Hinduism and Tribal Religions

Living Edition
| Editors: Pankaj Jain, Rita Sherma, Madhu Khanna

Holī (Holikā)

  • R. P. SinghEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-024-1036-5_496-1

Holi is a cultural festival of India celebrating the victory of good over evil. The term Holi has varied connotations in the sociocultural milieu of India; as a festival, as a metaphor, and as a mode of lodging protest, it has come up with different connotations on different occasions. As a religious and sociocultural festival among Hindus, it shows significant artifacts in Indian culture and registers its importance among many festivities celebrating the zest of life in nation.

It is a long spanning spring celebration. The main festival is held on the full moon of the Hindu calendar month “Phalguna” (between the end of February and the middle of March). In the religious and folk texts, there are various mythological reasons behind the celebration of Holi. In the Bhgavatpurana and the Vishnu Purana, we find the mention of Hiranyakashipu who attempted to kill Prahlada by forcing him to sit on a burning pile of woods, in the lap of Holika. Holika was Hiranyakashipu’s sister and Prahlada...

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Further Reading

  1. 1.
    Gopal M (1990) In: Gautam KS (ed) India through the ages. Publication Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India, New DelhiGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Mani V (1975) Puranic encyclopaedia: a comprehensive dictionary with special reference to the epic and Puranic literature. Motilal Banarsidass, DelhiGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Jones C (2011) Holi. In: Gordon Melton J (ed) Religious celebrations: an encyclopedia of holidays festivals solemn observances and spiritual commemorations. ABC-CLIO, Santa BarbaraGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Doniger W (1999) Merriam-Webster’s encyclopedia of world religions. Merriam-Webster, SpringfieldGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of English and Modern European LanguagesUniversity of LucknowLucknowIndia