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Happy Holi

Posted Mar 12 2009 4:29pm
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I am pleased to be able to write to you on this Holi. The festival of Holi is the origin of the word holiday. The reason I am so happy is because yesterday I met an Indian man at my work whose family in Chennai has been devotees of the avatar of Vishnu called Narasimha- the half man half lion avatar in the story of Druva and his devotion to Lord Vishnu. One of this man’s middle names was in fact Narasimha. This happened on the day before Holi, the 10th of March, which celebrates the death of Holika, the mother of Druva.

This is by far the most fierce of Lord Vishnu’s avatars, but even schoolchildren in India know all about this and it’s metaphorical significance, even though many Westerners might have difficulty understanding the image. Still, we watch people being dramatically killed all day on TV, so this will likely not shock anyone.

You can see the mythology here.
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