Teej Customs and Rituals
Just as in the case of several other Hindu festival, many traditions and rituals are associated with Teej celebrations. On Teej, women keep fast and perform other customs for long and healthy life of their husband. Every ritual has its own significance and so ladies perform all Teej customs with extreme devotion. Women start preparing for Teej well in advance and go out shopping to bring all the items used in performing Teej rituals.
Teej Customs and Rituals
Teej customs and rituals make the festival more interesting and full of colors. Women who observe fast for their husband take proper care that no carelessness is committed while carrying out the rituals. Teej festival calls for performance of all rituals seriously if one wants to be blessed with marital bliss.
To celebrate the auspicious occasion of Teej, women perform some serious rituals. It is customary for married women to return to their parents' home at the time of Teej. Married women and engaged girls get lot of presents from their father-in-law as per Teej customs. A traditional gift package called 'Shrinjhara' or 'Sindhare' is gifted to their daughter-in-law. This traditional name originated from the Hindi word shringaar meaning adornment. Shrinjhara package consists of Ghewar (sweet), traditional laheria dress (tie & dye), henna and lac bangles. All these items are used by the ladies to adorn herself.
Baya is another traditional package given to women observing fast on Teej. It includes dry fruits, mathris, new clothes, bangles and jewelry. It is given by mothers of the newly wed girls on the Teej Festival day.
Tradition to Adorn Oneself
On Teej, both married and unmarried girls dress up in traditional colored clothes. Women are usually seen in auspicious red, green and yellow colored lehangas, suits and sarees. Women start shopping for Teej well in advance. It gives them the opportunity to look beautiful of all.
Mehandi and Alta
The most important ritual is to beautify hands with special mehandi designs and alta. Girls and women apply intricate patterns of alta and mehandi to their hands and feet. This is also a part of Teej Shringar. Women usually hide name of their love in these mahendi designs and later ask them to find out their name. This tradition becomes a playful activity and adds vigor to the day's celebration.
Ladies also wear new gold and diamond jewelry. Some women wear very heavy jewelry while some wear light jewelry. Women have full liberty to ask for anything they wish. Even their husband do not stop them from doing anything and gift them whatever they desire as they starve themselves for well-being of their husband.
The most important ritual of Teej Festival is Teej Fast. Women and unmarried girls keep fast for long and healthy life of their husband. Teej fast goes for 24 long hours. It is the most rigorous fast in which a woman neither drinks nor eat.
Tradition of Lighting a Lamp
As per the ritual of Teej fasting, a woman should keep an oil lamp lit all night. If the oil lamp dies away, it is considered a bad omen.
The most important ritual of Teej is to bedeck Parvati Mata and carry out auspicious processions on the streets. Idol of Goddess Parvati is decorated with fine jewelry and new colorful clothes. The fasting day of Teej is very vital as women pray to Goddess for marital bliss and happy life.
Last but not the least, swings are the common sight when Teej is near. Beautifully decorated swings are hung from trees in the garden and gaily dressed up women swing and sing traditional Teej songs. Some women also dance while singing the holy songs.