Gai (Cow) Tihar and Laxmi Pujā

Laxmi Puja, Happy tihar, happy dipawali, goddess Laxmi

The morning of third day is Gai Tihar (worship of the cow). In Hinduism, cow signifies prosperity and wealth. In ancient times people benefitted a lot from the cow. Its milk, dung even urine was used for different purposes like purification. Thus on this day people show their gratefulness to the cow by garlanding and feeding the cow with the best grass. Houses are cleaned and the doorways and windows are decorated with garlands made of Sayapatri( marigolds) and Makhamali flowers (chrysanthemums).

In the evening Laxmi, the goddess of wealth is thanked for all the benefits that were bestowed on the families by lighting oil lamps (Diyo) or candles on doorways and windows to welcome prosperity and well being. At night the girls enjoy dancing and visiting all the houses of the neighborhood with musical instruments singing and dancing known as Bhailo all night long collecting money as tip from houses and share the bounty amongst themselves.

From the third day onwards tihar is celebrated with Deusi and Bhailo along with light and fireworks. . Deusi is mostly sung by the boys while the Bhailo is sung by the girls. Deusi is balladic in nature and tells the story of the festival, with one person in the group narrating and the rest as the chorus. In return the home owners give them money, fruit and Selroti (a special type of Nepali roundels made of rice flour and sugar). Nowadays social workers and politician along with young people visit local homes and sing these songs, and collect funds for welfare and social activities

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