Happy Onam

Aug 21, 2023

A good friend in Rotary from Siliguri in Northwestern part of Bangla state wished us a Happy Onam in the Rotary World Fellowship Group today.

Thank you Sirji – but Onam or Thiruvonam is actually celebrated as the 10th day – incidentally it’s on the 29th of August this year. Like Navratri the celebration starts nine days ahead on ‘Athum’ day – today – so in a way, you are right.

As a Malayalee, I have this opportunity to share this little known fact outside of Kerala because it is a small, spiritual celebration at home of daily puja with lovely Floral Decoration and little mud figurines to depict the iconic King Mahabali who is a symbol of virtuosity and abundance! Lord Vishnu himself came down in the Avatar of ‘Vamana’ – the Dwarf Man in evolution – for the Deliverance of the king – symbolic of a ripened, benign human ego, now ready for liberation – whose last wish was to visit his beloved people of Kerala once a year on ‘Onam’ month’s ‘Thiruvonam’ star Day. The nine day “reception committee” of happy citizens in each home are preparing for the grand reception with muted excitement starting today.

Nowadays, even small corporate employee engagement includes “Pookalam” competitions. Creativity contests for decorative floral arrangements as mural displays in the workplace on the floor are judged by celebrities. Good reason for increasing employee wellbeing and elevating employee spirits? Ideally!

To cut a long story super short, Happy Onam!

In fact, though there are protocol rules of Etiquette about official use of the Rotary Logo, i see that when it comes to patriotic fervour, even our Indian Tricolour is used with creative impunity and license on Independence Day by social media. While I am not sure if this will pass the tests of Rotarian Purists, I personally felt it looks cute and might even make a good Floral Decoration or “Pookalam” up in faraway Siliguri on the 29th – much in the best tradition of your Durga Puja Pandal competition!…..


H A P P Y ‘O-N-A-M’


More Peace and Prosperity to you all!

2290cookie-checkHappy Onam