Cheti Chand Celebration of the First New Moon

Cheti Chand – Celebration of the First New Moon

The moon has been earth’s darling from the beginning of time. It has been tirelessly revolving around its favourite planet since inception without a break. Even after being more than three hundred thousand kilometers away from earth it still has its own effect on the blue planet. We have seen the seashores go dry, and the oceans roar to destruction due to uneven lunar effects. The, roughly, 29.5-day lunar cycle can influence the behavior and instigate physiological changes in living beings on Earth, including humans.

Cheti Chand is the most prominent festival of the Sindhi clans both in India and Pakistan. Though it is a Sindhi festival the date of the festival is decided as per the Hindu Calendar.

It is celebrated when the New Moon first appears in the Cheti month, therefore, the name ‘Cheti Chand’. This is also celebrated as a tribute to the birth anniversary of the patron saint of the Sindhi’s- Ishtadeva Uderolal, more fondly known as Julelal, as the exact date of his birth is unknown. Though it is certain that he was born in the 10th century in Sindh during which time Sindh was ruled by the Sumras.

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Jhulelal photoA tyrant name Mirk Shah was threatening Sindhi Hindu’s to convert to Islam. To be rescued from this forced conversion the Sindhi’s prayed to the ‘Water God’. The God answered their prayers with a prophecy that a divine child born in Nasarpur would deliver them from their predicament. This child was the great saint Julelal.

Today in the honour of the water god a 40-day period of worship is followed. This is known as the Chailho Saheb. At the end of the fortieth day a ‘Thanks giving day’ is celebrated.

Water holds a lot of significance and is worshipped with great zeal and enthusiasm.  

This festival is celebrated with much fan and fare. A procession of ‘Baharana Sahib’ is taken to a nearby lake. The procession consists of an idol of Julelal, Oil lamp, sugar crystals, cardamom, fruits, a water jar and a coconut. These are decorated with flowers, leaves and traditional cloth. After performing the necessary pooja and rituals the Baharana Sahib is submerged in the water body.

Due to his miracles and pacification of Mirk Shah Julelal is worship by both Hindu and Muslims alike. The name Julelal signifies the rocking of his cradle on its own Jule (cradle), lal (child).  

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