Festivals of India

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Aparna Sanyal
It is believed that Buddha Purnima marks the full-moon summer night that saw the birth of a boy who would go on to teach the world about finding happiness by understanding the true nature of life. Central to Buddhist thought are ruminations on suffering brought on by sickness, old age,…
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Shruti Chakraborty
Many among us know about roza as an essential practice among Muslims during Ramzan (also called Ramadan). Did you know there are many other rituals that are followed as well? This ranges from e'tikaaf (a form of seclusion) to taraweeh (a special prayer at the end of the day).    (Photo Source: Ayan…
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Manan Kapoor
India has a host of harvest festivals, of which Lohri, Makar Sankranti, Pongal and Bihu are some of the more popular ones. However, there are several other similar harvest festivals celebrated by various tribes, regions and cultures that might not be as well known, but are an essential aspect of…
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Manan Kapoor
For most agrarian societies, harvest festivals are an integral part of their culture, and India is no different. Often, each community has a different name for the celebrations, but there is a lot that is common in the intent and festivities. Here we look at three—Ugadi, Gudi Padwa and Mopin—that…
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Nanditta Chibber
Christmas in Bandra is a sight to be seen. With a fascinating history, Bandra—which was once a 'dowry port' disputed by the English and the Portuguese—is an amalgam of Portuguese and Indian cultures with the added influence of the East India Company, hosting a large Christian community (Photo…
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M.D. Muthukumaraswamy
In this edition of ‘Lore and Life’, we look at the history of Holi, the various myths, traditions and rituals associated with the festival, and how the festival was used in the Indian independence movement (In pic: A 19th-century painting of a prince playing Holi in his harem from the National…
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Swasti Pachauri & Shruti Chakraborty
While colour-play is an integral part of Holi, there are also variations in the rituals and practices associated with festivities across different regions. Sahapedia.org looks at two such less-known traditions associated with Holi—Bhagoria in Madhya Pradesh and Yaoshang in Manipur (Photo Source:…
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Manan Kapoor
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M.D. Muthukumaraswamy
We explore the literary, scriptural, spiritual and anthropological connection between Murugan, the primary deity of the Tamil festival of Thai Pusam, and Tamil identity—especially in India and South East Asia (Photo Source: William Cho/Wikimedia Commons)   ‘The great drums beat As Asura warriors…
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Prof. D.P. Dubey
The most popular story associated with the Kumbh Mela at Prayagraj, Haridwar, Nashik and Ujjain is that of the pot of nectar that emerged from the samudramanthan (churning of the ocean) by the gods and the asuras. While there are several references to this tale in the epics and the Puranas, there…
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