Tuesday, August 5

Festivals in Nagaland

Hornbill Festivals Kohima

Introduction to Hornbill Festivals Kohima

Kohima Due to the presence of so many different kinds of tribes, each with their distinct features, customs and festivals, there are a number of festivals that are celebrated in Nagaland, one after the other, by these different tribes. The government of Nagaland has thus come up with the idea of initiating the Hornbill Festivals in Kohima, the capital town of Nagaland. It is during the Hornbill Festivals that one gets to have a glimpse of all the festivals of Nagaland at the same time and same place. The principal reason behind celebrating the Hornbill Festivals in Nagaland is to revitalize shelter and continue the prosperity of the heritage and traditions of the Nagas, through cultural revival and extravagance. The festival is named after the bird Hornbill that is omnipresent in the Naga folklores.

Description of Hornbill Festivals Kohima

A series of demonstrations and performances takes place during the Hornbill Festivals in Nagaland. Dazzling and multihued celebrations and performances of dance, music, parades, variety of games, sports, different kinds of food, fairs, rituals and religious ceremonies take place that bring together the Naga people on to a common platform. There is also the display of traditional arts where there is an exhibition of paintings and wood carvings by modern artists of Nagaland. The evenings come alive with musical performances that continue to keep the festive spirit high.

Time for celebrating Hornbill Festivals Kohima

The time for celebrating the Hornbill Festivals in Kohima,Nagaland is the first week of December every year. This festival lasts for 8 long days and is celebrated by almost all the tribes of Nagaland.

Nazu Festival

Introduction to Nazu Festival

One of the most enjoyable and colorful festivals of Nagaland, celebrated by the Pochury Tribe there is the Nazu Festival. The time for celebrating the Nazu Festival is just before the annual sowing of seeds take place. The whole outlook of the festival is les of rituals and more of pure entertainment and competition. There are dances and music performed by the tribal folks.

Description of Nazu Festival

There is a lot of dazzle and shine associated with the Nazu Festival in Nagaland. Melodious tribal songs and entertaining dances keep spirits high during the 10 days of the Nazu Festival. The most well known of the dances performed is the Khupielilie dance of the tribes. This dance is popular because of the tuneful and harmonious movements of the hands and legs of al the dancers, that presents a beautiful and amusing sight.

Time for celebrating Nazu Festival

The time for celebrating the Nazu Festival is in the month of February. The celebrations last for 10 days and the venue for the Nazu Festival is Phek in Nagaland.

Tuluni Festival

Introduction to Tuluni Festival

The most significant festival celebrated by the Sumi Naga tribe of Nagaland is the Tuluni Festival. This festival is celebrated to rejoice the most abundant and fruitful season of the year in Nagaland. The Sumi tribe in Nagaland celebrates the Tuluni Festival with splendor and grandeur. During the Tuluni Festival there are prayers and offerings that are given to Litsaba, who is the deity of fruitfulness who gives life and protection to the crops.

Description of Tuluni Festival

During the Tuluni Festival in Nagaland , a goblet is made with the leaf of plantain , to serve the rice beer. Tuluni is the name of this wine that is consumed by the Sumi tribe. “anni’ is another name for ‘Tuluni’ meaning the season of plenteous crops. To make the celebrations much more joyous, it is during the Tuluni festival that the fiancĂ© is invited over to the finacee’s place and the young couples exchange gifts. Engaged couples get married and start their new lives and all are fed lavishly with meat and other delicious food. There are folk songs and ballads that are sung to keep the spirit of the festival high.

Time for celebrating Tuluni Festival

The Tuluni Festival of Nagaland is celebrated around the second week of the month of July.

Moatsu Festival

Introduction to Moatsu Festival

It is the Ao Tribe in Nagaland who celebrate the Moatsu Festival in the first week of May. The main purpose of this wonderful festival is to provide recreation and amusement to the tribe after the hectic and stressful activities such as clearing fields and burning the jungles, sowing seeds and clearing the wells, repairing and constructing houses etc. The Moatsu Festival is marked by merriment and joy and lasts for three days.

Description of Moatsu Festival

The Moatsu festival is 3 days of complete merrymaking. There are folk dances and music, eating and drinking wine, singing songs of praises for the lovers etc. One of the symbolic celebrations for the Moatsu Festival is Sangpangtu. During Sangpangtu, there is a big fire that is lit around which the men and women sit in their best attires. Women serve meat and wine.

Time for celebrating Moatsu Festival

The Moatsu Festival is celebrated during the first week of May every year. The venue for the Moatsu Festival is Mokokchung in Nagaland.

Sekrenyi Festival

Introduction to Sekrenyi Festival

Also called the Phousnyi festival, the Sekrenyi Festival in Nagaland is celebrated by the Angami Tribe. This is essentially a ritualistic festival that takes place with a series of colorful and varied ceremonies. The Sekrenyi Festival continues for 10 long days.

Description of Sekrenyi Festival

The Sekrenyi Festival starts with the “kizie’ ritual and on the first day the men go for a bath to the village well. Two young tribals then clean the well at night and it is guarded to prevent anyone from using it after it is cleaned. The early mornings again, the men take a bath ceremoniously . The Thekra Hie is the best part of the festival when the young men and women of the tribe sit together, singing traditional tribal songs. There are jugs of rice beer as well as plates of meat kept in front of the participants. The men go for hunting on the seventh day of the Sekrenyi Festival. The most significant part of the festival is on the eight day when there is bridge pulling or gate pulling and there are inter village visits. It is only when the festival ends that people resume their work on the fields.

Time for celebrating Sekrenyi Festival

The Sekrenyi Festival is celebrated sometime in February every year and lasts for 10 days. It generally falls in the 25th day of the month of ‘Kezei’ by the calendar of the Angamis, the tribe who celebrate this festival in Nagaland.

Yemshe Festival

Introduction to Yemshe Festival

The Yemshe Festival in Nagaland is celebrated by the Pochuri tribe. Being one of their most important festivals, the Pochuri Tribe wait anxiously all year round for this time when they come together and celebrate the Yemshe Festival with fun and frolic. It is with grand celebrations and ceremony that the Yemshe Festival is held and all members of the tribe, the young and the old come together with the hope of a good harvest after a year of hard work.

Description of Yemshe Festival

The village spokesman announces the date for the Yemshe festival after which the arrangements and festivities begin. The whole village is cleaned by the village youth, starting from the streets, footpaths to the wells and the fields. The head of the family perform the rituals of the Yemshe Festival whose materials are then fastened to the entrance of each house. It is also the time for fun and merry making as engaged couples exchange gifts and indulge in feasts and wine. This is called the Big Yemshe when people get to know each other and also get engaged. The celebration of the Yemshe with rituals is called the small Yemshe, when a rich family hosts the ritual Purification feast. The feast continues and there are a number of rituals and specific arrangements that are made till the last day of the feast which is the feast cleansing day. All people stay indoors the last day of the feast following which arrangements start for the next harvesting time.

Time for celebrating Yemshe Festival

The time for celebrating the Yemshe Festival is during the month of October, in the first week of the month. The Venue for celebrating the Yemshe Festival is Kohima, the capital of Nagaland. It generally takes place from the last end of the last week of September to the first week of October.