Holi is a festival of colours that captivates the hearts of millions across India and beyond. Holi signifies the triumph of good over evil, the arrival of spring, and brings joy to life. This exuberant festival is a time for friends and family to come together, smear each other with colours, and revel in the spirit of unity and joy. Preparations for the two-day festival begin weeks in advance, with streets adorned with vibrant decorations and markets bustling with shoppers purchasing coloured powders (gulal), water guns and sweets.
When will Holi 2024 be celebrated?
Holi is celebrated towards the end of the month of Phalguna, according to the Hindu calendar. The first day of the festival, when a bonfire is lit to signify the burning of demoness Holika, is held on the evening of Purnima.
The next day, when people play Holi, is on Padwa, or the first day of the Hindu month of Chaitra.
The corresponding dates in the Gregorian calendar will be March 24 (Sunday) and 25 (Monday). The first day is also known as Chhoti Holi.
Holid 2024 date and time
The auspicious time (or muhurat) for Holi will be from 7.19pm to 9.38pm on March 24. The next day (March 25), people can play Holi by smearing colours on friends and family members.
Traditional songs and rhythmic beats of drums set the mood, and festivities commence with the throwing of colours. Faces and clothes are soon transformed into kaleidoscopes of vibrant hues as revellers drench each other in gulal (coloured powder) and water.
Last year, Holi was celebrated on Wednesday, March 8.
How to perform puja on Holi?
Puja is performed on the first day of Holi, with a pile of wood, which is burned as a symbol of victory of good over evil. To perform the puja, following things are needed: raw cotton thread, coconut, gulal powder, vermilion, akshat (grains of rice), incense sticks and flowers, batasha (sweets made of sugar powder), turmeric and a bowl of water
For the ‘Holika Dahan’ puja, raw cotton threads are tied around the pile of wood three or seven times. After this, Ganga water is sprinkled on it along with flowers and vermilion. Then, using rosary, roli, akshat, batasha, turmeric, gulal and coconut, the structure is worshipped.
How Holi is celebrated?
On the morning of Holi, the air is filled with excitement and laughter as people gather in open spaces, parks and streets to meet and greet friends and apply colours on them.
One of the highlights of Holi is the sense of camaraderie it fosters. On this day, social barriers dissolve as people from all walks of life join in the celebrations, embracing each other with warmth and affection. Strangers become friends, and old grievances are forgiven amidst the laughter and merriment.
The joy of Holi extends beyond just colours – it is also a time for indulging in delicious delicacies. Gujiyas, a sweet dumpling filled with khoya (a milk product), and thandai, a refreshing drink infused with nuts and spices, are among the traditional treats enjoyed during the festivities.