Posted: 18 March 2011 at 6:51am | IP Logged
Why Celebrate Holi !
Hindu festivals, quite often steeped in historical and mythogical background, are rich in significance and continue to provide benefits in every sphere of life.The festival of Holi or Phagwa, celebrated in the Hindu month of Phalgun[February -March] continues to attract growing number of celebrants throughout the world, holding great significance from the religious, cultural,medical and enviromental standpoints.
Foremost is the legend of Prahaladand Hiranyakshyapu. According to the legend,there once lived an evil and powerful king Hiranyakshyapu who considered himself to hold God- like sway over the world. He wanted everyone to worship him.To his great ire,his son,Prahalad who was indoctrinated in the worship of Lord Vishnu even before birth,began to worship this aspect of Divinity. To get rid of his son Hiranyakshyapumade several attempts to kill him but each one was unsuccessful. Finally, he asked his sister, Holika to enter a blazing fire with Prahalad in her lap as she had a boon to enter fire unscathed. Prahalad was saved due to his devotionto the Lord while Holikapaid a pricefor her sinisterdesire.The tradition of burning Holika or Holika dahan comes mainly from this legend.
The celebration of this festival of Holi,the re-enactment of the legend and gay atmosphere heralded by this observance all serve to reassure the devotees of the power of truth,victory of light over darkness and good over evil.The compassion and love of the Lord for his devoteee inspire renewed faith and confidence in the worshipper.
The social interaction, cooperation and active intermingling that flow naturally in the group-singing of the Chowtal,Ulaara and other folk songs, the spraying of Abeer and powder, the general camraderie that the celebration evokes, foster a heightened sense of community that builds the social man. Benevolence and peace for one's fellow man, foster a strengthening of harmony, gratefulness for each other,acceptance and willing adjustments.
The festival of Holi is connected to the Agricultural season in India since it marks the harvesting of the crops,evoking in the minds of the villagers a sence of completion accomplishment and success. Indeed a reason to celebrate! Apart from this, the periodof the beginning of the new season induces the groW*H of bacteria in the atmosphere.The heat generated by burning of Holika kills many of the bacteria and purifies the air.
According to the Vedas,the colors of the spectrum [red, yellow,green, blue,indigo and violet] help cure diseases. The essence of Cosmic therapy is based on the understanding that in the human body, different organs have different colours and any deficiency of colours causes ill-health.In the light of this,the use of various colours of powder during the celebration of Holi can be most beneficial in reducing any deficiency.
In addition,traditionally, the powders were made from Neem, Bale and Hardi as well as from other medicinal herbs prescribed by Ayurvedic doctors. These plants are well-known for their medicinal uses and hence the powders have been an integral of the celebration,despite variations that have been added with time.
Indeed, the celebration of this joyous festival of Holi or Phagwa goes far beyond the the allegory and holds many benefits to all.
Edited by JustShanta - 18 March 2011 at 7:50am