Makar Sankranti is celebrated on January 14th every year. It marks the end of cold and dark winter season and the beginning of the new harvest season. This day is dedicated to the Lord of Sun. It also marks the solar day in the Hindu Calendar. The day is considered to be very auspicious. The sun enters the zodiac sign of capricorn also known as Makar Rashi in Hindi. Makar Sankranti marks the end of dark and cold winters days and start of the happy and long summer days.
Makar Sankranti Festival – Date, History, Significance & Celebration
The day of Sankranti marks the beginning of the journey of the Northward of Sun. This is the reason why this festival is known as Uttarayan.
Sankranti is deemed as Deity. As said the legend Sankranti killed a devil named as Sankarasur. The day after the Makar Sankranti is known as Karidin or Kinkrant. On this day, the devil slayed the devil Kinkarasur.
Makar Sankranti is a very significant occasion for the nation. This day marks the movement of Sun towards the North. The period from Karka Sankranti to Makar Sankranti is known to be Dakshinayan (wiki).
As per the scriptures, the Dakshinayan signifies as the God of night or the sign pf negativity and Uttarayan is considered as a symbol of day of Gods or a sign of positivity.
Since it is said that on this day the Sun starts its journey towards the north so many people go to River Ganga and take a holy bath and chant mantras. Normally the Sun affects all the zodiac signs and that is the reason why people dip into River Ganga.
Before Makar Sankranti, the Sun is said to be in the Southern Hemisphere. This is the reason why the nights are longer and days are smaller in India during this time. Different people celebrate this festival with different names. In Punjab, the day before the festival of Makar Sankranti, Lohri is celebrated which marks the cultivation of the rabi crops and harvesting of wheat. Lohri is celebrated on January 13th every year with huge enthusiasm and zeal by many people and most importantly in Punjab and Haryana.
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On the day of Makar Sankranti, people fly kites all across India and celebrate this festival with huge enthusiasm and zeal. Many people make huge feasts and lunch to celebrate this day.