Navratri – Tamil Nadu!!

‘Celebrating legacy’ –  Navrathri is a festival which goes by the phrase strictly . As most of us would know,in Tamil Nadu, Navrathri is celebrated by setting up Golu(Arrangement of Dolls). This Golu would comprise of dolls that had been passed on from different generations and each time the collections getting bigger in size with the addition of  a new set of Dolls. These dolls would fall under different categories, which includes depiction of events sited in Puranas, day to day activities of people in Tamil Nadu, the rituals they perform during the course of one’s life, etc. Golu is one of the most exiting way to educate the kids on the stories of our epics , customs and beliefs of the families and thereby keeping the traditions intact. Here are few pics from this year’s Golu displays which I found really interesting and enthralling (Unfortunately I could capture only a few before the shop keeper chased me out of the shop 😛 )


Epic : Ramayana:

Ravana’s Courtyard in Lanka. An excerpt from Ramayana, where when Lord Hanuman went as a peacekeeper to avoid war, he was not offered a seat, so he had twined his tail and formed it as a seat.
Kumbakarna – Ravana’s Brother who sleeps even when people are playing different musical instruments sitting on him.
Ashvamedha Yagna: Any  Yagna should be performed by one’s wife by side and since Sita was in the forest, Lord Rama performs this Yagna with a Golden statue of Sita.

Lord Vishnu:

Childless Periazhwar finds Child Andal near the Tulsi plant. Andal wears the Garland that is to be dedicated for the presiding deity of the temple and looks at the mirror.

Lord Vishnu in Garuda:

Gajendra Moksham : Where Lord Vishnu came in Garuda to save the elephant which is being bitten by a Crocodile.

Lord Vishnu In Narasimha Avatar:

Lord Vishnu in Narasimha Avatar split the Pillar and came to save his devotee Prahalad. 

Lord Shiva:

Lord Shiva’s Marriage:

Meenakshi Kalyanam : Lord Shiva marries Lord Vishnu’s sister Meenakshi in the presence of Lord Brahma with his escort Saraswathi, Goddess Lakshmi and Narathar.

Mount Kailash:

Lord Shiva, Goddess Shakti, Lord Ganesha, Lord Subramaniya, Lord Brahma, Goddess Saraswati, Lord Vishnu, Goddess Lakshmi in Mount Kailash.

Tamil Rituals:

While in olden days, the Marriage set was very common where the Bride and the Groom sits in the middle with the priest performing Homam, the grooms’s sister holding a lamp behind , now this Marriage ceremony itself has been expanded a lot with the inclusion of Groom welcoming ceremony (Mapilai Azhaipu),  Bride welcoming ceremony (Pen azhaippu), Marriage feast , Musical concerts etc. 

Apart from this we have the Baby shower ceremony, tonsuring ceremony for babies, House warming ceremony, the ritual of taking bath in a pond and worshipping God,  Worship of Cows etc.

We can find these dolls a lot in Kuralagam and Mylapore areas in Chennai during the Navarathri Season. Its also good to visit Khadi which sells these dolls at reasonable prices. In Bangalore, I could find these dolls in Malleswaram 1oth cross street.

This practise of Golu is common in Karnataka and Andhra as well. But there are different sets of Dolls in these places specific to the customs and traditions of that particular places. More on these on my next article. *Stay connected*

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