Indians around the world will soon mark the Hindu festival of Holi this weekend, and the festival is now coming to Bangkok! The festival, which marks the arrival of spring, love, and new life, will take place on March 12 at Bangkok World, located near the Siam Amazing Park entrance. The festival will be held from 1pm to 10pm.
The event will feature full Bollywood-style shows by famous Bollywood singers, actors, and DJs in Thailand. The festival also includes a ceremony of prayers by scholars to the Hindu goddess of wealth, Lakshmi, and the remover of obstacles.
Traditional Holi celebrations involve smearing coloured powder made from the leaves or flowers of various plants such as neem, turmeric, saffron, and bael on each other’s faces or pouring coloured water. However, in modern times, coloured flour mixed with food colouring is used.
Foodies can look forward to savoury and sweet dishes from renowned Indian restaurants in Thailand, and Indian products will be on sale. The festival aims to spread the message of brotherhood and humanity. On the day of the festival, people wear white and keep their colour-stained clothes as a symbol of this message.
The Holi colour-splashing tradition is similar to the water-throwing tradition during the Songkran Festival in Thailand and other Southeast Asian countries. The event is expected to be a colourful and joyous celebration of diversity and culture, highlighting Thailand’s inclusivity and open-mindedness towards different traditions and beliefs, Pattaya Mail reported.
In addition to the coming of spring and love, Holi celebrates the triumph of good over evil. The holiday honours the Indian myth of the god Vishnu’s triumph over the demon king Hiranyakashipu.
In the legend, Hiranyakashipu asks his sister, Holika, to kill his son Prahlada, one of Vishnu’s devoted worshippers. Holika attempts to burn Prahlada on a pyre, but fails to do so, and ends up being burned instead. In the end, Vishnu manages to kill Hiranyakshipu.
In many places in India, a large pyre is lit on the night before Holi to celebrate the burning of evil spirits.
Each colour has a different meaning during Holi. Red symbolizes love and fertility, yellow is the colour of turmeric, a powder native to India and used as a natural remedy; blue represents the Hindu God Krishna, and green is for new beginnings.
The Holi festival is one way that Thailand’s large, vibrant Indian community has made its mark. The Indian community of Pattaya is also holding a Holi festival there tomorrow. The community is estimated to be over 100,000 strong and has had a significant impact on Thai culture, particularly in food and religion.
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