First of all, wishing you all a very Happy Lohri! May this festival bring to you happiness, prosperity and good health.
On the occasion of Lohri, let us dig deeper as to what this festival is all about.
- Lohri is actually a Punjabi folk festival, celebrated majorly by Hindus and Sikhs from Punjab in the northern part of India and is celebrated on 13 January of every year.
- There are many folklores about why this festival is celebrated. But, it is strongly believed that Lohri marks the end of the winter season and welcomes longer days, i.e summers and sun’s journey to the northern hemisphere.
- Lohri is celebrated by lighting a bonfire. Then, til (sesame seeds), gachchak (a sweet made my sesame seeds, peanuts and jaggery) crystal sugar, gur (jaggery), moongphali (peanuts) and phuliya (popcorn) are thrown into the fire. It is believed that throwing food into the bonfire represents the burning of the old year and start of the next year.
- Though Lohri is celebrated by many people, but it is a major festival for all the Punjabis and because of this reason, Lohri celebrations reaches a higher pitch of excitement. In traditional Punjabi families, Lohri is celebrated by singing Punjabi songs and doing bhangra or gidda, which are Punjabi dance forms on the beats of dhol. People on this day wear their brightest clothes and ”sarson da saag” and ”makki di roti” is served for dinner.
- Interestingly, there are many songs which are specifically made for Lohri only. One such famous song is “Dhulla Bhatti” which is in Punjabi language and people gather around the bonfire and sing this song while dancing.
- One famous fact is that some people believe that Holika and Lohri were sisters. While the former perished in the Holi fire, the latter survived with Prahlad.
As we can see that there are many folk tales regarding Lohri, hence people just tend to believe each tale and have a merry time with their loved ones by singing folk songs, dancing and eating delicious food, because why not?