The Holi festival is celebrated by Hindus around the world on the day of Purnima (the full moon) in the month of Falgun over two consecutive days – the first day of Holi is known as Holika Dahan and the second as Dhuleti. It is also known as the “Festival of colours”. Observed for centuries, the festival is a jubilant o
ccasion that sees Hindus create bonfires and cover each other in rainbow-hued powder to commemorate the beginning of spring. Holi also celebrates fertility, colour, love and the triumph of good over evil. The origins of the festival can be found in various legends in Hindu mythology, one of which tells the story of a demon, Holika and her brother, king Hiranyakashipu. On the night before Holi, bonfires are lit to signify the burning of Holika and the victory of good over evil. Some Hindus who observe the festival will also smear themselves with ashes from the fire, as a symbol of purification. It’s said that lovers have continued this tradition ever since, panting their faces the same colour in celebration of Holi and their love.
Red represents sensuality and prosperity.
Green symbolises life and happiness.
Blue symbolises determination and longevity.
Orange for progress.
Pink for friendship.
Yellow is believed to represent knowledge.
White signifies purity.
The Shree Pretoria Hindu Seva Samaj has around 500 people, young and old, attending this festival. Sunil bhai Bhatt, our resident priest , conducts the Holi puja thereafter members of the community takes part in lighting the fire. People participate in the puja by lighting diyas, offering popcorn and coconut in the fire thereafter walking around the bonfire with a loto filled with water. The atmosphere is always spiritually charged, calm, vibrant and peaceful. It is a really colourful evening whereby all devotees young and old play with different coloured powder. Devotees also attend the arti in the mandir. Children enjoy playing in the courtyard and covering each other with coloured powder.