Masan Holi 2023: The Grand celebration at mahashamshan Varanasi
The Masan Holi Varanasi, also known as Chita Bhasm Holi is a unique tradition in the city. While most people play the mainstream Holi with colorful colors, the Masan Holi gets played with ashes instead. It is an age-old ritual performed by devotees on the Manikarnika Ghat for centuries.This year, the Masan Ki Holi will be celebrated on the 4th of March 2023, the official Masan Holi 2023 date.
The Chita Bhasm Holi is part of a unique series of rituals, including the Rangbhari Ekadashi program. Both of these are interlinked- so you would hear their name together.
The Story Behind Masan Holi 2023
According to Hindu mythological scriptures, Lord Shiva and Parvati united on the date of the Rangbhari Ekadashi. Following that program and celebration by the people comes the Masan Holi 2023. The day after Rangbhari Ekadashi, the devotees visit the Manikanrika Ghat to show their devotion to the Lord.
It is said that Lord Shiva descends to celebrate the Chita Bhasm Holi with his ‘ganas’ or the Aghoris, Sages, and other followers. Once everybody gathers on the grounds, they use the ashes from the burnt pyres to smear over each other.
A Celebration of Afterlife And Moksha
While it may seem like a grisly ordeal at first, it has a symbolic meaning ultimately. In Hindu traditions, people do not fear or dread death- they think of it as something holy to get celebrated. As you will achieve moksha after cremation in Varanasi, people wish the dead a farewell to a new journey.
Hence, you will see people being overjoyed while smearing each other with the pyre ashes. You can also hear the music coming from the drums played by devotees. However, you must beware that it is an intense ritual overall.
Masan Holi 2023 date
Since the Chita Bhasm Holi is unique to the city of Lord Shiva, not much information is available on the same. However, the Masan Holi Varanasi 2023 date is estimated as March 4th- according to the Hindu calendar.
If you wish to witness the musical and enjoyable celebrations, you can visit the Manikarnika Ghat. But if you are visiting, be prepared to get drenched in the energetic vibe. You can enjoy the local bhaang beverages and food after the Chita Bhasm Holi in Varanasi.
Masan Holi 2023 At Harishchandra Ghat
While most people know of the Masan Holi at the Manikarnika Ghat, a Holi also happens at the Harishchandra Ghat. The procedure is very similar, but the date for this Holi is on the 3rd of March 2023 at Harishchandra Ghat.
It falls one day before the official Masan Holi, on the day of the Rangbhari Ekadashi. But aside from the date and location, most other aspects of both programs overlap. It is also a fest of playing with the ashes and celebrating the union of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati.
Masan Holi Timings
If you want to be a part of the grand Masan Holi celebrations this year, you can also visit the Manikarnika or Harishchandra ghats. The Holi program begins at the temple of Baba Masan, where a short pooja takes place in the morning.
After the pooja, the devotees and two people dressed as Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati walk as a group to the Manikarnika Ghat. What is timing for masan holi? The time for Lord Shiva to celebrate the Holi is at noon (12 pm) when playing with ashes commences.
🕉 Aghori Sadhus of Kashi celebrate Masan #Holi with Chita Bhasma at Manikarnika Ghat ! Skand Purana says Since Lord Shiva’s ethereal Ganas-ghosts dont get to play colours on #RangbhariEkadashi Bhagwan himself comes to cremation ground to play Holi with them 🚩#HarHarMahadev pic.twitter.com/ffIfavSZlZ
— TempleTrails (@TempleTrails) March 28, 2021