- Topic Summary:
compose an essay in which you explore one  of the sets of two  religious holidays, festivals, or celebrations provided below. For your chosen set, you should identify the religion[s] associated with each, describe the various activities and events, and discuss the beliefs behind the observances for the religion[s]
Be sure to pay attention to all the details in the rest of this document
Here are the options from which you will choose only one  set to explore:
• Hatsumōde and Obon in Japan or
• Qingming and Hungry Ghost Festival in China or
• Holi and Diwali in India
2. Quick View Checklist [discussed in more depth in the Parameters and Standards section below]:
□ Select only one  set of two  holidays/festivals/celebrations listed above as the subject of your essay.
□ Each holiday/festival/celebration is discussed in terms of religion[s], activities, events, observances, and beliefs.
□ Research sources are academic, scholarly, or primary sources [scriptures or official doctrines of the religion].
□ A Modern Language Association [MLA] formatted bibliography of at least three  sources is included.
□ The structure follows a standard college essay format [introduction, body paragraphs, conclusion, and citations].
□ Quotes are limited to religious scriptures or official doctrines only; and are no more than 10% of essay content.
□ Submission is at least 600, but no more than 1200 words [bibliography is not part of the word count].
□ Contains appropriate sentence and paragraph structure, proper grammar, and correct spelling and punctuation.
□ Demonstrates original writing skills.
3. CONTENT – For each of the two  holidays/festivals/celebrations in your chosen set, describe the various activities and events, identify the religion[s] associated, and discuss the beliefs behind the observances. All of this should be within the context of the country identified in your set. In other words, do not discuss how the holiday is observed in other nations. You should also include any alternate names for the events and draw special attention to differences in observances if there are multiple religions associated. Consider the following as you research and write: Are there specific activities, props, and/or dietary aspects associated with the event? To what extent do the people participate? Are there variations in activities, events, observances, and beliefs based on geographical or divisional/denominational differences within the subject country? Are the celebrations publicly observed or isolated within the structures of the religious communities? Have the events become secularized at all? Deductions of up to 30 points will be made for errors related to the Options and Content sections discussed here.
4. This paper should be done in a traditional essay format: introduction paragraph, two to three content paragraphs, a conclusion paragraph, and then a bibliography of sources. Additionally, the essay is expected to conform to academic writing standards [i.e., demonstrate the use of proper sentence and paragraph formats, proper grammar, and correct spelling and punctuation].
5. Your essay content is required to be a minimum of 600 words, but no more than 1200 words [the bibliography information is not part of the word count]. Submissions larger than 1200 words or fewer than 600 words will receive no points. A college paper needs to demonstrate the skill of being thorough, yet concise.
6. QUOTING – Quotes are limited to the sacred literature or official doctrines of a specific religion and should constitute no more than 10% of the paper content. In other words, you are not permitted to quote from your research articles. You need to develop the ability to take the information that you would quote and express it in your own words as this is how to demonstrate understanding. The quoted material from religious scriptures or documents is only to support your conversation and should be used sparingly. Any quotes will need to have internal documentation done according to MLA standards