Makar Sankranti

Makar Sankranti: Embracing the Sun’s Transition and Harvest Abundance

Makar Sankranti, celebrated on January 14th, is a joyous and colorful festival that marks the transition of the sun into the zodiac sign of Capricorn (Makar). This auspicious day holds immense cultural and spiritual significance across India, reflecting the importance of the sun’s movement, the harvest season, and the spirit of togetherness.

The Solar Transition and Harvest Celebration

Makar Sankranti is a unique festival as it is determined by the solar calendar rather than the lunar one. It signifies the gradual increase in daylight hours and the arrival of warmer days, signaling the end of the cold winter months. Additionally, Makar Sankranti marks the beginning of the harvest season, celebrating the abundance of crops and the earth’s fertility.

Customs and Traditions

Flying Kites: Kite flying is an integral part of Makar Sankranti celebrations, especially in states like Gujarat and Rajasthan. The sky is adorned with vibrant kites as people engage in friendly kite-flying competitions.

Sweets and Special Dishes: Sweets made from jaggery and sesame seeds are prepared and shared. Tilgul (sesame and jaggery sweets) are exchanged with the greeting “Tilgul ghya, aani god god bola” (Accept this tilgul and speak sweet words).

Bonfires: In some regions, bonfires are lit, symbolizing the end of winter and the transition to warmer days. People gather around the fire, sing songs, and offer prayers.

Holy Dips: Taking a dip in sacred rivers is a common practice on Makar Sankranti. It is believed that this ritual cleanses the soul and brings good fortune.

Cultural Diversity

Makar Sankranti is celebrated with various names and traditions across India. In Tamil Nadu, it’s called Pongal, while in Punjab, it’s known as Lohri. Each region brings its unique cultural touch to the festivities.

Spiritual Symbolism

Makar Sankranti also holds spiritual significance. It’s a time for self-reflection, gratitude, and embracing positive changes as the sun’s movement brings new energy.

Harmony with Nature

The festival promotes a deep connection with nature and the cycles of life. It encourages people to respect the environment and acknowledge the significance of agricultural sustainability.


Makar Sankranti is a celebration of transitions—the sun’s journey, the shift from winter to spring, and the transformation of harvest to abundance. It reminds us of the cyclical nature of life and our interconnectedness with nature. As people engage in festive activities, fly kites, share sweets, and offer prayers, they also honor the cycles of life and express gratitude for the blessings of the earth and the sun.

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