Famous Mizoram Festivals and Culture
Mizoram is one of those places where one can just stop and smell the splendid lush greeneries, the fog covered distant hills, the sweet smelling floral views. Situated on the north east hills, Mizoram is one of the seven sister state where one can experience heaven on earth. Consisting mainly of a tribal base population the mizorami word for festival is kut. There are three kuts that are held in Mizoram-Chapchar Kut, Mim Kut and the Pawl kut. All three festivals are solely dedicated to agricultural activities. The festivals are celebrated to mark the arrival of spring with extravagant feasts and intricate traditional dances.
This is considerably the oldest festival in mizoram. On this festival, farmers cut bamboo forests to make place for seasonal farming.t his is the season where the farmers wait for the bamboo heaps to dry or get burnt. And this process is termed as Chapchar. While Kut means festival therefore both the regime of drying the heaps and a festival to celebrate the coming of spring formulates the true meaning of chapchar kut.
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People wear traditional clothes and hats made from beads and parrots’ feathers. In this festival they don’t wear any shoes. A traditional bamboo dance is performed where the women dance extravagantly adorning the traditional clothing that they make while the men sit on the ground and beat each other with bamboo while all the while singing traditional songs.
Chapchar Kut is celebrated in all the Mizo villages and is a very important cultural tradition in the society. During the years the people of various villages have developed their own unique way of celebrating the festival and no two celebrations are alike making it diverse in its own way.
Chapchar Kut has nowadays become the most popular holiday in the state and is conducted during the months of March.
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Mim kut is an annual festival also like chapchar kut. More than a festival it is a vibrant and colorful cultural fiesta that is celebrated with great anticipation and extravagance, fun is a small factor compared to all the dancing and singing that continues for four to five days. Mim Kut is basically a Maize Festival. Although each and every festival in india are extravagant and flashy, mizo festivals are not only unique but simple and diverse thus the rich culture.
The tradition of paying their respects to the dead is carried out on already set customs that have used for centuries ago. The festival is celebrated by the entire state of Mizoram with great enthusiasm. During the time of Mim Kut celebration it is believed that the dead ancestors visit the houses of their children and relatives, special offerings are made for them. These offerings include fresh vegetables, maize, bread and necklaces. Often clothes are also dedicated in their memories.
Generally the first day of the festival is dedicated towards the ritual of making offerings for the dead ones. The second day majorly involves fun and frolic games and dancing and singing. There is tradition according to which on the second day, meals are prepared out of bread and people take a hearty meal from bread items.
The festival of Mim kut is celebrated in the months of August-September, just after the successful completion of maize harvest. Samples of the previous year’s harvest are consecrated to the departed souls of the community.
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Pawl Kut :
Like both the other kuts this festival is also to celebrate the great harvest of straw. Pawl meaning straw is harvested in December after the mim kut. This straw festival is considered to be a sort of thanksgiving festival as it is celebrated three months after the mim kut. Rice beer is primarily consumed during this festival with a great deal of merriment amongst the people. Different villages have different ways of celebrating this great festival.
There is yet another festival known as the
Thalfavang Kut :
Celebrated in the months of November this is also a festival concerning harvest. This marks the onset of harvest. Various communities and tribes gather around and pitch in their collections in the form of a feast as they merrily spend the time. Cultural activities are highlighted in the form of traditional games and sing alongs or dance and music.