As part of the Navarathri celebrations, everyone, particularly in South India, keeps Golu in their houses on Mahalaya Amavasai which is an auspicious day. This year, Navarathri celebrations began on October 4, 2013; Vijaya varusha Purattasi 18am naal (Mahalaya Amavasai).
Golu is generally kept in odd number of steps (padi) [3, 5, 7, 9 or 11] for nine nights. Ladies of the house set up the Golu with a lot of involvement and exhibit their handicrafts and toys (made of clay and wood) arranged aesthetically. This is a modest way for them to use their imagination and display their skill and vision of various themes. Women visit each other home during this time from the day following Mahalaya Amavasai. Thamboolam is given to sumangalis as its considered very auspicious particularly during this period. Women make varied kolams and light lamp (Villakku) in front of the Golu in the morning and evening similar to that done for the Athu Koil Azhwar (home deity).
Different types of sundals and sweets are prepared for amsai and distributed as prasadams to guests and visitors. The guests are insisted on showing their talent during this time through various means including singing or playing (instruments) carnatic music in front of the Golu among other things.
During this Vijaya Varusha Navarathri, readers of Anudinam are invited to showcase their Athu Golu in Anudinam. Kindly send us photographs of Golu kept in your house or nearby temples with a brief description along with your name and location to get it published. These details must be mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here is showcasing the Golu of some of the Anudinam readers…
Golu at Sri Kannan Vasan Battar’s Kudil At Therazundur
Golu at Vanamamalai Divya Desam, Nanguneri
Golu at Thriuvallur Sri Veeraraghava Swamy Divya Desam
As a part of Vijaya Varusha Navarathri Uthsavam, for the first time Golu was organised at Sri Kanakavalli Nayika Sametha Sri Veeraraghava Swamy Temple. The Kolu was organised on a Thematic concept of Avatars of Vishnu, showcasing 1) the Origin and significance of Sri Vaidya Veeraraghavar, 2) Dasavatharam, 3) Ramar Pattabishekam and 4) Krishna Leelas. In the words of a Bhakta: “The golu was scintillating and marvellous.”
Golu at Smt Godhanagesh’s Kudil At Basaveshwarnagar, Bangalore
We have been collecting these dolls for the last 15 years. The dolls are from different parts of the world. Ninety per cent of them are from different states of India.
Golu at Sri K Rangarajan’s Kudil At Maraimalai Nagar, Chennai
Golu at Sri Kausthub’s Kudil
Golu at Smt Priya Viswanath’s Kudil At Medavakkam, Chennai
I am keeping Golu for the past 12 years. This year apart from the traditional 5 step Golu i have kept a theme golu called festivals of India and also a day in a village. Emphasis is given to hand made dolls mostly made by us. All family members take an active part in arranging the golu.
Golu at Sri VS Srikanth’s Kudil At Chennai
Golu at Sri Periyamarai Setlur Kasturirangan Srikanth’s Kudil At Singapore
We have chosen Paratvadhi Panchakam, a short and beautiful sthotram composed by Sri Nadadoor Ammal, as the theme for the Kolu. Five steps depicting the five Nilais of Sriman Narayanan can be viewed in the Golu.
Golu at Smt Kousalya Rengarajan’s Kudil At Nanganallur, Chennai
The main theme this year is Srimath Ramayanam and Sri Krishna Leela.
Golu at Kudil of Bhuma Vijay & Janaki Krishnan At Thiruvanmiyur, Chennai
Theme – Festivals of Tamil Nadu
Golu at Kudil of Gokul Nedumaram At Mississauga, Canada
In this Navarathri Golu, a humble try on portraying Swami Desikan’s Navamani Malai as the theme.