Dashain begins today with Ghatasthapana

KATHMANDU: Dashain, the greatest and longest festival of Hindu Nepalis, officially begins today with Ghatasthapana.

Ghatasthapana is observed by people performing puja and setting up ghata or pot, on which they sow seeds of barley, wheat, corn and rice, at homes and temples in accordance with Vedic tradition.

The Nepal Panchanga Nirnayak Samiti, which publishes the lunar calendar, has said 11:25am is the auspicious time for sowing seeds in a mixture of sand and soil in a clay pot. The sprouted seedlings are called jamara. These are offered along with tika on the 10th day, which is observed as Vijaya Dashami. On this day — the main day of the Dashain festival — elders and seniors offer tika and jamara to younger relatives and subordinates and bless them.

Likewise, October 21 (Wednesday) will mark Mahaashtami along with the Kalratri puja on the same night. Mahanavami and Vijaya Dashami will be celebrated on the same day on October 22 (Thursday) this year.

The Samiti has suggested that all the concerned to perform Mahanavami rituals before proceeding to Vijaya Dashami.

The auspicious time to conclude the Mahanavami puja is 10:45am.

Though tika can be received and offered from the day of Vijaya Dashami to Kojagrat Purnima, the most auspicious time for receiving and offering tika is 10:55am on Vijaya Dashami.

According to popular Hindu myth, Goddess Durga had killed the demon king Mahishasur on Mahanavami and Vijaya Dashami symbolises the victory of good over evil.