The Spring Celebrations in India
For most of us, the spring season brings back colour and life to nature marking the end of dull and decaying months of winter. The liveliness of spring in itself is the reason to celebrate and when it comes to the springtime in India, the season is marked with a whole lot of festivities. As it is the harvesting season, most of the spring festivals welcome a new year of happiness and hopes of future prosperity. They are celebrated with a unique vigour symbolizing life in comparison with the barren winter weather. As we are entering into the season of life and colours, we have picked for you the top 5 spring festivals in India.
Holi- the Festival of Colours
Holi is one grand event in India that celebrates the spirit of togetherness and love. It is a colourful celebration that marks the beginning of spring, good harvests and victory of good over evil. A two-day long occasion, Holi is a colourful carnival which is as much associated with religious fervour, as it is with songs, dances and rubbing of colourful gulaals on friends and relatives. The festive spirit of Holi takes various forms throughout India. Be it the Foolon ki Holi in Mathura and Vrindavan, Lath Maar Holi in Barsane or the Elephant festival and Holi in Jaipur- the occasion is all about rejoicing the virtues of love, beauty and forgiveness.
Navroze- The Parsi New Year
Celebrated every year as the Parsi New Year on March 21, Navroze is the one of the main festivals of Parsi community. Navroze literally means ‘New Day,’ and this is the occasion when Parsis organize Thanksgiving ceremonies. They decorate their homes with flowers, garlands and Rangolis and together with their family and friends pay homage to their deity. The celebration is also marked by lavish feasts where traditional Parsi dishes are made for the guests. Unlike other Indian festivals, Navroze is fairly silent and it is a sophisticated event mainly celebrated by the Parsi communities.
Magh Bihu- the Harvest festival of Assam
Also known as Bhogali Bihu and Maghar Domahi, Magh Bihu is the main harvest festival of Assam. Marking the end of harvesting season during the months of Magh (January-February), the event comprises of a week-long feast, bonfires and traditional Assamese games like bull fighting and tekeli bhonga (pot-breaking). One of the main features of this festival includes the making of Meji– makeshift huts made of bamboo, leaves and thatch. Youngsters construct these Mejis in which people participate in the feast and then they burn the huts, the following morning. During this event, Assamese prepare cakes of rice that have various names like Shunga Pitha, Til Pitha and other coconut sweets called Laru.
Baisakhi- the Punjabi New Year
The main harvest festival of Punjab, Baisakhi or Vaisakhi, is celebrated with great joy while paying homage to deities for a good harvest. The festival marks the Punjabi New Year, which is celebrated in Vaisakh, the month of April. Extravagant fairs are held in the villages where people don their traditional outfits and rejoice on the beats of Bhangra and Giddah. Since, it is the beginning of new spring year, taking a dip in the holy rive is also considered auspicious. The festival has an immense importance for the Sikhs, as the day is also celebrated as the birthday of their tenth Guru, Guru Gobind Singh.
As a main festival for Christians, Easter is celebrated to mark the resurrection of Jesus Christ- the saviour of humanity. It is an occasion of rejoicing and merriment which is celebrated anytime between March 22nd and April 25, depending on the Sunday following the full moon. This festival is also parallel with the Jewish festival of Yore known as Passover. The event marks the definitive conquest of good over evil and is celebrated by providing feasts to the poor and needy. It is a kind of thank-giving festival, when Christians assembles in large masses offering prayers to the Son of God.
Happy Spring Season Folks!