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Holi The Festival of Colors
India, Nepal, Sri Lanka March 20th 2011
The Festival of Colors, also known as Holi, is a spring religious festival, mostly celebrated by Hindus and Sikhs, but primarily observed in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and countries with a large Hindu population. Other countries that recognize and celebrate the tradition are Suriname, Guyana, South Africa, Trinidad, United Kingdom, United States, Mauritius, and Fiji.
The most celebrated Holi is that of the Braj region, in India, because of the strong connection to the god Krishna. Places such as Braj have become a popular tourist destination during the festive season, where the Holi lasts up to 16 days.
Holi is celebrated as a welcoming of Spring, and a celebration of good over evil. It is a celebration of letting go of inhibitions and opening up your mind, body, and soul to the endless possibilities of love and life. For days, people run through the streets playing, laughing, singing, and splashing each other with colorful paints. The colors are a reflection of the differences found in nature and humanity.
People also attend bonfires to commemorate the story of Prahlada, a Hindu figure and devout follower of Lord Vishnu, the creator and destroyer of all existence. Holi is celebrated at the end of the winter season on the last full moon day of the lunar month Phalguna which is part of February and March.
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