Have you ever wondered, why the month of Purattasi is considered very important by the people? That is because this month has a great religious significance among Hindus and has secured a unique place in the “Traditional Tamil Hindu calendar”. Flick through the blog, and scrutinize the various aspects, traditions and science associated with this auspicious month. Let’s see how one can celebrate the month of Purattasi spiritually and appreciate it scientifically.
Glimpse into the month of Purattasi
The sound of loudspeakers scattering in the environment with divine songs, a large crowd of people marching towards the temples, leaving their houses adorned with flowers and inflated with the smell of incense sticks and benzoin resin, wishing that they could come back soon from the temple to taste a variety of delicious foods that they had prepared. At the end, experiencing spiritual solace, tranquility and gratitude, people consider the month of purattasi, a month of gleefulness.
What is Purattasi Month?
Purattasi month is the sixth month (Mid-September to Mid-October) in the Tamil traditional Calendar that has great importance among the Hindu people. This month is considered unique, as it beautifully blends with science and tradition. This month teaches the importance of taking care of physical and mental well-being while staying connected to our roots. One of the key practices during the month of Purattasi is temple visiting and fasting. Both these practices are been practiced for centuries across various cultures and religions.
Why is Purattasi month considered to be special?
The month of Purattasi is considered to be so auspicious, as it is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. People believe that 5000 years ago, Lord Vishnu descended on earth during the same month in the form of a Wild Boar (Koorma Avathar) to save the world from demons. Devotees of Vishnu consider this month as divine to thank him for protecting the planet from the end of Kali Yuga.
What will people usually do during the month of Purattasi?
Since the month of Purattasi is dedicated to Lord Vishnu, people swarm temples where he is worshipped as the main deity. “The Tirumala temple” situated in Andhra Pradesh is the famous and most visited temple during Purattasi month. Among all days in the month of Purattasi, Saturdays are considered to be the most auspicious and special because legends suggest that, Lord Vishnu is considered as the “God of Protector” and worshipping him during Saturdays will encapsulate people with a shield of protection from the harm that comes from “Shani”- The God of Karma. During the period of Purattasi, some people usually involve themselves in fasting as a dedication to god and on the other hand they prepare food called “Purattasi Thaligai” steamed rice, curried vegetables, fruits, Kozhukattai (steamed rice cakes), vadai (fritters), payasam, and Kesari as an offering to the God.
Temples to visit during the month of Purattasi
Temples that have Lord Vishnu as the main deity are very significant during Purattasi and devotees visit temples like Tirumala Venkateswara temple, Sri Koodal Azhagar Temple in Madurai, Sri Ranganathar temple in Karamadai, Sri Oppiliappan Temple in Kumbakonam, Srirangam Ranganthaswamy Temple in Trichy, and Perumal malai temple in Thuraiyur (South Tirupati) that are very famous places to visit during Purattasi
Now, let your spiritual outlook turn into scientific and realistic ideologies
“The six scientific perspectives on the month of Purattasi“
Steeped into the vibrant history of a proud classical civilization that dates back 5,000 years ago, Tamil culture, ideas, and tradition are deeply rooted into intense scientific ideas and aspects, even before the development of all the technological advancements. You will be astounded to find every festival, ritual, custom and tradition of Tamil has incredible scientific reasons behind it.
1. Vacation for Goat, Chicken and Fish – A hack to avoid digestive problems
During the month of Purattasi, people usually prefer to abstain themselves from consuming meat and other non-vegetarian dishes. You may affirm that this act of restraining oneself from consuming non-vegetarian foods is due to visiting temples. Though this reason is true for spiritually oriented people, they would find it startling to discover that the practice of avoiding meat is actually associated with science. Mid-September marks the beginning of autumn. Due to this, the temperature is moderately cooler and the daylight is more than the usual. The combination of cooler atmosphere along with daylight may lead to fatigue, heat-related infections and listlessness to the person who possesses a weak immune system. It is a concealed truth that, Purattasi is appertaining to the digestive system of human beings. Meat, especially red meat, is generally harder to digest than plant-based foods as it contains a lot of protein and fat, which requires a lot of time and energy for the body to break down.
2. Fasting – Rewards good gut health
Although fasting has gained popularity currently, the practice of fasting dates back centuries and is considered one of the oldest medical practices. Whether not eating food, or eating low-calorie foods, many people believe that our body’s purpose is to go without food for a particular period. People are involved in fasting during Purattasi to maintain good gut health. Even if they consume vegetarian food, items like spinach, cabbage, celery and tomatoes might cause trouble during digestion. So people prefer to consume less or completely avoid food for health benefits. Fasting during this period rewards the person with a good metabolism, supports cardiac rhythm, helps reduce anxiety, and maintains blood sugar levels. As people rarely prefer to take up fasting, they find Purattasi month perfect to do that task to protect them from health issues.
3. One month of being a typical herbivorous – Let your tummy stress less
Creatures that are herbivorous (Cows, goats, etc.) are physiologically designed to consume only plant-based diets. Hence digestive issues are uncommon among cattle. But humans are evolved to be omnivorous where they consume both meat and plant-based diets and have a complex digestive system. Since the earth has soaked itself in rain after summer, the month of purattasi (Mid – September to Mid – October) is known to emit harmful heat that is more problematic than summer heat. It is also believed that due to the interference of these sudden temperature fluctuations, the digestive capacity of the body will be weak, which might lead to complications like diarrhea, heartburn, nausea and vomiting. That is why people prefer to have only veggies over meat or poultry to maintain good gut health. Keeping that reason in mind, they cook varieties of vegetarian foods which include sweet Pongal, Maavilakku, coconut rice, sambar, lentil gravy, vegetable curry, Chickpea, curd and other healthy menus. Although people consume only vegetarian foods, some tend to exclude garlic and onions from their diet mainly to avoid body temperature becoming imbalanced
4. Benefits of Vitamin D – Get that for free
It is an existing fact on your mind for years, which states that sun is the prime, natural and the biggest source that provides vitamin D at free of cost. As daylight reduces during the month of Purattasi, people are deprived of getting sufficient sunlight. And as it rain now and then, people will not prefer to step out of their homes. Hence, when they halt indoors for a long period of time, they miss out on the chance to expose themselves to the sunshine and observe vitamin D. This condition may lead to fluctuations in BP in adults, allergic reactions to kids and frailty among youngsters. To avoid these health complications, people march in large numbers to temples making use of the right time when the sun shines moderately.
5. Developing social bonds – Unity among the community
Stepping outside the home during the month of Purattasi will not only add benefits to your health but also help to create social bonds among people, especially women. Women – the landladies of the kitchen for many years, never found ways to develop any kind of strong social bonds with people other than their family members. But the arrival of the month – Purattasi infuses dopamine into the minds of every woman as it provides them the chance to meet various people and develop a healthy relationship that would last even after numerous Purattasi months. Since women are piled up with various work at their homes, going outside and meeting people during this month aids them with refreshing and amusing effects that tend to reduce the stress and burdens that come out of heavy household workloads. Regular temple visit strengthens relationships, encourage good behavior, and create a sense of unity among people who share similar beliefs and values. Since frequent visit to the temple in mass numbers is not possible, people grab the chance to meet each other during special occasions like Purattasi month.
6. Visiting the hub of divinity and positivity – Experience the placebo effect
Every residential area houses a free psychological therapy centre named “Temple”. It is a place that holds pure vibrations of positive energy, magnetic waves, and electric waves. It is believed that during ancient times, the floor in the middle of the temple was constructed in a way that it could produce positive vibrations, allowing them to spread from the feet to the body of humans. Walking barefoot on these floors will help those vibrations circulate in the human body. Particularly, the bells in the temple produce sounds called “OM” and when it enter through the ears, it creates optimistic zeal in the body that tends to ease out all the negativities that Purattasi month brings such as weather change, allergic reactions, congestion, disruption in sleep patterns, and exposure to bacteria and viruses due to heat.
All these stumbling block causes stress and anxiety and the act of visiting temples and participating in religious rituals can create a placebo effect, where people experience better physical and mental health benefits as the ambience is designed in a way that produces only peace and contentment.
Sometimes a different perspective can benefit a people in numerous ways. Avoid just clinging on to the superstitions and expand the understanding, challenge your own beliefs and ideas, and gain new insights when you encounter different views. During Purattasi, embrace the scientific and traditional aspects and experience its holistic benefits.
In Conclusion, Purattasi is a unique month that beautifully combines science and tradition. It teaches us the importance of taking care of our physical and mental well-being while staying connected to our roots. So, the next time Purattasi comes around, embrace the scientific and traditional aspects of this month and experience its holistic benefits.
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