Features for kids on festivals, customs and traditions
Feature stories and articles for kids on unusual and interesting things in the world we live in. Articles for children on different customs, ways of life, about cinema, sport, champions, rare feats and artists. Cool reading for kids.
You must have often wondered about the monks with shaven heads, a white robe and a fine muslin cloth covering their mouths and noses. They are monks who follow the Jain religion. They cover their mouths and noses to avoid any involuntary killing – even of germs.
Excerpts from the book “Festivals of India”
Sravani, the sacred thread changing ceremony, and Raksha Bandhan are celebrated on the full moon day of the month of shravan (June-July) and are often regarded as two names for the same festival.
Deepavali – or Diwali – as is commonly uttered – literally means rows of lamps. These lamps light up houses all over the country, but for different reasons.
In West Bengal, it is time to worship Kali, the goddess with the fearsome strength, and in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh it is time to remember Dhanvantari, the divine physician.
Think of Diwali and firecrackers start exploding in the mind – that is how strong the association of crackers is with the festival of lights.
Legend has it that on Diwali, the sound of firecrackers resounds through the universe, announcing the homecoming of Lord Rama after a long period of exile.
On an ordinary day, the names Kumartuli and Krishnanagar would not make much of a difference to a Bengali. But come Durga Puja, and these two ordinary towns near Calcutta, become the focus of great attention.
Whether it is a pesky 11-year-old Dashrath struggling to maintain his flowing beard during the enactment of the Ramayana in a street Ramlila, or handsome young artistes enacting Rama and Sita on a professional stage, the feeling is the same for the viewers.
Think of Holi and you think of two places in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh where the festival has a special status. First, the area known as Brajbhoomi comprising Mathura, Vrindavan, Govardhan, Gokul (all connected to Lord Krishna’s birth, childhood and early youth) and Barsana (Radha’s village).
Janamashtmi, or the birth anniversary of Lord Krishna — the seventh avatar of Lord Vishnu — is celebrated with traditional gaiety and fervour all over India. It falls on the eighth day of the waning moon in the month of Shravan in August/ September.
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