Holi Celebrations

Celebrating Holi:

"Holi" one of the most popular Hindu festivals celebrated in the spring season. It is celebrated on Phalgun purnima the last full moon day of lunar calendar also called panchang. The festival is widely celebrated with lots of fun and enjoyment not just in India but in all the countries which have Indian Diaspora.

Rituals of Holi:

The festival basically starts from 'falgun purima' and is celebrated till 'teras'. On the evening of falgun purnima there is tradition of holika-dahan or the bone fire which symbolizes victory of good over the bad. Its symbolic meaning is to burn the demon inside you and lead a pious life. From the next day of Holi the festival of colors begins. The next day is called 'Dhulandi' which is the festival of colors. From dhulandi to teras color is played. In between the small festivals like rangpanchmi, rangchhat, sheetla saptmi, auliya ashthami, dashamata poojan, rangteras etc are also celebrated. Dhulandi, Rangpanchmi, Rang Chat, Rang teras are basically for playing the colors. Sheetla saptami, auliya ashtami are to worship deity sheetla and dashamata to worship deity dasha meaning good condition. The 16 day Brij-Holi is the most popular one. Lathmaar holi of brij is a tourist attraction these days.

Concept and History of Holi:

Holi is related with the mythological story of Prahlad and Holika. Prahlad was the son of demon Hiranakashyapa who believed himself as god but Prahlad denied accepting him as god and he kept worshiping Lord Vishnu whom Hiranakashyapa believed to be the greatest enemy to him. To punish Prahlad Hiranakashyapa and his sister Holika decided to burn Prahlad. As Holika had the boon that she could never be burnt so she sat on the fire with Prahlad but Holika burnt and Prahlad came out safe. The story symbolizes victory of good over the bad and the end of evil.

There are another stories too related with holi about Lord Krishna and the gopis. It's believed that Lord Krishna with his pranks on Gopis popularized this festival in Brij. There is one more story of Kamdev and Rati. Who was destroyed by Lord Shiva's anger for disturbing his meditation but for sake of his wife Rati Lord Shiva restored him and for commemoration of this event Holi is celebrated.

Holi is not just the festival to celebrate the victory of good over evil or it's not just the festival of colors but Holi is the festival of hearts. There are no restriction, no differences but just the love to be spread with colors.