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Monsoon Ragas 6 – Teej Festival of Rajasthan

Monsoon Ragas 6 – Teej Festival of Rajasthan

In our series on festivals and rituals associated with the advent of monsoons, this part we look at how Rajasthani people welcome and celebrate rains. Teej is one such festival which is mainly celebrated in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. Teej is synonymous with Shravan maas or the monsoon in India. It usually falls during the holy month of Shravan (July-August) each year. Teej is a big festival in Rajasthan, traditional dances, and dresses, henna are the main features of this festival.

Teej of Rajasthan

Being a monsoon celebration, it rejoices in the county of nature with social activity, rituals and customs. Teej symbolizes the harmony of clouds and rain, greenery and birds, sand and desert. All of these are highlighted in the multi-coloured scenery of this festival. It is celebrated for two days on the third and fourth days of the month Sharavan. It is called the green Teej because of the abundance greenery during this time. For millions of Rajasthanis, Teej means dancing, singing, telling stories, swinging, wearing new clothes and cooking festive food.

Mythical Connection to Teej

Teej is a day for women to worship Goddess Parvati. On this day, long ago she was reunited with her long separated husband, Lord Siva. According to mythology, she declared this day holy and proclaimed that whoever invokes her on this day will be blessed with whatever one desires. On these two days married women worship the Goddess for long and happy married lives, and the peace and prosperity of their children.

Wearing green, red or yellow dresses, hands and feet painted in delicate designs of red (henna), they worship Parvati and sing songs in her praise. Afterwards they assume themselves on swings. This celebration has special meaning for newly married women who does this worship very religiously. Devotion to the Goddess and self decoration of women are the two dominant themes of the festival. On this occasion parents send gifts to their married daughter which is called sindhara.

Celebrating Teej

Teej is usually celebrated during the monsoon time in India. This festival holds great significance in itself. It is believed to be a celebration of the union of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. According to ancient Hindu mythology, it is said that, Goddess Parvati observed fasts and prayed to Lord Shiva for hundred years to make him happy so that he could marry her. She took 108 births to come to a form in which Lord Shiva would accept her. Happy from her dedication, Lord Shiva decided to fulfill her wish and to become her husband.

Hence, it is believed that celebrating and worshiping Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati on this day will bless a woman with marital bliss, good health of husband and children, and harmony in married life. This auspicious day is to celebrate Goddess Parvati and her true dedication towards Lord Shiva.

The word “Teej” literally means “third” and is usually the third day after full moon or new moon night. Therefore, it is celebrated on the advent of monsoons on the third day after the full moon or new moon night.


While Hindu married women celebrate this festival with all their heart for the well being of their husbands, unmarried pray to get a good husband when they get married. On this day, houses are decorated extensively with flowers and lights; women apply henna on their hands and wear new clothes and jewellery. They then worship the Vat, banyan, or bargad tree. Decorated swings are hung on the tree and the women take turns to swing on them while singing Teej songs.

They also visit the temple, and offer flowers, fruits, coins, and a special prayer is narrated to the women also known as “Teej Vrat Katha”. Without which this festival is incomplete. At the end of the day, they sing praise to Goddess Parvati and wait for their husbands to come and take them. During the puja, a lamp is light throughout as a symbol to their devotion and dedication to the Gods. A special sweet known as “Ghewar” is also prepared during this time.


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