Culture | Slideshow: Devotees at two religious festivals in Nepal
  • A child writes with chalk on a wall to celebrate Shreepanchami festival at Saraswati temple in Kathmandu, Nepal February 1, 2017. Children are given their first writing and reading lessons at the temple during this festival in the belief that the goddess of education Saraswati will help them excel in education. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
    A child writes with chalk on a wall to celebrate Shreepanchami festival at Saraswati temple in Kathmandu, Nepal February 1, 2017. Children are given their first writing and reading lessons at the temple during this festival in the belief that the goddess of education Saraswati will help them excel in education. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
  • A mother helps her child write with chalk on a wall to celebrate Shreepanchami festival at Saraswati temple in Kathmandu, Nepal February 1, 2017. Children are given their first writing and reading lessons at the temple during this festival in the belief that the goddess of education Saraswati will help them excel in education. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
    A mother helps her child write with chalk on a wall to celebrate Shreepanchami festival at Saraswati temple in Kathmandu, Nepal February 1, 2017. Children are given their first writing and reading lessons at the temple during this festival in the belief that the goddess of education Saraswati will help them excel in education. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
  • A child writes with chalk on a wall to celebrate Shreepanchami festival at Saraswati temple in Kathmandu, Nepal February 1, 2017. Children are given their first writing and reading lessons at the temple during this festival in the belief that the goddess of education Saraswati will help them excel in education. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
    A child writes with chalk on a wall to celebrate Shreepanchami festival at Saraswati temple in Kathmandu, Nepal February 1, 2017. Children are given their first writing and reading lessons at the temple during this festival in the belief that the goddess of education Saraswati will help them excel in education. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
  • Preparing the faithful. Devotees offer prayers before taking a holy bath in the Triveni River during the Swasthani Bratakatha festival in Panauti. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
    Preparing the faithful. Devotees offer prayers before taking a holy bath in the Triveni River during the Swasthani Bratakatha festival in Panauti. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
  • Ready for a dip. Devotees cross the Triveni River during the Swasthani Bratakatha festival. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
    Ready for a dip. Devotees cross the Triveni River during the Swasthani Bratakatha festival. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
  • Just waiting. A devotee covers her face with a shawl as she stands on the bank of the Triveni River. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
    Just waiting. A devotee covers her face with a shawl as she stands on the bank of the Triveni River. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
  • Circle of warmth. Devotees gather around the fire near the bank of the Triveni River after taking a holy bath. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
    Circle of warmth. Devotees gather around the fire near the bank of the Triveni River after taking a holy bath. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
  • Pain all worth it. The feet of a devotee wrapped with a bandage. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
    Pain all worth it. The feet of a devotee wrapped with a bandage. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
  • Right spot. A devotee is offered a tika from her friend after taking a holy bath in the Triveni River. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
    Right spot. A devotee is offered a tika from her friend after taking a holy bath in the Triveni River. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
  • Smart prayers. Devotees offer butter lamp to celebrate the Shreepanchami festival at Saraswati temple. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
    Smart prayers. Devotees offer butter lamp to celebrate the Shreepanchami festival at Saraswati temple. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
  • Embracing their faith. A devotee arranges her hair after taking a holy bath during the Swasthani Bratakatha festival. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar
    Embracing their faith. A devotee arranges her hair after taking a holy bath during the Swasthani Bratakatha festival. Photo: Reuters/Navesh Chitrakar

Slideshow: Devotees at two religious festivals in Nepal

Hindu devotees flock to temples and the Triveni River in Kathmandu to celebrate Shreepanchami and the month-long Swasthani Bratakatha

February 3, 2017 12:18 PM (UTC+8)

Two recent festivals in Nepal saw Hindu devotees flock to temples and the Triveni River in Kathmandu – the Shreepanchami and the month-long Swasthani Bratakatha.

The Shreepanchami is one of the most important festivals in Nepal alongside Basanta Panchami or Vasant Panchami – the day when winter ends and spring starts, which falls in January-February.

During the Shreepanchami festival, Saraswati, the Goddess of knowledge, is worshipped as the source of all intelligence and creativity. She is considered the creator of art, music, science and all education. Her blessings are the source of innovation and knowledge.

Thus children are given their first writing and reading lessons at the Saraswati temple during this festival in the belief that the goddess will help them excel in education.

Every year, the month-long Swasthani Bratakatha sees Hindus taking holy baths, telling folk tales and fasting for peace, prosperity or a husband.

This festival is dedicated to the God Madhavnarayan and Goddess Swasthani. Devotees often share folk tales about miraculous feats performed by these gods in many Hindu households.

The holy bath is usually taken on the first day of the festival.

 

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