Holi is a popular Hindu festival that is celebrated with great enthusiasm and joy in India and other parts of the world. It is a festival of colors and is celebrated on the full moon day in the Hindu month of Phalguna, which usually falls in February or March.
The story of Holi is associated with various Hindu legends, but the most popular one is the story of Holika and Prahlad. According to the legend, there was a demon king named Hiranyakashipu who had a son named Prahlad. Prahlad was a devout follower of Lord Vishnu, which enraged his father who wanted to be worshipped as a god.
Hiranyakashipu tried to kill his son several times, but every time Lord Vishnu saved him. Finally, the demon king’s sister Holika, who was immune to fire, decided to kill Prahlad by sitting with him in a pyre. However, Lord Vishnu’s intervention ensured that Holika was burned to ashes, and Prahlad was saved. This story symbolizes the victory of good over evil, and Holi is celebrated to mark this triumph.
The festival of Holi begins with a Holika Dahan or Dehen ceremony on the night before the main festival day. In this ceremony, people light bonfires and throw offerings like sweets, coconut, and flowers into the fire to signify the destruction of evil. The next day, which is the main Holi festival day, is known as Rangwali Holi or Dhulandi. On this day, people play with colors, sing and dance, and exchange sweets and greetings with each other.
The Shubh Muhurat or auspicious time for Holika Dahan in 2023 is from 6:24 PM to 9:07 PM on 14th March, and the auspicious time for performing the Holi puja on the next day is from 6:29 AM to 12:16 PM on 15th March.
To perform the Holi puja, you can follow these simple steps:
- Take a bath and wear clean clothes.
- Set up a small altar or mandir with a picture or idol of Lord Vishnu or Radha-Krishna.
- Offer flowers, fruits, and sweets to the deities.
- Light incense sticks and offer them to the deities.
- Offer water and milk to the deities.
- Recite Holi mantras or sing Holi bhajans to seek the blessings of the deities.
- Finally, distribute prasad or sweets to your family and friends.
Holi is a festival of joy and happiness, and it is a time to forget all differences and come together to celebrate the spirit of togetherness. So, enjoy this colorful festival with your loved ones and spread happiness all around.
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