The Tamil Calendar month of Thai is the month when the grown paddies/crops sowed in the Tamil Calendar month of Aadi are harvested. The all-new rice taken from this latest harvest is to be used as the main ingredient for making sweet Pongal along with the other ingredients of sugar/jaggery, milk, and ghee and THIS IS THE SPECIAL GRAND OCCASION KNOWN AS THE HUGELY-POPULAR PONGAL FESTIVAL!
The day, known as ‘Makara Sankranthi’ is the day on which the Sun God shifts from the Zodiac Sign of ‘Dhanur’ to the other Zodiac Sign of ‘Makaram’. On this holy day, the season/session (of 6 months) ‘Utharayana’- also known as ‘Ayanam’ - commences. This wi be for a duration of 6 months from the Tamil Calendar months of Thai to Aani. It may be noted that in the epic of Mahabharatha, Utharayana or Ayanam is the season the old-warrior-sage Bhishma waited in his death-bed in the War of Kurukshetra. Utharayanam or Ayanam is the season that offers maximum benefits for 6 months.
The 1st day of the Tamil Calendar month of Thai is celebrated as the all-important festival of Pongal marking the commencement of Utharayana Punyakalam (the session of good benefits). ‘Tarpanam’ or Obeisance to the departed forefathers is performed on this day. These 2 occasions always occur combined on this singe day. Most citizens have doubts as to the ideal time for setting the Pongal pot for the festival and the ideal time to perform the ‘Tarpan’.
All of us are aware that Pongal Festival is celebrated with the preparation of Pongal in an all-new pot (earthenware). However, as regards the ideal lagnas to set up the Pongal Pot, they are the lagnas of Makaram & Kumbam.
On the 1st day of the Tamil Calendar Month of Thai, the Makaram and Kumbam lagnams occur from 6.00 AM to 10.00 AM. These are the 4 idea hours for this purpose – ensure that no Rahu Kalam and Yama Gantam occur in this time bracket while setting up the Pongal Pot.
Ther term makaram signifies the month of Thai and the term kumbam signifies pot. So, there are the idea periods chosen by our ancestors and these are very much to be followed by us as well to avail all the positive aspects of this holy/sacred occasion/festival!
During this year 2021, the Tamil Calendar month of Thai commences on 15th January.
The idea time selected by the experts in this aspect for setting up the Pongal Pot:
- For tying ‘kapu’ – 13th January - Wednesday (today) - 9.00 AM to 10.30 AM.
- For setting up the Pongal Pot - 14th January - Thursday - 7.30 AM to 9.00 AM
- For setting up the Pongal Pot - 14th January - Thursday - 10.30 AM to 12.00 Noon
- To perform Pooja on Mattu Pongal Day - 15th January- Friday - 9.00 AM to 10.30 AM
- For setting up the ‘Kanuppongal’ - 16th January Saturday - 7.30 AM to 9.00 AM
- 16th January - Saturday - from 10.30 AM to 12.00 Noon
To perform Utharayana Punyakaam Tarpanam - Take bath - Observe Penance (Viratham) Perform Tarpan before 8.00 AM – Avail the entire benefits!