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Ashvin or Ashwin (Nepali: आश्विन , असोज, Bengali: আশ্বিন Ashbin; Sanskrit: अश्विन् //; Malay/Indonesian: Aswin; Thai: Asawin), also known as Aswayuja, is the seventh month of the lunisolar Hindu calendar, the Bikram Sambat which is the official solar calendar of Nepal and the parts of India. It is the sixth month in the solar Bengali calendar. It falls in the season of Shôrot, (Sharad in Hindi) or Autumn. In solar religious calendar, Ashvin begins with the Sun's exit from Virgo.
It overlaps September and October of the Gregorian calendar and is the month preceding Diwali or Tihar the festival of lights. The month is here named Ashshin, Bengali script: আশ্বিন). In lunar religious calendars, Ashvin begins on the new moon after the autumn equinox.
Ashvini is the first star that appears in the evening sky. In Indian astrology it is the head of Aries, or the first of the 27 Nakshatra. Ashvin also stands for the divine twins, the Ashvins, the gods of vision in Hindu mythology. Asawin is the Thai variant of Ashvin and stands for warrior. The term is often translated into English as "knight".
Several major religious holidays take place in Ashvin. Those are as follows:
- Navratri (1-9 Ashvin)
- Durga Puja (6-10 Ashvin)
- Kojagiri Pornima (15 Ashvin)
- Vijayadashami or Dussehra (10 Ashvin)
- Divali festival including Dhanteras (28 Ashvin), Naraka Chaturdasi (29 Ashvin) and Lakshmi Puja (Last day of Ashvin)
- Kali Puja (new moon of Ashvin), which are held as per the lunar calendar, usually fall in this month.
Ashwin is known as aipasi (ஐப்பசி ) in Tamil and begins when the sun enters Libra in October.
- Henderson, Helene. (Ed.) (2005) Holidays, festivals, and celebrations of the world dictionary Third edition. Electronic edition. Detroit: Omnigraphics, p. xxix. ISBN 0-7808-0982-3
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