Holi is a well-known Hindu festival that is celebrated with a great deal of fervour, not just in India but also in other regions of the world that have a sizeable Hindu population. Holi is known as the festival of colours.
Holi is a Hindu holiday that is observed on the day of the full moon during the month of Phalguna, which typically occurs in either the month of February or the month of March. It is also known as the “festival of colours” or the “festival of love.” In addition to being a celebration of the entrance of spring, fertility, and the conclusion of winter, the event is also meant to represent the triumph of virtue over evil.
History of Holi in Hindu Mythology –
It is possible to trace the history of Holi all the way back to ancient Hindu mythology. There are a number of myths and stories that are connected to the celebration, but the one that is told most frequently is the one about King Hiranyakashipu and his son Prahlada. King Hiranyakashipu was a wicked ruler who harboured feelings of resentment towards his son because of the love that the boy had shown to Lord Vishnu. There were other occasions on which he attempted to put an end to Prahlada’s life, but Lord Vishnu always came to the rescue. At long last, Lord Vishnu slew King Hiranyakashipu by assuming the shape of the avatar Narasimha, a creature that is half-human and half-lion. The Hindu holiday of Holi is observed to commemorate the victory of good over evil, which resulted in Prahlada being spared.
Holi – The Celebration
Holi is a celebration that is celebrated over the course of two days, the first of which is known as Holika Dahan. On this particular day, people will congregate around a campfire in order to execute a ritual and to pray to Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva. This conflagration is meant to represent the slaying of Holika by Lord Vishnu. Holika was the sister of King Hiranyakashipu, and Lord Vishnu was responsible for her death. People gather around the fire to sing and dance, and the ashes of the fire are thought to have the ability to cleanse the spirit and offer good fortune to those who step into them.
The most important day of celebration takes place on the second day of Holi, which is known as Rangwali Holi. On this day, people get together to celebrate Holi by having fun with coloured powders, singing and dancing to traditional Holi songs, exchanging sweets and embraces, and playing with coloured powders. Children as well as adults, regardless of age, participate in the celebrations by smearing colourful powders, also known as “gulal,” on each other and spraying coloured water on each other. The streets are packed with people who are singing and dancing while also smearing each other with different coloured powders. The overall vibe is one of merriment and excitement.
The festival of Holi is not just celebrated in India; rather, members of the Hindu community in countries all over the world take part in the festivities. Holi is a festival that is celebrated all over the world with tremendous fervour and joy. During this time, people gather together to rejoice in the simple pleasures of life. In various parts of the world, the festival of Holi is also observed as a period for seeking forgiveness and mending strained relationships. People travel to the homes of one another in order to publicly apologise for whatever transgressions they may have committed in the past.
Types of Holi –
There are several types of Holi that are celebrated across India and the world, each with its unique traditions and customs. Some of the most popular types of Holi are:
- Lathmar Holi: This type of Holi is celebrated in the Braj region of Uttar Pradesh, India, and is famous for its ‘Lathmar’ or ‘stick fight’. Women in the region use sticks to playfully beat men, who are protected only by shields. The festival is a symbol of the play between Radha and Lord Krishna.
- Hola Mohalla: This type of Holi is celebrated by the Sikh community in the state of Punjab, India. The festival is a celebration of martial arts, poetry, and religious devotion, and is a display of bravery and courage.
- Rang Panchami: This type of Holi is celebrated five days after the main Holi festival and is more subdued compared to the main festival. People apply color to each other, but the celebrations are not as wild as the main Holi festival.
- Phagu Purnima: This type of Holi is celebrated in the eastern state of Odisha, India, and is a celebration of spring and fertility. The festival is celebrated with great fervor and is a symbol of renewal and rejuvenation.
- Holi Hai: This type of Holi is celebrated in the city of Mathura, India, and is famous for its street processions, music, and dance. People come together to sing and dance to traditional Holi songs, and the city is filled with a festive and joyful atmosphere.
- Holika Dahan: This type of Holi is celebrated on the first day of the main Holi festival and is a celebration of the burning of the demon Holika. People gather around a bonfire to perform a ritual and offer prayers to Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva.
- Kama Holi: This type of Holi is celebrated in the state of Maharashtra, India, and is famous for its romantic themes. The festival is a celebration of love and is a time for young couples to come together and celebrate their love.
In conclusion, there are several types of Holi that are celebrated across India and the world, each with its unique traditions and customs. Regardless of the type of Holi, the festival is a celebration of love, unity, and togetherness and is a reminder that good will always triumph over evil.
Celebrations on Holi –
Holi is a Hindu holiday celebrated by donning brightly coloured clothing and feasting with family and friends. People get together to enjoy the delicious sweet and savoury delicacies that have been prepared, as well as the drinks that have been brought. Thandai is a sweet and pleasant drink that is created with milk, sugar, almonds, and spices. Some famous meals associated with the festival of Holi include gujiya, mathri, dahi bhalla, and thandai.
Not only is Holi a celebration of the arrival of spring, but it is also a festival that honours love, unity, and companionship with one another. Regardless of their faith, caste, or socioeconomic class, individuals from all walks of life gather together to enjoy the holiday. The festival of Holi is celebrated to break down barriers and foster a sense of unity and connection among participants. People should put aside their differences and get together at this time of year to rejoice in the simple pleasures of life.
However, in recent times, the festival has become commercialized, with people using chemical colors that are harmful to both people and the environment. It is important to celebrate Holi in a responsible manner, by using natural and eco-friendly colors, and by not engaging in activities that harm others or cause harm to the environment.
Holi in Assam –
Holi, also known as ‘Doul Utsav’ in Assam, is one of the most vibrant and colorful festivals celebrated in the region. The festival is celebrated with great enthusiasm and joy, and is a celebration of spring and the end of winter. In Assam, Holi is celebrated on the full moon day in the Hindu month of Phalguna, which falls in February or March.
On the main day of Holi, people come together to play with colors, sing and dance, and share food and drinks. In Assam, the traditional colors used for Holi are made from flowers, leaves, and fruits, and are considered to be eco-friendly and safe for the environment.
In Assam, Holi is also a celebration of music, dance, and poetry. Traditional Assamese songs and dances are performed, and people come together to enjoy the festive atmosphere. Holi is a time for families and friends to come together and forget their differences, and is a celebration of love, unity, and togetherness.
One of the most unique aspects of Holi in Assam is the ‘Bihu dance’, a traditional dance performed during the festival. The Bihu dance is performed to the beat of the dhol, a type of drum, and is a display of the cultural richness of the region. The dance is performed by both men and women, and is a symbol of joy, happiness, and unity.
‘Doul Utsav’ at Barpeta Satra –
Barpeta Satra, is one of the most important and ancient Vaishnavite monasteries in Assam, India. The Satra is known for its unique and rich cultural heritage, and is considered to be a symbol of Assam’s rich cultural heritage. During the festival of Holi, the Satra comes alive with vibrant and colorful celebrations.
The festival of Holi is celebrated with great enthusiasm and devotion at the Barpeta Satra. People come together to play with colors, share food and drinks, and enjoy the festive atmosphere.
One of the most unique aspects of Holi celebrations at the Barpeta Satra is the ‘Naam Prasanga’, a traditional devotional dance performed by the devotees of the Satra. The dance is performed to the beat of the dhol, a type of drum, and is a display of devotion and spirituality. The dance is performed by both men and women, and is a symbol of joy, happiness, and unity.
In addition to the Naam Prasanga, the Holi celebrations at the Barpeta Satra also include the performance of traditional Assamese songs and dances, and the recitation of religious hymns and prayers. The festival is a time for families and friends to come together and forget their differences, and is a celebration of love, unity, and togetherness.
In conclusion, Holi is a festival that holds great significance for the Hindu community and is celebrated with great enthusiasm and joy all over the world. It is a time for people to come together, celebrate the arrival of spring, and forget their differences. The festival of Holi is a celebration of love, unity, and togetherness and is a reminder that good will always triumph over evil. So, let us celebrate Holi with joy and happiness and spread the message of love and unity.