Warm wishes on Onam13 September 2017
Onam is the national festival of Kerala. Coming after the deprivation of the long monsoons, this is the time of bountiful harvests.
The myth goes something like this:
Once Kerala was ruled by a just king under whom the land prospered, egalitarianism prevailed, honesty and fair dealings underpinned transactions (including commercial – the weights and measures were always correct, the balladeers sing; rudimentary fair trade!). The gods became jealous of this earthly challenge to what was essentially the promise in the other life. So they tricked our king and banished him to the netherworld. But before he went he extracted one wish – to visit his subjects every year. The festival celebrates the annual visit of King Maveli. Onam is our celebration of this egalitarian myth – our collective memory of primitive communism. Pop anthropology hails that the egalitarian underpinnings of the ‘Kerala model of development’ is culturally anchored on this myth.
Some of the previous Onam greetings: