Every religion has its own fair share of festivals and celebrations.Most of these festivals are colorful celebrations filled with gaiety , lots of good food, socialising and generally creating a happy atmosphere.
Festivals have many stories , customs and traditions connected to them. Every festival has a symbolism and the entire proceedings are centered around that particular theme. Like for example Diwali is a festival of lights - where the significance is light banishing darkness , Xmas is the celebration of birth of Lord Jesus and Id is again a celebration of good times and so on.Even merry making has a significance - it is the essence of inner illumination which is celebrated.It is an important and integral part of our life and we look forward to it year after year.
It is interesting to know that most of these customs and traditions have come down to us from our ancestors and also an intermingling of cultures and civilizations over a period of time.Festivals come down to us from our ancestors and also an intermingling of cultures and civilizations over a period of time ! For many, religious festivities bring in some much needed change in an otherwise somewhat boring routine. In India ,down south there are more than 13 festivals ,one loses count of the minor ones. However, it is welcomed and loved by all ..
Festivals manage to bring people physically and emotionally together and add a lot of color and interest to life .When we watch the Ganapathy festivities and the immersion ceremony that takes place in Bombay every year on the telly, we can feel the excitement and the feeling of unity between people since people belonging other religiouys beliefs too take part in the fun and gaiety. Holi and Diwali too are celebrated by most Indians regardless of what Religion they belong to.Similarly, Christmas is another festival that is celebrated with a lot of enthusiasm by all .In fact my children had many catholic friends while they were growing up and we had a xmas tree brought in every year and they all would get together and decorate it.
One can see that there is a lot of inter connection between religions and practices, just that over a period of time they have undergone a sea of change and now have come up with totally different identities.Bringing families and friends together is the whole purpose of most of these festivals.It is nice to read about the way you celebrate festivals in your country.I agree that with modernisation customs and practices too change and one is at a loss to understand whether this is good or bad. Festivals are celebrated with a lot of enthusiasm among all class of people rich or poor..
Most of the traditions and customs get passed on through the vast majority of the middle class families. It is no doubt a struggle for a poor family to celebrate in a grand manner unless they get some help from others. Festivals fulfil a certain need in human beings.It is a great way of reviving and renewing social contacts and friendships .It Even brings family members closer to one another.Talking from a personal point of view , Hindus celebrate one festival or the other all round the year probably much more than others since Hindusim is a religion of many gods and we have to acknowledge them all and celebrate important days ..These festivals make life much more interesting and colorful !