The most prominent and exhilarating festival of Bengalis, Durga Puja, is just knocking on the door. It is celebrated in much grander and vigorous manner by Bengalis all around the world. The five-day festivities are to appreciate and celebrate the homecoming of Durga Maa with her kids, Lakshmi, Saraswati, Ganesha, and Kartikeya. Durga Maa’s farewell comes with a fun ritual called Sindoor Khela on Vijayadashami, right before she has to return to the abode of Kailash, home of Lord Shiva. Read on to obtain more knowledge about the traditional rituals of Bengalis.
What Is Sindoor Khela?
To conclude this grand celebration of Durga Maa, married women first perform the ritual of Devi Baran. Baran is done by offering her sweets and betel leaves. Then they do aarti and smear Maa with sindoor, on her forehead and feet. After Baran, Sindoor Khela begins.
The married women are flawlessly decked up in white sarees with red borders, so it becomes a twinning platform that makes Bengalis’ hearts flutter with pride. They playfully apply sindoor to each other on foreheads, cheeks, and on their bangles. They also feed each other sweets. It is truly such a pleasant sight to see and you should indeed take the opportunity to witness it!
The Reason Why The Auspicious Sindoor Khela Is Celebrated
- In Bengali culture, it is customary for Bengali mothers to offer sindoor to their married daughters as a parting gift before they leave for their in-laws. This was also treated as a blessing for her married life.
- During Durga Puja, Maa also travels to her father’s home, the earth. She is considered a divine Mother and a graceful daughter, so this custom has been respectfully extended to Durga idols as well.
- Adhering to traditional conventions, Sindoor Khela showcases praying for blessings for a long, prosperous, and happy married life for each other and protecting kids from evil matters.
- It also represents the strength of womanhood. It is Maa Durga, she is known for her strength and power!
Modern Day Khela Is Considerate For All
- Sindoor Khela predominantly restricts to married women but in recent times, it includes broader people like single mothers, unmarrieds, divorcees, widows, transgenders, and sex workers as well.
- Sindoor Khela is a universal traditional custom for all now.
- It is now a fun ritual where dancing to dhaak beats does not stop and everyone hurdles and enjoys this grand custom.
Afterwards, the idol is taken for immersion with the same lavish festivities of dhaak, dance, and hearts filled with happiness!
Ei baar Sindoor Khela hobe!
Cover Image Credits: Wikimedia Commons
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