Holi- Festival of Colors
‘Holi’ is an important Indian festival. This festival is celebrated on the full moon of ‘Phalgun’ month according to the Hindu calendar. This festival is mainly celebrated in India, Nepal and other areas of the world along with people of Hindu or Indian origin.
Many stories are associated with the festival of Holi. The most famous story of these is that of Prahlad. It is believed that in ancient times there was a very powerful ‘asura’ named Hiranyakashyap. He banned the name of God in his kingdom. Enraged by the devotion of his son Prahlad, Hiranyakashyap ordered his sister Holika to take Prahlad in her lap and sit in the fire. Holika had the boon that she could not be consumed in the fire. Holika got burnt while sitting in the fire, but Prahlad survived. Holi is lit on this day in memory of the devotee Prahlad.
This festival of colours is traditionally celebrated for two days. ‘Holika’ is lit on the first day, also known as ‘Holika Dahan’. On the second day, called ‘Dhuraddi’, ‘Dhulendi’, ‘Dhurkhel’ or ‘Dhulivandan’, people sing Holi songs, and go door to door to throw colours, abir-gulal etc. on each other.
It is believed that on Holi day, people forget the old bitterness and embrace and become friends again. The round of singing and throwing colours on each other lasts till noon. After bathing and resting, after wearing new clothes, people go to each other’s house in the evening, hug each other and eat ‘gujhiyas’ and sweets.