The most famous fire festivals

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There are so many holidays in the world that their number cannot even be counted. We will tell below about the most famous holidays associated with fire.

Up-Helly-O (Lerwick, Scotland). Winter Scotland literally sparkles with holidays. Hogmanai, the local New Year, can be mentioned. Processions with torches take place in the country, in which almost half of the population participates. And on the last Tuesday of January, there is also a fire festival called Up-Helly-O. It, like Hogmanai, has been held here since the days of paganism. This holiday is hosted by the city of Lerwick in the north of the country. Moreover, the choice of such a day for the fire festival is not accidental. After all, this is when the longest night of the year passes. In ancient times, the Vikings burned torches and bonfires all that night, giving the Sun new strength. And the venue for the festival is quite good. Lerwick has access to the sea, which is a must for a traditional ritual. It provides for the burning of a huge boat on the water, built on the model of the Viking drakkar. The ship quickly turns into a large bonfire, signaling the Scots to begin the feast. It is accompanied by indispensable songs and dances. Torchlight processions are also a mandatory attribute of Up-Helly-O. People take the lights in their hands with the arrival of dusk, and the participants in the procession are dressed in Viking costumes. In honor of the holiday, gala dinners are held in almost every home; similar events are held in various institutions and even schools.

Fallas (Valencia, Spain). From the Valencian language, the name of this holiday is translated simply - "lights". The holiday marks the end of winter, and it is celebrated from 12 to 19 March. Fallas captures the entire territory of Valencia - Gandia, Alsira, Denia, Orihuela and Madrid itself. The villagers of the province are preparing for the arrival of this holiday long before it begins. For this, bonfires are kindled in the fields in order to scare away evil spirits and to lure the good ones, bringing abundance. The beginning of the holiday is characterized by crowded processions, people wear festive folk costumes. Everything here plays with bright colors and ribbons. The compositions that the Spaniards carry in the church, giving to the Virgin Mary, were also created from them. When the ritual hikes are over, Fallas turns into an endless fun walk, in which music is constantly playing. People drink constantly at this festival, and carnivals are held everywhere. The Fallas symbol is also built from flowers, ribbons and torches, which is burned in every courtyard. The culmination point of the festivities is fireworks.

Luminara (Pisa, Italy). This holiday is held every year on June 16th. The whole of Pisa, like the Arno River flowing through it, is illuminated with thousands of lights. On this day, all houses and even churches are decorated with illumination in the form of complex ornaments. Bridges are illuminated in the city, and floating candles are launched on the water. The main pride of Pisa, the Leaning Tower, is illuminated by ancient lamps with burning oil. This night is not complete without fireworks, which are traditional for any major holiday. And all this festivities are called Luminara. This fiery festival is dedicated to the patron saint of Pisa, Saint Ranieri. For the first time, fires in honor of this saint were lit here in the 17th century. In the next century, the traditions of celebrating Luminara became much more inventive. Buildings were no longer simply decorated with countless oil lamps. The renewed illumination was able to literally change the outlines of all houses. The city, even for one night, turned from real to illusory. In 1867, the holiday was canceled, but then it was returned. During World War II, there was also no time for Luminara, and the festivities were canceled in 1966. Then the Arno flood destroyed many houses and bridges in the city. However, the very next year, the Pisans, who missed their Luminar, continued to “rock” again.

Fiesta del Fuego (Santiago de Cuba, Cuba). A fire festival is held in the city on the east coast of the island. It was there that the Cuban revolution began at one time. And this Fiesta is held from July 3 to 9, its main actions take place at night. At the bottom of the city, you can find whole columns with platforms decorated with flowers. Someone is constantly dancing there, and amateur orchestras are playing everywhere on the streets. Trays of food and traditional Cuban booze, rum are placed everywhere. And when night falls, the whole city lights up with torch fire. Festive festivities are becoming much more spectacular than during the day. Fire shows and performances of fakirs are held in the streets and squares. Each night, the celebration ends with a grand fireworks display.

Fireworks Festival "Cologne Lights" (Cologne, Germany). This festival has a concise name in German. The festival is only 10 years old, but from the very first year of its existence it has become almost the main attraction for tourists. The small town in mid-July is filled with tourists from all over the world. I must say that Cologne is ready for such an influx. So, during the days of the festival, even museums are open around the clock, and not only entertainment and shopping establishments - cafes, restaurants and shops. Today "Cologne Lights" gather up to a million spectators. People come here to see not just a series of fireworks over the embankment, but a whole show with lights and music. Each volley of fireworks is accompanied by music that sounds in time with the shots. It is best to watch the festival from the embankment or some city hills. And you can fully contemplate the whole spectacle by sailing along the night Rhine on a boat.

Tadinjut (Myanmar). There are two main holidays in the life of this Asian country. Tadinjyut, like Tinjan, is associated with the rainy season, an important period for Myanmar. The second holiday is dedicated to its beginning, water is its symbol. But Tadinjut is held in honor of the end of the rainy season, its main symbol is fire. It is believed in the country that Tinjan is, by and large, a youth holiday. It is celebrated very violently - people pour water on each other and at this time it is not forbidden to get drunk. But in Tadinjyut, the main attention is paid to the elders, they are honored and family values ​​are remembered. It is important that this festivities are also considered one of the festivals of worshiping Gautam Buddha. Indeed, on the eve of Tadinjyut, this saint returned to earth from heaven, where for three months he explained his teachings to the gods. When people met Buddha, they lit many welcoming lights. It was then that the tradition of celebrating Tadinjyut with numerous lights was born. And most of them these days are near the temples. So, one of the main churches in Yangon, Shwedagon, is surrounded by a whole ring of 9 thousand candles and butter bowls. Many people gather there offering night prayer. From there, everyone goes to the night festivities. A record number of firecrackers explode in the streets, and many burning lanterns are launched into the sky.

Tihar (Nepal). This day in Nepal is called by different names - Lakshmi-puja, Day of the cow, Day of the dog go Day of the crow. There are so many traditions associated with Tihar that it's time to get confused. First of all, it is worth clarifying that this is not even one separate holiday, but a whole bunch of celebrations that form a festival that lasts several years. The literal translation of its name means "a row of lamps", but another interpretation sounds much more natural - "a holiday of lights". During the celebration of the festival, many lights are burning everywhere. They are formed by lamps, candles and just flashlights. The final point of Tihara is a magnificent fireworks display. The festival lasts five days, which are dedicated to important gods for the people of Nepal - Yashma, symbolizing death, and Lakshmi, symbolizing fertility. The first day of the holiday celebrates the crows, who are considered to be Jasper's companions. Almost half of the festive food goes to these birds. On the second day, attention is paid to the dogs that guard the gates to the kingdom of the dead. These animals are marked with tilak, red dots on the forehead that are commonly found in humans. The third day of the festival is dedicated to cows; the Nepalese perceive them as nothing more than the earthly incarnation of Lakshmi. Animals are decorated with ribbons and flowers here. The fourth day of the festival is dedicated to the welfare of the family. The family box for collecting money becomes the main ritual item. The last day of Tihara is dedicated to the veneration of relatives, and especially brothers and sisters.

Diwali (India). This important fire festival is also an important national holiday. Diwali has been celebrated in India for a long time, they say that it is at least 7 thousand years old. And it begins at the end of the rainy season, in November. In Diwali, Hindus worship several of their gods at once - Krishna, Kali, Ganesha and Lakshmi and the ruler Rama. In preparation for the holiday, people clean their homes, buy new dishes and get rid of old things. Thus, they want to please the goddess of well-being Lakshmi, because the whole house will be cleaned to shine for her visit. And in order for the meeting with the goddess to take place at an appropriate level, diya - ritual lights are lit on the roof. However, they are located not only here. On festival days, lights are also lit in temples, gardens, along the river bank, on the streets and even in animal pens. Before the start of the prayers, in front of the Lakshmi figures, patterns are laid out of multi-colored powders. During the festival, bathing in any body of water is considered to be equivalent to bathing in the Ganges. The spirit of man will be purified in the same way as in the sacred river. If we talk about customs that are devoid of ritual overtones, then fireworks are launched in Diwali. At night, many sparklers are lit here, and firecrackers explode.

Loy Krathong (Thailand). This holiday is also associated with the wires of the rainy season and takes place in November, which is already quite traditional for the countries of Southeast Asia. The Thai holiday is called Loy Krathong. And it begins at midnight, when, as if on command, almost the entire population of the country begins to launch kratongs. These are small boats decorated with leaves, flowers and candles. With this gesture, the Thais express gratitude to the water goddess and apologize for their sins. Moreover, they usually put sweets with coins in krathongs, so people placate the spirits of water for a year in advance. Analyzing the further fate of their ship, people come to the conclusion whether the gods accepted their gifts and whether sins are forgiven. If the krathong continues to sail with a lit candle, then this is a good sign. But if the boat quickly drowned or the candle went out on it, it means that one krathong cannot be done. After all, sins are so serious that the ritual of cleansing must be repeated. Thais try to launch kratongs with the whole family, because this will give the opportunity to be close to loved ones in the next life. People fill reservoirs with boats, and then, until dawn, have fun, launching fireworks and sky lanterns. At this time, the Thais also hold contests for the most beautiful fireworks.

Fete de Lumiers (Lyon, France). This Festival of Lights in Lyon is the main tourist event in the city. And it passes there since the 19th century at night from December 6 to 9. However, there is nothing to be afraid of, because the lights of the holiday illuminate the city, almost like during the day. The Festival of Lights in Lyon is celebrated quite traditionally for Europe, where a lot of attention is paid to the illumination of buildings. But the French have been able to achieve impressive success in fire and light shows. At first, Fete de Lumières was celebrated with festive processions with lanterns and torches. Over time, the emphasis shifted to decoration with garlands and multi-colored lamps. At the same time, the townspeople decorate not only the facades of their buildings, but also every window. Festive lighting covers the entire city, and in addition to it, an illumination show is played on the main square of Lyon. At the same time, its plot changes from year to year.

Watch the video: Wakayama Oto Fire Festival. JAPAN Forward

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