The month of Margazhi (Tamil Calendar) or the Dhanur masa is dawn in Heaven, and the day breaks for its celestial inmates. Waking up the omnipresent Lord every morning by chanting the Suprabatha (Good morning!) is a very exhilarating experience for a staunch devotee. Since Margazhi is dawn to the Lord, praying and chanting during this month acquires greater religious fervour.
Lord Sri Narayana opens the doors of his abode Vaikunta for his devotees and blesses them on Vaikunta Ekadashi day.
Similarly, on the day when the star Adhirai (or Arudhra) falls on the full moon day of the Margazhi Masam, Lord Shiva blesses his devotees with his blissful Cosmic Dance performance - the Dance which creates, sustains and destroys the entire universe. Thiruvadhirai is supposed to be the birth day of the Lord who is beyond births and deaths. Fritjof Capra draws a parallel between Shiva’s Ananda Tandava (Blissful dance) and the dance of the sub atomic particles in his book – The Tao of Physics, which was published in 1975. It explains the very faint line between modern physics and the age old mysticism. Therefore whether you are a scientist or a mystic, whether you are a theist or an atheist, Thiruvadirai is the day to celebrate Lord Shiva’s Cosmic Dance.
On Thiruvadirai day, we wake up early in the morning and offer our prayers to Lord Shiva. A sweet dish – Thiruvadirai Kali – is prepared and offered to the Lord along with Yezhu Kari Koottu, which is prepared with all the vegetables which are harvested during the season.
Rice – 1 cup
Jaggery – 1 cup
Cardamom – 4
Cashew nuts – 10
Raisins – a few
Ghee – 4 tbsps
METHOD:1. Dry roast rice until it becomes pink in colour.
2. Dry grind the roasted rice till it becomes like fine semolina.
3. Dissolve jaggery in 3 cups of water and add 1 tbsp of ghee.
4. Bring the jaggery water to a boil, and add the roasted and broken rice.
5. Stir well and cook until it becomes a lump.
6. Add 3 tbsps of ghee and blend well.
7. Heat the remaining ghee in a ladle, and fry the cashew nuts to a golden colour.
8. Add the raisins and fry till they bloat, and add to the prepared Kali.
9. Mix in the cardamom powder and offer it to the Lord.
Relish the hot prasadam with a dollop of butter, and Yezhu Kari Koottu on a cold Margazhi morning. The recipe for Yezhu Kari Koottu is given here.