Indian culture, beliefs, and way of life typically express the myriad facets of a timeless motif in bright colours. All the colours of the rainbow are visible during Holi. The mesmerizing hues of reds, magentas, yellows, greens, violets, blues, ochre, gold, silver etc is yet another orgiastic paean of the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, hope over despair and most significantly the victory of togetherness over divisions.
There is only one contemporary cultural festival somewhat similar to Holi, where all participants can physically touch each other.
It is La Tomatina, a food fight festival held on the last Wednesday of August each year in the town of Buñol in the Valencia region of Spain. Thousands of participants from all over the world come to fight in a battle throwing over one hundred metric tons of over-ripe tomatoes at each other.
Spring Festivals in Other Cultures Around the World
There are many spring festivals in diverse cultures all over the world. Though the Christian Easter and Jewish Passover are technically celebrated in remembrance of historical events, in essence they are spring festivals as they coincide with the onset of spring.
- The Brazilian carnival has been around since the 1640s when Parisian style balls copying Mardi Gras started. Mardi Gras is believed to have roots in the pagan spring festival which Romans called Saturnalia. Over time, adapted to Christianity, this became a farewell to pleasures of the flesh to practice repentance and prepare for Jesus Christ's death and resurrection.
- Rio Carnaval has become world-famous through the Samba Parade, a show, extravagant display and fierce competition of the Rio samba schools.
- In England Mardi-Gras is known as Shrove Tuesday and it is celebrated by the traditional making of pancakes. In many towns and villages people take part in pancake races, where they race carrying a frying pan tossing their pre-cooked pancake in the air.
Losar is celebrated by Tibetans in spring for greetings, togetherness and abundant festivities, and prayers as well.
Nowrūz is the Iranian new year and beginning of spring. People jump over bonfires while singing the traditional song Zardî-ye man az (ane) to, sorkhî-ye to az (ane) man meaning "My yellowness is yours, your redness is mine," with the symbolic message "My paleness (pain, sickness) for you (the fire), your strength (health) for me."
Setsubun (節分) or Risshun (立春) the Spring Festival (春祭 haru matsuri) in Japan. Japanese have a special ritual called mamemaki (豆撒き, meaning bean scattering) to cleanse away all the evil of the past year and keep disease-bringing evil spirits for the year ahead away.