Holi is the festival of colors. It is a popular ancient Hindu festival, also known as the “festival of Spring “, the “festival of color”, and the ” festival of love”. Holi is filled with beautiful and vibrant colors. Each has a particular significance, religious or otherwise. Considered one of the major festivals in India. According to Hindu mythology, it is celebrated in the month of Phalguna( referring to the Hindu calendar) on full moon day.
Holi is the marker of the arrival of spring, the end of winter, the blooming of love. It is a festive day to meet others, play, and laugh with each other. It is a festival to forget old grievances and start the new beginnings with great warmth & high spirit. The festival of Holi teaches humankind to transcend above the dogma of caste and creed.
With the onset of spring, the whole of India gets into the colorful climate of Holi. This festival denotes celebration due to good harvests and land fertility. This colorful festival also celebrates the eternal love of Radha and Krishna. Holi is the significance of the triumph of good over evil. Although the festival of colors originates in South Asia, it has now gained popularity across the world.
What is Holi?
Holi festival is based on historical and spiritual significance in Indian mythology. Encircled by the story of popular mythological legend king ‘Hiranyakashyapu’ and his son ‘Prahlada’. Explains why people celebrate Holi as a festival of triumph of good over evil. According to the Bhagavata Purana, king Hiranyakashyapu is the king of demons. He owns a boon that gives him five special powers. Neither a human being could kill him nor animals, neither with any means nor on the landmass or water or air. The King hates God especially Lord Vishnu and threatens people in his kingdom for worshipping God. He grows arrogant thinking he is the God.
However, his son Prahlada disobeyed his rule and continued to worship Lord Vishnu. The King infuriates and instructs his sister Holika to annihilate his son Prahlada. Holika has also had a boon of immune to fire. Holika was wearing a cloak that made her immune to injury from fire. Fire surely could not affect her so she took a seat on the fire with young Prahlad. Lord Vishnu rendered protection of his devotee Prahlad and he was alive but Holika was burnt to death. Therefore, the festival of Holi symbolizes the victory of good over evil.
How is Holi celebrated?
The celebration of Holi generally takes place within two days. Holika Dahan takes place the night before Dhuleti. Burn wood and dung-cakes. Families often pray to God for their well-being. It is a symbolic conflagration that is meant to define the triumph of good over evil. Dhuleti often refers to playing with colors. Bright colors powder is a unique part of the Holi. Everyone comes out of their houses and dabs each other with colors often termed ‘gulal’. Kids play with water guns (pichkari) and water balloons. Furthermore, people throw color in the air. On the day of Holi, the entire arena turns into a rainbow.
Significance of colors
Every color has a significant role, green denotes new beginnings, red symbolizes fertility, love, beauty, and most importantly it represents a married woman. Yellow is similar to turmeric, an ingredient of the spices family. It has importance at auspicious functions and having medicinal properties. It has importance, for the treatment of digestive disorders and as an antiseptic. The blue color refers to Lord Krishna. Similarly, saffron is associates with strength and Hinduism.
Color plays a significant role in keeping the cultural heritage. It is diverse, speaks the language of people, and holds integrity together. Indian festive celebration is incomplete without flavorful sweets. People exchange sweets like snacks and Thandai among each other and friends. Along with popular Holi sweets like Ladoo, Burfi, Imarti, and Gujiya, etc.
Holi around the world
The craze of Holi is magnificent all over the world. People celebrate Holi with joy and happiness wherever Indians or people of Indian origin are present . Holi has become more & more popular due to its uniqueness which is played with vibrant colors. The celebration is a little modified in other parts. The importance of any festival is to take a break from the daily regime of life. Therefore, the other major intention of celebrating festivals is to bring people together and generate a feeling of brotherhood and spread harmony across each other.
Festival is the prime reason to feel terrified and take a break from the monotonous life. So, today the festival of colors brings us the opportunity to reunite with our friends and family. It is merely the reason to bring the colors back into life. People across the globe also find such practices interesting and filled with moral teaching, which gives humankind to grow over.