The Metaphor of Dahi Handi

Dahi Handi

The pot of curd hung high represents all the good things this world has to offer and getting to it shows the struggles one must endure to get to it, a struggle where you may fail time and again; But the point is to never give up, for in the end the rewards are great and worth it.

Happy Dahi Handi to All!

May Krishna be wih us all during our struggles 😁

Dahi Handi

Dahi Handi  is an Indian festival, celebrated every August/September, that involves making a human pyramid and breaking an earthen pot filled with curd tied at a convenient/difficult height. This event is based on the legend of the child-god Krishna stealing butter. A participant in this festival is called a govinda or govinda pathak. It is mostly popular in the state of Maharashtra. It is part of the main festival Gokulashtami, which is known as Krishna Janmashtami in the rest of the country, and celebrates the birth of Krishna. This is celebrated on the next of Krishna Janmashtami.



With the month of Shravan bringing in freshness, celebrations and a joyous ambiance, the entire society gears up for the various festivals during this time. Dahi Handi is one such festival, which is eagerly awaited by all and is celebrated with lot of gusto and enthusiasm. It is also called as Govinda in Maharashtra, or Gokulashtami in many other parts of the country this is a day when Lord Krishna is revered and worshipped.

Dahihandi is a popular aspect of Janmashtami, a Hindu festival, marking the birth of Lord Krishna. It is celebrated amidst great revelry and essentially involves the construction of a human pyramid to break the curd pot that is hung at a considerable height above the ground. The festival promotes teamwork and the importance of physical fitness, agility, concentration, and psychomotor skills. Across India, the festival is celebrated with lot of colour and pomp. Mumbai city is the best place to enjoy the celebrations.

Mathura in India is a synonym for such celebrations as this is the birthplace of Lord Krishna. This city in the northern part of India is a symbol of peace and harmony with its bright decorations and innumerable displays of scenes from the life of Lord Krishna. There are walking tours in Jaipur and many such programmes in places like Vrindavan and Mathura, which would surely make your Dahi Handi experience a memorable one.

Dahi Handi celebration commemorates the way of living of Lord Krishna. In His childhood, young Krishna was very fond of the curd and the butter. While growing up the fondness of curd and the butter increased and young Krishna became notorious for stealing it. When Krishna and His troop started eyeing neighborhood homes to quench their thirst for milk products, female folks in the entire neighborhood became cautious and started hanging milk products from the ceiling like a chandelier. The idea was to take advantage of short height of young Krishna and His troop and keep Dahi Handis out of reach of small hands.

To defeat the idea of female cowherds, Krishna devised the idea of forming human pyramid. Human pyramid was used as the ladder to climb up and reach the Handi. Since then it has become part of Indian folklore. Every year during Janmashtami this event from the life of Lord Krishna is played by the young troop of boys. To make the task challenging Handi is kept at several floors high at the open ground or at the street crossing. Dahi Handi could be up to several floors high in the sky. Women folks who represent female cowherds from the tale of Lord Krishna thwart any attempts to create human pyramid by throwing the water or some slippery liquid on the pyramid formation.
In Mumbai Dahi Handi is getting emerged as a competitive sport. Hundreds of team participates every year in the event. Famous celebrities are invited to promote the event. In recent years the prize money has reached to one crore which is equivalent to 10 million of Indian Rupees.

The terms govinda (also another name of Krishna) or govinda pathak are used to refer to the people who participate in forming this human pyramid. They practise in groups weeks before the actual event. These groups are called mandals and they go around the local areas, attempting to break as many pots as possible during the event. Pyramid formation needs coordination and focus; the lowest layers consist of the most number of people, preferably sturdy, while the middle layer players need to pay attention to those below as well as the others standing on their shoulders. The outer layer individuals need to focus on maintaining balance. As lighter people are needed higher up, the topmost layer usually has a single child. Breaking the pot usually ends up with the contents spilling over the participants. Traditionally, spectators threw water on the participants to deter them and people chant in Marathi “Ala re ala, Govinda ala” (govindas have arrived). The pyramid formation is often accompanied by crowds, music and dancing.

In 2012, a mandal called Jai Jawan Govinda Pathak from Jogeshwari, Mumbai, made an entry into the Guinness World Record by forming a human pyramid of 9-tiers 43.79 feet (13.35 m) at the Dahi Handi event held in Thane; the previous record was held by Spain since 1981.

So get ready for this great event and do not miss this massive event.

|| Hare Krishna ||

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