Hello Friends, HAPPY HOLI !!
What is Holi and why is it celebrated?
Holi is a Hindu festival that celebrates spring, love, and new beginnings.
While many families may hold religious ceremonies during Holi, for many Holi is more of a fun time. Holi is a colorful festival that includes singing, dancing, and the throwing of color powder paint or colored water. Holi is also known for being the “festival in colors”.
This festival celebrates Radha Krishna’s eternal and divine love. It celebrates Vishnu’s victory as Narasimha Narayana over Hiranyakashipu. It highlights the victory of good over evil. Over the centuries, however, the meaning has changed significantly. Holi was once a rite that married women performed to pray for the well-being of their families. Raka, or the full moon, was also worshipped. Holi’s origin is thought to have been before Christ’s birth.
How is Holi celebrated?
People light bonfires on the first night of Holi and then throw, popcorn, coconut, grains, and chickpeas onto it. People of all ages get out on the streets to have fun and paint-throw the next day. Everyone is welcome to participate as it is celebrated as one big festival! People enjoy having fun with each other painting and smearing colored water at each other.
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Story (The legend) – HOLI
Hiranyakashyap, a demon king, once overthrew the kingdom of the earth. He was so self-centered that he ordered everyone in his kingdom to worship him only. To his immense disappointment, Prahlad, his son became a fervent devotee of Lord Narayana, refusing to worship his father.
Hiranyakashyap tried many ways to kill Prahlad, but Lord Vishnu saved his life every time. He finally asked Holika, his sister to take Prahlad into a blazing flame with her. Hiranyakashyap was aware that Holika had a boon that allowed her to enter the fire unharmed.
Holika coaxed Prahlad, a young boy, to take sit in her lap. She then set a blazing fire in her own seat. Legend has it that Holika was forced to give up her sinister desires by giving her life. Holika didn’t know that the boon only worked if she entered the fire by herself alone.
Prahlad, who continuously chanted the name of Lord Narayana throughout, was unharmed and the Lord blessed his extreme devotion. Holi is thus named after Holika. Holi is a celebration of the triumph of good over evil.
Holi is also known as the triumph of a devotee. According to legend, no one, no matter how strong, can harm a true devotee. True devotees of god will never be destroyed and those who dare to torture them will be turned into ashes.
Celebration of HOLI
People still re-enact the scene of Holika’s burning to ashes every year to celebrate the triumph of good over evil. Many Indian states, particularly the north, burn Holika’s effigies in large bonfires. It is common to throw cow dungs into the fire, shouting obscenities at it in the air as if at Holika. It is then common to hear a scream of “Holi-hai!” Holi-hai! ‘. Gujarat and Orissa follow the tradition of burning Holika. People offer gram and stalks of the harvest to Agni, the god fire, as a way to express their gratitude.
Further, on the final day of Holi, devotees carry a small amount of fire ash from the bonfire to their homes as a blessing. This custom is believed to make their homes clean and prevent them from getting sick. There is a tradition in many places of cleaning the home, taking out all dirt from the area, and then burning them. This eliminates disease-causing bacteria and improves the sanitation of the area.
1. How many days Holi is celebrated?
The festival of Holi in most regions is celebrated for two consecutive days. Holika Dahan, or Chhoti Holi, is the first night of the festival. While the next day people celebrate it with each other by smearing colors & colored water on each other, enjoying it with along with sweets & thandai
2. What is the festival of Holi about?
The festival of Holi is about celebrating the win of good over evil, an occasion of new beginnings by letting go of the past to start fresh along with welcoming the start of springs.
3. What are the different types of Holi celebrations in India known as?
The festival of Holi is celebrated with many different names in various states of India such as :
- Rang Panchami in Maharashtra
- Lathmar Holi & Holi Milan in Uttar Pradesh
- Holla Mohalla in Punjab
- Shigmo in Goa
- Royal Holi in Udaipur
- Kumaoni Holi in Uttarakhand
- Manjal Kuli in Kerala
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