INDIA, March 30, 2013 (Hindu Janajagruti Samiti): In this festival the main emphasis is laid on the burning of Holika or lighting of the Holi bonfire. The origin of the traditional lighting of Holi is attributed by some to the burning of evil demons like Holika, Holaka and Putana who troubled little children or to the burning of Madan (the Deity of Beauty who tried to distract Lord Shiva's meditation) according to others.
This particular full moon day carries special importance as this day holds the Raja-Tama in the atmosphere in its original fire-form (Tej). This is the day when the Principle of the Primal Shakti from the Universe, which imparts dissolution, is active in a Marak form. The worship of this Principle helps the jiva by purifying its subtle body and to a certain extent the atmosphere around it is also purified. The worship performed on this day liberates the jiva from its Raja-Tama orientation. Thus in a way, the jiva is reborn after this Pournima.
Beginning from the full moon day (pournima) of the Hindu lunar month of Phalgun till the fifth day (panchami) this festival is celebrated for two to five days depending on the regional variations. It has various names such as Hori, Dolayatra in North India, Shimga, Holi and Hutashani mahotsav, Holikadahan (burning of Holika) in Goa, Konkan and Maharashra and Kamadahan (burning of desires) in South India. One can also call it Vasantotsav or Vasantagamanotsav that is the festival celebrated to welcome the Vasant (spring) season.
Rangapanchami is celebrated on the fifth day (panchami) in the dark fortnight of the Hindu lunar month of Phalgun by throwing a red, fragrant powder (gulal) and splashing colored water, etc. on others.
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