Lohri is a festival celebrated formerly by people from the Punjab region of India and Pakistan. The festival celebrates winter, the shortest day and longest night of the year in the region, as well as the start of the harvest season.
Lohri, one of North India’s most celebrated festivals, is just around the corner. The event, which is largely observed by Sikhs and Hindus, celebrates the end of the winter and the harvesting of the rabi crops. Every year, on January 12, the festival is celebrated with great enthusiasm.
People dress up in colorful traditional attire and dance and sing around the bonfire to celebrate the longer days and warmer weather.
What is the origin of the name Lohri?
The Lohri festival is also known as Lohadi or Lal Loi, but no one knows where the term Lohri came from.
Many people believe the name comes from the term Loh, which means the light and warmth of fire, while others in rural Punjab call Lohri ‘lohi’.Others believe Loi, Saint Kabir’s wife, gave Lohri its name.
The history and significance of Lohri
“Sundar Mundariye Ho, Tera Kaun Vichara ho, Dulha Bhatti Wala Ho”
A lot of you may have heard this folk song while celebrating Lohri. The story of Dulha Bhatti and two Punjabi girls, Sundari Mundari, originated with the event and is told by house elders. Dulha Bhatti’s legends date back to the 16th century. He was a thief who used to rob the rich and give money and food to the poor. He is reported to have been a courageous warrior who helped regular people and rose to popularity in Punjab. Lohri is meant to honor Dulha Bhatti’s valor and resistance to the tyranny of the Mughal rulers.
Bonfires are lighted, sweets are shared, and traditional Punjabi folk songs and dances are performed in honor of Dulha Bhatti during Lohri festivities.
How is Lohri celebrated?
Lohri is historically celebrated by lighting bonfires around which communities assemble to worship the fire. The celebration is also widely observed in other regions of the country, including Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, and Jammu and Kashmir.
Visitors to the festival also celebrate by eating joyful, delicious foods, dancing to traditional songs such as bhangra and gidda, and exchanging gifts.
The bonfire represents Agni, the deity of fire, and devotees would sing, chant, and throw in offerings, mainly foods like sesame seeds, popcorn, nuts, and sugar cane
People eat makki ki roti and sarson ka saag, as well as chewing gajak, moongfali, tilkut, puffed rice, revdi, and popcorn around the bonfire at dinner.
What should you wear to Lohri?
Traditional Lohri attire for women frequently comprises Punjabi suits with vibrant colors and elaborate designs, while men wear kurta-pajamas, or traditional Punjabi costumes, to celebrate the occasion with elegance.Lehenga, Anarkali suits, Indo-western Patiala Salwar suits, Sharara Lohri Dress, Navy blue ikkat-printed Kurta, Pathani Kurta, Jodhpuri Achkan sherwani, and more lethal looks and attire to wear this Lohri for men and women.
Differences between Lohri and Baisakhi
Lohri is a festival dedicated to the sun god.As the sun gets closer to Uttarayan, the new position warms Mother Earth. The seeds that were latent due to a lack of heat are now sprouting.
Hindus take a holy bath in the Ganga on the festival of Baisakhi. This event is observed throughout Punjab, and a number of Nagar Kirtan processions led by five Khalsas costumed as Panj Pyaare march through the streets in the early hours of the day.
Baisakhi is one of the most important Sikh festivals.This celebration is most popular in Punjab and Haryana. Baisakhi is sometimes referred to as Vaisakhi. This day is also known as the Solar New Year. Farmers celebrate Baisakhi as the start of a new harvesting season.
Vashakhi marks the beginning of the new year, according to the Vikram Samvat calendar, and is observed on April 13th each year. It is an opportunity for Hindus to wash in sacred rivers like the Kaveri, Ganges, and Jhelum, visit temples, and spend time with family and friends. It is also a harvest festival for the Sikh community, and it is celebrated by Sikhs all over the world with folk music and dances.
It is a means of thanking God for a healthy harvest last winter and wishing for fruitful crops in the next season. There are many various types of meals offered on this occasion, but the most prevalent is “Peele Chawal,” which is also provided as prasad on Baisakhi.
I wish everyone a very Happy Lohri!
© Ruchie Verma.
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