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Hartalika Teej Festival is the celebration of the reunion of Goddess Parvathi with Lord Shiva. During this festival, Goddess Parvathi is worshipped under the name of Hartalika.
Hartalika Teej is one of the three types of Teej - Hariyali Teej, Kajari Teej and Haritalika Teej that are being celebrated. Haritalika Teej falls on Shukla Paksha Tritiya(on the third day of the bright fortnight) of the Hindu month of Bhadrapada. Haritalika Tej is celebrated one month after Hariyali Teej.
Teej festival can be observed in the North Indian States like Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, and Bihar. We can also observe this festival in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka with the name Gowri Habba. It is believed that Women who perform Gowri Habba will get the blessings of Goddess Gowri(Parvathi) for Happy married life.
What do people do on Hartalika Teej Festival?
Usually, on this day, Women get up early in the morning, clean their house neatly, take a head bath and dress up beautifully in a traditional way wearing jewelry, Kajal and bindi. Mainly, Green color clothes are preferred by women. Then they perform Puja. Hartalika Puja is performed in the morning time. If Shiva-Parvathi Puja cannot be done in the morning, Pradosh time is also considered a good time for Puja. On this day, Statues of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvathi are made with clay and worshiped for Marital bliss. The story of Hartalika is narrated during the puja. It is believed that women who perform this vrat and listen to the story of Hartalika Teej, are blessed with a happy married life. Food offerings that are made by the women during this vrat are sweets, fresh fruits, and green vegetables. A special sweet with rice and coconut milk is prepared.
Story of Harthalika Teej:
Hartalika word is a combination of two words "harit" and "aalika". Harit means "abduction" and aalika means "female friend". According to the story of "Hartalika Teej" Goddess Parvathi was the daughter of Himavat, king of the mountains, and Mena. Himavat with the suggestion of Narada, wants his daughter Parvathi to marry Lord Vishnu. But Goddess Parvathi Loves Lord Shiva and wants to marry him. On hearing this matter Parvathi told her friend about her father's decision. So Parvathi's friend took(abducted) her to the thick forest so that her marriage would be canceled with Lord Vishnu against her wish.
Goddess Parvathi made a Shiva Lingam with her hair and prayed Lord Shiva on the third day of Bhadrapad. Lord Shiva was impressed with that and promised Parvathi to marry her. After that Parvathi was married to Lord Shiva with her father Himavat's blessings. From then, that day is called as Haritalika Teej as on that day Parvathi's female friend had to abduct her to achieve Parvathi's goal of Marring Lord Shiva.
Celebration of Hartalika Teej:
Hartalika Teej festival is mostly celebrated by the North Indian women with enthusiasm and zeal. During this festival, Women observe Fast and perform puja for the long life of their husbands. Unmarried girls also perform this vrat to get a good husband. Women observe fast without even drinking water. This fast is broken on the next day. Women performing this vrat stay up all night listening to prayers. In many places, we can find big processions carrying the idols of Goddess Parvathi and Lord Shiva with bands, music, and dance. We can also find several camels and elephants making the procession attractive. On the occasion of the Hartalika Teej festival, fairs are also organized. People enjoy the processions during this festival.
Festivals play a significant role in our day to day lives. We worship different Gods and accordingly there are different festivals that we celebrate to mark the occasion. Festivals provide us with an opportunity to spend quality time with our family, friends and relatives. There are so many rituals attached to the festivals and this makes the entire concept of celebration of festivals even more colorful & exciting.
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