Chitra Pournami is an important occasion among Hindus in South India. It is the birthday of Chitragupta, the assistant of Yama. Lord Yama is the Hindu god of death. Chitra Pournami/Purnima is an auspicious day on which the Chitra star coincides with the full moon or Pournami in the Tamil month of Chithirai. Chitra Pournami 2021 is on April 27.
On this day, women clean the house well and perform Pooja for Chitragupta. They draw maa kolams, light lamps and make offerings of Chakkarai pongal, white pongal, payasam, etc., to him. The only Chitragupta temple in south India is in Kanchipuram. Many people come to the temple on this day to witness the special ceremonies to honor the deity.
Significance of Chitra Pournami:
Every religion speaks of the importance of karma, though the word itself comes from Hinduism. The Bible expresses the same idea in the words that what a man sows, he reaps. The importance of doing good deeds and avoiding bad deeds is therefore underscored by all faiths. Despite this, people do indulge in wicked deeds without any fear of reprisals. The significance of Chitra Pournami is that the day serves as a reminder to people that they should not commit sins as their deeds are being watched by Chitragupta, who keeps a meticulous record of all that they do on earth. Hence, people would refrain from committing such wrongdoings and repent their sins.
The mythology behind Chitra Pournami:
Legend says that Brahma created Chitragupta as Yama was unable to keep track of the deeds of all human beings. Another legend is related to Lord Indra. Indra committed a sin by being disrespectful to his guru, Brihaspati. When Brihaspati went away, he flouted his guru’s strictures by doing many bad things. When Brihaspati returned and came to know of it, he advised Indra to repent his sins. So Indra went down to earth. He saw a Shiva Linga under a kadamba tree and began worshipping it. Seeing a golden lotus growing in a pond nearby, he offered it to Shiva, and on Chitra Pournami day, he was relieved of all his sins.
Hindu mythology says that Chitragupta keeps track of all the good and bad deeds of the people on earth. When a person is dead, their soul goes to Lord Yama first. Chitragupta tallies all their deeds and submits a report to Yama for his final judgment, which will also decide the fate of the person’s soul.
Chitra Pournami is a day that reminds us that our deeds, both good or bad, have consequences during our life on earth and in the afterlife. Hence, it is essential for us to do good deeds and refrain from doing evil deeds.
On Chitra Pournami day, we should repent our sins and seek forgiveness for them. On this auspicious day, our sins can be reduced through expiation and heartfelt prayers. These can free people from the bad karma created by their bad deeds.