The New Year Day, i.e, January 1st, is a big celebration throughout India each year. New Year Day can be celebrated however you and your friends and family choose to celebrate it.
You can decide to adhere to the same traditions as everyone else, or you can create your own celebration.
Nevertheless, to give you a flavour of the scope of these celebrations, here are 10 ways of celebrating the entrance of a new year in India:
1. Fireworks: you can expect to see the New Year’s sky lit up with colourful lights.
2. Food and drink: special foods and drinks help to create a party atmosphere at New Year time. These foods and drinks may be shared among friends and family members, but they may also be offered up in temples or as part of rituals.
3. Spending time with loved ones: New Year Day is definitely a time to spend some quality time with your friends, family, and your partner.
4. Making resolutions: as the old year leaves us and a new year arrives, many people in India – and throughout the world – take the opportunity to make some resolutions for improving their own lives and the lives of others. That might mean learning a new language, or it might mean signing up to do some voluntary work for the duration of the coming year.
5. Puja: purifying the home and dedicating it to a deity. Households often form a very elaborate form of the Puja ritual where they prepare their most prized possessions, jewellery and foodstuffs for the year ahead.
6. Giving gifts: New Year Day is a great time to give a little gift or a card to somebody who is important to you so that you can help them to start the new year off with a big smile on their face. It does not have to be something expensive – you can bake a cake or buy a little trinket to show that you are thinking of them. Take the opportunity to show your friends that you love them, and your family that you appreciate them both now and all year round.
7. Sending new year messages: whether you use social media, traditional cards, texts messages, or messaging apps, it is traditional to wish your contacts a very happy new year and to say something like you wish that all of their dreams will come true in the year that is to come.
8. Religious devotion: many religious devotees like to spend the New Year festivities renewing their spiritual commitments. That might mean meditating or offering up prayers, or it might mean participating in a community worship session at your local temple.
9. Quiet reflection: any time which could signify a letting go of old regrets and trying to remake one’s life in a more positive vein can be used as a time of quiet reflection. This is definitely true of New Year Day, when many people like to take the opportunity to reflect on their lives and the direction that their life is taking, to reassess their behaviour in the past year and to think hard about their goals and whether they are the right goals and whether they are on track to be achieved in the year ahead.
10. Relaxation: for many people in India and beyond, loud, raucous celebrations can be stressful. As a result, many people like to spend the festive period simply resting calmly. This is totally fine, too. Whilst there is value in participating in the celebrations and spending time with your community, nobody should feel pressured to celebrate or party if this makes them feel anxious. As we said at the start of the article, you can make your New Year Day celebrations whatever you want them to be – do whatever you feel most comfortable doing.
Happy New Year!
Whether the last New Year Day seems a long way away for you, or whether you are currently gearing up to celebrate the next New Year in style, we hope that your new year is a happy and healthy time for you. Whether you celebrate it as a religious festival or a party with friends, a feast with your family or a time to reflect on your life’s goals, we would like to take this opportunity to wish you a very Happy New Year indeed.