Losar—The Tibetan New Year is celebrated mostly in India, Nepal, Tibet, Sikkim, and Bhutan. It will be celebrated between 24 February and 26 February 2020. The festival came into existence much before Buddhism was celebrated as a gesture of thanks to the Gods. Initially celebrated mostly among farmers, Losar went on to become a predominantly Buddhist festival celebrating the commencement of the New Year.
When Is Sonam Losar 2020 Celebrated
|Sonam Losar||24 to 26 February 2020||Monday to Wednesday|
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The word “Lo” means “year” and the word “Sar” translates to “new”.
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How is Losar celebrated ( Tibetan New Year )?
Pre-Buddhist Losar involved burning of incense sticks as a ritual to please the local Gods. It was believed that pleasing the Gods would contribute to the wellbeing of the local people. In the modern day, Losar is celebrated for three days. However, pre-celebrations are a part of the festival and begins from the month before Losar happens. It starts with the commemoration of eight auspicious symbols related to the festival, including parasol, conch shell, vase, and victory banner, among others. Each of these symbols is related to Buddhism.
Cleaning the house, especially the kitchen, and preparing special Tibetan dishes are a part of the first day of the festival. A special soup with dumplings in it and a special Tibetan noodle called Guthuk are two of the many dishes that are served during the festival.
On the second day, religious ceremonies take place in various monasteries. Firecrackers are set off to keep the evil spirits at bay. Local people also present gifts to the monks as a gesture of thanks.
The third day is the New Year’s Day. Waking up early, wearing new clothes, and offering prayers to the Gods is a custom that’s followed on this day. People celebrate by eating “kapse”—a type of cake and drinking “chang”—an alcoholic beverage.
You can visit the monasteries in India to be a part of this cultural festival that champions the Tibetan culture.
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