Celebrations always call for indulgences of sorts, like letting the hair down and allowing the soaring spirit to break into spontaneous modes of expressing happiness through dancing and singing. The dhunuchi nach will perhaps find its roots in a similar reason. Dhunuchi is a cup shaped earthenware with a handle and a stem in which burning incense comprising of old coconut husk and camphor, smokes. This is used during arati, an essential ritual performed during the worship of the goddess.
A dhunuchi nach ( ritualized dance worship) sees a devotee dancing with the same object in his hand to the feverish beatings of the dhak or the traditional drum from Bengal. It is performed in front of the goddess and often the number of dhunuchis goes up to 3, one in each hand and the third one held precariously between the teeth. Often competitions are organised to decide on the best dhunuchi dancer. It’s a fun activity through which we try to express the untold joys that Durga puja fills our lives with.