Snake god festival

Hindus in Nepal, India and Bangladesh celebrate the festival by worshipping snakes to honour the serpent god. During the festival, Nepalese traditionally post pictures of Nagas above the doors of their homes to ward off evil spirits, offer prayers to Nagas, and place food items such as milk and honey in their fields for Nagas. It is believed that if Nag Panchami is observed properly every year the Nags provide good health, wealth and blessing during life. - Photos by Reuters

In Jainism and Buddhism also, the snake is regarded as sacred and has divine qualities. It is believed that a Cobra snake saved the life of Buddha and another protected the Jain Muni Parshwanath.
In Jainism and Buddhism also, the snake is regarded as sacred and has divine qualities. It is believed that a Cobra snake saved the life of Buddha and another protected the Jain Muni Parshwanath.
A devotee pours milk over a statue of a snake god during the ?Nag Panchami? festival. The Snake Kings are offered food items such as milk and honey by placing them in gardens.
A devotee pours milk over a statue of a snake god during the ?Nag Panchami? festival. The Snake Kings are offered food items such as milk and honey by placing them in gardens.
The Nepalese people believed that the snake kings had relation with the almighty God and would take care of them. The festival is celebrated in the month of July/August.
The Nepalese people believed that the snake kings had relation with the almighty God and would take care of them. The festival is celebrated in the month of July/August.
A man sticks a picture of a snake god at the main entrance of his house and offers prayers to it to mark the ?Nag Panchami? festival. During the festival, Nepalese traditionally post pictures of Nagas above the doors of their homes to ward off evil spirits.
A man sticks a picture of a snake god at the main entrance of his house and offers prayers to it to mark the ?Nag Panchami? festival. During the festival, Nepalese traditionally post pictures of Nagas above the doors of their homes to ward off evil spirits.
A girl shows a picture of a snake god during the ?Nag Panchami? festival (or snake festival) in Kathmandu. It is believed that if Nag Panchami is observed properly every year the Nags provide good health, wealth and blessing during life.
A girl shows a picture of a snake god during the ?Nag Panchami? festival (or snake festival) in Kathmandu. It is believed that if Nag Panchami is observed properly every year the Nags provide good health, wealth and blessing during life.
A devotee holds a snake to show his devotion and respect, and to seek blessings during the ?Nag Panchami? festival (or snake festival) in Kathmandu.
A devotee holds a snake to show his devotion and respect, and to seek blessings during the ?Nag Panchami? festival (or snake festival) in Kathmandu.
Hindus in Nepal, India and Bangladesh celebrate the festival by worshipping snakes to honour the serpent god.
Hindus in Nepal, India and Bangladesh celebrate the festival by worshipping snakes to honour the serpent god.
A man looks on as a devotee (unseen) pours milk over a statue of the snake god in Kathmandu.
A man looks on as a devotee (unseen) pours milk over a statue of the snake god in Kathmandu.

Comments (13) Closed




Pavas Ambashta
Jul 26, 2012 04:59pm
Although there is hardly any doubt about the quality of photos and I congratulate the Dawn Team for them!! But, do you really think that there is something called "snake god" in Hinduism (I am sure that there is no "snake god" at least in Hinduism)?? If not, then isn't the title misleading and so spreading the wrong concepts of the religion to the persons not knowing Hinduism?? For the rest of comment about the cultural diversity of Hinduism I really admire your broad sense of understanding of the religion..
Saeed Chaudhry
Jul 28, 2012 11:56am
Wonderful! both are creatures of the same God. then why Hindus should treat the poor low cast Dalit, as lesser human beings. Saeed
Vjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjj
Jul 26, 2012 06:14pm
Well thought and wonderfully scripted lines, to make a news and catch attention with poor data. First line talks about India, bangaladesh and Nepal Second line only about Nepal Third line---GOK A normal reader would interpret these news as general hindu festival or ritual. By the way why "Pakistan" is not included in the first line when Bangladesh is included? In India, people speak about 3000 languages (including dialects, refer wikipedia for more info). Each of these people are further divided based on the region, cast etc. India is truly a nation with lots of diversity. In these context, it is possible that such a festival may exist in some part of India. However it is definitely not a festival that even involves any attention....or a generalization as a Hindu festival. Having said that, I also state that people in India do worship snake. Also the author may note that there is a difference between god and minor deity god. In Hinduism, Snake is nothing but Rahu and Ketu, which denotes the two points of intersection of the paths of the Sun and the Moon as they move around the celestial sphere. (which appears like twining snakes) Therefore, Rahu and Ketu are respectively the north and the south lunar nodes in modern science.
fahim
Jul 26, 2012 06:27pm
well speaking of ignorance, why are you commenting on Muslims and christians when you yourself dont like others commenting or misrepresenting your religion? your are doing the same, so stop being a hypocrite.
Muhammad Bashir Khan
Jul 27, 2012 04:33am
There is only one God. No one else should be given that status.
Thehimera
Jul 24, 2012 12:44pm
There is no such thing as 'Snake God'. We see the power and presence of God in all things around. Our God does not reside in a distant Heaven and the only way to see him is by dying. We see in the snake the infinite nature of God, his power to take life and as such we God as snake, not the other way around. We are allowed and encouraged the feel, see, smell, hear and taste his presence in all his creation. Our religion has been malligned, misunderstood, misrepresented and misused. In its absolute simplicity our God, is the only One, the One without the second beyond and our senses and yet fully and perceptibly present amongst us. This is the paradox of our faith,
Shubs
Jul 24, 2012 04:41pm
Offended much?? Why do you feel that this photo feature has 'maligned, misunderstood, misrepresented and misguided' your religion (and mine, by the way)? Your write up on the concept of an omnipresent divinity in Hinduism is great, but I fail to understand why you felt offended! This is a lovely set of photos. If you feel offended, or god-forbid, humiliated, at being told that a co-religionist worships a certain animal, then I'm sorry to tell you that you are ashamed of our animistic traditions. This defensive write-up is a sign of an inferiority compex, of judging your own culture through the standards of others. Why not rejoice in the diversity of the cultural traditions that constitute what we know as Hinduism?
Mishra
Jul 24, 2012 04:53pm
Though I am an atheist, in my opinion, having real but natural god is far better than fake and supernatural god.
Pankaj Patel (USA)
Jul 24, 2012 06:11pm
This is height of ignorance about Hinduism.Hindus worship all things in nature trees like Banian animals like cows and elephant, birds like peacock and snake among other things.This do not mean they are God, the way Christians and Muslims worship dead bodies and preserve it for centuries but do not confuse them with God.Milk and honey are ritual offering and not for the cobra to eat, cobra do not drink milk any way.
Raju
Jul 24, 2012 08:32pm
With all due respect, if one was to follow the Vedas in reality, the person would not worship 'everything' as God or anything apart from the 'One God'. Snakes are animals, lesser than humans, it does not befit humans to bow down before animals.
kaushik
Jul 27, 2012 06:18am
No Hindu would ever refer any animal as a lesser than human. You are totally wrong.
Kesav das
Jul 26, 2012 02:46am
It is not necessary to die in order to see God,the only ingredient required is 'devotion' (Bhakti).'premanjana chakshurita bhaktivolochanena santah sadaiva...' (Brahma Samhita).
Ghazwa
Jul 30, 2012 05:55am
I hope "peace be amongst his followers". Live and let live.