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Home » Other Astrological Information » Events / Festivals » Holi

Holi

Colors play an important role in our lives. We spend a lot of time on choosing the color that suites us the best during shopping – say when buying a two-wheeler or a car or when buying some dress material. How about having a festival of Colors? Yes. Holi, the festival of Colors is an Indian festival celebrated as an annual spring festival. Holi falls on a purnima day (a full-moon day) during the month of March or early-April.

Happiness and Joy with colors marks the day of Holi. The festival is usually celebrated by throwing colors on each. Holi usually falls on Phalguna Poornima Day in any year. Kamadahanam happened this day. Lord Mahashiva opened his third-eye and destroyed Kamudu who encourages and enhances earthly desires. On this day, devotees of Lord Shiva pray with utmost faith. Through the poojas, they attain all the necessary things the devotes wish and lead a happy life.

Lord Shiva is the first and foremost one who gives tantras. Through tantric means, one can activate the Kundali and able to open the third-eye. In fact, Lord Shiva opened his Third eye on this day. That is the reason why we celebrate Holi as festival of ‘open of Third Eye by Lord Shiva’. Kamadahana Mahotsavam starts on this Phalguna Poornima Day. Those who wishes to attain Tantric like Vasikarana, relief from debts, happy life and critical ones like Mahamkali, Chamundi, Bhairavi, Dhoomavati, and Pratyangiri will start their poojas on this day.

There are so many tantric available to us for various purposes i.e. Mahavijaya Sundari Sadhana, Manokamana Phalam, Siva Gowri Sadhana etc., However, it is not possible to give all these and many more, we would like to give one sadhana through which one can get rid of debts and leads a happy life.

Vychakashi Sadana

Those who desire sudden income in huge will perform this sadana. By performing this pooja, one can attain income. In the universe, there is nothing impossible but belief is the must. Infact, Vychakshi sadana is the powerful Goddess for tantric solutions. Let us see, how to perform this pooja.

One has to perform this pooja on Holi night-before Holi Kamadhanam. One has to select a peaceful place and with purified bath. He has to sit on a seat covered with Rose colour cloth facing east side. Before him, he has to place a rest place duly covered with rose colour cloth and light with pure ghee lamp. He has to see that the lamp should light through the pooja time. On the rest place, he has to pour rice duly mixed with sandal and place a plate on it. Then he has to write ‘Vaichakshi Namaha’ and place the Vaichakshi yantra duly purified with panchamrutams. Put tilak of sandal and kumkum on the yantra. Then place flowers of white and yellow and light the dupsticks and see the atmosphere is full of fragrance. Close the eyes and recite the following moola mantra for three times. ‘Om Blowm Vaichakshi Dhana Pradayai Blow Fut’. Then, you have to think of your desire and sleep at that place.

On the next day morning, all the pooja items will be packed in a cloth and place it in running water and do not see it back while coming back. Do not disclose this to any one that you are performing this sadana.

Along with Diwali, Holi is the most colorful festival of the Hindus. It falls on the Full Moon Day (Purnamashi) in the month of Phalamasam according to Hindu calendar. The Holi festival has many elements of primitive and prolific rites and revelries that have defied civilization. During the three days of this festival, the whole country, towns, cities and villages go gay with merry makers. Streets, parks and public places are crowded with people, daubed in diverse colours, looking funny and ridiculous. Children and youngsters compete with each other in being original and use fast and sticky colors. The festival of joy, fun and enthusiasm is celebrated when both Man and nature cast off their winter gloom.

Holi heralds the arrival of spring-the season of hope and new beginnings and marks the rekindling of the spirit of life. Gulmohurs, corals, silk-cottons and mango trees start flowering, gardens and parks present a glorious spectacle of a riot of colors-crimson, red, pink, orange, golden yellow, lemon and a variety of glittering greens. Men who remained in doors during the cold months of winter emerge out to see a new sparkling world of colour and gaiety. The flowers breathe out their fragrance into space and brooks and steams leap in the valleys. Men rejoice with brilliant light of the day and the eloquent silence of night. The joy bubbling in their hearts finds expression in dance, drama and music.

Holi is one the most ancient festivals of the Aryans, which finds an honored mention in our old Sanskrit texts like Dashakumar Charit and Garudpuran. Even the play Ratnavali written by Harshdev in 7th century contains a delightful description of Holy festival. In those days, Holi was celebrated as ‘Vasantotsav. Acclaiming it as a spring festival Mahakavi Kalidas has called it Madanotsav. The mythological origins of this festival vary in different parts of the country. In South India, especially in Tamilnadu and Kerala the legend that is popular is of Kamdev-the god of Love, his bow is of sugarcane having string of a line humming bees and his arrow-shafts are topped with passion that pierce the heart. In spring, he moves through woodlands and hunts birds, beasts and men. Once in his foolish pride, he aimed his arrow at the mighty Lord Shiva who was in deep meditation. Lord Shiva opened his third eye and burnt him to ashes. Grief-sticken Rati, Kamdev’s wife beseeched Lord Shiva to take pity on her and restore her husband to life. Shiva relented and granted her the boon that she could see her husband but he would remain ‘anang’ that meant without the physical human form. Hence, the songs sung during Holi tell the pathetic tale of Rati and her lamentations. In Tamilnadu Holi is known by three different names viz., Kamavilas, Kaman Pandigai and Kama-dahanam.

Lord Sri Krishna in the 8th incarnation of Lord Vishnu is also worshipped during the Holi festival, which is celebrated as a commemoration of a mythological incident. Putana, the she-demon was sent by the cruel King Kansa to kill the child Krishna. In guise of a beautiful woman, Putana went about in the village of Nandgaon suckling every child to death. But the infant Krishna sucked her breasts till blood starting flowing and she succumbed to her death. Hence, on the previous evening of the Holi, bonfires are lighted to celebrate the victory of Krishna and the death of Putana. Those who attribute the origin of festivals to seasonal cycles maintain that Putana represents winter and her death ends in winter. The mighty king Hiranyakashyapu in his stupendous ego ordered his people to worship him as God. The king wanting to kill Prahlad and wipe out the very name of Lord Vishnu sent his sister Holika, who possessed the boom of never being burnt by fire, to destroy Prahalad. She cajoled the young Prahlad to sit in her lap and she herself took her seat in a blazing fire with the full conviction that fire could never touch her. But the flames devoured Holika and Prahlad walked out of the fire unscathed and alive. Perhaps this festival got its name from this incident. Certainly, it was the victory of good over evil.

Everywhere in North India the victory is celebrated, effigies of Holika are burnt in the huge bonfires that are lit. This tradition is also followed in Gujarat and Orissa. To render gratefulness to Agni, god of Fire, grams and stalks from the harvest are also offered to Agni with all humility. In Bengal, this festival is known by the name of Dol Jatra or Dol Poornima. On this day in a picturesquely decorated palanquin, is taken the Bengali family observes fast and prays to Lord Krishna and Agnidev. After all the traditional rituals are over, he sears Krishna’s idol with gulal and offer Bhog to both Krishna and Agnidev. Krishna’s love-play with gopi’s is known. Hence, in places like Mathura and Brundawan where Krishna cult flourished, this Holi festival is celebrated with songs, music, plays and dances and of course colored waters are thrown on each other. In Nandagaon, where the young Krishna played all his youthful pranks, Holi is observed for many days and also in Barsana, which was the birthplace of Radha, Krishna’s beloved. The men-folk of Barsana come together and play the game of ‘Huranga’ in which men abuse women and in retaliation women beat them with sticks that the men try to avoid with their shields.

This festival of Holi remains a big charm in Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore’s Shanti Niketan. On the Dol Poornima, in the early morning the students dress up in saffron colored clothes and wear garlands of fragrant flowers. They sing and dance to the accompaniment of musical instruments before their teachers and the invited guests. In the end, dry gulal (colored powders) and the auspicious black aabir is smeared on the foreheads of everyone. Use of liquid colours is fully forbidden.

The Sikh community also celebrates Holi with feasting and merriment. In Punjab it is called as Hola Mohalla. In Maharastra, Holi is commonly known by the name of ‘Shimga’ and is also called Rangapanchami. The fisher folk celebrate it on a large scale with hilarious singing, dancing and merry making. Today this festival retains its significance mostly in every section of the society in the State. During the Martha regime, this festival was celebrated with great pomp and grandeur. It was on a Holi festival day that five-year-old Jitabi, daughter of Lakhooji Jadhav, innocently splashed colored water and threw gulal on young Shahaji, son of Malajirao Bhowale. Taking it as an auspicious event, the two children’s engagement was announced that very day. Soon they were married. Shivaji, the son born to this couple, fought valiantly and shook the foundations of the powerful Mugal Empire. Thus, Shivaji established the Maratha Empire and changed the course of history.

As years rolled by, this age-old festival of Holi acquired a new significance. Besides being a spring festival, it also became the harvest festival. The winter crop of Rabi gets ripe and the corns of wheat become golden. So Holi means to the farmers joyful celebration of new harvest and bubbling with joy and excitement at the prospect of prosperity they offer their first crop to Agnidev- the god of Fire-who for millennia has been looked upon with love and esteem by the Aryans. Only after this offering of first harvest to Agnidev, the farmers use the crop for their personal consumption. On the eve of Holi, huge bonfires are lit with logs of wood, basketful of cow dung cakes, ghee, honey and the new crop brought fresh from the fields. When the fire leaps up in high and strong flames, all those present walk around the bonfire seven times, pray and invoke the blessings of Agnidev. Women prepare delicious sweets and put these in the bonfire as Naivedya to Agnidev. When the fire dies down, water is splashed on the embers and everyone applies the ash from the extinguished fire on the forehead. Some of the ash is preserved in the house all through the year to apply to the foreheads of children as an effective remedy against impeding evil.

The ancient tradition of the Aryans of celebrating the festival of Holi in honour and in devotion to Agnidev-the god of Fire-continues even today in the modern world of science and technology. Indeed, it is a festival, which gives men a thrilling spell of happiness and respite from their problems of everyday life. This festival is a festival of myriad colours of gaiety, of friendships and re-unions all over the country. Thus, Holi is certainly a vital part of Indian life and culture in which religion still is a living force.

Holi celebrations in various years

2014: March 17
2013: March 27
2012: March 8
2011: March 19
2010: February 28
2009: March 10
2008: March 21
2006: March 14

 


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