Holi is celebrated on two consecutive days starting from Phagun Purnima. In 2022, Holi falls on the 17th and 18th of March. Holi is celebrated with colors to mark the coming of the spring season. People are happy since the shivers of winters are over, and now it’s time for a pleasant spring. The first day is also known as Chhoti Holi, during which we perform Holika Dahan. The next day is Badi Holi. People of every age group celebrate Holi; they play with colors and water, dance to traditional and Bollywood songs, and eat delicious cuisines and sweets like gujiya, dahi-balle, etc.
In this article, you will understand the why and how we celebrate Holi. If you want to celebrate festivals from your home, You can get online puja services from Online Temple.
Why is Holi celebrated?
Holi is celebrated with colors to celebrate the coming of the spring season. There is also a mythological story behind celebrating Holi. Ages ago, there was an evil king named Hiranyakashyap. Lord Brahma blessed him that neither human nor animal, neither inside nor outside a room, neither during the day nor night, and no weapon could kill him. This boon from Brahma made him almost invincible. He was so strong that he became arrogant and wanted everyone to worship him. He killed those who disobeyed.
Hiranyakashyap was an enemy of Lord Vishnu. Unfortunately for him, his son, Prahlada, chose to worship Vishnu instead of his father. Prahlada was a hardcore devotee of Lord Vishnu, which made Hiranyakashyap furious.
Demon King asked his sister Holika to get rid of his son, Prahlada. Lord Brahma had blessed Holika with a special cloak that made her immune to fire. Holika tricked Prahlad into sitting with her in a blazing fire. Prahlada obeyed and prayed to Lord Vishnu to protect him. Holika’s plan failed as a gust of strong wind took the cloak away from her and wrapped it around Prahlada. As a result, Holika herself burnt to death.
Later, Lord Narsimha, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, killed the demon king Hiranyakashyap. Lord Narasimha was neither a complete human nor an animal, and he killed Hiranyakashyap on his lap, at the threshold of his palace, at the time of dusk using his claws. Thus, this way, the blessings of Lord Brahma didn’t work for Hiranyakashyap, and he finally met his end.
So from the mythological point of view, Holi is also celebrated as the victory of good over evil. On the first day of Holi, we perform Holika Dahan on the night of Phagun Purnima, which means the combustion of Holika(Hiranyakashyap’s sister) by burning a bonfire.
How is Holi celebrated?
On the first day of Holi, we gather items for Holika Dahan Puja. The items include:
- Cow dung to make idols of Holika and Prahlada
- Agarbatii and Dhoop
- Gulal, Holi color
- Grains from new cultivated crops
- Wood for bonfire
The Puja for Holi is started with chanting Lord Ganesha mantra, followed by Maa Ambika, Lord Narasimha, Prahlada, and Holika Mantra. We believe that Holika bestows power, prosperity, and wealth and eradicates fear. Thus, we worship her as well, along with other gods.
The offerings are made to Holika in the bonfire like the grains, coconut, flowers, etc. The new grains later, when they get roasted in the bonfire, are distributed as Holika Prasad.
On the second day, the occasion of Badi Holi, we celebrate on the streets and special events with colors, water, music, dancing, and fun.
Celebrating Holi is one of the most loved Hindu festivals. Apart from kids, even the adults are excited to celebrate and have fun playing with colors and water. The joy of celebrating Holi is a wonderful memory in itself. Brace yourself to play Holi and get different colors on you. Online Temple can help you book online Hindu puja services so that you can spread the positivity of chanting, hawan, and puja in your home.