Holika Dahan is celebrated in the very beginning of spring, the festival signifies that evil cannot exist for long and eventually it is good that will triumph. The story behind this is about Prahlad, the son of cruel king Hirnakashyah. Prahlad’s faith in God saved him all the times from his father who used all the evil forces and the powers he possessed in order to kill his son. It’s the victory of bhakt Prahlad over demon Holika.
On the eve, people light bonfires also known as Holika Dahan. The effigy of Holika is usually made of cow dung and the pile is decorated with shields, swords, sun, moon, stars all made of cow dung.
People chant the mantra and put offerings in the fire. All nutritious things like peanuts, sesame, dry coconut, wheat, and grams were placed into the fire that clears the atmospheric vibrations of negative energies. The burnt holika increases the temperature by 50 to 60 degree Celsius which kills the bacteria present in the environment and that also helps in cleansing the body indirectly.
Also, there is a tradition of roasting green chickpeas in the fire (holika) in order to depict the beginning of harvesting season. Green chickpeas are harvested at their peak of freshness and it is packed with nutrition. It is high in fiber, low in saturated fat, sodium, and cholesterol and it promotes a healthy heart. Green chickpeas are a great source of folate (vitamin B9), antioxidants, vitamin A and C. It’s also rich in protein, fiber, gluten free and allergen free.
Healthy ways to add Garbanzos (Green Chickpeas) in diet
- Roasted chickpeas: Green chickpeas can be easily seasoned and roasted in the oven until crispy and crunchy. It is a protein-rich snack which can be opted for munching on the go.
- Chickpea hummus: Green chickpea hummus dip pairs deliciously with raw vegetables and whole grain crackers. It is easy to prepare and add healthiness to whatever we pair it up with.
- Bean bowl or salad: One can quickly make garbanzos salad breakfast filled with proteins and fibers.
Festivals like Holika Dahan have its own way of teaching well. It gives reasons to connect, learn, forgive and care. It teaches the value of faith, goodness, and honesty. The best way to celebrate these festivals is to adopt good values, take care of health and people around, follow integrity and grow to bond.
Changing environment and lifestyle makes it even more important to take care of our health through our diets and physical activity. Feeling loved and spreading love is all we meant to be!
Over to you
Festivals come with celebrations and the major part of the celebration is food. Adding nutritious food like Garbanzos in diet, learning about history and environment is one way to celebrate festivals as per new era.