This year 2013 Tamil New Year is fall in April 14th 2013 Sunday!
What is Tamil New Year?
Tamil New Year is the New Year of Tamilians which is celebrated by Tamil speaking peoples all over the world, and starts with Tamil 1st day of First Month Chithirai. In our solar system earth revolves around the Sun.
When the earth enters into the Mesha Rasi (at zero degree) it is called Tamil New Year. Scientifically it is earth’s New Year – ie- the beginning of the new orbit of earth around the Sun. Tamil language is believed to be more than 30,000 years old and a classic language like Sanskrit.
Origin and significance
The Tamil New Year follows the Nirayanam vernal equinox and generally falls on 14 April of the Gregorian year. 14th April marks the first day of the traditional Tamil calendar and is a public holiday in both Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka. Tropical vernal equinox fall around 22 March, and adding 23 degrees of trepidation or oscillation to it, we get the Hindu sidereal or Nirayana Mesha Sankranti (Sun’s transition into Nirayana Aries).
Hence, the Tamil calendar begins on the same date observed by most traditional calendars in India as in Assam, West Bengal, Kerala, Manipur, Mithila, Odisha, Punjab, Tripura etc. not to mention Nepal, Bangladesh, Burma, Cambodia, Laos, Sri Lanka and Thailand. The 60-year cycle is ancient and is observed by most traditional calendars of India and China, and is related to 5 revolutions of Jupiter, or to 60-year orbit of Nakshatras (stars) as described in the Surya Siddhanta.
The traditional Tamil year starts on 14 April (2013) in Kaliyuga 5115. Vikrama and Shalivahana Shakha eras are also used. There are several references in early Tamil literature to the April new year. Nakkirar, the author of the Nedunalvaadai writes in the 3rd century that the Sun travels from Mesha/Chitterai through 11 successive Raasis or signs of the zodiac.
Kūdalūr Kizhaar in the 3rd century refers to Mesha Raasi/Chitterai as the commencement of the year in the Puranaanooru. The Tolkaapiyam is the oldest surviving Tamil grammar that divides the year into six seasons where Chitterai marks the start of the Ilavenil season or summer. The 8th century Silappadikaaram mentions the 12 Raasis or zodiac signs starting with Mesha/Chitterai.
The Manimekalai alludes to the Hindu solar calendar as we know it today. Adiyarkunalaar, an early medieval commentator or Urai-asiriyar mentions the 12 months of the Tamil calendar with particular reference to Chitterai. There were subsequent inscriptional references in Pagan, Burma dated to the 11th century CE and in Sukhothai, Thailand dated to the 14th century CE to South Indian, often Vaishnavite, courtiers who were tasked with defining the traditional calendar that began in mid-April. Wish you all a Happy Tamil New Year Day!