Although every festival has its own charm, the festival of Holi is unique because of the colors it involves…green, yellow, red, pink and all their hues. It is one of the major festivals of India and is celebrated with a lot of enthusiasm. It falls on the Full moon Day in the month of Phalgun-and is also called the Spring Festival, as it marks the arrival of spring. Market place becomes colorful as heaps of colors are seen on the roadside and roads and colonies continue looking colorful even after the festival by the left over colors played by children and adults both. Women start preparing sweets a few days before and a special drink, ‘kanji’ which is served to anyone who come at the door to wish. The highlight of Holi is mixing ‘Bhang’, which is a mixture of buds and leaves of cannabis ground into a paste, and mixed into drinks or food. This gives a ‘safe ‘high’ to the person consuming it and adds to the fun and gaiety.
This festival of colors and shades erases all differences between people and religions. It helps to bring the society together.
Holi has its own legend associated with it. The Demon king, Hiranyakashyap, wanted everyone to worship him, but his son, Prahlad, refused to do so as he was a devotee of Lord Vishnu. The Demon king was angry and asked his sister Holika, to take Prahlad in her arms and enter a blazing fire .She had been granted with a boon which had made her immune to fire and so only Prahlad would get burnt to death. But when Holika did that, the Lord protected Prahlad and she got burnt to death as the boon was applicable only when she entered the fire alone.
Since that time, people light a bonfire called Holika, on the eve of the Holi festival to celebrate the victory of good over evil. Next day, people play with colors and that is why this day is called Holi with colors or ‘Dulhandi’.
Importance of worshipping Holi
Women pray on this day for children, peace, prosperity and a happy home. For Holika dahan, people collect thorny bushes or pieces of dry wood and on the eve of Holi, after taking out an auspicious time, the bonfire is lit.
Holi is celebrated at a time of the year, when the fields are in full bloom and people pray for a good harvest.