The Lohri festival - Celebrating Harvest Season and Togetherness

Festivals have psychological, economic, socio-cultural, and political impacts on the community. Tomohito Minamizono (Scientific research, 2013) found that the cognitive aspect of festivals, i.e., how people incorporate festivals in their daily lives, reduces psychological distress by reminding them of the excitement of previous events

In India, Lohri celebrations mark the beginning of the harvest season. India is primarily an agrarian economy and has many rituals celebrating concepts related to the harvest process. Almost half of the population engaged in agriculture, the greenery permeates through the economy to the culture and social fabric of the society.

Lohri

Agni, the “God of Fire” is considered as a mediator between Gods and humans. On this day, the farmers especially pray to bless their land with abundance and show gratitude to the crops before the harvesting begins. People celebrate this festival by seeking blessings, prosperity and happiness from the Gods. 

Apart from the rituals, festivals like Lohri, also have “psychological connotations’ ‘attached to them. Lohri reinforces the sense of identity because being with others enhances the connection with like-minded people. This idea of celebrating this festival with the whole community provides a sense of security which is a very affirming and uplifting experience. 

Lohri is also known as the festival of happiness as it adds joy to the lives of people. The situations, conditions and memories associated with the festival induce a sense of happiness. Since birth, the mind is in sync with all the known festivals for joy, celebrations, and togetherness which retriggers the brain to feel happy. 

It elevates attachment which is an affective bond between people and community. Moreover, it contributes to the upliftment of the well-being of the people by increasing the sense of collective identity and togetherness. The festival mainly focuses on these four areas- Livability, Sustainability, Viability, and Vitality which leads to cultural awareness, individual and cultural responsibility.