Ritu (Indian season)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

For other uses see Ritu (disambiguation).

Ritu (Sanskrit: ऋतु) means "season" in the Hindu calendar, and there are six ritus (also transliterated rutu) or seasons. The word is derived from the Vedic Sanskrit word Rtu, a fixed or appointed time, especially the proper time for sacrifice (yajna) or ritual in Vedic Religion; this in turn comes from the word Rta (ऋत), as used in Vedic Sanskrit literally means the "order or course of things". This word is used in nearly all Hindu languages.

Seasonal table[1][2][edit]

India observes all 6 ecological seasons. South India experiences the seasons on a different schedule than the one depicted here.

No. Ritu Season Hindu lunar months Gregorian month Characteristics Seasonal festivals
1 Vasanta
वसन्त
Spring Chaitra and Vaishakha ~ March to May Temperature around 20-30 degrees; vernal equinox occurs in the middle of this season. Vasant panchami, Ugadi, Gudhi Padwa, Holi, Rama Navami, Vishu/RongaliBihu/Baisakhi/Tamil Puthandu, Hanuman Jayanti
2 Grishma
ग्रीष्म
Summer Jyeshta and Aashaadha ~ May to July Very hot, temperatures up to 45-50 degrees Celsius; ends with the summer solstice. Vat Pournima, Rath Yatra, Guru Purnima
3 Varsha
वर्षा
Monsoon Shraavana (Sawan) and Bhadrapada (Bhado) ~ July to September Very hot, very humid and heavy monsoon rains; begins with the summer solstice. Raksha Bandhan, Krishna Janmaashtami, Ganesh Chaturthi, Onam, Gurujonar Tithi
4 Sharad

शरद्,

Autumn Ashwin (Kwar) and Kartika ~ September to November Mild temperatures; 19 to 22 degrees Celsius; Autumnal equinox occurs in the middle of this season. Navaratri, Vijayadashami, Sharad Purnima, Bihu
5 Hemanta

हेमन्त

Fall winter Margashirsha (Agrahayana, Agahan) and Pausha (Poos) ~ November to January Very pleasant temperatures; generally, 20-25 degrees Celsius; ends with the winter solstice. (mid-Winter celebration), Bihu, Deepavali, Kartik Poornima
6 Shishira
शिशिर
Winter Magha and Phalguna (Phagun) ~ January to March Moderately cold, but pleasant during occasional sunshine; temperatures may decrease below 10 degrees Celsius.This season is typical to tropical and subtropical regions, because trees actually shed their leaves in this season in tropical areas; starts with the winter solstice. Shivaratri, Shigmo, Pongal, Sankranthi

The seasons are described in literature such as the Sanskrit poem Ṛtusaṃhāra written by Kālidāsa.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Feller, Danielle. The Seasons in Mahākāvya Literature, Eastern Book Linkers, Delhi, 1995, ISBN 8186339248
  • Raghavan, V. Ṛtu in Sanskrit literature, Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri Kendriya Sanskrit Vidyapeetha, Delhi, 1972
  • Renou, Louis. Sanskrit et culture, Payot, 1950
  • Selby, Martha Ann (translator). The Circle of Six Seasons, Penguin, New Delhi, 2003, ISBN 0-14-100772-9

External links[edit]