Origin of Holi - from a FR Perspective
Origin of Holi – from a FR perspective

There are many legends associated with Holi, all celebrating the triumph of good over evil.

Hiranyakashyap, the demon king

One of the most popular legends is the story of a demon king called Hiranyakashyap, who believed that he was more powerful than the gods. He wanted everyone to worship him­.

Hiranyakashyap's son, Prahlad worshipped the god Vishnu and not his father

His son, Prahlad, did not worship his father. Instead, he worshipped the god Vishnu. This made Hiranyakashyap so angry that he decided to murder his son. He tried all sorts of methods. Prahlad was attacked by soldiers, thrown over a cliff and into a well, trampled by an elephant, starved and bitten by poisonous snakes, but each time the god Vishnu saved him.

Hiranyakashyap's sister Holika

Finally, in desperation, Hiranyakashyap asked his demon sister, Holika, to kill Prahlad.

Holika had a special cloak garment (read: FR Garment) that prevented her from being harmed by fire. Hiranyakashyapu asked her to sit on a bonfire with Prahlad on her lap. When the fire was lit Prahlad began praying to Lord Vishnu. So Lord Vishnu summoned a gust of wind to blow the cloak off Holika and on to Prahlad, saving him from the flames of the bonfire and burning Holika to her death.

Holika is burnt to ashes, Prahlad remains safe

Even today, people in India enact the scene of ‘Holika’s burning to ashes’ every year to mark the victory of good over evil by lighting huge bonfires on the eve of Holi.

Moral of the story:  Triumph of good over evil

Moral of the story (from a FR perspective): If you want to be saved from flames, wear your FR correctly – Button it up. Roll it down. Tuck it in.

Have a safe and colourful Holi!

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