In this article, we will discuss the significance of Sindoor Khela, i.e., the vermicelli game. We will also learn about its origin and how the ritual is followed.
Durga Puja is known to be the biggest festival in Bengal. We Bengalis wait all year long just for these 5 days celebrations. Bidding goodbye to the goddess never gets easy. That is why on Vijaya Dashami, there is a sombre atmosphere all around. Even though everyone is sad as the five days of the long celebration ends, we also know how to make the farewell a joyous occasion. Women keep waiting for this day as they get to take part in ‘Sindoor Khela and enjoy themselves. These days women are a bit conscious about their health and have started shifting to herbal sindoor.
What exactly is Sindoor Khela?
The literal meaning of the term ‘Sindoor Khela’ is “vermicelli game’. The Bengali women play this game with lots of enthusiasm and hope to welcome our beloved Goddess Durga the following year. Traditionally married women participate in this; there are certain rituals that the women need to perform before they can start playing. This is believed to bring them good luck and give their husbands long lives.
The beliefs and traditions associated with Sindoor Khela
The rituals of sindoor khela can start after the ‘ghat visarjan’; it is a symbolic emersion of the goddess and marks the end of the puja. All the married women gather in the pandal wearing white saree with red borders. At first, they perform Devi Baran one by one, bidding goodbye to the goddess and asking her to return to us the following year. Each woman goes up to the goddess individually, does arti and applies sindoor on the feet and forehead of ‘Maa Durga’. After the Devi Baran is done, they apply sindoor on each other’s parting of the hair and forehead and then apply some to the three most essential bangles of a Bengali married woman. They are sankha (conch shells), pola (coral) and noa (iron). They are also supposed to give sindoor to the feet of women who are elder to them. After completing this, they can start applying sindoor on each other’s faces. Although it is pretty visible that the hair is going to be badly affected by this, everyone should do a hair care routine; after this, you can check out the hair care product range Shahnaz Husain offers.
No one can exactly trace the origin of this ritual of Sindoor Khela. It is believed to be as old as the puja of goddess Durga itself, dating back almost 400 years. However, some believe that this ritual originated from the time when the zamindars used to celebrate this puja in their house. This ritual replicates the feel of the festival of colour, i.e., Holi. This signifies the celebration of sisterhood and women hood. As everyone is becoming more conscious about their skin and hair, they are trying to shift to herbal sindoor, and you can try out the ones offered by Shahnaz Husain.
This ritual is known to be a grand celebration but has certain back draws because it is non-inclusive. Widows, unmarried girls and ladies are not supposed to participate in this. However, the world is changing these days, and hence people try to involve everyone in this celebration. People have become more aware of their skin, hair and health these days, so they try to do hair care before and after this ritual.