Baisakhi is one of the popular festivals of Hindus and is celebrated all over India. But especially, this festival is celebrated with great joy and enthusiasm by the Sikhs in Punjab. Baisakhi is the festival which symbolises harmony, peace, love and socialising within and outside the community.
The word Baisakhi comes from the word Vaisakh (mid-April to mid-May) is the Hindu month as per the Hindu calendar, and this is why it is also known as Vaisakhi.
Usually, this festival falls on the 13th of April every year, but after every 36 years, it is also celebrated on the 14th of April. Therefore, Baisakhi will be celebrated this year on Friday, 14 April 2023, and the Baisakhi Sankranti muhurat will start at 08:56 AM.
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Baisakhi is one of the most awaited festivals of Sikh Hindus, which is celebrated with great pomp and happiness. The festival is a celebration of the new year for Sikh Hindus and also marks the harvesting of Rabi crops.
One of the other reasons for celebrating Baisakhi or Vaisakhi is, in 1699, Guru Gobind Singh Ji laid the foundation of the Khalsa Panth, and this is the reason why this day is also known as ‘Khlasa Sirjana Diwas’ or ‘the birth of Khalsa’.
This day also symbolises being pure, clear and being free. A great celebration takes place in Anandpur Sahib, Punjab, where Guru Gobind Singh Ji was born and also established the Khalsa. On the other hand, on the day of Baisakhi, in 1919 Jallianwala Bagh Massacre also took place.
On the day of Baisakhi, Sikh people start the day firstly by taking a holy bath in a river like the Ganges, Jhuelum or the Kaveri and wearing new bright outfits as per tradition among the Sikhs community. Where men wear a kurta, pyjama or lungi along with a turban on their heads, on the other hand, women can wear a salwar-kameez or a lehenga-choli. Then they visit gurudwara and perform the morning praying together. After the prayer, Kada Prasad (a sweet prepared with wheat, butter and sugar) as prasad is distributed among the devotees.
In the afternoon, a meal is organised for the devotees, which is known as langar (vegetarian food) in the Gurudwara. Langar is distributed to each and every community or class without any discrimination.
On this day, a religious procession also takes part, which is also one of the important parts of Baisakhi. The procession is taken out of Guru Granth Sahib which is also known as Nagar Kirtan in Punjabi. It is accompanied by sacred hymns and led by Panj Pyare (the 5 beloved people who form the Khalsa), dressed in saffron. During the procession, they follow the Holy book of the Sikhs, Guru Granth Sahib, along with other people. After the procession finishes, the Gurudwara ardas known as prayers, are also offered to the almighty.
For Sikhs, Baisakhi is incomplete without Bhangra or Gidda. Bhangra is basically an energetic dance form which is performed by both men and women. Meanwhile, Gidda is a folk dance performed only by women. On the festival of Baisakhi, Sikhs dance their heart out which shows their celebratory mood and their joyful spirits.
Any festival is incomplete without lip-smacking dishes, and so is the festival of Baisakhi. On this auspicious day, numerous dishes are prepared, like sarson ka saag, makki di roti, paneer tikkas and many more.
Baisakhi is the festival where Hindu Sikhs pray, socialise and enjoy a good harvest. On this day, devotees start the celebration with a sacred bath in the river and visit gurudwaras to pray and seek blessings for the prosperous year ahead.
Feasts are organised where after the prayers, ‘Karah Prasad’ is distributed, and during lunchtime, guru-ka-langar is organised. Processions of Guru Granth Sahib are also taken out with traditional dance and songs.
This is all about Baisakhi, or Vaisakhi hope you enjoyed reading the article. We wish you a very happy Baisakhi. If you have any doubts or queries, feel free to share them in the comments section below. Thank you for taking the time to read this article, and we look forward to hearing from you.
Thank you for taking the time to read this article, and we look forward to hearing from you.