Festivals Of Egypt And Nepal Cultural Studies Essay

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A festival is an event, usually and ordinary staged by a local community, which centers on and celebrates some unique aspect of the community and the festival. Festivals of many types, serve to meet specific needs, as well as to provide entertainment. These times of celebration after a sense of belonging for religious, social or geographical groups. Modern festivals that focus or cultural or ethnic topics seek to inform members of their tradition. There are neumerous types of festivals in the world. Though many have religious origins, others involve seasonal change or have some cultural significance. There are two principal types of festival like (i) Seasonal festival (ii) General Festival.

Festival In Nepal

          Everybody knows that Nepal is a land of mountain, but it is also land of festival. Every year more that 50 festivals celebrated in Nepal. Generally national festivals celebrated on some fixed dates and according to the lunar calendar astrolgers set their religious festival. Different types of festival are as follows:

Ø     New Year:         In Nepal it is known as "Navavarsho". This is the first day of "Baisakh". According to the Nepali officially calendar this very first day is observed usually in the second week of April. It is a national holiday. People go for picnic and have get together on this day.

Ø     Saraswati Puja: This day is celebrated as the birthday of "Saraswati" the goddess of learning. To please their goddess students worship their pens and books and expects her favour in their exam and studies this day falls between January/February and its very auspicious day for marriage.

Ø     Shivaratri (Moha- Shivaratri): Shivaratri is one of the major festival in Nepal. It is the night of Lord Shiva which falls between February/March. In south east Asia and Inia it is the most worshipped God and more than 1,00,000 lac of Hindu gathered in the "Pashu Patinath" temple. In winter the worshiper take dip and bath in the holy river and fast for the whole day.

Ø     Teej:          This festival is celebrated in August/September. On this day hindu women's day for her men. Generally women wears red Saris. On this day women observe fast and they pray to Lord "Shiva" for their husband's healthy and prosperous life.

Ø     Tihar: This is the second biggest festival which falls between October/November. It is the festival of light. People worship Laxmi-the Goddess of wealth. They believe the Goddess Laxmi will enter their house, so they clean their houses and lit candles, oil lamps and the whole place took illuminating. This festival ends with "Bhai Tika"- brothers day when a sister pray long and healthy life for their brother. Gambling is not illegal on this festival because it is also gambling time in Nepal.

Ø     Holi:         In Nepal this festival is known as "Phagu". It is a festival of waters and colours. Holi is one of the most joyous occasion for Hindu community.

 

*Origin of this festival:

 

The celebration of Holi is very ancient in its origin and by its very origin is celebrates on ultimate triumple of the 'good' over the 'evil'.  Originally Holi is an agricultural festival celebrating the arrival of spring. The festival of Holi is also associated with the enduring love between Lord Krishna (an in carnation of Vishnu) and Radha, and Krishna in general. According to legend the young Krishna complain to his mother Yashoda about why Radha was so fair and he so dark. Yashoda advised him to apply colour on Radha's face see how her complexion will change-because of this Krishna is extended over-longer period.

 

Festival of Egypt

 

Egypt is a wondrous country with many festivals and celebrations. Some festivals are historical some are secular and some are religious. Some of the festivals are given below:

 

Ø     Sham al Naseem: In Egypt both Muslim and Christian welcome the very fast day of spring. Sham al Naseem means "the smell of Spring". The people gather together for outdoor picnic on the twenty first of March. On the day they have some traditional foods like 'Midamis' (Kidney beans) and "Fasiyah' (Dried fish).

Ø     Ramadan: Ramadan is a very important festival in the Islamic calendar and more than 90% of the people are Muslim in Egypt. To honour the time when the holy Quran was revealed to the prophet Mohammad (sm) and it is celebrated on the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. In this month Muslim people fast for entire month and they don't eat, drink or smoke from sunrise until sunset. Generally the working hour are often reduced in this time for praying in Egypt. By taking "Iftar" the fast is broken with friends, family and community people. The end of Ramadan is marked with festival called Eid-Ul-Fitr.

Ø     Egyptian Christmas: There is a small but significant community of Christian celebrate the Christmas, while most of Egyptian are Muslim. For the Coptic Christian of Egypt Christmas is celebrated on January each year. In this time the Christian community people fast and take only vegetable no meat or milk is taken from November 25th to the night of January 6th. The Pope of Orthodox Church beginning prayer at the big Cathedral in Cairo at 11 pm.

Ø     Wafa Al Nil: This festival is dedicated to symbol of Egypt the Nile River. Now a days painting competition, seminar, music concerts are the common terms of celebrating of this September month festival. It is among one of the ancient festival of Egypt.

Ø     Pharaonic Wedding: This celebration is held on the month of November and this festival is the symbol of ancient civilization of Egypt. Many couples visit to the Karnack temple and get married there.

Ø     Moulid an- Nabi: The prophet's birthday is celebrated at Moulid an- Nabi. It's held during the 3rd month of the Islamic calendar.

 

*Origin of the Celebration:

 

The earliest account for the observations of Mawli can be found in Mecca. When the house in which Muhammad (sm) was born. It was originally a festival of the Shia ruling class, not attended by the common people. Public celebration of the birth of Muhammad (sm) did not occur until four centuries after his death. The first official Mawlid celebrations occurring in Egypt towards the end of the 11th century. The first public celebrations by Sunnis took place in 12th century in Syria under the rule of Nuraddin Zangi. Today it is an official holiday in many parts of the world.

 

*Celebration of Mawlid:

 

Where Mawlid is celebrated in a carnival manner, large street processions are held and homes or mosques are decorated and food is distributed and stories about the life of Muhammad (sm) are narrated with recitation of poetry. Mawlid is celebrated in most Muslim countries and in other countries where Muslims have presence. Saudi Arabia is the only Muslim country where Mawlid is not an official public holiday.

 

*Conclusion:

Festival is an entertaining event. There are various types of festival in the world. Different countries celebrate of their own festival with their own style. Every festival has its own origin and history. Festival shows a countries culture, ritual and their religious aspects. In Nepal they celebrate their festival from their religious aspect and most of the people are Hindu. However in Egypt they celebrate their festival from their Islamic religious aspect. Actually both of the countries celebrate festival from different value.

 

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