Holi is the festival of colors. It is celebrated on the full moon day of Phalgun, ie., on Phalgun Purnima. It is one of the important festivals of India. It is a celebration to welcome the season of Spring. This festival commemorates the triumph of goodness over evil. It is celebrated with fun, frolic, vibrancies, gaiety and enthusiasm. Various parts of the world celebrate this festival of colors with pomp and show.
1. Essence of Holi
Holi is the festival of romance. It acknowledges the spirit of devotion and unity. It spreads the message of eliminating the spirit of evil, hatred and jealousy. People forgets the cultural differences, socio-economic barriers and celebrate this beautiful festival of colors all together. It is a celebration of pranks and fun. The boisterous noise of “Boora na mano, Holi hai”, means don’t be upset or angry. This makes the ambiance more lively and vibrant. Individuals forget their enmity and celebrate together with great fun and exuberance.
The foremost legend associated with Holi is the Prince Prahlad. He was a devotee of Lord Vishnu. His father was King Hiranyakashyap, a demon. He tried destroying Prahlad’s life with her sister, Ogress Holika. She took Prahlad inside the blazing fire and tried to kill him. But, Lord Vishnu saved the little Prince’s life. Thus, the spirit of the festival is the destruction of evil from the face of the Earth. Also, the world celebrates Raasleela, the eternal love story of Lord Krishna and his beloved, Radha on this day of Phalgun Purnima. It is said that mischievous Sri Krishna initiated the spraying of colors on Radha and the gopis. This legendary love story imparts a special fervor to this festival of colors. The mythological significance of holi festival discussed in detail.
3. Rituals of Holi
Various rituals take place during the festival. Holika Dahan is celebrated on the eve. People lights a huge bonfire and prays to God to bestow blessings. They also pray to eliminate the power of sins and evil from Earth. They apply the leftover ashes on their foreheads. This ensures the blessings of Lord Agni. The next day is celebrated with too much excitement and fun. Children use pichkaris and water balloons. People greet each other. They spray colored water, gulaal and abeer (bright colors) on one other. The ecstasy of Bhaang (the intoxicating drink) enhances the spirit of the festival further. Women form tolis and dance and sing to the rhythm of Dholak. The air gets filled with happiness, enthusiasm and life.
4. Celebration in India
Each region of India has its own local influence. It is celebrated with various names in various regions of the nation. People of West Bengal calls it “Dol Yatra”, Haryana celebrates it as “Dulandi Holi”, Mathura and Vridavan name it “Braj Holi” and Manipur celebrates Holi as a 6-day celebration. Maharashtra, Gujrat and Haryana celebrate Holi by breaking the pots and stealing butter from them. Human pyramids are made to break the earthen pot filled with butter. These are hung at a height from the ground level. People celebrate the pranks of naughty Krishna with great pomp and show. People get drowned in colors, eradicate hatred and fill the atmosphere with intoxicated love and life.
5. Safety Tips
It is a festival of joy and happiness. Spoiling the ambiance with filthy attitude and obnoxious mentality destroys the essence. Play with natural colors. And, even if you use the artificial colors, use the better quality ones. Apply cream in appropriate quantity on your face prior to going out. Also, use cleansing milk to get rid of the colors. It is suggested not to use soap. This is because, it takes away softness from the face. Also, oil the hairs thoroughly. Cover it to prevent it from getting exposed to the harmful chemicals. Don’t forget to use dental caps and sunglasses to play safe.
The essence makes it unique. It venerates the triumph of Humanity. Celebrate this festival with great vigor and play safe. Wish you all a very happy and safe Holi.