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Festivals In India

Baisakhi


There are quite a number of important festivals in Northern India. One of the significant festivals is Baisakhi or Vaisakhi. It is even more so important in the state of Punjab. One can witness vivid celebrations during the festival and can go back collecting the best memories of the joyous occasion. This festival is associated with the harvest of Rabi crop. Considered as very important in the rural India, this festival has one more significant factor attached to it. Yes, we are referring to the birth anniversary of Khalsa Panth (Sect). Held on the first day of the Vaisakh month, this festival heralds atmosphere of enjoyment, lots of jubilance and fun. Vaisakh Month is usually referred as month of April and May. This festival is important for both Sikh and Hindus but for the former one, it is even more special.

Karwa Chauth

Karwa Chauth is a world renowned tradition, representing India as a country full of love and traditions. This event has not been just in vogue in current soaps, but has played a big part in almost any other movie made in Hindi cinema. This festival is observed by Hindu married women belonging mainly from Northern and Western India. Few states which extensively participate in the event are Delhi, Haryana, Gujarat and many more.

Every married Hindu woman is supposed to establish a fast on this very day from the break of dawn till they see the moon at night. Women pray for their husbands all day long apart from not eating and drinking. The biggest feature of the prayers is the asking God for long life and wellbeing of their husbands. This ritual has its basis on strengthening bonds between husbands and their wives. This also shows the importance of family and relationships in India. Indian culture mostly believes in monogamy, and that signifies the importance of a partner in a person’s life. The preparations begin with women getting dressed up for the day, and adorning themselves with henna and jewellery. The day progresses as they pray to Lord Shiva, Ganesha, Parvati and Kartikeya, as well the pot of clay called Karwa. In some traditions, women begin their fast by having their last meal sent by their mother-in-laws called Sargi.

Similarly, women receive Baya,a gift of clothes and sweets from the mother-in-law as well. The whole day is passed by listening to the legend of Karwa Chauth. Finally after seeing the moon through the sieve and worshipping it, women take their first sip of water and first bite of food, by their husband’s hands, after seeing them through the sieve. This is how the day of Karwa Chauth culminates as being one of the most important days in the relationship of a Hindu couple.

Good Friday

 

Every religion has its own significant celebrations. Most of these celebrations have certain anecdotes or historical reasons associated with them. Primarily rooted in the canals of history, such celebrations have been rejoiced since centuries. When we think of Christianity, we often remember Christmas as the basic celebration. But apart from Xmas, there is one very important festival, Good Friday that has its roots in the journey of Jesus Christ.

The birth occasion of Christ is celebrated with fanfare. It is vividly rejoiced by the devotees. But once this period of exultation is over, his followers pursue a time of fasting and penance. This period starts on Ash Wednesday and ends on Good Friday. Known as Lent, this period of fasting is celebrated more as following the example of Jesus Christ. It is believed that Jesus fasted for forty days in harsh dessert before he began his preaching. It was his way of overcoming evil power. By following the rituals of prayer and fasting, Jesus set the precedent of austerities.

 

Teachers Day

Teachers are one of the most important people, after our families that influence our lives. From the moment we step into school, to the point when we quit education and become self sufficient, there is a teacher to guide us in everyday of our life. Teaching is not just restricted to academics. We do and we will always find teachers in every walk of life. A famous man said, that anyone who made me even learn a single word, it’s worth serving him for the rest of my life. From the time that we are vulnerable minds, teachers start guiding us and help us in moulding our personalities. As kids, we all have our teachers as ideals, the images that we wanted to be, the guidance and sensibility that we wanted to achieve. How many times we thought of thanking our teachers and could never get a chance to actually do it. Teacher’s day is all about that, and a lot more.
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Budda Purnima

Buddhism was originated some 2500 years ago. It is widely accepted as one of the universal religion that is in existence in many countries. It has a strong presence in many Asian countries and now even western countries like USA and Australia are accepting this on a wide scale. Buddhism is not only a religion but also a philosophy. Based on the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama also known as the “Buddha”, Buddhism preaches peace and tolerance.  The literal meaning of Buddha means ‘Enlightened one’. Going by the history books, Siddhartha Gautama was the prince of Lombini and in a moment of despair or enlightment he found himself totally non-aligned from worldly desires. He wanted to get rid of sorrows of human existence. At the young age of 29, he renounced all attachments to worldly pleasures and forayed into a voyage to seek answers for the misery of human condition. His next six years consisted of self-mortification and frequent fasting. He managed to achieve the supreme enlightment beneath the Bodhi tree while he was mediating. He died at the age of 80 in a small place called Kusinara. He spent his life in establishing Buddhist monastic order of monks.

 

Muharram

Moharram is considered one of the most sacred months of Islamic calendar. It is the first month, so marks the start of every Islamic New Year. According to Hadith and Quran, Muslims are advised to respect the month and not commit any wrongdoing. The sigficance of this month further increased after Imam Hussein P.B.U.H was martyred on the 10th of Moharram. This day is called an Ashura. This completely changed the significance of Islamic history related to Moharram. After the death of the Prophet, Muslims were divided into two sects, one believed that Prophet Muhammad P.B.U.H were the last messenger of God, and there were no successors as he never announced anyone to be his successor.

 

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