By Upasana Kone
Northwest Asian Weekly
Nothing brings out the vibrancy of India like the festival of Holi. The festival represents India in its true sense, representing its colorful culture and ethos. Holi heralds the arrival of the spring season with great fervor as people smear and throw colored powder and water at each other.
Out of many signature annual fundraiser events, Holi is the most celebrated event organized by Child Rights and You (CRY) America across different chapters. CRY Seattle has been organizing this event since 2010. This was the 6th year of successful fundraising to restore fundamental rights of underprivileged children in India. This year CRY Holi was back with the same camaraderie and celebration in CrossRoads Park, March 7. But this time around it was bigger and crazier than previous years. There was a huge fanfare of 3800 people including kids who helped CRY raise a whopping $33,000. This is the cost of supporting an education project for a year, which will improve the lives of thousands of children and their families.
History and significance
Like many Asian festivals, there are numerous faiths attached to Holi. Holi takes its name from the Hindu demoness Holika. Her death is celebrated as a triumph of good over evil each year in a massive bonfire on the night before Holi. It also celebrates the immortal love of the divine couple Radha and Krishna. The spraying of colored powder depicts playfulness and romance between the celestial souls
The festival of colors also embarks upon new beginnings, letting go of the bygones in cheerful delight. In addition to the boisterous nature of the festival, Holi also drives home lessons of social harmony as people from various faiths, irrespective of cast, creed, and gender, come together to revel and in turn strengthen the social fabric of the country.
There is certainly a fun quotient!
Holi spreads an infectious mood of festivity where people can let their hair down, dance in merriment, and watch the world in a myriad hue of colors.
It also brings out the prankster, from backslaps to surprise attacks and messy color smearing: everything is fair during Holi. In fact, this is the only time when no one minds being hit with water balloons by total strangers and still be able to get away with it—“Bura Na Mano Holi Hain” (which means ‘Don’t Mind, It’s Holi’). The color carnival is rampant in open streets, parks, temples, and buildings and in every nook and corner of India. Holi is also an excuse to indulge in delicious savory snacks and drinks. Although traditional Holi delicacies vary from region to region, it’s deemed incomplete without an intoxicating drink called ‘Bhaang’ made from the cannabis plant. (end)
Upasana Kone can be reached at email@example.com.