India is a land of fairs and festivals. As different communities belonging to different religions live here, therefore many festivals are celebrated regularly every year. Among these festivals, some are religious; some are based on seasons while some are of national importance. All the festivals are celebrated with great enthusiasm in a colourful atmosphere.
Diwali, Dussehra, Raksha Bandhan, Id-ul-Fitr, Id-ul-Zuha, Christmas, Mahavir Jayanti, Gurunanak Jayanti, Ganesh Chaturhi etc. are the religious festivals of India. These festivals are celebrated by different communities but they are celebrated as a whole. We can see festive atmosphere everywhere in India.
Holi, Baisakhi, Basant Panchami, Bihu, Pongal, Onam etc. are seasonal or harvest festivals. The spirit of Holi is colour-rich and vibrant, flung into the air and smeared with immense joy on friends and dear onces.
This festival marks the end of winter season and advent of bright days of summer. Baisakhi, a harvest festival, is celebrated in North India, particularly in Punjab and Haiyana, when the Rabi crop is ready for harvesting. In South India, during the same period, 'Pongal' is celebrated.
The farmers worship the sun, the earth and the cattle as thanks giving for a bounteous harvest. And then there is Basant Panchami. It marks the arrival of sweet spring the season of pleasant breeze, flowers and fragrance. All fill life with vigour and vitality. Hence people celebrate this festival with great zeal and excitement.
Then comes our national festivals- the Independence Day, The Republic day and the Gandhi Jayanti these festivals are celebrated by all communities through out the country. The Independence Day celebrated on 15th August every year reminds us those numerous freedom fighters that made the Britishers leave the country.
They gave us our long-cherished freedom. The Republic day, which falls on 26th January, is observed with national feeling. This festival fills us with pride that now we live in a sovereign democratic republic country with a constitution of our own. On this day colourful parade starts from Vijay Chowk which ends at the Red Fort.
Similarly Gandhi Jayanti is also celebrated nation wide. It falls on 2nd October, the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi, the father of Nation. Whole nation pays heartiest tribute to our revered soul, who lived and died for the country.
The festivals make our life colourful and enthusiastic. They bring people together. They come every year to make us forget all ill-will and communal hatred the festivals strengthen the feeling of oneness too people, without any malice, meet with one another and wish for bright future. Thus, festivals are very important and they must be celebrated with pomp and show by all.
Festivals are the periods of celebration and are an important part of life of Indian people. When religion intervened to invest the festivals with spiritual meaning, this joy came to be identified with the joy of worship.
The Festivals of India are still associated with religion and participation in the productive activities and with the seasons of the year.
The harvesting festivals, the spring festivals, the sowing festivals, during the rainy season are all associated with man’s relation with nature.
Even our Durga Puja and Diwali are Autumn festival and the festival of lights welcoming the winter or harvesting season.
The folk-culture behind these festivals has their roots in the age-old folk-traditions and the impulses of the common man. Of course, as in primitive society social relations corresponded simply with forces of production, the festivals then revealed the harmony of communal living without any veils.
But later in our society, the relations grew complex and the festivals, on many occasions lost their folk traditions.
However, in many regions such as north-eastern India, the festivals still show folk-characteristics and include folk dramas, folk-songs, folk-dances and the rituals associated with folk-beliefs.
The regional festivals differ from one state to another. The manner in which they are observed and celebrated are also different.
But even though the festivals today have lost much of their significance in the changed perspective, they still have a definite role to play in keeping off the forces of disintegration in our society today.
The Indian Society has been divided into various classes and groups is quite antagonistic, so much so that they are often found involved in conflicting quarrels which are only exercises in futility.
Festivals, without class-hatred, can bring about the harmony in our Indian society.
Also read: Major Festivals of India (National, Religious, Harvest and Seasonal)
Category: Indian SocietyTagged With: Indian Festivals