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Tuesday, January 14, 2003

Tilgul ghyaa ani god god bola goes the popular phrase in Marathi (my mother-tongue). Roughly translated into English, it means "Have this Tilgul (a sweet made of Sesame seeds and jaggery) and talk sweetly". It's a greeting that is exchanged on the day of Makar Sankranti, an Indian festival that falls every year on January 14th.

According to Hindunet, Makar Sankranti marks the beginning of Uttarayan, the Sun's northward journey. Makar is called Capricorn in the western astrological calendar. Makar Sankranti falls on 14th of January every year. The day and night on Makar Sankrant are of exactly of equal hours. This day is observed as the most auspicious day by the Hindus all over the country. In the south of India, this festival is popular as Pongal.

Though the festival is celebrated differently in the country, it is significant to note that Til seeds (sesame seeds) and jaggery are used everywhere. Obviously, to combat the chilly winter, til oil is used along with jaggery. Til contains oil and it is healthy. Being soft, exchanging til seeds or products made from til means an exchange of love and tender feelings.

Makar Sankranti is a major festival in Maharashtra, especially in the rural areas where the harvest season begins on this day. Laddus made from Til and jaggery, Tilguls made from til and sugar are offered to each other as a wish for prosperity, health and happiness. These tokens symbolize one's wish for other people to say sweet words and have sweet and soft feelings to one and all. That's why the phrase "Tilgul ghya ani god god bola!".

So... Happy Makar Sankranti and Happy Pongal to you all!!

And, belated Lohri wishes to all the Punjabi people (a certain Sukhwinder included!)!! Hope you had fun yesterday! :-)


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Sameer/Male/27. Hails from India/Maharashtra/Mumbai/Prabhadevi, speaks Marathi, English and Hindi. Spends 60% of daytime online. Uses a Faster (1M+) connection. And likes Reading/Computers.