 18:41 on 17/Mar/2018
Pratipada Tithi Ends = 18:31 on 18/Mar/2018
On the day of Ugadi, people prepare the Ugadi Pachadi also known as Bevu Bella is a paste of raw mango, neem, tamarind and jaggery. The taste of the dish is sweet and sour and symbolises that life is a beautiful combination of happy and sad events. Happy Ugadi to everyone out there and may God Almighty grant each one of you with good health, happiness and wealth. Happy Ugadi 2018!