Kajali Teej, 29 August 2018

Kajal is a cosmetic make up item that is a dry black powder-like substance in the raw type, which is mostly used by females for eyes’ beautification purposes. Kajal is applied on the upper and lower eyelids, the eyelashes and the outer ‘V’ of the eye area. Besides the availability of ready-to-use Kajal in the form of pens in retail beauty shops, e-commerce sites etc, small quantities of Kajal can also be made easily at home on cooking stove burner fire or by using a Diya or candle flame. Kajal is also sometimes put on infants-babies, children, to keep people’s bad-negative sight away and to protect the child. However, even in history, Kajal does not seem to have much trace-link with the festival Kajali Teej except the relevance that ladies also use Kajal to look nice on the festival.

Kajali Teej is an Indian and Nepali festival. It is typically celebrated in central-northern India and Nepal. It is famous to be celebrated with enthusiasm and vigor on an international mapped small tourist place called Bundi in Rajasthan. A fair is also held here at this time. Bundi is sometimes referred as Chotti Kashi, smaller version or replica of Varanasi. The celebration is normally marked for one or two days, but the festivity and aura spread up to the following important festival Krishna Janamasthami. Krishna Janamasthami in 2018 falls on Gregorian 2-3 September.

Kajali Teej is one of the three Teejs; the other two being Haryali Teej and Hartalika Teej. Kajali Teej is also called Badi Teej, Kajari Teej, Boorhi Teej and Satudi Teej, different words that are used in the natives’ own way region wise. Kajali Teej falls between two important and prominent festivities of Raksha Bandhan and Krishna Janamasthami.

Kajali Teej happens about 15 days after the Haryali Teej. It falls in the Hindu lunar calendar month of Bhadrapada, towards the end of the monsoon season. Bhadrapada corresponds to the Gregorian period mid-end August and much of September. Kajali Teej is observed on Tritiya – the 3rd day of the Krishna Paksha, the waning-decreasing phase of the moon, and the dark fortnight in this month.

On Kajali Teej, ladies, mostly married, pray to Goddess Parvati, Lord Shiva, and Lord Krishna in devotion. Many visit Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati temples. Many observe Vrat, fasting, for the long life and wellbeing of their respective husbands. They pray for a blissful married life. Many prepare special food and snack-sweet items like ‘Gujiya’, ‘Halwa’ etc. In some areas, there is local folk music and dancing. Some worship the moon, and the holy Neem tree called Neem Puja. Many dress up like newlywed brides and also apply Mehendi.

Mantra for Goddess Parvati

Om Umaamaheshvaraabhyaan Namah

ऊँ उमामहेश्वराभ्यां नमः

and,

Sarva Mangala Maangalye, Shive Sarvaartha Saadhike
Sharanye Tryambake Gauri, Naaraanyani Namostute

सर्वमङ्गलमाङ्गल्ये शिवे सर्वार्थसाधिके
शरण्ये त्र्यम्बके गौरि नारायणि नमोऽस्तु ते

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