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Holi Hai!!! – Plan for a prosperous and joyful new year

Every Indian festival has a purpose and the purpose is relevant even today. Today I want to discuss a bit about structure of an Indian year and purpose of Holi.
         As you may be aware, Indian culture has 3 key gods i.e. Branhma, Vishnu and Mahesh or Shiva and similarly 3 goddesses i.e. Devi Saraswathi, Mahalakshmi and Mahakali. The roles of the 3 gods and goddesses are also defined. Brahma and Devi Saraswathi are creators, Vishnu and Mahalakshmi are nurturers finally lord Shiva and Mahakali are destroyers. Lord Ganesha is also considered as representation of Brahma.
         According to Hindu philosophy this cycle of creation, nurturing and destruction is a continuous cycle. Shree Swami Vivekananda gave an analogy of waves in an ocean to this cycle. Another interesting principle in Vedic literature is “Yatha Pinde tatha brahmande| Yatha Brahamande tatha Pinde” or what you observe at micro level is also observable at mega level or vice versa. This is perfectly scientific based on holographic theory in quantum physics. Therefore, Hindus considered a year as a section of infinite time.
         Hindu festivals in a year are also organized around this theory of creation, nurturing and destruction.  The beginning of the year is with festivals of Lord Ganesha and Devi Saraswathi. Later for quite some time lord Vishnu is worshipped. This includes Aashadhi and Karthiki Ekadhashi. In the month of Ashwin i.e. 6th month when half a year is about to get over we offer our prayers to Lord Vishnu on the day of Dhanathrayodhashi and request for good health. On the new moon day or Aashiwn Amavasya, we offer our prayers to Devi Mahalakshmi and request for good wealth. Finally, the year ends with Mahashivarathri where we offer prayers to lord Shiva the destroyer.
         Holi comes after Mahashivrathri when a Hindu year is about to end, and a new year is going to begin in just 15 days. These are last 15 days of Shishir Rhutu or season. During Shishir season trees shed their leaves. The Hindus has always learnt from nature and complimented the nature as well. As the summer is about to start, these shed leave and trees may become reason for forest fire and so the suggestion is to burn the leaves and dried trees. This is also time to pray the forest gods and goddesses for happy and mishap less summer in the forest.
         In some cultures, on the day of Holi people use bad words against each other and this is totally acceptable. In some other cultures people play along with family and friends using colors or mud. The whole purpose of this is to forget everything that happened in the year and have a fresh start on new year day. Cultures where bad words are acceptable suggest taking out the frustration or grudge and be friends whereas cultures where people play colours suggest being friends by forgiving everything that happened in last year.
During the fortnight after Holi, Shraddhas for ancestors are performed. This is to resolve unhappiness of ancestors or fulfill any of their wishes.
         This whole concept is very similar to business closure but on a personal front. It also suggests preparation for next year on Gudi padwa or Yugadi.
         This is a great indication that Hindus were very much evolved and used to take care of emotional debts and maintain emotional balance year over year. This concept is very important today in digital world. As you think about the concept and see how it is applicable in today’s world, you may take it forward in your life and build a sound foundation of next year. You may have your own ways and methods to reconnect with your friends and relatives. You may also have your own ways to create your emotional balance. This is a good time to think and revisit events and people in past 1 year. Identify the and build an action plan. I wish you all a Happy and joyful Holi.
If you want to know more about scientific aspects of Indian culture to make your life happier and successful you may read my book ‘Eva and Shiva’.
Note: Shaktas celebrate Navarathri and during this festival all 3 goddesses are worshipped. The sequence followed for 9 nights is Mahasaraswati, Mahalakshmi, Mahakali respectively. This sequence also follows creator, nurturer and destroyer theory.


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