Holi – is basically a two day festival and on this auspicious day people play with colors and express their love. Holika Dahan falls on March 23, 2016 whereas Holi is celebrated on March 24, 2016. This festival is an ancient Hindu festival which is quite popular among non-Hindus and is celebrated with lot of zeal and enthusiasm. Holi falls in the month of Phalgun and the festival is celebrated with lots of love, color, food and friendship. Holi festival symbolizes good over evil. ALSO READ: Holi 2016: Know Puja Muhurat, Puja Vidhi & auspicious timings to celebrate Holika Dahan

Devotees start preparing almost 40 days before the actual festival starts. Further they prepare bonfire from bamboo, grass, wood and some cou dung. The Holi Puja or Holika Dahan takes place on an auspicious time mostly after the sunset and devotees follow proper guidelines to seek divine blessings from the God. According to ancient old story, Holika Dahan is the day when Holika was burnt into ashes which signifies the burning of all that is bad. On this day, people worship Lord Shiva and Lord Krishna. ALSO READ: Holi 2016 songs special: Aaj Na Chhodenge, Lahu Munh Lag Gaya – Top 5 Bollywood songs to groove to on this joyous day!

Holi is considered as an auspicious festival for the married women, as it ensures well-being, happiness and healthy life of their husband. The celebration of this colorful festival begins with a Holika bonfire on the eve of Holi. The fire puja is known as Holika Dahan or Chhoti Holi. it is said that Lord Krishna started this colorful trend by applying colors on his beloved Radha.ALSO READ: Holi 2016 Special: Thandai, Malpua, Gujia, Puran Poli – Top 10 lip-smacking recipes to make Holi enjoyable!

Here we have shared the Holika Dahan Puja process:

Holi Puja Vidhi – Materials required for the puja

1. Earthen lamp

2. Ghee

3. Dhoop stick or agarbatti

4. Flowers

5. Chandan, ashtagandh or roli

6. Dry coconut and some sweets

7. Akshat (raw rice)

8. A glass of water

9. Moong lentil

10. Dry turmeric pieces

11. Raw yarn

12. Badkula garland (made of cow dung)

13. Grains

Holi Puja Vidhi (before Holika Dahan)

Firstly, one needs to prepare Puja ki thali with all the necessary puja material in it. Devotees light the earthen lamp, dhoop sticks and worship Lord Ganesha on this day. Further they take flower, rice and water and worship Lord Ganesha while chanting few mantras.

Here are some powerful mantras to seek divine blessings from Lord on this auspicious day: 

1.  “ॐ गं गणपतये नमः” (Om Gan Ganpataye Namah).

Further devotees worship Goddess Durga and Lord Narasimha and chant their names. They also offer tilak, coconut, sweets and water to them.

2.  “ॐ प्रह्लादाय नमः” (Om Prahladaya Namah). Further they worship Prahlad by chanting this mantra.

Devotees worship Holika (bonfire) and offer dhoop, rice, flower, sweets, coconut, turmeric pieces, moong lentils and badkula to her.  Further they pray, “Some people created you due to constant fear of blood sucking demons. Therefore, I worship you. I seek prosperity, wealth and power for me.” People offer water to the bonfire and empty the glass of water in front of Holika.

Holi Puja Vidhi (after Holika Dahan)

Devotees roast the grains in the bonfire and distribute it as prasad. Further they take the remaining raw yarn spindle back to their homes. Devotees put some dhoop powder in the bonfire and perform Holi Puja.

Happy Holi!