To all those opposing valentine's day because it's supposedly corrupts "indian culture"::
Kaaman Pandigai is our Valentine’s Day
Wednesday February 14 2007 09:45 IST
CHENNAI: With Valentine’s Day gaining increasing popularity in the last few years, it would be interesting to know that Tamil culture and literature have celebrated love and given importance to Manmada or Kaama (Cupid) and his lady love Rathi from time immemorial.
There are references in ancient Tamil literature to celebrations of love in the form of Indran Pandigai or Indran Tiruvizha and Kaaman Pandigai or Kaaman Tiruvizha.
Kaaman Pandigai and Indran Pandigai have several similarities to the Valentine’s Day celebrations.
Not only these festivals glorify love, they are celebrated in the month of February. Dr Navaneethakrishnan, retired professor in Tamil folk studies at Madurai Kamaraj University, says Indiran Pandigai used to be held even during the time of Raja Sarfoji who came from Maharashtra to south India.
“When Kaama was burnt by Lord Shiva, Parvati protested his action and said Kaama had to be alive for people to find happiness in love,” he says.
Eminent folk singer Pushpavanam Kuppusamy says Kaaman Tiruvizha is a 10-day celebration when villagers get together and offer prayers to Lord Manmatha. “In the month of February, even today, in some places in Thanjavur district, people go to the Manmatha temple and offer prayers. Devotees are given poree and kadalai” he says.
The significance of this celebration, he says, is that love unites the families of a village.
On similar lines is the Indran Pandigai which also is celebrated in February to welcome spring.
“The Indran Pandigai has a lot to do with ecology and environment,” claims Dr Navaneethakrishnan. “Indra Vizha is usually celebrated to pray for rain which brings prosperity which in turn will make people happy and contribute to a full family life,” he adds.
“Holi and Bhogi are also closely connected with celebration of love,” claims Sukhi Sivam, a well-known Tamil scholar.
However, Bharathi Thirumagan, daughter of Villu Paatu vidwan, Subbu Armugam, suggests there is a story in the Silapadigaram that relates to the festival. “Sage Agathiyar instructs Thoonkayil erindha thoditol Chemabayan Raja to celebrate Indran Vizha for 28 days which will ensure a happy life for the people of the kingdom failing which the saduka bootham and naalangadi bootham will destroy the kingdom.”
“These festivals propagated love,” she adds.
There are also references to Indran Pandigai being celebrated with fervour by couples on the banks of the rivers. They enjoyed the beauty of nature in each other’s company during this festival, it is said. “Kaveri Poompattinam was a place where many couples enjoyed the scenic beauty,” points out G Premeela, HOD, Music Department, University of Madras.
‘In the north, they celebrate Vasanth Utsav. The festival dates back to the era when Lord Krishna along with Gopikas celebrated spring with colours and flowers,” she says.It is thus clear that the celebrations are just not limited to lovers or couples. They propagate love as such and the joy love brings for all of us. They glorify the beauty of love and nature.
So, i put the whole article...
Two sentences stand out prominently...
>>> Devotees are given poree and kadalai
>>> Indran Pandigai being celebrated with fervour by couples on the banks of the rivers
Not to mention the stories of playboy god Krishna. If Krishna is not part of "Indian culture," what else is?
I don't like V-day myself, but to appease all those RSS/BJP/VHP/SS type goons who want to eliminate this, instead of a "foreign" valentine's day, I recommend having an annual pilgrimage to Kajuraho, like the annual muslim pilgrimage to Mecca or the Kumbh Mela.