Holi is a very traditional festival of India and people celebrate this festival with full enthusiasm. It is celebrated on the day of fhalgun purnima according to Hindu calendar. Holi pooja is done on the day before holi festival. This day is called as ‘choti holi’ and pooja is called as ‘Holika Dahan’. Holi is the day of celebrations and colors, so there is no tradition of any special pooja to be performed on this day. Holika Dahan is considered to be the major holi pooja on the festival of holi. Holika Dahan is the lightning of bonfires to celebrate the victory of good over evil.

Rituals of Holi and Holi pooja process:

Preparations of holi pooja start almost 40 days before the holi festival. Gathering of wood is done by people and they throw these pieces of wood on every crossroad of the city. This pooja of Holika Dahan takes place on the evening of ‘choti holi’. People do this pooja very traditionally and with complete faith in God.

Here are some important steps of holi pooja:
  1. Holi can be performed on any crossroad of the city.
  2. On the day of vasant panchami, a log of wood is kept on these crossroads.
  3. To covert this log into a large heap, people throw twigs, branches of tress, dry leaves and so many other combustible materials on this log.
  4. On the day of holi pooja, people place statues of Holika and Prahlad on the top of this heap.
  5. Statue of Holika is made of combustible material while statue of Prahlad is made of non-flammable material.
  6. On the evening of ‘choti holi’, this heap is set to fire and people sing Rakshoghna mantra of Rig Veda to keep away evil spirits.
  7. On the next morning, people collect the remaining ashes of holika dahan as these ashes are considered to be Prasad of holi festival.

In different communities, holi pooja is done in different manner. For example, in Marwari community, women perform

holi pooja in afternoon and this pooja is called as ‘Thandi holi’. This pooja is considered to be very fortunate for married women as it ensures long life of their husbands.

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