India 24 October 2016: Diwali (Deepavali) is celebrated as the victory of good over evil. In India It is celebrated each year for 5 days during mid-October to mid-November. Diwali (Deepavali) is also celebrated in many other countries like Singapore, Malaysia, Nepal, Canada, Britain, South Africa and New Zealand where there are many Indian communities living.
As Christmas is a special and important holiday for christians similarly Diwali is as important for Hindus. Diwali is also celebrated by other religions like Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism. Anyone no matter which faith, can join in "The Festival of Lights". So read on to know What is Diwali?
What is Diwali (Deepavali)?
Diwali also known as Deepavali consists of three to five days of celebrations. Deepawali or diwali is derived from the words the "deep" or “diwa” which means "light" or "lamp", and "avali" means "row". Hence you find a row of lamps everywhere during Diwali (Deepavali) in India.
◦The first day of Diwali is marked on the The thirteenth day from Poornima which is the Full Moon. The first day of Diwali is called Dhanteras of which "Dhan" means "wealth" and teras means thirteenth day. On This day the goddess Lakshmi is celebrated who is the the Goddess of Wealth.
◦The second day of diwali often known as Chhoti Diwali or Narak chaturdashi. On this day as per Hindu mythology it is believed that Lord Krishna destroyed the demon Narakasur and freed the world from fear. People mark this day buy bursting Firecrackers to celebrate lord krishna’s victory over Narakasur.
◦The third day is the The new moon day the actual day of Diwali. Lakshmi puja or Lakshmipujan is the actual day of Diwali, and the most significant day. On this day the house has to be cleaned to welcome the Goddess of wealth Lakshmi. On this day people exchange Gifts and sweets to strengthen bonds of love between family and friends.
◦The fourth day of Diwali (Deepavali) is the bright fortnight of Kartik also known as Balipratipada / Padiwa / Govardhan puja / Varshapratipada. On this day Lord Krishna protect the people of Gokul from Indra's wrath by lifting the Govardhan Parvat and Vikramaditya was crowned king.
◦The fifth and final day of the Diwali Festival is Bhai Dooj / Bhaiya Dooj. On this day of Diwali sisters ceremonize their love by applying an auspicious Tilak on the forehead of their brothers and perform an aarti for him by showing him the light of the holy flame as a mark of love and protection from evil forces. Sisters are lavished with gifts, goodies and blessings from their brothers.