If you should be lucky enough to be in India on the 23rd March this year, you might be advised to don something that is easily washable because you will probably find yourself taking part in the festival of Holi.
Holi, one of the most joyful Festivals
Holi must be one of the most joyful festivals on earth as young and old, rich and poor alike all throw special brightly coloured paint at each other and light bonfires to celebrate the destruction of evil. Why? Well, obviously it’s good clean messy fun but there are also a number of legends that explain the origin of this polychromatic party.
The most popular legend goes like this. Prince Prahlad was a keen worshiper of the god Vishnu much to the chagrin of his father King Hiranyakashipu and his wicked aunt Holika. One day King Hiranyakashipu and Holika devised a plan to dispose of Prince Prahlad once and for all. Holika had a strange power: she was immune to fire. So grabbing Prince Prahlad she entered a raging furnace. Things did not go as she expected for the gods intervened and Holika was burned to death while Prince Prahlad escaped unscathed. Holi is also associated with the love of Radha and Krishna and it marks the end of winter and the beginning of spring.