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Holi is a two day festival that also celebrates the victory of good over evil, as well as the abundance of the spring harvest season. It’s commonly referred to as the “Festival of Colors”. People exuberantly throw colored powder and water all over each other, have parties, and dance under water sprinklers. Bhang (a paste made from cannabis plants) is also traditionally consumed during the celebrations. Holi is a very carefree festival that’s great fun to participate in if you don’t mind getting wet and dirty.
Navaratri, Dussehra, and Durga Puja
The first nine days of this festival are known as Navaratri, and are filled with dance in honor of the Mother Goddess. The tenth day, called Dussehra, is devoted to celebrating the defeat of the demon king Ravana by Lord Rama. It also coincides with the victory of the revered warrior Goddess Durga over the evil buffalo demon Mahishasura.
In eastern India, the festival is observed as Durga Puja. Huge statues of the Goddess are made and immersed in the holy Ganges River. The festival is an extremely social and theatrical event, with drama, dance, and cultural performances held throughout the country.
Krishna Janmashtami, also known as Govinda, commemorates the birthday of Lord Krishna. An extremely fun part of the festival involves people climbing on each other and forming a human pyramid to try and reach and break open clay pots filled with curd, which have been strung up high from buildings.
Onam is a traditional ten day harvest festival that marks the homecoming of the mythical King Mahabali. It’s a festival rich in culture and heritage. People strikingly decorate the ground in front of their houses with flowers arranged in beautiful patterns to welcome the King. The festival is also celebrated with new clothes, feasts served on banana leaves, dancing, sports, games, and snake boat races.
Pushkar Camel Fair
An astonishing 50,000 camels converge on the tiny desert town of Pushkar, in India’s state of Rajasthan for the Pushkar Camel Fair. For five days, the camels are dressed up, paraded, shaved, entered into beauty contests, raced, and of course traded. It’s a great opportunity to witness an old, traditional style Indian festival.
[Source: http://goindia.about.com/od/festivalsevents/tp/Indiafestivals.htm]Holi Holi is a two day festival that also celebrates the victory of good over evil, as well as the abundance of the spring harvest season. It’s commonly referred to as the “Festival of Colors”. People exuberantly throw colored powder and water all over each other, have parties, and dance under water sprinklers. Bhang (a paste ...
Maha Shivaratri is celebrated with great devotion and religious fervor by Hindus, in honor of Lord Shiva, one of the Hindu Gods forming the Trinity. The festival falls on the moonless, 14th night of the new moon in the Hindu month of Phalgun (in the month of February – March, according to English Calendar). On the festival of Maha Shivaratri, devotees observe day and night fast and worship Shiva Lingam, to appease Lord Shiva. Many interesting legends have been related to the festival of Maha Shivaratri, explaining the reason behind its celebrations as well as its significance.
According to one of the most popular legends, Shivaratri is the wedding day of Lord Shiva and Parvati. It is also believed that Lord Shiva performed ‘Tandava’, the dance of the primal creation, preservation and destruction on this auspicious night of Shivaratri. According to another popular legend, described in Linga Purana, it was on Shivaratri that Lord Shiva manifested himself in the form of a Linga for the first time. Since then, the day is considered to be extremely auspicious by the devotees of Shiva and they celebrate it as Maha Shivaratri – the grand night of Shiva.
Shiva devotees observe strict fast on Maha Shivaratri, with many people having only fruits and milk and some not even consuming a drop of water. Worshippers dutifully follow all the traditions and customs related to Shivaratri festival, as they strongly believe that sincere worship of Lord Shiva, on the auspicious day, releases a person of his sins and also liberates him from the cycle of birth and death. As Shiva is regarded as the ideal husband, unmarried women pray for a husband like Him, on Shivaratri. On the other hand, married women pray for the well being of their husbands, on this auspicious day.
On Maha Shivratri, devotees wake up early in the morning and take a bath, if possible in river Ganga. After wearing fresh clothes, they visit the nearest Shiva temple, to give ritual bath to the Shiva Lingum (with milk, honey, water etc). The worship continues the whole day and whole night. Jaagran (nightlong vigil) might also be observed in Lord Shiva temples, where a large number of devotees sing hymns and devotional songs, in praise of Lord Shiva. In the morning,g devotees break their fast by partaking the prasad offered to Lord Shiva, after the aarti, the night before.
(source:http://festivals.iloveindia.com/mahashivratri/)Maha Shivaratri is celebrated with great devotion and religious fervor by Hindus, in honor of Lord Shiva, one of the Hindu Gods forming the Trinity. The festival falls on the moonless, 14th night of the new moon in the Hindu month of Phalgun (in the month of February – March, according to English Calendar). On ...
Hawa Mahal (Hindi: हवा महल, translation: “Palace of Winds” or “Palace of the Breeze”), is a palace in Jaipur, India. It was built in 1799 by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh, and designed by Lal Chand Usta in the form of the crown of Krishna, the Hindu god. Its unique five-storey exterior is also akin to the honeycomb of the beehive with its 953 small windows called jharokhas that are decorated with intricate latticework. The original intention of the lattice was to allow royal ladies to observe everyday life in the street below without being seen, since they had to observe strict “purdah” (face cover).
Built of red and pink sandstone, the palace is situated on the main thoroughfare in the heart of Jaipur’s business centre. It forms part of the City Palace, and extends to the Zenana or women’s chambers, the chambers of the harem. It is particularly striking when viewed early in the morning, lit with the golden light of sunrise.
HistoryView of Hawa Mahal in 1875
Maharaja Sawai Jai singh, the ruler of Rajasthan of the Kachwaha clan, was the original planner and builder who built the Jaipur city in 1727. However, it was his grandson Sawai ujjawal Singh, son of Maharaja Sawai Madhosingh I, who built the Hawa Mahal in 1799 as a continuation of the Royal City Palace. Pratap Singh’s deep devotion to the Hindu god Lord Krishna is inferred to have prompted him to build it as a dedication, in the form of a Mukuta or headgear, adorning the Lord. Though no historical record is available to its exact history, it is conjectured that Royal family ladies, who were under strict observance of purdah (the practice of preventing women from being seen by men), had to be given opportunity to witness proceedings in the market centre and watch the royal processions and festivities sitting behind the stone carved screens. Hawa Mahal did just that in style, amidst its luxurious comforts and behind strict screened exclusivity, unseen by outsiders.
Royal family of Jaipur, during their reign, also used the palace as a hot weather retreat, during the suffocating summer season of Jaipur, for several years, since the unusually designed window screens provided the much needed cool breeze and ventilation.
Views of Hawa Mahal façade the rear side The complete view of facade from the main road Full rear view of the Hawa Mahal
The palace is a five-story pyramidal shaped monument that rises to a height of 50 feet (15 m) from its high base. The top three floors of the structure have a dimension of one room width while the first and second floors have patios in front of them, on the rear side of the structure. The front elevation, as seen from the street, is like a honeycomb web of a beehive built with small portholes. Each porthole has miniature windows and has carved sandstone grills, finials and domes. It is a veritable mass of semi-octagonal bays, which gives the monument its unique façade. The inner face on the back side of the building consists of need-based chambers built with pillars and corridors with least ornamentation, and reach up to the top floor. The interior of the Mahal has been described as “having rooms of different coloured marbles, relieved by inlaid panels or gilding; while fountains adorn the centre of the courtyard”.Walls
Lal Chand Usta was the architect of this unique structure who also planned Jaipur city, considered then as one of the best-planned cities in India. Built in red and pink coloured sand stone, in keeping with the décor of the other monuments in the city, its colour is a full testimony to the epithet of “Pink City” given to Jaipur. Its façade depicts 953 niches with intricately carved Jharokhas (some are made of wood) is a stark contrast to the plain looking rear side of the structure. Its cultural and architectural heritage is a true reflection of a fusion of Hindu Rajput architecture and the Islamic Mughal architecture; the Rajput style is seen in the form of domed canopies, fluted pillars, lotus and floral patterns, and the Islamic style is evident in its stone inlay filigree work and arches (as distinguished from its similarity with the Panch Mahal – the palace of winds – at Fatehpur Sikri).
The entry to the Hawa Mahal from the city palace side is through an imperial door. It opens into a large courtyard, which has double storeyed buildings on three sides, with the Hawa Mahal enclosing it on the east side. An archaeological museum is also housed in this courtyard.
Hawa Mahal was also known as the chef-d’œuvre of Maharaja Jai Singh as it was his favourite resort because of the elegance and built-in interior of the Mahal. The cooling effect in the chambers, provided by the breeze passing through the small windows of the façade, was enhanced by the fountains provided at the centre of each of the chambers.
The panoramic view from the roof of the Mahal is stunning. The bazaar (the Seredeori Bazaar or market) on the east resembles avenues of Paris. Green valleys and mountains and the Amer Fort form the scenario to the west and north. The Thar desert’s “interminable line of undulating vapour” lies to the east and south. All this transformation of the landscape, from a stark and desolate land of the past, occurred because of the concerted efforts of the Maharajas of Jaipur. So much so that the Mahal has been stated to be a counterpart of Versailles.Views of the Jantar Mantar and the City Palace can also be witnessed from the top floor of the monument.
The top two floors of the Hawa Mahal are accessed only through ramps. The Mahal is maintained by the archaeological department of the Government of Rajasthan.
(source:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hawa_Mahal)Hawa Mahal (Hindi: हवा महल, translation: “Palace of Winds” or “Palace of the Breeze”), is a palace in Jaipur, India. It was built in 1799 by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh, and designed by Lal Chand Usta in the form of the crown of Krishna, the Hindu god. Its unique five-storey exterior is also akin to ...
Good Friday commemorates the crucifixion of Jesus. It is the most solemn day in the Christian calendar. The dates of Good Friday, which vary each year, occur between March 20th and April 23rd. It falls on the last Friday before Easter. It is the pinnacle of the Holy Week. All Christians observe this day with great humility and reverence. It is this spirit of humility and reverence that is reflected in each of the Good Friday PowerPoints, which can be used as a preaching aid on Good Friday.
History of Good Friday
As early as the first century, the Church set aside every Friday as a special day of prayer and fasting. It was not until the fourth century, however, that the Church began observing the Friday before Easter as the day associated with the crucifixion of Christ. First called Holy or Great Friday by the Greek Church, the name “Good Friday” was adopted by the Roman Church around the sixth or seventh century. This collection of reflect the types of traditions associated with the history of Good Friday.
Good Friday Origins
There are two possible origins for the name “Good Friday”. The first may have come from the Gallican Church in Gaul (modern-day France and Germany). The name “Gute Freitag” is Germanic in origin and literally means “good” or “holy” Friday. The second possibility is a variation on the name “God’s Friday,” where the word “good” was used to replace the word “God,” which was often viewed as too holy to be spoken aloud.
Good Friday Traditions
Good Friday rituals and traditions are distinct from every other Church observances. They add to Good Friday’s significance. The ceremony is somber, with priests and deacons dressing in black vestments. The pulpit and the altar are bare; no candles are lit. The purpose behind the solemn presentation is to create an awareness of grief over the sacrifice of God’s only begotten Son. Today, many churches hold special services on Good Friday evening to commemorate this important day.
Good Friday Church Rituals
Starting anytime between midnight and 3 a.m., priests and other clerics begin to recite specific prayers. At the morning ceremony, the priest or church official recites lessons from the scriptures. Afterward, there is a succession of prayers asking for God’s mercy and forgiveness on all mankind.
At the noon hour comes the Adoration of the Cross, where a representation of the True Cross is unveiled and the clergy and laity pay homage to the sacrifice of Christ. In the Jerusalem Church, a remnant of the True Cross itself is presented for the ceremony. Next comes the Mass of the Presanctified, in which the priest or church official takes Communion from the host that was blessed during the Maundy Thursday ceremony. The ceremony concludes around 3 p.m. with a procession, which is followed by evening prayers.
In many Protestant churches, Good Friday observances begin at noon and last until 3 p.m. This coincides with the hours that Jesus hung on the cross. These services often include sermons on the last seven phrases that Jesus spoke while being crucified. Other services include reenactments of the Passion according to the Gospel of John, processions of the Stations of the Cross, and the singing of appropriate hymns. The library of provides a collection of images to aid the in celebration of Good Friday.
To many Christians, Good Friday is a day of sorrow mingled with joy. It is a time to grieve over the sin of man and to meditate and rejoice upon God’s love in giving His only Son for the redemption of sin.
(source:http://www.faithclipart.com/guide/Christian-Holidays/good-friday-significance.html)Good Friday commemorates the crucifixion of Jesus. It is the most solemn day in the Christian calendar. The dates of Good Friday, which vary each year, occur between March 20th and April 23rd. It falls on the last Friday before Easter. It is the pinnacle of the Holy Week. All Christians observe this day with ...
In the New Year, may your right hand always be stretched out in friendship, but never in want.
An optimist stays up until midnight to see the New Year in.
A pessimist stays up to make sure the Old Year leaves.
For eleven months and maybe about twenty days each year, we concentrate upon the shortcomings of others, but for a few days at the turn of New Year we look at our own. It is a good habit.
Arthur H. Sulzberger
A new beginning is perhaps the best time to say…
It’s so nice to know you…
And here’s wishing our friendship
continues to grow in the days to come.
The secret for success in life is for a man to be ready for his opportunity when it comes.
Be always at War with your vices,
at peace with your neighbors,
and let each New Year find you
a better person.
Cheers to New Year and another chance for us to get it right.
I don’t really have a New Year’s resolution to go on a diet or anything like that. I am who I am, and I don’t want to be somebody else.
If it didn’t Bring you Joy,
Just Leave it Behind.
Let’s Ring in the New Year
With Good Things in Mind.
Let Every Bad Memory Go
That Brought Heartache and Pain.
And let’s Turn a New Leaf
With the Smell of New Rain.
Let’s Forget Past Mistakes
Making Amends for This Year.
Sending You These Greetings
To Bring you Hope and Cheer
Happy New Year!
Many people look forward to next year for a new start on old habits.
Year old has gone. Let the dead past bury its own dead. New Year in possession of hours of time. All hail the duties and possibilities of the next twelve months!
Edward Payson Powell
Year-end is neither an end nor beginning, but it happens with all the wisdom, experience can instill in us.
The object of a New Year is not that we should have a new year. It is that we should have a new soul.
G. K. Chesterton
We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year’s Day.
Edith Lovejoy Pierce
Let fall Showers of Love
and Romance Bloom,
A Romantic Year Ahead.
Friends are not beautiful as they look and they walk as they talk. Friends are beautiful as they are sincere as they care and as they remember.
Happy New Year!
(source:http://quoteocean.com/happy-new-year-quotes/1)In the New Year, may your right hand always be stretched out in friendship, but never in want. Irish Toast An optimist stays up until midnight to see the New Year in. A pessimist stays up to make sure the Old Year leaves. Bill Vaughan For eleven months and maybe about twenty days each year, we concentrate upon the shortcomings ...