Holi, The Festival of Colors in India for the year 2018 is celebrated on Friday, March 2.
Holi falls in the months of February and March each year. It is a two day Spring festival with the first day called Chhoti or Holika Dahan and the second day called Dhuleti or Rangwali Holi. The festival celebrates sharing and love as well as colors.
Holi is a Hindu festival that marks the start of spring.
Celebrated across India, it’s an ancient festival with the first mentions of it dating all the way back to a 4th century poem.
It was even described in detail in a 7th century Sanskrit play called “Ratnavali,” written by the Indian emperor Harsha.
“Witness the beauty of the great cupid festival which excites curiosity as the townsfolk are dancing at the touch of brownish water thrown … Everything is colored yellowish red and rendered dusty by the heaps of scented powder blown all over,” wrote Harsha.
Amid vibrant bursts of color, a troupe of dhol players — a traditional wooden drum played in South Asia — dance around and splash each other with water and powder colored red, yellow, blue and green. The scene depicts the classic Holi traditions of family and friends coming together to laugh, dance, and feast.
In modern day Holi celebrations, Holika’s cremation is often reenacted by lighting bonfires on the night before Holi, known as Holika Dahan. Some Hindus collect the ashes and smear them on their bodies as an act of purification
Rangwali Holi takes place the next day and is an all-day affair where people throw and smear colored powder on each other.