Pola / Pithori Amavasya

Name of the festival : Pola / Pithori Amavasya
Lunar Day (Tithee) :

श्रावणामावास्यायां प्रदोष व्यापिनां कार्यम्
दिनद्वये प्रदोषव्याप्तौ एकदेशव्याप्तौ परा |
परदिने प्रदोष व्याप्तभावे पूर्वाग्राह्या ||

Pithori Amavasya

  • It is celebrated and worshipped from Aashadh Amavasya to Shravan Amavasya.
  • This period of one month includes Jivantika pujan, Nagpanchami, Aditya Ranubai Vrat, Rakshabandhan, Bhakt Gaurav Janmashtami etc.
  • According to Krishnopanishad Lord Shankara is the Sadguru of Lord Krishna. Lord Krishnas ‘Venu’ is contiguous form of Lord Krishna. ‘Venu Vruksh’ is still worshipped as form of Lord Shiva. (That is the secret of Shravan month and Janmaashtami yog, which is seen here.)

Pithori Amavasya Pujan Vidhi

  • Deities named ‘Chusashth Yogini’ are invoked and worshipped by making sixty four (8*8) clusters of rice.
  • At some places people worship by drawing pictures on the wall and on the other some places it is celebrated by making ‘Flour Idols’.
  • After this ‘Khir’ is offered as offering Naivedyam and Vandanam. It is customary to donate it without looking at your children.(off springs)

Ancient references of this worship

  • In Shri Shivapanchakshar Stotra, there is a reference of  “श्रीनिलकण्ठाय वृषध्वजाय” i.e. there is a sign of Vrushabh(bull) on the flag of Lord Mahadev.
  • According to ‘Bhagavat Puran’, Vrushabh is the incarnation of Bhagavan Vishnu. Through agriculture these people carryout work of subject rearing. Thats why farmers think that field is found to be fertile with his (Vrushabh) touch.
  • According to the story of ‘Vrushvaishya – Bhill’, in Shiv Puran, it is mentioned that Vrushabh has got a place in Lord Shankaras ‘Gan’(Group).
  • In Atharvaved the Hymn states, “Bring us, Give us, Bless us with the cows with Bulls.”
  • Apart from this many references of Vrushabh are found in ancient texts as Rigveda, Taittiriya Samhita, Kathak Samhita, Krishi Parashar etc.

Pujan Vidhi (Worshiping ritual)

  • The main Deity of this festival is Vrushabh (Bull) and hence in his actual absence the image of  this deity is made by clays on this day.
  • As Bulls are deity, they are kept free from their routine work.
  • They are bathed and rubbed with Ghee and Turmeric on their backs known as ‘Hingula’.
  • After that Bulls are decorated by painting their horns, tying curls and beautiful garlands,  wearing anklets and colourful swing on their back.
  • After the procession in the evening Punyavati (virtuous ladies) worship as per tradition and offer ‘Puranpoli’ as Naivedyam as per the custom.
  • In some places ‘Thombara’ (a food item made by Jawar) is also offered as Naivedyam.
  • Also the practice of offering Rakhi (which was tied on Rakshabandhan) is found common everywhere.
  • At some places sister prays for the wellness of brother and breaks cucumber on his back as a custom and then only stsrts eating cucumber

Importance of the Festival

  • The festival is also called as ‘Bendur’ or ‘Bender’.
  • This festival is a showing sense of gratitude and devotion to the bull. Because he is responsible for the abundance of crops in the fields and growth of cows (cattlewealth) which indirectly reflects prosperity and progress of any country. It also shows basic purpose behind its celebration.
  • It is strictly stated in the Atharvaved (9.4.17) and Mahabharat (262.4) that, “The bull of the country should not be killed.”
  • Coins decipiting bulls have excavated at Harappa and Mohenjodaro, shows Bull worshipping was the culture of that time.
  • There is a separate temple of of ‘Vrushabh’ named ‘Vasvangudi’ near Mysore.
  • Farmer loves his bulls / Ox like his children even today. All the festivals we find in our culture are nothing but the systematic way of expressing love and compassion to all the animals. Shiv Puran praises Vrushabh as,

नन्दीश्वरो महातेजा नगेन्द्रतनयात्मजः |
सनारायनकैर्देवैः नित्यं अभ्यर्च वन्दितः ||