Wishing you Happy Diwali and Prosperous New Year…
Deepavali or Diwali is the Hindu festival of lights celebrated every year in autumn in the northern hemisphere (spring in southern hemisphere). It is an official holiday in Fiji, Guyana, India, Malaysia, Mauritius, Myanmar, Nepal, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, and recently Sindh Province in Pakistan. One of the most popular festivals of Hinduism, it spiritually signifies the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, knowledge over ignorance, and hope over despair.
Its celebration includes millions of lights shining on housetops, outside doors and windows, around temples and other buildings in the communities and countries where it is observed. The festival preparations and rituals typically extend over a five-day period, but the main festival night of Diwali coincides with the dark night of the Hindu Lunisolar month Kartika in Bikram Sambat calendar (the month of Aippasi in Tamil Calendar), on the 15th of the month. In the Gregorian calendar, Diwali night falls between mid-October and mid-November.
Before Diwali night, people clean, renovate, and decorate their homes and offices. On Diwali night, people dress up in new clothes or their best outfit, light up diyas (lamps and candles) inside and outside their home, participate in family puja (prayers) typically to Lakshmi – the goddess of fertility and prosperity. After puja, fireworks follow, then a family feast including mithai (sweets), and an exchange of gifts between family members and close friends. Deepavali also marks a major shopping period in nations where it is celebrated.
Diwali is a festival of lights and one of the major festivals celebrated by Hindus, Jains, and Sikhs. The festival usually lasts five days and is celebrated during the Hindu lunisolar month Kartika.
- Good Triumphs Over Evil. The epic tale of Lord Ram defeating the evil King Ravana is infamous. …
- Day One is Danteras. …
- Day Two is Narak Chaturdasi A.K.A Choti Diwali. …
- Day Three is Lakshmi Puja. …
- Day Four is Padwa or Balipratipada. …
- Day Five is Bhai Dooj. …
- Row of Lights. …
- Special Diwali Food.
Diwali is celebrated by multiple faiths. Diwali is celebrated by multiple faiths. Every year around October and November, Hindus around the world celebrate Diwali, or Deepavali—a festival of lights that stretches back more than 2,500 years.
South India celebrate Diwali as the day that Lord Krishna (depicted above) defeated the demon Narakasura. In northern India, they celebrate the story of King Rama’s return to Ayodhya after he defeated Ravana by lighting rows of clay lamps.
And all these religions and traditions not only have different deities to pray to on Diwali, they also sometimes have different mythological versions of the same tales.
The day Lakshmi roams the earth
The prime reason why Diwali is marked by flamboyant decorations, new clothes and flashy displays of colors and lights is because it is widely believed that Diwali is the day on which the Hindu goddess of prosperity, Lakshmi supposedly roams the Earth and blesses people with wealth and happiness.
The Nirvana of Mahavira
Another popular belief that signifies the occasion of Diwali for Jainism, India’s sixth largest religion, is that this is the day on which the last of the 24 Thirthankaras (Great Teachers), Lord Mahavira attained ‘Nirvana’.
Guru Gobind Ji’s escape from Gwalior
While most traditions surrounding Diwali go back thousands of years, one of the most recent traditions associated with it is the one in Sikhism. Sikhs celebrate Diwali as the occasion on which their teacher Guru Hargobind Ji was released from the captivity of Mughal ruler Jahangir in Gwalior along with several Hindu kings.
Return of Ram to Ayodhya
The most popular tradition behind Diwali dictates that it marks the day on which the Hindu deity Lord Ram returned to his home city of Ayodhya after vanquishing the demon king Ravana. According to mythology, lights were lit all across the country to celebrate his return to rule.
Triumph of good over evil
In southern parts of India however, Diwali (or Deepavali) is celebrated as the day on which Lord Krishna killed the demon Narakasura and brought peace to the lands. According to legends, Narakasura repented in his last moments and requested Mother Earth that his death be celebrated with lights and colors across the lands every year. A wish that was gladly granted.
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