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Losar Tibetan New Year – All You Need To Know About Losar Festival In India

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Losar Tibetan New Year, Losar Festival In India
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Losar is a festival in Tibetan Buddhism, which is also known as the Losar Tibetan New Year. It is one of the most vibrant and unique festivals celebrated. This day is celebrated on different days depending on the tradition of each location. It is a new year’s festival celebrated in the month of February, that is on the first day of the lunisolar Tibetan calendar. It is a 15-day festival that includes prayers, hoisting of religious flags, reading Buddhist scriptures, and lighting butter lambs in the houses. The main celebrations happen during the first week. Apart from the Losar festival in India, this festival is celebrated mostly in Nepal, Tibet, Sikkim, and Bhutan. 

It is of immense cultural importance and symbolizes the Tibetan New Year and the Triumph of good over evil. It is a traditional Buddhist festival that has been celebrated for over a thousand years. This festival is also known as the ‘Festival of Swords’. During this festival, families and friends gather together and celebrate the new year filled with hope and positivity. 

Losar Festival Is Celebrated In Which State?

Losar festival is celebrated in various parts of India by the Tibetan Buddhist community. It is celebrated in Andhra Pradesh, which shares its border with Tibet, Sikkim, Ladakh, and Dharamshala, where there are significant Tibetan communities. In India, it is mainly celebrated in the Himalayan regions, particularly Himachal Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Ladakh, and other regions inhabited by Tibetan Buddhist communities.

Losar Tibetan New Year – The Celebration Of Losar Festival In India

In India, the Losar festival, i.e., the Losar Tibetan New Year is celebrated every year in many regions by the Tibetan Buddhist communities in the month of February. In the word losar, ‘lo’ means year, ‘sar’ means new. The first three days of this Losar festival in India are main. People clean their houses and decorate them on the first day with traditional Tibetan symbols such as dhuksey. They also prepare special food, such as ‘kapse’, deep-fried pastries, and ‘khapse’, sweetened fried biscuits, on this day. 

The second day is marked by offerings and religious ceremonies to the deities. Therefore, it is an important day. The monks perform their traditional dance ‘cham’ on this day to depict the victory of good over evil. On the third day, people visit their family and friends and exchange gifts. People welcome their guests with traditional Tibetan butter tea and other snacks.

Losar Festival In Arunachal Pradesh

The Losar is the main festival celebrated during the Tibetan New Year in Arunachal Pradesh. It is celebrated in February or March every year according to the lunisolar Tibetan calendar and lasts for two weeks. The people of the Mahayana Buddhist Monpa tribe, who dominate the West Kameng and Tawang districts, organize this festival. Tawang is also one of the most popular tourist attractions in North East India. It is celebrated to invite happiness and prosperity into the new year and ward off evil. 

During this festival, prayers are offered in Buddhist religious buildings, Gonpas, and offerings are made to various deities, elders, and family members. People wear new clothes and jewellery and perform Aji Lhamu, a traditional mask dance.

Also Read – Do Not Miss Out These Famous Indian Festivals In February

Losar Festival In Sikkim

Losar festival in Sikkim is a Tibetan New Year celebration celebrated with zeal and enthusiasm. Also known as Gyalpo Losar, it is a momentous harvest festival day among the Tibetans and is marked by visiting the monastery and visiting relatives and friends after performing the rituals. Flowers are an essential part of this festival and devotees greet each other with flowers. 

Losar festival is a festival of joy and celebration and is preceded by chaams or traditional dances. This festival marks a good time for the hard work of farmers of Sikkim because it is celebrated on account of land, harvesting, and local Buddhist communities.

Losar Festival In Ladakh

Ladakh celebrates the Losar festival for 15 long days with great enthusiasm each year. During this festival, Ladakh is turned into a melting pot of culture, vibrant colours, and chanting prayers that fill the air and make it a true paradise on earth. It is one of the major festivals in Ladakh. 

The Tibetan Buddhists celebrate Losar festival with traditional dance performances, music, and food. People make religious offerings before their deities and perform ancient rituals and cultural events. A lot of special ceremonies are conducted by the monks of different monasteries.

Also Read – Who is 14th Dalai Lama? History, Facts, Quotes, And The Purpose Of Life According To The Dalai Lama

Losar Festival In Himachal Pradesh

Himachal Pradesh is a land of rich cultural heritage and is known for its beautiful weather. Losar is one of the festivals that is celebrated with great pomp and show in Himachal Pradesh. It is a festival of celebration of harvesting crops and to ward off the evil of old days in the new year. The losar festival is celebrated for three days in Himachal Pradesh. On the first day, people begin with the aroma of Tibetan culinary treats, decorate houses colourfully, and visit monasteries and worship their spiritual head, Dalai Lama

On the second day, a special dance called chaam is performed; people carry flaming torches and chant slogans and then throw the torches away to prevent evil from entering the community. On the third day, people wear new clothes, visit monasteries to pray, and families get together for dinner with a unique alcohol called Chang.

Final Words

During the time of the Losar Tibetan New Year, tourists flock to enjoy holidays in the parts of India celebrating this festival. Therefore, it is a perfect time to visit and see some ancient and different cultures. The losar festival in India holds immense significance in Tibetan Buddhist culture. The streets come alive with vibrant colours, music, and dance during this festival. People begin the preparations for this festival weeks in advance.

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