Holika Dahan 2019: Many stories but one message
Holika Dahan 2019: Holi is the festival of colors but is it just the festival of colors? Holi has a history in different forms in the ancient period.
The most famous story of Holika Dahan is that of Prahlad and Hiranyakshyap. Where Hiranyakshyap was a demon king who barred the people of his kingdom from praying to the lord. He had the desire to become immortal wherein his desires made him do all the injustice. But Later when his son was born (Prahlad) he became the follower of the lord and this became a thorn in Hiranyakshyp’s eyes. So he decides to kill Prahlad and for this, he called his sister Holika who was blessed with a shawl which could protect her throughout her life. As the conspiracy moves ahead Prahlad was asked to sit with Holika around the fire. But the moment flipped its tales and the shawl flew to Prahlad and Holika died.
Krishna’s story of Holika Dahan
In some parts of Indi Holi is also called Phagwah. The king Kansa or the uncle of Krishna was terrified of dying and he knew his infant nephew would kill him when he will grow up. He sent Putana, the devil as a woman to poison the infant under the guise of breastfeeding. Baby Krishna sucks not only the poisonous milk but her blood too. She runs and bursts into flames. The day before Phagwah is celebrated by burning Putana.
The Shiva-Parvati story of Holika Dahan
The story of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati also has a version of Holi Festival and is celebrated as Kama Dahan. According to Hindu mythology Goddess Parvati, the daughter of Himalaya was attracted to Lord Shiva and wished to marry him. But Shiva was under deep meditation so later in the story Kama Deva left the arrow of love on Lord Shiva which led to the disturbance in the deep meditation of Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva who got extremely furious burnt Kamadeva into ashes.
The Significance of Holika Dahan
In Hindu Mythology we have several stories in regard to the Dahan but what enriches this festival is the one message behind all the Dahan during Holi in ancient time that is burning the selfish traits of human beings, and the triumph of good over the devil. Ego, jealousy, hatred, and all other bad attributes of a human is burnt in the Holika Dahan. The serenity of this ritual is that it states it is never too late to leave bad things behind and choose the path of righteousness. Holi not only teaches to bring colors in one another’s life but also quitting the evil traits inside us and become a better version of ourselves. Another aspect of Holika Dahan emphasizes the struggle of the right to win over wrong which doubles the meaning of Holika Dahan.
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