Holika Dahan

Religion: Hindu
Country: India
Upcoming Holika Dahan is on 28 March 2021 (Sunday)

Days Remaining in Holika Dahan 2021
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Holika Dahan Ceremony is celebrated just before the day when ‘Falgun Purnima’ falls in the month of Phalguna according to Hindu calendar and the very next day festival of Holi is celebrated. People across different states have different way of bringing about the ‘Holika Dahan’ ceremony. In rural areas, freshly cut plantation of sugarcane is burnt by collecting them in one place. Different state people carry out various ceremonies during this event. In urban areas, people mostly burn the big logs of wood. It is said that by burning Holika, a cleansing event takes place in the environment. Due to the importance of this ceremony which marks the win of good over bad, people over the centuries and generations have been celebrating this ceremony as they used to celebrate earlier. And on the next day after Holika is burnt, the festival of color starts. People play with colors and exchange good wishes with each other. Apart from it, special cuisines are also made in the houses.

The Story Behind the Holika Dahan

The whole story behind the Holika Dahan according to the Vedas and religious textbook begins like this. Once upon a time a king named as Hiranyakashyap was there and he was known for its brutal and dreadful activities. He was so cruel that he forced all the people in his kingdom to worship him only and should consider him, as their almighty. In every region of his empire, he tried to eliminate the existence of anything that is related to other gods. But as people say, every cruel person has to face his end in his life, so does this king too. His own son named as ‘Prahalad’ used to worship Lord Vishnu and as this practice was against the power of his father, hurdles came in his way. Hiranyakashyap used to put hurdles in the way of his son and stopped him from worshipping Lord Vishnu. Whatever best he can do to stop his son from worshiping, he did. But the strong determination of his son did not deter him from worshipping almighty ‘Vishnu’. Every time he tried to do something that can stop his son, due to lord Vishnu, all attempts failed.

After several attempts of stopping his son and consecutive failures in doing so, he decided to kill his own son. Finally Hiranyakashyap took the help of her sister named as ‘Holika’. She was also as cruel and dreadful as his brother. Both of them made plans in which Holika was to sit on fire with Prahalad on her lap. As ‘Holika’ was blessed with drape, by which she cannot be burnt by fire or Agni. But at the time of sitting on fire with Prahalad on her lap, a strong wind blown in and it carried drape away from the Holika body and came on the Prahalad body. Thus Prahalad got saved and Holika got burnt. So once again the victory of good over bad took place. And this lead celebration in the whole kingdom and we call this celebration as Holi festival.


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