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Greenest Time in Nepal

Posted by: Dhurba K. Deep | Date: July 31, 2008

MONSOON in Nepal is lush green. Hills are green. Fields are green. Entire Nepal is green. In fact, this is the greenest time of the year.

 

The fresh smell of greenery is the first luxury the monsoon a stranger can feel. Monsoon begins here it the middle of June and continues till mid-September. The monsoon is also the season for planting rice and plenty of rain is needed for rice plantation. Nepalese farmers know exactly when to start their work. They set themselves to work when they see that they have enough rain necessary for the work.

The Newar farmers of Kathmandu Valley are supposed to complete this work before the Ghantakarna festival which starts exactly on the 14th day of the dark fortnight of Shrawan (June-July). It is interesting to note that the deadline, traditionally set for completing the rice plantation work covers roughly seven weeks. Farmers who cannot get their work done before the deadline are not supposed to take part in Ghantakarna festival at all. This is the traditional taboo which signifies that work worship. This custom speaks a lot about the beautiful philosophy of labour that the Nepalese have always esteemed.

 

It is quite interesting to note that farmers, particularly the Newar farmers of Kathmandu Valley, do not engage in any festivity and fun until they totally finish their rice plantation work. Another interesting part is that the valley farmers are not supposed to use any musical instruments for social ceremonies during this particular period. It is only after Ghantakarna and Gunla, the beginning of the Buddhist religious month, that they begin to use musical instruments again for the ceremonial occasions. The only entertainment they sing while palnting rice without any musical instrument.

Every terraced rice field here is a piece of beautiful terracraft. Something very special about I the monsoon here is that it always comes along with a crowd of festivals. It is during this particular season - that the Nepalese observe the largest number of festivals at very close intervals. All these festivals are basically of religious and invariably associated with the monsoon June-July and August are the three major months that bring forth lots of socio-religious events. Some of the major festivals that occur during this particular season include:

 

  • Ghantakarna, a very old festival designe' chase evil spirits away
  • Nagapanchami, the serpents' day, designed to win the vice by means of virtue.
  • Janaipurnima, designed to respect the dition of learning old texts and its values.
  • Krishnastami, Lord Krishna's birthday.
    Gokarna Auncy, father's day.


Ghantakarna is the first festival of the monsoon that begins for many others to follow the series and the last one is Gokarna Auncy that pulls the monsoon festivals curtain down.

Festival in Nepal means deep religious faith feeling for fellow beings and, of course, feast and with friends and family. This is something very typical of the Nepalese way of life that can be better explained only through one's own experience


Courtesy: Nepal Traveller

 

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