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Holi Festival 2021: how thwarting a Hindu demon king led to the colorful celebration

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What’s the story behind Holi?

The various Holi celebrations originate from various Hindu legends, although one of these is widely considered to be the most likely origin.

In it, the name of the celebration refers to Holika, the sister of UK Time News demon king Hiranyakashipu. The Demon King obtained immortality with five powers:

  1. He could not be killed by animals or humans
  2. He could not be killed either inside or outside
  3. He couldn’t be killed day or night
  4. He could not be killed on land, in water, or in the air
  5. He could not be killed by projectiles or pocket weapons

When his immortality made him mean and he began to kill anyone who disobeyed him, his son, Prahlad, decided to kill him. When the king found out, he asked his sister Holika for help; in their plan, she would wear a cloak that would prevent her from being injured by fire and take Prahlad to a bonfire with her.

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However, the cloak flew from Holika’s shoulders as she was in the fire and covered Prahlad; he was protected but she burned alive.

In legend, Lord Vishnu then appeared to kill Hiranyakashipu by avoiding his five powers.

He took the form of Narasimha, who was half human and half lion; he met him on the doorstep, which is neither inside nor outside; he appeared at twilight, which is neither day nor twilight; he put his father on his knees, who is neither earth, nor water, nor air; and he attacked him with his lion’s claws, which are neither projectiles nor pocket weapons.

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While Hiranyakashipu and Holika came to represent evil, Vishnu and Prahlad came to represent good. The story shows the victory of good over evil, which is why it is linked to the festival.

The other most popular origin of the festival is the legend of Krishna. UK Time News deity, embarrassed by his dark blue skin, told his mother that he feared his love Radha would not accept him. She told him to color Radha’s face any color he wanted; when he did, they became a couple.

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Why is gulal thrown in the air

The colored powder – or gulal – launched on the second day of the festival comes from the legend of Krishna. Anyone at Holi is just to be covered in scented powder to celebrate the love of Krishna and Radha, regardless of age or social status. The powder also signifies the arrival of spring and all the new colors it brings to nature.

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Historically, gulal was made from extracts of turmeric, paste, and flowers, but today, synthetic versions are widely used.

The four main powder colors are used to represent different things. Red reflects love and fertility, blue is the color of Krishna, yellow is the color of turmeric, and green symbolizes spring and new beginnings.

What to cook this Holi Festival

Peshwari naan

A delicious side dish for a Holi Festival feast. The coconut in this naan bread also makes it a great sweetener for any spicy meal.


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