Holi Date 2013- Holi festival will be celebrated in India this year on 27 March 2013.
Holi – the festival of colors in India- is perhaps the most fun filled one among all the festivals celebrated in this world. It is also one of the major religious Hindu festival. Holi is celebrated on the day of Purnima in the month of Falgun that corresponds with the months of February-March of English calender. Purnima is the full moon day and carries great significance in the Hindu lunar calender.
Holi Celebrations in India
Holi celebrations in India have two aspects- religious aspect and the aspect of fun with colors, thandai, bhang ( both of these are special drinks had by people while holi celebrations) etc. The religious traditions and rituals of Holi are observed on the eve of the Holi day. These two days of Holi are referred to as ‘Chhoti Holi’ (eve of Holi festival day) and ‘Dhulendi’ or ‘Dhulandi’ (the Holi day celebrated by throwing and rubbing dry and wet colors on each other).
On the eve of Holi festival, the local Hindu communities gather at one place and lit a bonfire. This is called ‘Holika Dahan’ related to the legend of Holika and Prahlad. People offer various materials like wheat, gram and oats etc. to the Holi fire. Some of the scholars are of the opinion that Holikotsav (Holika + Utsav = Holikotsava) is named after parched grains known as ‘Holka’ in Sanskrit.
On the second day of Holi festival, people forget all their restraints and give full meaning to this festival of colours. They bring home holi colors- dry as well as wet colors and play with each other using these Holi colors. The dry holi color called ‘Gulal’ or ‘Abir’ is thrown on each other while the wet colors which originally come in dry form, are mixed with water and rubbed on each other.
As far as celebration with food and drinks is concerned, Holi is again a fun filled festival when ‘bhaang’ and ‘thandai’ are drunk. These drinks are prepared with natural ingredients. For thandai, poppy seeds, dry fruits, rose petals, black pepper, sugar etc. are used and for bhang, the leaves of marijuana, milk, almonds, ginger, rosewater, sugar etc. are used. While thandai is a refreshing drink that gives energy to the people tired by playing with colors whole day long, bhang is an intoxicating drink that is traditionally had for experiencing full on fun. Holi sweets like ‘gujhiya,’ ‘puran poli’ etc. and holi chaat (snacks) like ‘kanji ke vade,’ ‘shaahi toast’ too are relished by people on holi day.
Apart from the Holi rituals and traditional holi colors, sweets, drinks etc. there are modern ways too for celebrating Holi. These are in form of Holi cards, greetings and Holi SMS wishes that people send to their friends and relatives staying away from them.