What’s the legend behind Onam?
A few Onam thoughts through words and poems
If you want to become familiar with variations of different customs and rituals associated with Onam, you need to listen to countryside music, folk, old musical instruments etc. Mahabali is present in the songs of Pakkanar of Malabar regions. There are many old folk poems which detail the customs associated with Onam during the glorious yesterdays. They are deeply linked to the social life of yesterdays and rural life. There are many Onam songs related to collection of flowers for Pookalam and Onam plays, dedicated to kids. A few songs are dedicated to agriculture and different phases and seasons of farming.
Onam was first mentioned in Thiruvalla Thiruvatta Shasanam of A. D. 861, during the 17th year of rule of Stanuravi. It was recorded that a Chennan gave away his land for Avani Onam and that he should give fine if he fails to give Onasadya with its income. Food menu of that special meal was also given as an instruction. It includes ghee, green gram, jaggery and banana. Though that meal can’t be compared with grand Onasadya of today, it was quite a royal and grand food those days, definitely.