Nag Panchami in 2017
Nag Panchami 2017 date is 27th July. Legend has it that on Nag Panchami Krishna overpowered the deadly snake Kalia and performed the famous Kaliyamardhanam. Naag Panchami is celebrated on Panchami Tithi of Shukla Paksha in Shravan Maas. Indian Astrology believes that snake is the God of every month's fifth date. However the Panchami Tithi of Shukla Paksha in Shravan Month is the most auspicious for worshipping the snake God .On this day, a resolution is taken, of saving snakes. Shravan Shukla Paksha's fifth date is celebrated every year as Naag Panchami with full faith.
One can trace the custom of snake-worship to the "Naga" clan, a highly developed tribe who lived in ancient India. One of the oldest Indus Valley civilisation of 3000 B.C. gives evidence of snake-worship amongst the Nagas, a culture wide-spread in India way before the Aryans came. Later, the Indo-Aryans began to worship many of the snake deities of the Nagas and some of them even found mention in the Hindu Puranas, Vedas and Hindu legends. According to Hindu mythology two of the most Popular Hindu Gods, Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva, are closely associated with serpents. While Lord Vishnu rests on the several hooded Snake Ananta as his bed, Lord Shiva wears a snake around his neck as an ornament. One may also remember that for churning the milky ocean and getting the divine nectar of immortality the Snake Vasuki was used as a rope. On the day of Nag Panchami, devotees and visit snake temples and snake pits and offer prayers to the snakes. Shiva temples are also crowded during this festival. In many places live cobras or their pictures or idols are worshiped and religious rites are performed to please them by offering them milk, turmeric, saffron, rice etc.
On Nag Panchami day, people in almost all parts of India visit the Shiva Temples and offer prayer to the snake God an ornament of Lord Shiva. Some worship the snake idols which are found in almost every village and some offer prayer near anthills. Many in Maharashtra are known to feed milk to poisonous snakes .This comes from the belief that by doing this poisonous snakes will never bite. In eastern India, Mansa, the queen of serpents, is worshipped. Her blessings are sought for a better future.
Snakes are considered as the incarnation of power and sun. Nag Panchami is a form of nature worship There is a long list of beliefs associated with Nag Panchami . On the day of Naag Panchami, having a vision of snake is considered auspicious. It is generally believed that one should avoid digging the earth in Shravan Maas. Particularly on Naag Panchami, ploughing of field, digging of foundation is considered inauspicious. The reason behind this belief could be that the habitat of snake is considered to be beneath the earth. Digging of land can hurt snakes.
This day holds special significance for those people whose Kundali shows KaalSarp Dosha Such natives should keep a fast on Nag Panchami and offer prayers to the snake god to pacify KaalSarp Dosha. Many devotees fast from sunrise to sunset and after sunset eat food without salt or frying. In many parts of South India, Women decorate the doorsteps with Snake Kolams on this day. Paintings of Naag are also drawn on either side of the entrance of the home and worshiped.
There are several different ways of celebrating Nag Panchami that differ from region to region. Like at some place kite lying competitions are held whereas some places organize wrestling competition. It doesn't matter that in which the festival of Nag Panchami is being celebrated, The ultimate aim is to worship the Almighty and enjoy the day.