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Me-Dam-Me-Phi: Know About An Ancient Festival Celebrated By Ahom people In Assam

Me-dam-me-phi is an annual state holiday that Assam observes on 31 January. Assam. It could be equated to the Mahalaya Amavasya Day wherein we conduct ancestral worship for the departed souls. This is probably what we have in common with the Ahom Community or Tai Ahom community that is a part of the Assam and Arunachal Pradesh milieu. In 2023 Me Dam Me Phi arrives on Tuesday, 31st January.

Historical Background

Me Dam Me Phi can be split into three words, the Me, Dam and Phi which mean Offerings, dead forefathers and Gods respectively. Being the primary festival of the Ahom group, It offers the prasad to the Dam Chao Gods. The very first ancestral worship was first conducted by a king namely Swargadeo Sukapha, at Charaideo. It had been relegated to the background and treated as a private festival for years to come. It had to wait up to the end of the 20th century, to be announced as a government holiday and a day for public celebration. The Tai Ahom community of Assam celebrates this festival on January 31. It is treated more as a festival than as a event with religious flavour. It is commendable that the Assamese community is upholding its bygone traditions with an equal fervour and zeal. January 31 is a declared state holiday for the purposes of celebrating the Me Dam Me Phi festival. Departed souls and the Dam Chao Gods by name Grihadam, Dam Changphi, and Me Dam Me Phi receive devout offerings made by the people of Assam on this day. They are considered to be Gods of heaven.

Celebration Of Me-Dam-Me-Phi

Since Ahom groups are clustered around sivasagar, Dibrugarh, Lakhimpur districts of Assam the festival is celebrated with utmost prominence. Guwahati is another place that receives the gods of heaven with an elaborate fanfare and due enthusiasm. Dance drama and music feature as the prime activities that go on uninterrupted in the evening. A pillar by name Dhamkhuta is established and worshipped with homemade wine and mah-prasad that consists of beans and chickpeas, and rice with meat and fish.
The festival is celebrated on such a grand scale that people from not only the Assamese community, but also from other communities take an enthusiastic role in its observance. Community feasts are open to all those who participate in it and the cultural programs are in tune with the spirit of the times, and pique the interest of the audience by their folksy rendition and archaic Assamese style.

Disclaimer: The information is based on assumptions and information available on the internet and the accuracy or reliability is not guaranteed. Boldsky does not confirm any inputs or information related to the article and our only purpose is to deliver information. Kindly consult the concerned expert before practising or implementing any information and assumption

Story first published: Thursday, January 19, 2023, 19:05 [IST]
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