Festivals & Celebrations: Repositories of Culture

And a sweet reminder of shared experiences

My life has been circumscribed by festivals. I have learned more from these celebrations than I ever did at any other time of the year. They are interwoven and have flowed through the most important relationships in my life — with my parents, my husband, and my children. I dream of these moments of joy. I dream they fall down through the centuries, from my distant ancestors, and come to me.

From grand city events to simple village melas, India has always had a jam-packed festival calendar. It is as rich and diverse as its traditions and topography. During this time, the deity-filled temples and rainbow-hued saris are vivid and supersaturated. The palette goes into overdrive. And each festive will set your memories ablaze long after the celebrations are over.


It’s a time where we honour our traditions — some followed for centuries and others made by us — that celebrate our roots, our rituals and the rhythms of everything around us. When you celebrate a festival, you create a template for the next generation of how to live with fullness. Everything seems new and tremendously exciting. You awaken to a new life.

Indian festivals serve up an electrifying cornucopia of colourful celebrations, and the myriad cultures represented ensure that there’s something happening somewhere almost every month of the year. From deeply religious celebrations of the divine to intimate sweet little rituals at home, you can choose a festival to match your kind of vibe and soak up a bit of what it means to be from India.


From the spirited dances to serving a mega meals; learning to play rhythmic beats on dhol to visiting mega pandals; visiting one-of-a-kind music festivals. And all while discovering the essence of fasting, feasting, giving and forgiving.

Sometimes festivals are indeed postcards from the past, and are not written out of prescience as much as time travel. And everywhere around you, there’s a burst of inspiration, and the ecstatic flood of feeling that comes with them. It’s an emotionally superior experience.

These joyful celebrations serve as an opportunity to preserve traditions and nurture spiritual connections. They become a thread that binds everyone together. Elders pass on their knowledge and stories to the younger ones, ensuring that traditions are carried forward. And, when the times are tough, our children show us the light.