Erünyie - Thürinyie

The nomenclature of the word “Erünyie” derives from the Chakhesang Khezha dialect “Erü” meaning Paddy and “Nyie” means ‘Festival’ which means paddy festival also in Chokri dialect “Thürinyie”, ‘Thüri’ means paddy and ‘Nyie’ means “Festival.

Among the festival, it is one of the most important festivals of the Chakhesangs celebrated as a mark of thanks to God, at the end of the year after all the harvest is collected and brought home. Everyone waits anxiously for this grand festival, as the whole year long they have been toiling and giving their best to yield plenty.

The festival Erünyie/Thurinyie is celebrated in the month of December, beginning from 3rd of December and continues for 15 days or more. From the start of the festival till the end, meat and local wine are compulsory, sharing it with brothers, sisters and loved ones. The rich people host the festival for those who cannot manage the festival and make them happy. They also kill domestic animals and distribute it to the poor. Elderly people take this time to bless young ones.

On the 7th day of the festival, all the youths go to the rich at night to have rice beer. Early in the morning on the 8th day before the Sun rises all the boys get ready for ‘Water Spray Blessing’ equipped with their guns and spears from the public well. This ritual is done as a mark to keep the body clean and also to keep the physical body healthy, strong and energetic and also to keep away from sickness and disease. On the 9th day, the villagers, mostly young youths have a feast with the host and help the host in grinding the rice, singing and shouting melodies. On the 10th day, continuing to help the host, they go out to the forest to cut firewood. All the youth get a partner and the couples have competition in cutting firewood and goes back with the loaded decorated firewood.

The festival continues till the 18th of the month and during all these days no one goes to the field and does work and gets complete rest. And during this long celebration, they sing melodies, dance, shout with joy and make merry wearing new garments and all sort of traditional attires.

The festival is celebrated with great enthusiasm to give thanks to God as they have brought the harvest of hard work and toil of 12 months safely home. And also to offer God a prayer so that the harvest collected will last long.

After the celebration of Erünyie/Thurinyie for 15 days, many more Rituals, norms and rules are continued to be observed and during all these days everyone stays at home till the end of the month.

N. Khalo