(Last Updated on : 15/03/2017)
Amongmong Festival is observed in the first week of September by the Sangtam tribe in Nagaland
. It is a pre harvest festival. Togetherness is the best word to describe Amongmong festival and the word Amongmong means togetherness. The festival is celebrated for six days. The Tribe worships their local deities and they place three cooking stones near the fireplace in order to achieve good harvest, prosperity and health of the tribe.
Celebration of Amongmong Festival
After the announcement of the village priest in the night, the next morning another priest reads the proclamation. The villagers prepare for the festival by accumulating food stuff, firewood and special wine. The announcement indicates the separation of the spirit of the dead from the living. A line is drawn between the dead and the living throughout the festival.
The main objective is to have a good harvest. Each day of the festival has its own significance. The first day is called Singkitshsa. This day is marked by closing of all transaction that are related to purchase of domestic animals like pigs, cow, Mithuns and roping them. Preparing and collection of food stuff is done on that day. Now on the second day, the roped domestic animals are killed. After setting aside some portion for the feast, the meat is distributed among the team members of a group called athiru and akhingru. The third day is known as musuyangtap. It is a day of worshipping the three oven stones. The oldest woman of the household perform this ritual by placing gum rice balls on the top of the stones and pouring little wine on these stones. God lijaba is represented by this stone.
On these three days villagers will neither go to fields nor outside the village as this is believed to bring calamities. As dawn sets in the priest would go to the village well and draw water carefully. Others would follow him. Each one of them must cover their head with green leaves else they would be affected by cholera. The whole day is devoted to merrymaking.
The fourth day is called kikha-langpi. The village is cleaned by the males. After returning every grown-up male contributes meat and wine and feast together in the house of the village priest. The wives put chillies; ginger and cotton in green leaves called "tsidong" and put them in the field to ward off damage.
The fifth day is known as shilang wuba nyunong. On this day the villager visits relatives, friends and neighboring villages, sharing meal and drinks. The last day of the festival is known as akatisingkithsa. From this day the harvesting starts. This festival is a sort of a thanksgiving to Mother Earth.