Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Hello Holi!

Widows in Vrindavan, India celebrating the Holi festival for the first time
Mawa Gujiya

Today marks the last full moon of March 2013 and the first day of a one to forty day long festival of colors, music, colors, food, colors, togetherness, and, you guessed it, COLORS! If that's not reason enough to make you want to celebrate Holi, the festival of colors, then I'm guessing you're more of a "black and white" kinda person, but perhaps a little more detail might strike your interest.

Holi is a festival to welcome spring and signify the beginning of harvest season. It holds a religious significance as well such as celebrating the triumph of good over evil and recognizing the Hindu god, Lord Krishna.

Even with Holi’s joyous melodies, delectable treats, and electrifying hues, the aspect that I find to be most magnificent is Holi’s celebration of unity. 

Holi is the one time a year when strictly enforced rules of separation and social systems are a bit more lax. Men and women, boys and girls, rich and poor, young and old, come together in a harmonious celebration complete with smiling faces, full tummies, and color-drenched bodies.

This year’s festival crossed yet another boundary when hundreds of widows gathered in Vrindavan, India and celebrated Holi for the first time! Before this year, widows were not allowed to participate in the festivities but on Sunday, the women danced and celebrated with handfuls of flower petals and basked in all the colors of Holi like everyone else.

Although the most recognized Holi festival is held in Vrindavan, India, the celebration lives up to its barrier-breaking traditions and has been enjoyed by countries all over the world. Places such as Nepal, Pakistan, the UK, Trinidad and Tobago, South Africa, the US, and Guyana have all been known to celebrate this festival of colors. It was spread across the globe by Hindu migrants but it is celebrated by a variety of people who view the festival as a celebration of love, laughter, unity, and (of course) colors.

Holi is definitely on my list of cultural celebrations that I plan to experience but until I actually make these plans a reality, I will continue to get lost in my daydream of infinite colors and fantastic Holi happiness.

With infinite love,
The Frohemian

(The photos above are from Google)

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