Kolam - a symbol of auspiciousnes. It is a traditional art practised by ladies in south India especially Tamilnadu.
Hindu's believe that that the geometrical patterns & designs applied with rice flour at the entrance to a home, invites Goddess Lakshmi (goddess of wealth) into the household, and drives away the evil spirits.
Early in the morning kolams are drawn with bare hands on the cleaned floor, in front of houses and in front of deities in pooja rooms. On special days even colored powders are also used to fill the patterns and they are called "Rangoli"(meaning colors).
Apart from the beliefs there are several the benefits for the person who draws kolam. Just because the artist has to bend down each morning, it helps the ladies to breathe fresh air and in overall stretching of her body thereby refreshing her for the day. Drawing complex patterns everday improves her concentration and creativity to draw new designs.
The reason for using rice flour is to provide food for the ants & birds outside the house. Nowadays finely ground white stone powder is used, for this is easier to use & also the kolams are brighter & well finished.
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