Phagwah Messages!

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Peoples Progressive Party

The People’s Progressive Party (PPP) takes this opportunity to extend Phagwah greetings to all Guyanese, especially the Hindu community.

Phagwah is a festival that has truly become national and one that is most anticipated having transcended religious boundaries. This is manifested through the participation of a wide cross-section of Guyanese throughout the country.

The kaleidoscope of colours that exemplify the celebrations, heralds the dawn of spring, reminding not only of nature’s beauty but the vibrancy of our rich diversity.

The fun and frolic that have come to be associated with it remain a catalyst for the forging harmony among all of our people.

As Guyanese celebrate the PPP urges that we be inspired by the significance of Phagwah, through its pertinent messages. The courage, determination, and sacrifice of young Prahalad and the triumph of Lord Vishnu, which speaks to the triumph of good over evil is even relevant on reflection of how our country and people navigated and overcame various challenges.

Despite the removal of the COVID-19 restrictions, we urge all to act with the greatest sense of responsibility during celebrations.

Let us be motivated by what this colourful festival signifies and be emboldened in hope that, through resoluteness in the face of adversity and despondency, the messages of Phagwah speaks to truth inevitably prevailing.

As Guyanese mark the occasion, our Party once again extends best wishes and urges caution, tolerance, and respect in the celebrations.

Shubh Holi to all!

General Secretary of the Peoples National Congress 

Today I have the distinct pleasure on this happy, festive and auspicious occasion of extending Happy Holi Greetings on behalf of the People National Congress Reform to all Guyanese. Specifically, we join with our Hindu brothers and sisters in celebrating this festival of happiness, colours, laughter, and joy.

Holi, the festival of colours, is celebrated each year with zeal and enthusiasm in the Hindu month, Phalgun. Over the years, this spring festival has been embraced by persons of all walks of life, as it ushers in the Hindu New Year. With the overflow of positive energy, people come together in fellowship to celebrate this festival.

The festival known as Holi and Phagwah marks the beginning of spring. It is an opportunity to celebrate new beginnings and new endeavours. We are hopeful that the festival of colours will serve to bring renewed energy and optimism to all Guyanese.

For celebrants, when ‘abeer’ and ‘abrack’ are applied, everything looks the same.  Similarly, when we apply the paint of love to the mind, all differences disappear. This helps to foster this sense of oneness and forge unity amongst our people.

As we celebrate life, the opportunity for renewal, we cannot ignore the difficulties brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic. Let us remain thankful for life and use this occasion to recommit to love, unity, generosity, compassion and tolerance.

The significance of Phagwah is two-fold. Its secular significance lies in the advent of the season of spring and its real and symbolic implications of revival, rebirth, renewal, restoration and redemption.

There is also a solemn religious significance. It marks the destruction of evil in the embodiment of Holika and the triumph of the forces of good. Additionally, the religious significance of Holi lies in the conquest of good over evil, manifested by the destruction by Prahalada of his demonic father, King Hiranyakashipu.

Guyana’s diverse multi-cultural society and the spirit of tolerance and harmony has been the essence of our Guyanese cultures and civilization. Holi celebrations demonstrate that social cohesion is an achievable goal.

Holi also reminds us about the greatness of faith and hope. Prahlada sat on the lap of Holika, but the fire could not harm him. That was due to the unshakeable faith Prahlada had in God. We must seek inspiration as we chart a way forward to bring Guyanese together.

Guyana is fortunate to be a multi-religious, multi-ethnic and multi-cultural country. Our diversity is our greatest asset. As we join in this celebration, let us do so in a respectable manner.

As the celebrated Indian national, K. Vani wrote many years ago, “… festivals are gatherings for refreshing the spirit and enjoying life.”

 We, therefore, urge all Guyanese to use this occasion to refresh their spirit and enjoy life and to participate fully in this colorful festival and enjoy the rich elements of our religious and cultural diversity.

To my fellow Guyanese, have a safe and Happy Holi!

Namaste!

Alliance For Change 

The Alliance For Change extends joyous greetings to all Guyanese, especially our Hindu Brothers and Sisters on the auspicious and revered celebration of Phagwah or Holi. This is a time of great joy, the signal of new beginnings and of a brighter world.

As we celebrate with our friends and family and those around us, let us remain mindful that COVID 19 has not been eliminated. Let us also pause to reflect on the story of Holi and its relevance to our lives even today.

The story of Holi is one of arrogance and power, of treachery and betrayal and the ultimate triumph of good over evil. It tells us of a ruler so powerful and arrogant that he would destroy anyone who did not obey his every command. He was even prepared to kill his own son. It is a story of betrayal. The boy’s aunt lured him into a blazing fire and sat him in her lap believing that she had special protection and would not be harmed. But, it is also a story of faith and the triumph of good over evil as the boy’s faith protected him and he walked out the fire unscathed.

Today, we face many of the same evils; arrogance, haughtiness, treachery, betrayal. But let us not despair and lose hope. Let us stand strong and united to defeat evil wherever it exists. Let faith abound that better must come!

A joyous Phagwah to all!

Guyana Hindu Dharmic Sabha 

As we celebrate Phagwah, Guyana Hindu Dharmic Sabha extends joyous and blissful Phagwah greetings to all Guyanese. As Guyanese look forward to celebrating this loved festival after a two-year hiatus, we urge that celebrations be respectful and in line with its deeper religious meaning.

This Hindu festival which is widely celebrated occurs annually in the Hindu Month of Phalgun and has a spiritual dimension that encourages devotion and implicit faith in Bhagwan, and reminds us to let our divine qualities emerge in the face of every situation.

As Hindus attend mandirs on Phagwah Day and Holika Dahan, the messages about the story of Prahalad reminds us to always stand on the side of righteousness and divest ourselves of negative energies, tendencies and qualities that impede our spiritual connection and growth, and act as barriers to togetherness.

Phagwah is an ancient Hindu festival on our national calendar which has been embraced by Guyanese and its messages resonates with all people; the triumph of good over evil and removal of all negativities and vices, equality and brotherhood, the promotion of love and unity. It is a unifying and inclusive festival that encourages people of all walks of life to participate and celebrate in togetherness.

This festival which heralds the advent of the season of spring is resplendent with the colours of nature’s blooms, as celebrants smear each other with vivid hues. It reminds us of the concept of “Vasudhaiv Kutumbakham”; the world is one family.

Proletariat in nature, the festival removes all barriers and differences, as covered in colour people are unrecognizable emphasizing that there should be no differences on this day.

Holi comes from the Sanskrit word “hola’ meaning grains, reminding us of the festival’s linkage to agriculture and a bountiful harvest. It also precedes the Hindu New Year.

Phagwah is a beautiful festival and we must capture the essence of the celebration by fostering love, understanding, unity, harmony, steadfastness, fearlessness and righteousness as we engage in the gaiety and festivities this festival brings.

As you enjoy the festival and all of its dimensions today, we urge that the land be converted into a spiritual garden from which we must imbibe positive and good vibes.

There must be no primitive behavior nor any disrespect on this day, rather we must embrace each other in the spirit of friendship, colouring each other to illustrate the splendor of nature. As Prahalad did, let us always fight against injustice and unrighteousness so that all people can prosper in love, peace and unity.

Holi Utsav will be hosted by the Guyana Hindu Dharmic Sabha today at the EVEREST CRICKET CLUB GROUND. Gates open at 4:00pm and admission is free.

Come and enjoy chowtaal, songs and dances representing the festival of Phagwah.

No alcohol allowed. All are invited! Holi ke Shubh Kaamnaye from the Guyana Hindu Dharmic Sabha to all!

Ethnic Relations Commission

The Ethnic Relations Commission, (ERC), extends Phagwah greetings to all Guyanese, especially the Hindu community at home and the diaspora. Over time, this colourful national festival which marks the arrival of spring is greeted with participation by Guyanese from other ethnic groups, who evidently discard religious and cultural barriers.

The burst of colours is seen in the towns and villages during this joyous occasion but, for our young nation it exhibits the vibrant mix of our rich diversity which defines who we are as a people. It represents an achievement stemming from a combination of efforts as we endeavor together to be one people.

The fun and frolic associated with Phagwah, or Holi, is more than celebratory. It also serves to bring together Guyanese from all walks of life. The Commission urges all to celebrate and internalize the significance of Holi. Significant in its underlying message is the triumph of good over evil for the progress of humanity, as the story of young Prahlad illustrates in the Hindu scriptures.

Phagwah is also indicative of how, as a nation we embrace our cultural diversity. That therefore, offers relevant lessons for us all and is an impetus for increased and sustained efforts to build upon our unified strengths and improve on weaknesses. Such national occasions allow for improvement of our capacity to overcome inherent challenges to foster togetherness.

The Commission encourages everyone to observe Phagwah while remembering the recurring theme of its messages.

Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union

At this time, the Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU) extends to the Hindu communities and Guyanese at large sincere greetings on the occasion of Phagwah 2022. The festival which is among our country’s most colourful is embraced by Guyanese from all walks of life. It is yet another observance that adds to the rich cultural tapestry of our beloved nation and multi-cultural society.

The story of Phagwah or Holi is one now that is fairly well-known among Guyanese. It speaks of the devoutness of Prahalad and the intrigues formed against him. It is yet another reminder of the triumph of good over evil and despite adversities and challenges, our perseverance will bring us to our ultimate goals. Holi also signifies the generation of nature, the fertility of the land, and the bountiful harvest which it provides to mankind. Phagwah’s social and cultural significance can be seen in the way that it has broken down the barriers of separation, suspicion, and insecurity in society. It is a festival of social cohesion that enriches the country’s multicultural character.

GAWU realizes that the messages of unity, goodwill and optimism exchanged during such Festivals as Christmas, Mashramani, Eid and Phagwah are positive contributions to instill hope and productive relationships between our people and build strong foundations for our future generations. In this regard, we feel that discriminating practices, whatever their form and a callous attitude to sections of the population will not serve to promote a national environment of trust, confidence and genuine togetherness so vital to peace and a healthy economy.

May the understanding associated by Festivals like Holi lead to a united and better country where our people of different faiths will take pride in our progress and developments knowing that a secure future is the aspiration we all cherish.

Happy Holi 2022 from GAWU!

Guyana Trades Union Congress

Let Holi Festival of good overcoming evil see similar manifestation in daily governance

The Guyana Trades Union Congress (GTUC) extends Phagwah greetings to all Guyanese, particularly our Hindu brothers and sisters. As a nation of many peoples, and historically from diverse cultures, it remains a mark of significant advancement Guyanese of all walks of life are celebrating the Holi Festival as a calendar event. Such achievement, attained during the Forbes Burnham government, remains a signal to the world that Guyana is home to religious freedom and the government could set the tone for respecting the fundamental rights and freedoms of all.

As all Guyanese mark this auspicious event on the Hindu Calendar, which exemplifies new beginnings and concomitant benefits of the season as reflected in nature, the same must be for Guyana. GTUC uses this opportunity to call on the Government, particularly those leaders of Hindu faith, to deliver to this nation what spring represents. Guyana needs a new national political culture. A culture that would build on the freedoms and rights enshrined in the Constitution of Guyana which are the entitlement of all Guyanese.

Therefore, let this Holi Festival see the beginning of similar manifestation in daily governance. GTUC calls for a progressive approach to the management of the nation’s affairs, built on the political system of “inclusionary democracy” as expressly outlined in Article 13 of the Constitution. Guyanese demand the politics of inclusion to triumph over the politics of evil, hate, marginalisation, discrimination, division and ethnic tension.

The environment of socio-economic, cultural and political dysfunction is hindering citizens/workers’ desire to establish and maintain relations across the ethnic and political divide. Workers deserve an environment of peace and harmony, buttressed by equal opportunities, which are necessary for development. It is not a case where persons are not aware or knowledgeable about the challenges we face, but they know fixing these requires collective political and ethnic will. Thus, collectively we the citizens/workers of Guyana must demand of our political leadership that they join with us to build the society we deserve.

Guyana Oil and Gas Energy Chamber

The President Mr. Manniram Prashad and the Board of Directors of the Guyana Oil and Gas Energy Chamber-GOGEC extend Holi greetings to all Guyanese, especially to those of the Hindu community on this occasion of the festival of colors celebrating the arrival of spring.

Holi celebrations commence on Basant Panchmi which is the fifth day of the bright half of the Hindu month. During a period of forty days from Basant Panchmi to Holika Dahan, melodies of chowtaal can be heard from Hindu temples and homes.

Significant is its underlying message by the story of Prahalad, which continues to be an inspiration for the advancement of humanity.

Phagwah is embraced by all Guyanese which is just another expression of our diversity. We urge all Guyanese to participate in this colorful festival and enjoy the rich elements of this religion.

Best wishes and we urge everyone to be safe and respect this occasion.

Shubh Holi to all!