10 things you should know about diwali festival
Year on year, Hindus, Sikhs and Jains eagerly await Diwali. The whole world identifies Diwali as the most important festival of India. In fact, over the recent past, other countries have also started celebrating Diwali to admire their ties with India and Indian culture. Here are some interesting things you must know about Diwali before celebrating it.
Diwali is a highly significant festival for the Hindus
Diwali is described as the festival of lights marking prosperity and triumph of good over evil. Hence, Diwali holds a prime significance in Hindu religion with several dimensions to it including religious, spiritual, social, cultural and psychological.
Honoring Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and inviting her to every home is the most important theme of Diwali. The array of lamps lighted on this occasion by every household is meant to invite Lakshmi into the house who brings with her wealth, goodness and development.
Legends connected with Diwali
Diwali reminds us of many mythological stories in Hinduism. Diwali marks the triumph of Lord Krishna over the demon Narakasur. In Northern India, people celebrate the return of Sri Rama and Sita to the city of Ayodhya after defeating the mighty demon king. Kali puja is famous in Bengal during Diwali.
Diwali is a pan India festival
Perhaps no other festival is celebrated with such a great enthusiasm than Diwali all over India. The festival assumes different colors, flavors and styles across India. However, the spirit of Diwali brings all Indians together. In fact Indians living abroad celebrate Diwali in a grand manner in a way inspiring the global communities around them.
Diwali and Jains
Diwali is a significant festival for the Jains as Lord Mahavira, the last Tirtankar of the religion is said to have attained Nirvana on October 15, 527 BC on the fourteenth day (Chaturdashi) of the Kartika month.
Diwali and Sikhs
Sikhs celebrate Diwali as Bandi Chhor Divas as the history says that it was on the day of Diwali that Guru Har Gobind Ji freed himself and many Hindu Kings from the captivity of Jahangir, the Islamic ruler and reached the Golden Temple of Amritsar. In fact, it was on the day of Diwali in 1577 AD that the foundation stone was laid for the construction of the Golden Temple.
Diwali is a socio-religious festival. Families come together to celebrate Diwali. Newly married couple visit their in-laws house and receive fabulous gifts and sumptuous treats. People spend luxuriously and dine merrily. New clothes, sweets, crackers and get-togethers make Diwali the most enjoyable festival.
Diwali brings more business
Businesses thrive during Diwali. People buy new clothes, utensils, jewels, vehicles, household items, furniture, sweets, groceries and others and hence every business is seen performing at its peak during the Diwali season. The economic activity across the country reaches the peak during Diwali.
Diwali outside India
While many countries are coming out to organize Diwali celebrations, the largest celebration of Diwali outside India happens in the city of Leicester in UK. The vibrant light shows, music and dance programs organized in this city are watched by thousands on this day on the streets.
Public holiday on Diwali
Diwali is the most important public holiday in India. Different countries have different versions of Diwali. In fact, Diwali is also a public holiday in many countries including Surinam, Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, Myanmar, Singapore, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Mauritius, Malaysia and Fiji.
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