With the arrival of the Monsoons, the festivity and celebrations in India don’t stop! These festivals have been celebrated through the ages and people around the country enjoy keeping the rich heritage of India alive. Join us as we take a tour of the great festivals to look forward to in the second half of July…

1. Angarak Sankatahara Chaturthi

When: July 15th, 2014

Who: Celebrated by Lord Ganesha Devotees

Angarak Sankatahara Chaturthi is an auspicious day dedicated to Lord Ganesha. Devotees of Lord Ganesha fast on Sankashti Chaturthi every month, and the special event of Angaraki Chaturthi is celebrated when it falls on a Tuesday as the Hindu God Mangal guides this day. The devotees fast all day and break their fast after sighting the moon or the next day at dawn. On this day, Lord Ganesha devotees visit the temples, which are beautifully decorated with flowers, garlands and thoranams and incense is lit in every corner to please the deity.

2. Ramayana Maas Aarambh

When: July 17th, 2014

Who: Malayalis and Lord Rama Devotees

Ramayan Maas is the last month of Malayalam calendar, also known as Karkidakam. This is a month long maas beginning July 17th and ending on August 16th. As the name suggests, Ramayana Maas is a holy month, which falls during the peak of monsoons. It is believed that reading the Ramayana every evening during this month is very auspicious.

3. Aadi Velli

When: July 18th, 2014

Who: Tamilians

The month of Aadi is called the month of Goddesses. Aadi Velli is celebrated for a month, starting July 18th. This Tamil month is dedicated to the divine powers of all the ammas (goddesses), and every Sunday, Tuesday and Friday of this month are considered very auspicious. Devotees visit the three famous Shakthis – Ichchaa Sakthi, Gnaana Sakthi and Kriyaa Sakthi, during this month to take the blessings of the Goddesses. The deities are decorated with garlands and the aroma of incense and flowers pervade through the air.

4. Kalashtami

When: July 19th, 2014

Who: Devotees of Lord Bhairav/Lord Shiva

Kalabhairav Jayanti, also known as Bhairav Ashtami, it is observed every month during Ashtami Tithi of Krishna Paksha. Devotees of Lord Kalbhairava, the incarnation of Lord Shiva, pray to the deity to free them from fear, obstacles and sorrow. It is believed that chanting Kala Bhairava Astangam and prayer during this time is very beneficial. The temples are beautifully decorated, fragrance of the incense fills the sanctuary and special rituals and poojas are performed during this time to please the deity.

These are some of the many monsoon festivals that are celebrated in the month of July in India. Enjoy the showers and these festivals of monsoon!

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