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Opinion
May 9, 2021

Mother’s Day being celebrated

Monica Ranjit
Getty image: Freepik
Getty image: Freepik

Mother’s Day is a special day set aside in celebration of mothers all over the world.  It is celebrated around the world as a day to honour mothers, motherhood, maternal bonds, and the influence of mothers in society within the family remembering the impact that all moms make in the world.

Mothers are the most important persons in our lives and they put in their all to help us hone our skills and/or abilities and carve our personalities. It is celebrated every year to appreciate the efforts a mother puts in for her child.

The days usually celebrate with giving gifts, flower bouquets, etc. to their mothers to make this day special.

Day

Mother’s Day is celebrated on different dates in various countries marking as an annual holiday. While not every country celebrates Mother’s Day at the same time, what’s important is to honour mothers worldwide and that most countries do celebrate this special day.

Mother’s Day is celebrated on the fourth Sunday of March in the UK, while Greeks observed on February 2.

Arab countries celebrate it on March 21.

However, in most countries Mother’s Day is celebrated on the second Sunday in May every year, among them the USA, Canada, most European countries, Australia, New Zealand, India, China, Japan, the Philippines and South Africa.

As such, this year, it will be celebrated on May 9.

The writer (first from left) celebrating Mother’s Day in New York on Sunday — May 9 evening.

Internationally, there are a large variety of Mother’s Day celebrations with different origins and traditions, some now also having been influenced by this more recent American tradition.

In the US, a woman named Anna Jarvis wanted a special day dedicated to mothers since her mother expressed this desire. She took the initiative after her mother’s death. She observed Mother’s Day through a service of worship at St. Andrew’s Methodist Church in Grafton, west Virginia on May 10, 1908.

Mother’s Day began to be observed officially after former American president Woodrow Wilson signed a proclamation in 1914 declaring the second Sunday in May as a national holiday.

Mother’s Day was celebrated by the Greeks and the Romans in ancient times by worshipping Goddess Rhea and Cybelle.

In Arab world, mothers are serenaded with flowers, cards, gifts and family dinners to celebrate their love, care and sacrifices. According to Dr. Mohammed Bakr, the previous director of the Egyptian Antiquities Organization, the pharaohs very much respected women and it is obvious from the drawings in their temples how they celebrated women and more specifically, mothers.

In the Arab world, the idea was reasserted by the Egyptian journalist, Mostafa Amin, who mentioned Mother’s Day in his books in 1943, and 10 years later, he sent an official request to the government and created a campaign for it.

The then Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser announced in 1956 that mothers shall officially be celebrated on March 21, and the rest of the Arab world followed suit.

Nepal

In Nepal, Mother’s Day is celebrated in a different way than in the other world. Nepalis celebrate Mother’s Day according to the lunar calendar. The day falls on the new moon of Baisakha, the first month of the Nepali calendar (that falls on the last day of the dark fortnight of April or early May.)

This year the Mother’s Day falls on May 11, Tuesday . The day is also called Matartirtha Aunsi, which translates as “mother pilgrimage fortnight.”

The children who live away from their mother come to visit her with clothes, gifts, gifting of money, flower necklaces, sweets, fruits and other delicacies as an expression of love and gratitude, and receive blessings from them.

But those who have lost their mothers give an offering of ceremonial grains called Sida Daan, bath at shrines, and gaze at their reflections in the holy water. It was believed that in doing so, one might see one’s own mother reflected as well.

As in other countries, on mother’s day there is no official holiday.

According to the legends, during the rule of cowherds in Nepal, one of the cowherds lost his mother and was so depressed that he went to make offerings at a water storage pond in the forest. Amazingly, he saw his mother’s face appear in the water and accept his offerings.

From that day on, this day was known as Mata Tirtha Aunsi, the Nepali Mother’s day. People believe that coming to this place and paying homage on this day brings peace to the departed soul of their mother.

On this day,those who have lost their mother pay a visit to the Mata Tirtha– sacred pilgrimage site bathing that lies six miles southwest of downtown Kathmandu to remember the deceased mother’s homage.

Mata Tirtha means mother’s holy place that consists of two pools. The larger one is for bathing and the smaller one where one “looks upon their mother’s face”.

It is believed that those who take a holy bath in Mata Tirtha and offer tarpan today helps his/her mother reach salvation and bring prosperity to the family.

Finally, Mother’s Day arrives this year too with a bit more resonance than usual. Many of us have been separated from our loved ones during the pandemic and some have lost parents.

So, let’s celebrate the day with joyfully with the mothers and if the mothers are already departed to the heaven it is our duty to pay respect for our late mothers.

Be the mothers around the world happy and safe.

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