Maha Shivratri is a Hindu festival celebrated every year in reverence of Lord Shiva. Alternate common names/spellings include Maha Sivaratri, Shivaratri, Sivarathri, and Shivaratri. Shivaratri literally means the great night of Shiva or the night of Shiva. It is celebrated every year on the 13th night/14th day of the Maagha or Phalguna month of the Hindu calendar. Since many different calendars are followed by various ethno-linguistic groups of India, the month and the Tithi name are not uniform all over India. Celebrated in the dark fortnight or Krishna Paksha(waning moon) of the month of Maagha according to the Shalivahana or Gujarati Vikrama or Phalguna according to the Vikrama era. The festival is principally celebrated by offerings of Bael or Bilva/Vilvam leaves to Lord Shiva, all-day fasting and an all-night-long vigil. In accordance with scriptural and discipleship traditions, penances are performed in order to gain boons in the practice of Yoga and meditation, in order to reach life's summum bonum steadily and swiftly. A week-long International Mandi Shivratri Fair held at Mandi in the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh every year is one of the major tourist attractions in the state.
According to a legend, Parvati performed tapas, prayed and meditated on this day to ward off any evil that might befall her husband on the moonless night. Since then, Mahashivaratri is believed to be an auspicious occasion for women to pray for the well-being of their husbands and sons. An unmarried woman prays for a husband like Shiva, who is considered to be the ideal husband. Another legend of the day is that Shiva and Shakti married each other.
(... from Wikipedia on 2012-04-17 21:56:24)
Shabbat Shuvah ("Sabbath [of] Return" שבת שובה) refers to the Shabbat that occurs during the Ten Days of Repentance, but is between (i.e. not including): the two consecutive Days of Rosh Hashanah; and the Day of Yom Kippur. Only one Shabbat can occur within the seven days period that falls between these dates. This Shabbat is named after the first word of the Haftarah (Hosea 14:2-10) and literally means "Return!" It is perhaps a play on, but not to be confused with, the word Teshuvah (the word for repentance).
(... from Wikipedia on 2012-04-17 08:00:17)
Día de la Bandera ("Flag Day") is a national holiday in Mexico. Flag Day is celebrated every year on February 24 since its implementation in 1937. It was established by the President of Mexico, General Lázaro Cárdenas, before the monument to General Vicente Guerrero, first to pledge allegiance to the Mexican flag on March 12, 1821.
When the Pledge is recited, it is customary to salute the flag with the raised arm Bellamy Salute while speaking. When the flag is being paraded, the arm is held across the chest, palm parallel to the ground.
(... from Wikipedia on 2012-04-18 02:40:44)
An Independence Day is an annual event commemorating the anniversary of a nation's assumption of independent statehood, usually after ceasing to be a colony or part of another nation or state; more rarely after the end of a military occupation.
Most countries observe their respective independence days as a national holiday, and in some cases the observance date is controversial or contested. Not all countries observe an independence day holiday, choosing to celebrate other national days instead of or alongside an independence day.
(... from Wikipedia on 2012-04-17 22:54:58)
Black History Month, also known as African-American History Month, is an annual observance in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom for remembrance of important people and events in the history of the African diaspora. It is celebrated annually in the United States and Canada in February and the United Kingdom in October.
Black History Month had its beginnings in 1926 in the United States, when historian Carter G. Woodson and the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History announced the second week of February to be "Negro History Week". This week was chosen because it marked the birthday of both Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. Woodson created the holiday with the hope that it eventually be eliminated when black history became fundamental to American history. Negro History Week was met with enthusiastic response; it prompted the creation of black history clubs, an increase in interest among teachers, and interest from progressive whites. Negro History Week grew in popularity throughout the following decades, with mayors across the United States endorsing it as a holiday.
(... from Wikipedia on 2012-04-17 08:47:49)