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“Nepal Honors Mothers in Matatirtha Aunsi Celebration”

Today on the occasion of Matatirtha Aunsi, Nepali people from across the globe visit their mothers to see their faces, assuming they see the divine through them. There has been a tradition to take a bath in the morning, tenderly offer beautiful clothes and delicious foods to mothers and take blessings.

The Matatirtha Aunsi festival or Mother’s Day is celebrated on the full moon day of the month of Baisakh according to Nepali calendar. In every home in Nepal, despite different religious beliefs, people offer gifts and Aarti to their mothers. As per the tradition, people take a bath in the morning, offer beautiful clothes and delicious foods to their mothers and take their blessings.

People who have lost their mothers, visit Matatirtha temple in Chandragiri Municipality of Kathmandu Valley in expectation to visualise her face in sacred pond water and connect to the divine. It is believed that taking a holy dip in the pond frees one from maternal debt. Here at Matatirtha Aunsi festival, a day to honour mothers and motherhood, people visit the sacred pond and perform shradh, a ritual performed for the peace of the departed soul. As a charity, motherless people offer food and gifts to the elderly on the temple premises. According to legends, in ancient times a farmer visited the pond on the premises of the Matatirtha temple to quench his thirst, whilst drinking water, he saw his late mother’s face reflected in the pond.

By Sweta Singh (Kathmandu)

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