Logical or Mythological: Find here all the reasons to celebrate this Holi

hjappy-holi-images

Religions teaches us lot, if we want to learn something out of it. There are lots and lots of people who think of themselves smart just because they do not follow stupid religious traditions.

You must have heard that cool guy saying, “Celebrating Holi? Nah, I don’t give damn to those stupid superstitions.” Then you must have got those forwarded messages on WhatsApp or Facebook showing off reasons behind not celebrating Holi.

Usually they are…

1) Holika Dahan (Fire of Holi) creates lot of Air Pollution due to smoke of fire.

2) It also consumes lot of wood, which in turn harms environment by cutting more trees.

3) Playing with colors harms skin.

4) Tons of water get used in Dhuleti (Color Holi) and harms balance of environment.

Well, it seems logical at first sight, but once you read whole article you’ll definitely think other way round. Here are some logical and scientific reasons to celebrate Holi, which also is a counter argument to above mentioned WhatsApp-ed reasons.

Logic 1: Holika Dahan (Holi Fire) is good for environment and personal health too.

Its known to the whole science fraternity that winter creates more bacteria in environment as well as in human body. Festival of Holi comes in mutation period between Winter and Summer where danger of this bacteria is highest. Due to this reason only lot of people get caught in Viral infections, Cold, flu, cough and fever.

Holika Dahan creates lot of healthy smoke (as its made out of pure mud pie and wood) and heat up to 50-60 Celsius. During Holi Parikrama (taking round of holy fire) both of these smoke and heat cleans bacteria from body and environment releasing us to get caught from cold and flu.

If everyone celebrates Holi around country with these simple understandings, we won’t be seeing Bird Flu, Swine Flu or any other kind of dangerous diseases.

Countering to the argument of Environment Pollution, Holika Dahan never creates Air Pollution as fire generated from mud pie and wood does not create that much carbon which pollutes air. Those people who are arguing on this front, better go to your offices without your diesel cars for one week in a year. That’s better to save environment than fighting on social media.

On second argument of Wood Cutting, which is believed to contribute to deforestation. Activists estimate Holika causes 30,000 bonfires every year, with each one burning approximately 100 kilograms of wood.1 This represents less than 0.0001% of 350 million tons of wood India consumes every year, as one of the traditional fuels for cooking and other uses.2

Logic 2: On Dhuleti playing with colors makes our skin better.

Now, here is an argument of harming skin by playing colors. Well, definitely it harms skin when we play Holi with Synthetic Colors. Rama and Krishna never used factory made synthetic colors and never asked you to use it too.

Our Ancient Hindu Scriptures suggest making colors out of pure forms of environmental plants. You may use it below mentioned plants and items to make pure colors.

Plant based sources of colors:3

Color

Sources

Green

Mehendi and dried leaves of Gulmohur tree, leaves of spring crops and herbs, Spinach leaves, rhododendron leaves and pine needles

Yellow

Turmeric (Haldi) powder, Bael fruit, amaltas, species of chrysanthemums, and species of marigold, dandelions, sunflowers, marigolds, daffodils and dahlias, gram flour

Red 

Rose or the bark of crab apple trees, Red Sandal wood Powder, feels of Red Pomegranate, flowers of Tesu tree (Palash), fragrant red sandal wood, dried hibiscus flowers, madder tree, radish and pomegranate

Saffron

flowers of Tesu tree (Palash), Mixing lime with turmeric powder creates an alternate source of orange powder, barberry

Blue

Indigo, Indian berries, species of grapes, blue hibiscus and jacaranda flowers

Purple

Beetroot

Brown

Dried Tea leaves, red maple trees, Katha

Black

Some species of grapes, fruit of Gooseberry (Amla)

Now, remember cosmetic cream advertisement saying “Haldi Chandan ke Gun se Bhari, Aayurvedik Cream…” Now you don’t need more hint on why celebration of holi makes your skin better, do you?

Logic 3: Having Dance-Masti with color and water pumps up energy in you.

It’s again a proven fact that this mutation period of season brings tardiness and laziness in body. You don’t feel good going out for work. Well, that’s not good when you have tremendous pressure of completing March ending Targets.

To counter this laziness, people sing Songs (Phag, Jogira etc.) with Dhol, Manjira and other traditional instruments. This helps in rejuvenating the human body. Their physical movement while playing with colors also helps in the process.4

Well, if you are not comfortable with Dhol and Manjira, you can also try Drums and Music which will have equal impact on leveling up your energy in body. Obviously, Mind is better off with traditional music and chanting.

Again, countering to the WhatsApp-ed argument for heavily wasting water for this Dance-Masti, Our research shows that this water recovers to its pre-festival levels within 5 days.5

Logic 4: Have you heard of Color Therapy?

Color Therapy is a complementary therapy for which there is evidence dating back thousands of years to the ancient cultures of Egypt, China and India. Color is simply light of varying wavelengths, thus each color has its own particular wavelength and energy.

The energy relating to each of the seven spectrum colors of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet, resonates with the energy of each of the seven main chakras/energy centers of the body.

If you can imagine the chakras as a set of cogs/wheels, they are rather like the workings of a clock or an engine; each cog/wheel needs to move smoothly for the clock/engine to work properly. Thus good health and wellbeing is achieved by a balance of all these energies.  Balance of the energy in each of the body’s chakras is very important for health and wellbeing.

Playing with Color on Holi can help to re-balance and/or stimulate these energies by applying the appropriate color to the body and therefore re-balance our chakras.6

Here is a short list of colors and their effect on your body part chakra.

Colours and related Chakras

Color

Chakra

Violet

Crown

Indigo

Brow

Blue

Throat

Green

Heart

Yellow

Solar Plexus

Orange

Sacral

Red

Base

Mythology 1: Story of Narsimha – Avatar of Vishnu.

Most prominent mythological reason why we celebrate Holi is, in the honor of Hindu god Vishnu and his follower Prahlada. King Hiranyakashipu, Prahlad’s Father and Holika, Prahlada’s evil aunt tried to kill Prahlad by bonfire. Narsimha – Avatar of Vishnu saves his follower and kills Holika and Hiranyakashipu.

The Holika bonfire and Holi signifies the celebration of the symbolic victory of good over evil, of Prahlada over Hiranyakashipu, and of the fire that burned Holika.7

Mythology 2: Story of Radha and Krishna.

As a baby, Krishna developed his characteristic dark blue skin color because the she-demon Putana poisoned him with her breast milk. In his youth, Krishna despaired whether the fair-skinned Radha and other girls would like him because of his skin color. His mother, tired of the desperation, asks him to approach Radha and color her face in any color he wanted. This he does, and Radha and Krishna became a couple.

Ever since, the playful coloring of Radha’s face has been commemorated as Holi.8

Mythology 3: Legend of Shiva and Parvati.

The legendary significance of Holi is linked to Shiva in yoga and deep meditation, goddess Parvati wanting to bring back Shiva into the world, seeks help from the Hindu god of love called Kama on Vasant Panchami. The love god shoots arrows at Shiva, the yogi opens his third eye and burns Kama to ashes. This upsets both Kama’s wife Rati (Kamadevi) and his own wife Parvati. Rati performs her own meditative asceticism for forty days, upon which Shiva understands, forgives out of compassion and restores the god of love.9

This return of the god of love, is celebrated on the 40th day after Vasant Panchami festival as Holi. That is the reason why it is the festive day to end and rid oneself of past errors, to end conflicts by meeting others, a day to forget and forgive. People pay or forgive debts, as well as deal anew with those in their lives.10

Hope, All these Logical and Mythological reasons boosts your energy to celebrate this Holi with lots of love.

Happy Holi!!!

2 Swaminathan and Varadharaj, The status of firewood in India, IUFRO Symposium Proceedings (2003), pp 150-156.

3 Satyajit N. Singh, National Council of Science Museums (NCSM) Web blog.

4 Satyajit N. Singh, National Council of Science Museums (NCSM) Web blog.

5 Tyagi, V. K., Bhatia, A., Gaur, R. Z., Khan, A. A., Ali, M., Khursheed, A., & Kazmi, A. A. (2012), Effects of multi-metal toxicity on the performance of sewage treatment system during the festival of colours (Holi) in India, Environmental monitoring and assessment, 184(12), pp 7517-7529

7 Wendy Doniger (Editor), Merriam-Webster’s Encyclopedia of World Religions, January 2000, ISBN 978-0877790440, Merriam-Webster, page 455

8 R Deepta, A.K. Ramanujan’s ‘Mythologies’ Poems: An Analysis, Points of View, Volume XIV, Number 1, Summer 2007, pp 74-81

9 Robin Rinehart (2004). Contemporary Hinduism: Ritual, Culture, and Practice. ABC-CLIO. pp. 135–137. ISBN 978-1-57607-905-8

10 Holi India Heritage: Culture, Fairs and Festivals (2008)

Advertisements

One thought on “Logical or Mythological: Find here all the reasons to celebrate this Holi

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s