The Spring Festival of India, Holi - is a festival of colors. Celebrated in March or April according to the Hindu calendar, it was meant to welcome the spring and win the blessings of Gods for good harvests and fertility of the land. Celebrated in northern parts of
, Holi, the festival of colors, is another seasonal festival associated with Hinduism. India
Each year, young and old, men and women, all indulge themselves in the spirit of colors. There are mouthwatering delicacies to savor such as 'Gujhias' and 'Papris' and there are interesting traditions and customs of Holi. The best part is that all the offences and anger gets dissolved with one boisterous shout of 'Bura na mano, holi hai!' (Don't be angry, it’s Holi!). This shout is considered to be a part of the long tradition of the festival of Holi. The festival is celebrated on the full-moon day of Phalguna, though it stretched up to a week in
Northern India and six-day long in Manipur. As the tradition goes all the people gather around on a day before the Holi as we know it, it is the evening of bonfires. People light up bonfires of dead leaves, twigs and sticks and people dance and sing around it to welcome the Spring and commemorate the saving of Prahlad and burning of his wicked aunt Holika.
The ashes of the Holi fire are believed to have some medicinal properties. Next morning, it is 'Dhuledi' or the main festival of colors where adults and kids alike splash each other with colored powder and water jets known as 'pichkaris'. Traditionally, only natural colors prepared from flowers and herbal products were used but today, artificial colors have taken over. Holi sweets and delicacies are an important part of the festival as one can relish 'Gujhias' in
Northern India and 'Puran Poli' in Maharashtra. 'Thandai' (a cool drink of milk) mixed with 'bhang' (an intoxicating substance) is to be beware of, as it is very common during Holi.
In the present time, the colors available for Holi are made of harmful chemicals; therefore, you should take safety measures, if you want to ensure a joyous and colorful Holi. In the following lines, we have provided some safety tips for Holi.
Safety Tips for Holi
- While playing Holi, always wear old and ragged clothes that can be discarded immediately after the occasion. Brightly colored and dark colored clothes are preferable for the mood of the day. This way, you will save a lot of time in laundering your stained clothes.
- Wear full-sleeved t-shirts or shirts and leggings that cover your legs fully, so that your sensitive body parts are not exposed to the harmful chemicals of the colors of Holi. Wearing socks on the occasion is a good idea too.
- For children use non toxic colors.
- If you are playing Holi, apply a thick layer of coconut or any oil on your body and hair, it can be washed off easily later. While washing off the color, use lukewarm water and keep your eyes and lips tightly closed. The oily coat would protect you from the immediate effect of harmful chemicals of the colors of Holi.
- If you are traveling on Holi, keep the car windows tightly shut. It is still better to avoid traveling on the day of playing colors, because you never know when balloons filled with colors and water might fall onto you.
- Do not make use of harmful colors for Holi. This will not only prove harmful to your playmates, but also spoil your Holi. Make use of herbal colors for the festival.
- Choose herbal colors that are easily available in the market, for Holi. You may also make herbal colors at home. For instance, red sandalwood powder can be used to make red color; henna powder can be put in best use to derive the bright green color, while yellow color can be made by making use of turmeric powder.
Wish u a very Happy & safe holi !!!!!!!!!!!!!
Senior Fashion Stylist [IIFA]