A House In The Sky And Other Uncommon Animal Homes Why Is Holi Celebrated?

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Why Is Holi Celebrated?

The Spring Festival ‘Holi’ is celebrated by the Hindu community residing all over the world. The festival is so fun and attractive that everyone is drawn towards its attractive and vibrant colors. It has taken the form of more of a community sport where irrespective of caste or creed, religion or sect, people of all ages come together in a group having fun smearing, throwing and splashing colors on each other.

Holi is celebrated on Phalguna Purnima at the end of the winter season on the last Full Moon day of the lunar month Phalguna-February/March. This year it is celebrated on March 20.

Holi is named differently by different communities of India. There are also many themes behind the celebration of this festival. But whatever the name or theme, the unique feature of this festival is the smearing, throwing and splashing of colors on each other. Everyone looks alike painted in these colors, their hearts and souls conveying the message of universal brotherhood and equality. Let this Holi mark the most joyous event of the year in your life by bringing happiness and wealth in vibrant colors of the rainbow.

The origin of Holi

Hindu Mythology

The story of Hiranyakashipu and Prahlada

According to Vaishnava Theology, there lived a great demon king named Hiranyakashipu. Through his long penance, he won the heart of Lord Brahma. He had been given an aid that made it almost impossible to kill him. He was given a boon that he should not be killed by day or by night, by astra (weapon) or by shastra (philosophy or cult), inside the house or outside, by man or animal, no more on earth or in heaven . He began to demand that men and gods begin to worship him. He began to attack Earth and Heaven.

Hiranya Kashipu had a son. His name was Prahlada. Prahlada was a devotee of Lord Vishnu. His father, Hiranyakashipu had warned him several times not to worship Lord Vishnu, but he never obeyed him. So Hiranya Kashipu finally decided to kill his son, Prahlada. Hiranyakashipu’s attempts to kill Prahlada failed. Finally he decided to make his son sit on his sister’s lap in a pyre which was set on fire. Hiranyakashipu’s sister, Holika, the demoness had a boon that would prevent him from burning. When the pyre began to burn, Prahlada emerged unharmed, while Holika was burnt to ashes.

The burning of Holika is celebrated as Holi. Later, Lord Vishnu came in the form of Narasimha, (who is half man and half lion); kept Hiranyakashipu on the porch steps of his house which was neither inside nor outside the house and killed him in the twilight which was neither day nor night. Narasimha took Prahlada in his lap which is neither on earth nor in heaven, and tore him with his claws which are neither astra nor shastra.

The legend of Krishna-Radha love

In memory of the love of Lord Krishna and Radha, Holi is celebrated for sixteen days in Vrindavan and Mathura, where Lord Krishna grew up. This festival ends on Rangpanchami. It happened once that Lord Krishna complained to his mother about the contrast between the dark color of his skin and the light color of Radha’s skin. By doing this repeatedly, Krishna’s mother decided to apply color to Radha’s face. When it was done, it was liked by Krishna and all his friends. Since then, Lord Krishna, along with his friends, popularized this festival by painting the colors on the gopis and Radha. As this incident took place during the spring season, since then Holi is celebrated in spring, the celebrated season of love.

The story of Kamadeva

Lord Shiva was in deep meditation in order to take Goddess Parvati as his wife. The god of love, KamaDeva, fired his weapon at Lord Shiva in order to take Parvati as his wife. The god of love, Kamadeva, fired his weapon at lord Shiva to break his meditation. Lord Shiva opened his third eye and looked at Kama Deva. KamaDeva’s body was reduced to ashes as Lord Shiva’s gaze was so powerful. Rati, the wife of Lord KamaDeva, prayed to Lord Shiva to bring her husband back to her. For her sake, the body of Lord KamaDeva was restored only as a mental image. The fire of Holi is celebrated in memory of this incident.

Holi: The harvest festival

Holi is celebrated with tremendous zeal and fervor in North India as the summer harvest festival. Holi is celebrated in Kashmir as the summer harvest. Holi is a very big festival here. People celebrate this harvest festival by throwing colored water and powder. They sing and dance thanking God for helping them with a bountiful harvest. So Holi is a harvest festival celebrated with colors and sweets.

Science and Holi

The influence of colors and plants

Spring is the transition period during which the weather changes. It is the end of the winter season and the arrival of summer. Bacteria, viruses and other harmful germs are activated causing harmful diseases by spreading harmful germs that cause contagious diseases like viral fever, cold, measles, chicken pox cholera, etc. In ancient times, when medical science had not yet realized its strong roots in India. people mainly depended on Ayurveda and medicinal plants. Natural epidemics would depopulate in the thousands causing death.

Thus, as a preventive measure, people playfully threw naturally colored powders that had medicinal significance. Colors are very important to anyone and human skin. These dyes are traditionally made with Neem, Kumkum, Haldi, Bilwa and other medicinal herbs prescribed by Ayurvedic doctors.

When these colored powders and liquids were smeared and sprayed, they helped inoculate and kill germs from homes, surroundings, and the human body. These dyes were also used in spraying fields to protect crops from pests and diseases and to preserve grain in healthy barns. Over time, this practice culminated into a sensational sport and took the form of Holi – the colorful festival.

Impact of Holi-Thandai Special Drinks:

People prepare a special drink on Holi called Thandai. This drink is prepared with milk, almonds, pistachios, rose petals, sugar cane juice and medicinal herbs. This drink helps in rejuvenating the human body and increases the energy level. This drink is medicinal in nature.

Impact of Holi Bonfire-Holika Dahan or Kama Dahanam:

On the day before Holi, bonfires are lit, also known as Holika Dahan or Kama Dahanam. According to Hindu ritual, people sing and dance around the fire. While taking parikrama or moving around the fire, the temperature of the burning fire helps in killing the microorganisms and destroying the germs from our body and surroundings. In this way, fire helps eradicate disease causing germs, bacteria and viruses and keeps mankind safe from harmful diseases.

Freshly harvested sheaves of green gram and wheat are roasted over fire and eaten. This is a healthy food during the spring season. This helps stimulate the body and activates its metabolism.

This year celebrating Holi, inhyderabadmall is very happy to share the happiest moments with you all. His Holi store is rich with its versatile collection of special Holi sarees, special Holi gifts, Holi colors, Holi pumps, Holi sweets, Holi sweets and Holi flowers.

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