Holi or Dol Festival

by - February 22, 2020

                 Holi is an ancient Indian festival, originally referred to as 'Holika Burning.' The Dol Yatra (Holi Festival) is a Hindu Vaishnava festival. The last day of the year was Phalguna Purnima (Full-moon)and the new year that heralded the Vasanta-Ritu (with spring beginning from the next day). Thus Holika's full moon festival slowly became a merrymaking festival, announcing the start of the spring season. That may explain this festival's other names-Vasanta-Mahotsava and Kama-Mahotsava.
                 According to Vaishnava's belief, on the day of Phalguni Purnima or Dolpurnima, Sri Krishna used to play colors with Radhika and other Gopis with Abir or Gulal. That's where the play of the drill originated. So on the morning of the day of Dol Yatra, Radha and Krishna's Idol was taken out of Abir and Gulale and carried out in Dola along with the singing of praises. The fans then played Abir and Gulal with each other. Phalguni Purnima is called Dolpurnima in connection with the Dol Festival. Again, it is also called Gaurapurnima, the birth of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu on this full moon.
History and Mythology 
                    Holi Purnima is performed in some parts of India, especially in Bengal and Odissa as the birthday of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu (1486-1533). Nevertheless, the term ' Holi' has a literal meaning that is' fire.' There are different legends to clarify the meaning of this word, most popular of all is the legend associated with Hiranyakashyap the demon king. 
                   Hiranyakashyap wanted everyone in his kingdom to worship him only but Prahlad (son) became an ardent devotee of Lord Narayana (Vishnu) to his great disappointment. Hiaranyakashyap ordered his sister Holika, to enter her lap into a blazing fire with Prahlad. Holika had a blessing allowing her to join fire without damage to herself. She was not conscious, however, that the blessing only worked when she walks into the fire alone. As a result, she paid a price for her evil impulses while for his utter dedication Prahlad was saved by God's (Lord Narayan) grace. Therefore the festival celebrates the victory of good over evil, and the triumph of devotion as well. 
         Lord Krishna's story is also synonymous with color playing as the Lord started the practice of color playing by adding color to his beloved Radha and other Gopis. The play slowly gained popularity among the people and became a tradition. 
                It also heard that one day Srikrishna and Sri Radha Rani were sitting with their Friends or Gopis in one place. At one time, sudden menstruation of Sriradhara occurred. Srikrishna organized a Holi so as not to be embarrassed (Radha Rani) by the friends/gopis or the devotees. There was such a playing of Holi and with Abir that was not seen clearly all-around in Vrindaban at that time. 
            It also came to hear that Lord Sri Krishna and Radharani were met several times (9 times). Naukabilash, Holi festival, etc. is one of them. There was a Holi in Vrindavan that day, so for Abir and Gulal at that time the sky & surroundings of Vrindavan became a kind of darkness, nothing could be seen clearly, created a suitable atmosphere for the reunion of Radha-Krishna.
Social Side
                     There is also a secular aspect of the Holi festival. From this morning onwards, men and women become crazy for playing with different liquid colors, Abir, Gulal and others. Holi festival has cultural significance in various Hindu traditions of India. It is a festive day when one forgets his past mistakes. On this day, people settle disputes with each other; on this day they forget about these disputes and forgive them. They forgive the old debt and start a new deal. Holi festival brings with it the arrival of spring. To many, it signifies the beginning of a new year. It's a festival for people to enjoy the seasonal change and make new friends.
                The famous Muslim tourist-Ulbaruni has listed in his historical memories about Holi Utsav (Festival) too. Nowadays not only the Hindus but also the Muslims, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains everyone celebrated Holi Utsav.

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