India the largest known secular country in the world. Muslims, Sikhs, Buddhists, Zoroaster, and a number of other people who are different in religion, culture, traditions, and languages are inhabited in this country. According to one study India caters to 33 different sects and religions that are practiced in this vast country named India! The Hindu community is what makes up the largest population of the country. Hindus are the majority in number so likewise the number of festivals is bigger and outnumber the other people and religious, cultural, and seasonal festivals. Indian festivals are many in numbers like Diwali, celebrated by all Indians irrespective of religion and language, it is celebrated in the autumn season. Next in the chain is Holi, which is celebrated in the spring season, Dussehra is a nine-day-old festival claiming victory of Ram over Ravana the evil.
Ramadha and Eid ul fitr, a Muslim festival is also celebrated in the country, Christmas, is celebrated in the country by the Christians, Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated in remembrance of Ganesh, the lord to the home, Durga Pooja is a five-day festival celebrated in Bengal, Baishakhi is a festival known to be linked with Sikh which is celebrated in April over the harvest of Rabi crops, Easter, another religious festival of Christians is celebrated in the country, Onam is the biggest festival in Kerala celebrated at harvest time, Raksha Bandhan is celebrated to strengthen the bond between brothers and sisters, Budh Poornima is celebrated by Gautam Buddha’s followers, Krishan Jananmashtmi is celebrated as a birthday of lord Karishna, Pongal is a four-day long festival celebrated in Tamil Nadu, Maha Shivratri is an annual event to honour lord Shiva, Bihu is a seven day long festival celebrated in Assam, Chhath Pooja is celebrated to show devotion to Sun god.
There are many other known festivals, but the purpose of all these festivals is to create harmony and peace amongst different people and nations. Being a liberal country means knitting all the religions and making the different nations feel at home in order to promote the idea of unification and brotherhood.
How can we spend Holi festival in unique way?
Holi is a festival known to be linked with Indians, the Hindu community especially. It is celebrated in the season of spring, usually in March. It is marked with colours, dance, music, food and other related rituals. The powder is known as ‘gulal’ translated as coloured powder which they throw on each other or rub on the cheeks as a symbol of love and happiness. This tradition is times old and no newness is made in it. From ages, its been celebrated in the same way, wearing white dresses, decorating the plates with gulal powder, gathering in any open area, place or in streets, waving a handful of powder on one another or it can be rubbed on the cheek of the other person unknowingly, the festival is then prolonged on with traditional dances, or any other fun-to-do dance, singing of the famous songs and having done with the festivity, the day is ended with a sumptuous sight of food which is eaten by all. A happy day comes to an end!
The question that comes to my mind is that when new trends are followed in foods, dance, folk lore, music, dresses why not in celebrating the festivals? Why festivals are always linked with pomp and show and littered with loud music and hefty dances? Why not celebrating Holi in a new way? What you say? Agreed? Let’s begin now! Holi in a new bent… following tips/ways can be utilized as per choice:
- Instead of powder plate, try some seasonal flowers, arrange some carnival focusing on educating the children with the wild and exotic flowers grown in the spring season. It would be fun with learning for the young generation.
- Invite the needy or poor to the food table especially arranged for them, each house will dish out one dish onto that table, it will be pocket friendly and could be a free buffet for the deserving ones.
Arrange a sale on your old white clothes or give one free of cost to whom he or she likes to. Try it and you will love the new face of Holi.