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    Home > Edutainment > Festivals of India

Maha Shivratri

Celebrated by Hindus all over, India, Shivratri is a solemn festival devoted to the worship of the most powerful of Hindu deities, Lord Shiva. In this religious festival at which devotees spend the whole night singing his praise.

Onam

Kerala's great festival is Onam, celebrated with tremendous enthusiasm. It is primarily a harvest festival observed not only in every home but also out in the open, against the background of lush green tropical vegetation in which the region abounds. The most exciting part of the festival is the snake boat race held at several places on the palm-fringed lagoons. Various kinds of boats, beak-shaped, kite-tailed and curly-headed, take part in these thrilling contests.

Pongal

This is a three- day harvest Festival and one of the major events in South India. In Tamil Nadu where it is called Pongal, on the first day, the sun is worshipped. On the next day, Mattu Pongal, A thanksgiving ceremony is held in which cows and bullocks are a part and fed on freshly harvested rice. In Karnataka, this festival is called Sankranti; cows and bullocks are painted and decorated and fed on Pongal (a rice preparation). Entertainment is found in the form of young men trying to snatch bundles of money from the horns of a ferocious bull. In the evening the cattle in each village are led out in procession to the beat of drums and music.

Raksha Bandhan

On the day of Raksha Bandhan sisters tie a “Rakhee” on their brothers’ wrist, while the brothers give them a gift and vow to always love and protect them. It is said that when Lord Indra warred with demons, his consort tied a rakhee or a silken amulet around his wrist. It is said this helped him win back his celestial abode.

Naga-Panchami

Naga-Panchami falls on the fifth day of Shravan and is held in honour of Nagas or snakes. This day is dedicated to snakes and they are worshipped with milk and fruits.


Diwali

The beginning of the Hindu New Year, Diwali is one of the most important festivals in India.

This festival commemorates Lord Rama's return to his kingdom Ayodhya after completing his 14-year exile. Twinkling oil lamps or diyas light up every home and firework displays are common all across the country, the entrance of houses are decorated with Rangoli.. The goddess Lakshmi (consort of Vishnu), who is the symbol of wealth and prosperity, is also worshipped on this day.

The celebrations take place on the darkest night of the lunar month, Amavasya, when diyas burn and the sky is ablaze with fire crackers of all kinds. It's not only the festival of lights, it's also a festival of colours. True, Indian colours that adorn places of worship and decorate houses across the country.



 
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