There are countries such as China, where traditionally birthday was an insignificant, almost meaningless, ordinary day. However, to most of us, this is one of the most special events of a year, and we all love to celebrate it. Nowadays, in the majority of countries, birthday is a mix of universal celebrations, combined with local traditions. India is the best example of this occurrence, where Hindu rituals mix with western countries’ birthday practices. As a result, you’re getting a unique event that can’t be found anywhere else in the world. India is famous for celebrating numerous colourful traditional and cultural events and festivals. It is no different with birthdays. Although there are slight differences in rituals, depending on the region, birthday is always a big deal in India. Here is a list of the most popular ways of celebrating birthday across the country.
India Cakes is a must to have on one’s birthday. It’s probably the most common and for sure, the most delicious birthday practice. When guests sing a Happy Birthday song (usually in Hindi or English), guest of honour blows out the candles and then cut into the cake. What differs this practice from every other country is the fact that the celebrant is feeding every guest by hand. This is supposed to bring good luck. When everyone tasted the cake, it’s time to feed the guest of honour. It often happens that guests, especially the younger ones, use the opportunity and cover birthday boy or girl face with cake.
Sweets before everything
We love devouring sweets when it’s our birthday. According to the India tradition, when it’s your birthday, you should eat something sweet before anything else. Only after that, you can eat other meals. One of the most consumed treats is a ball-shaped sweet called laddu, which is made of flour, sugar, and ghee.
One of the reasons that make the birthday a special day for children is new clothing. Disciples have to use uniforms at school. However, a person who celebrates a birthday has the spotlight this day. Why? Because celebrants are allowed to come into school in their new outfit. Their parents buy it just for this reason. New clothes usually have bright colors to emphasize the happiness of the day. But the new outfit is not the only thing that children receive. Like anywhere else in the world, they are getting various presents. Most often, these are toys. However, depending on kid interests, it could be anything else that he or she loves the most.
It’s an old tradition that young Indians bend down and touch elders’ feet. This is a sign of appreciation of age, wisdom, and experience. Children do that on birthday to show respect to their parents as a sign of gratitude for giving them life and taking care of them. When celebrant does that, they are getting blessed.
This is standard practice for families that follow local traditions. When it’s a child’s first birthday, parents shave their head . They do that to provide them with a fresh start of their life. The ritual cleanses the baby of any sins and evil from the past life.
The first birthday is more significant than the others. Parents will bring their children to the temple and pray for the essential issues. They beg the gods to bless their baby. Sometimes they go to a temple as early as 4 am. It’s believed that gods are the most active at this time.
On top of that, adults in India celebrate birthdays in standard ways. One of them is hanging out with friends in a bar. It seems like it’s not an extraordinary way of celebrating. There’s an exception, though, as a bartender will prepare a special drink for the guest of honour.
There’s a group of people that loves partying. Their birthday is an excellent reason to organize one. Depending on how much resources one has, it might be a small dinner or a huge party. Sometimes wealthy individuals go crazy, and their parties transform into great events featuring fireworks, superstars concerts, and other fancy attractions.
Birthday celebrations in India are incredibly abundant. Some of them are strongly connected to religion, while others are performed all over the world. It doesn’t matter what one practices, though. What is truly important is the fact that they all have one thing in common – to make that particular person feel unique during this day.