Passover (Pesach in Hebrew) is one of the most important
festivals in the Jewish year. It is the occassion when Jewish people remember how they were led away from slavery and out of Egypt towards the Promised Land. Also, the Passover is one of the three national feasts of Israel that were commanded by God that Israel as a nation commemorate annually, and they are; Passover, Shavuot (the feast of weeks also know in the Christian world as Pentecost) and Succot (the feast of tabernacles). A special service called Seder (Order) takes place over a meal around a table in a home. 

Today I’d really like you to spend a few minutes to think about your use –
or most probably wastage – of water. 
Annually, the United Nations designates this day as World Water Day as an opportunity for the world to think about the Environment and our impact upon the natural world. Interestingly for me, last year’s theme was water and culture which drew attention to the fact that “there are as many ways of viewing, using, and celebrating water as there are cultural traditions around the world.”  This year’s theme is “Clean Water for a Healthy World” – the overall goal is to raise the profile of water quality at the political level so that water quality considerations are made alongside those of water quantity. It is still a reality that an estimated 1.1 billion people rely on unsafe drinking-water sources.

So, today, instead of drinking your tea or coffee, raise a glass of water and celebrate how lucky we are to be able to drink good, clean and healthy water.

Naw-Rúz (New Day) is the traditional celebration
of the Iranian New Year and is celebrated throughout many countries of the Middle East and Central Asia: Iran, Azerbaijan, Afghanistan and Tajikistan. For countries outside of the Middle East, the date has been fixed as 21st March, but traditionally it falls at the spring equinox. Originally it is one of the nine holy days of the Bahá’í Faith and is a work holiday.

The coming of Spring is celebrated in the Hindu religion over
several days during the Festival of Colours – called Holi. Holi is a time for fun rather than religious observance. It is the most vibrant Indian festival, when distinctions of caste, class, age or gender are set to one side. The practical jokes and games that surround Holi are thought to arise from the belief that the origin of the festival lies with Krishna who was very mischievous as a young boy and threw coloured water over the gopis (milkmaids) with whom he is believed to have grown up.

Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year is rich in traditions, rituals and folklores.
The celebrations take place over 15 days. It has been said that it is a combination of the US Thanksgiving, and Western Christmas and New Year. This is hardly an exaggeration! The origin of the Chinese New Year itself is centuries old – in fact, they say too old to actually be traced. All agree, however, that the word Nian, which in modern Chinese means “year”, was originally the name of a monster that preyed on people the night before the beginning of a new year. Previously, the Chinese lived in a totally agrarian society and only took a ‘holiday’ once a year after the harvest and before planting new crops. this coincided with the lunar New Year. The Chinese New Year is now popularly known as the Spring Festival because it starts from the Beginning of Spring.

Nirvana Day

This is a Mahayana Buddhist festival which in India is known as
Parinirvana. (Celebrated by some Buddhists on 15th Febraury). This festival marks the death of  Buddha and celebrates when, at the age of 80, he finally attained nirvana (enlightenment) and was released from the cycle of death and rebirth: freedom from physical existence and its sufferings. Mahayana or Theravada Buddhists meditate or visit temples or monasteries, and the day is treated as a social occasion. Nirvana Day celebrations vary throughout the world but usually include food preparation and the exchange of gifts such as money, household goods, or clothing.

Denying children’s rights is WRONG!  Put it right.
This is UNICEF’s annual event to bring to the world’s attention the plight of disadvantaged children around the world and to promote a change in their circumstances. Primarily, it is a day for school-age children and schools are invited to particpate by having a non-uniform day – but I believe it is just as important for ALL of us to take note and contribute in someway to make a difference. What can you do today to make the world a better place?

Follow the links here to get a fuller understanding about what is going on in the world:
Minority Rights Group International

Holocaust Memorial Day is commemorated internationally on
27th January each year. On this day in 1945  the Soviet Army liberated the largest Nazi concentration camp – Auschwitz-Birkenau – and the world began to truly understand what took place. When I was a teenager, I remember interviewing my local doctor – Dr. Norman – for a school project about the holocasut. Dr Norman was with the first contingent of the British military that entered the camp and he then had to travel to other concentration camps to make a report for the British Government. An experience that haunted him for the rest of his life.   HMD Trust.

Louis Braille’s birth day. This day celebrates the contribution
that Louis Braille has made to the lives of those who are blind, deafblind or living with vision loss. In 1829, Louis Braille published the Method of Writing Words, Music, and Plain Song by Means of Dots, for Use by the Blind and Arranged by Them. Today, this method – braille – is used in virtually every language as the standard form of reading and writing for the blind or poorly sighted.  This has become the annual opportunity for blindness organizations to promote braille literacy, showcase their work and raise public awareness of blindness issues.

usaCaThanksgiving is celebrated in the USA.

Thanksgiving Day is traditionally a time for giving thanks for the harvest, so is really harvest festival.  However,  in the US and Canada it is celebrated as THE holiday of the year, when everyone tries to get home to spend the day with relatives where a large festive meal with turkey is prepared. Even though Thanksgiving is religious in origin, it is identified as a secular holiday in the modern world. The location and date of the very first Thanksgiving celebration has been a topic of contention. The earliest attested celebration took place in 1565 at St. Augustine, Florida. However, the traditional one occurred in 1621 at Plymouth Plantation.

Find out more about Thanksgiving Day.