Plant Myths, Religious Importance, and Traditions in Uttarakhand (Himalaya) -
By: Bhishma Kukreti, M.Sc. (Botany) (Mythology Research Scholar)
Botanical name – Pinus roxburghii
Local name –Kunlai, कुंळाइ, कुंळै
Hindi Name –Chir, Cheed
Economic benefits – People use pine for wood for furniture, Fuel wood, edible seeds, resin, livestock bedding by leaves, decoration by cones, lighting medium .People use pine as herbal treatment for asthma by residing in pine forest.
Myths, Religious Importance and Traditions
Pine , Chir, Cheed has very important role in hills of Uttarakhand.
In old days, people used pine for air flow for guessing rain or no rain in near future by the sound of pine leaves occurred by air flow.
Pine has importance in folk religion and cultural of Uttarakhand.
Pine and Pandaw Festival
Chandra Prakash Kala informs that there is a festival in Garhwal called Panda in which the local people celebrate the occasion with dance and song and perform rituals for pleasing various deities and goddesses. The festival continues for several days. On the closing ceremony day, people uproot the pine tree and they bring it to the village. Then people adorn the tree by various local fruits. At the end , people distribute those fruits as auspicious and god blessed fruits.
Pine Twigs in Marriage Ceremony
People use Pine twigs at the time of marriage ceremony. Twigs are dug along with banana tree in each Stambha (pillar) of Vedi (a square platform where marriage rituals are performed).
In a couple of ceremony, people use pine resin as part of ritual ingrediant.
Copyright@ Bhishma Kukreti, Mumbai 2017
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