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Home > Religious Festivals
Religious Festivals of India
Hindu Festivals Muslim Festivals Christian Festivals
Sikh Festivals Buddhist Festivals Jain Festivals
Parsi Festivals Jews Festivals
Ram NavamiA large number of festivals being celebrated in India have a religious outlook. These festivals are being celebrated in commemoration of some saints, gurus and prophets, the gods and goddesses or events celebrating their victories. Religious ceremonies, enthusiasm paralleled with ample fun and celebration marks the Indian festivals.

Festivals of India play a major role in spreading unity in diversity, with emphasis on communal harmony. Some famous religious festivals mark the advent of the seasons and some mark the celebration of cultural events. Famous festivals in India are joyously celebrated all over the country.

During any festive season, the whole of India brightens up and there is lot of excitement in the air. If you drop in during any of the festival time, watching or taking part in the festivities, can be an interesting experience.

There is a big list of the religious festivals that are celebrated in India. In a secular country like India people light up their homes with as many lights on Diwali as on Christmas, the fireworks are as loud as on Onam. The colors of Holi are spread across the castes and creeds. On the occasion of Raksha Bandhan an unspoken pledge is exchanged between, a brother and sister cementing their fraternal relationship. Hindus commemorate the birth anniversaries of their deities as Ram Navami, Maha Shivratri, Janam Ashtami similarly, the Sikhs remember their gurus on Gurpurab.

Many of the festivals are subject to the lunar calendar. Most of the days of the festivals are not determined by the pre-set dates of a linear calendar, but according to the waxing and the waning of the moon. The Islamic festivals are celebrated according to the Muslim or the hijri calendar. The month long fasting is completed with Eid-ul-fitr. The Islamic year commences with Awal Muharram. Most of the cultural festivals take place during the winter season. It is observed with attending religious lectures. The Jews rejoice on their New Year that falls on the 7th of September.

Christian religious festivals in the country have the entire colour that is found in Indian celebrations. This is especially true of the festivals associated with particular shrines, such as Vailankanni in Tamil Nadu. They are colourful events involving thousands of people from all denominations and religions.

The pockets which were under French and Portuguese rule add the distinct features of those European countries. Goa is special where Christian festivals are concerned, and Goan celebrations have a character and spontaneity of their own. Some of the oldest and most beautiful Indian churches are in Goa and, apart from the regular Christian festivals, these churches observe days particular to them with masses, feasts and processions.

Fairs of religious importance have always been a part of India and will stay so forever to add to India`s colour and integrity. The various Indian fairs see people near and far participating and celebrating. The party environment raises everyone`s spirits. Fairs on the whole mean an occasion and opportunity to make new friendships and renew old ones. Fairs are all about partying, eating, shopping, celebrating, relations and making merry.

Konark Dance FestivalThe colorful costumes, the captivating customs reveal the cultural heritage of India. Promotion of the Indian culture and heritage takes place at the famous Dance Festival of Konark in Orissa and the Khajuraho temples of Madhya Pradesh. These festivals have enchanting temples as their background. The dancers from various parts of India participate in the festivals and perform the classical dances. These festivals add to the cultural tourism in India. At the Surajkund Crafts Fair, artists, craftsmen, painters, weavers and sculptors from various parts of the country flock to the Indian state Haryana to display and sell their creations to the various connoisseurs of arts and crafts. Visiting the fair is not just another way of spending a holiday in India for the tourists; it is an experience that reveals the artistic heritage of India. People throng the Pushkar City of Rajasthan at the annual religious and cattle fair. Every year in July the sacred coastal city of Puri comes alive to celebrate the Rath Yatra of Lord Jagannath.. On the tenth day of the sixth month of the Ladakhi calendar, the Hemis monastery turns into a very large stage where monks, tourists and people from all over the world congregate for the famous masked dances. The Hemis festival lasts for two days and is the largest monastery festival in all of Ladakh and Spiti. The Hemis festival is not only a religious festival, but also an annual fair for the entire region. There are shops selling jewelry, trinkets and food items as a part of the festivities. The fun and frolic felt at the fairs and festivals can only be experienced rather than explained. India is a versatile country with fantastic hues of fairs and festivals, which are bound to leave you spell bound. The great diversity of Indian religious beliefs is projected through the various festivals that are celebrated in our country. They arise from the innate desire of man to seek diversion from humdrum activities and they help in symbolizing, reflecting and enriching social life in a specific cultural setting. Religious festivals also reinforce the presence of God in the life of the individual, the family and the community as a whole. Celebration of such festivals stimulates one to reflect upon the spiritual aspect of his being.
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