Newari Festival

by Suraj KC | Jun 28, 2018
Newari Festival

Newar Festival are a subset of Nepalese Festivals that has developed over centuries among the Newars of Kathmandu (Kathmandu is called Yen in Nepal bhasa language), Nepal. Newar is the popular caste of Kathmandu inhabiting especially in The Kathmandu valley i.e. Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Lalitpur. Newari Festival refers to the festivals that are celebrated by the Newars. Newars are well known for their lavish festivals. The word Jatra is used for carnivals. Newari festivals are called Jatra simply.

Sakimila PunhiYoma,Ghayh,Swasthani, Sila Chahre,Holi Punhi, ,Bungdya Jatra,Bhoto Jatra,Swanya Punhi,Sithi Nakhah,Gathan Mugah, Gunhu Punhi, bhoyey, ,Mataya (Lalitpur), Yomahri are the important festivals of Newari community. Newars’ festivals start from Gathanmugah(August) and ends in Sithi Nakhah.(June) . Therefore Gathan Mugah is also known as Kayahmacha Nakhah (the son festival) and Sithi Nakhah is also known as Mhayamacha Nakhah (the daughter festival) in Newar culture. No festival is observed in between Sithinakhah and Gathan Mukhah as the farmers are busy in the their work at that time. The festivals celebrated by the Newars are related with their places and lives. Thus through the festivals observed by the Newars, one can know many things about them.

Newari Culture is very rich in pageantry and ritual throughout the year, Many festivals are tied to Hindu holidays, Buddha’s birth and the harvest cycle.Newar religious culture is rich in ceremony. The Newar or Newah are the historical inhabitants of Kathmandu Valley and its surrounding areas in Nepal.Newar is known for their contribution to culture, art, and literature, trade, agriculture, and cuisine.Nepal’s 2011 census ranks Newars as the nation’s sixth-largest ethnicity/community, with 1,321,933 Newars throughout the country.
Even the gods demand good food at the time of their worship, and especially more so when a festival is celebrated in their honor.

Kathmandu, the capital, is known famously as the ‘city of the gods’, but the fact untold is that this city of gods is home to hundreds of gods who are worshipped and offered food and drinks like nowhere in the world. The quintessence of the dominant Hindu religion has been polished by the regularity of festivals in Nepal. Festivals come almost every month in the Nepali calendar, and they have played a vital role in setting the character and spirit of the nation and the people. Festivals stand for celebration and uncompromising devotion and food. Where there’s a festival, there’s food!

Food has been married to festivals since time immemorial in Nepal, as one is complete without the other. People here regard festivals as opportunities to serve good food to the gods, and eat the same with their families as blessings. Also notable is that, every festival in Nepal has a distinct line of food. It is said that different foods eaten during different periods of festivals are not only culturally significant, but are scientifically remarkable, too. Festivals and food have been carved into the calendars in such a way that they seem to be season-friendly and health-friendly. There is a lot of science going on with what locals eat during the specific festivals especially the Newars of Nepal who celebrates a lot of festivals and called as “ Boss” for traditions and culture.


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