Celebrating Diwali - Let Your Light Shine
Festival of lights is just round the corner. Celebrated on Kartik Amavasya, twenty days after Dussehra, Diwali signifies the victory of good over evil. On the night of Diwali, the entire country gets a golden makeover, with innumerable diyas, lamps, candles and lights adorning the households and streets. According to mythology, when lord Rama returned home to Ayodhya with his wife Sita and brother Lakshman, after decimating the demon king Ravana, he was welcomed by the people who lighted diyas in the streets in his honour. This love of the lord, lighting of rows of diyas, happiness, enthusiasm and celebration has been collectively observed ever since as Diwali.
The preparations for this festival start a few weeks ahead of the day. People clean their houses and surroundings before Diwali, which is symbolic of warding off all negativity and evils from one’s life. New clothes, especially ethnic attires are bought, to be worn on the luminous night of Diwali. Wearing of new clothes signifies becoming a changed and better person, by giving up the darkness and negativity within. In many families, it is considered auspicious to buy a piece of jewellery or a utensil around Diwali. In fact, it is not just clothes, utensils or jewellery, but all kinds of new purhcases, right from property to furniture to FMCG goods are made during this festival. That’s primarily the reason why Diwali time seems like a shopping carnival in India and sellers of all kinds of goods and services look forward to it with much eagerness.
Diwali celebrations usually span over a couple of days, with people decorating their homes by placing string lights, lamps and candles on window edges, driveways, compound walls and balconies. Colourful rangoli at the entrance and garlands made from marigold flower, hung on the door, welcome you inside joyous homes. Diwali is the time when people affirm and renew their friendships and relationships. They do this in a fun and loving way by visiting their friends and family and giving them sweets, chocolates, dryfruits and many other kinds of gifts. In the evening, Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity along with Saraswati, the goddess of knowledge and Ganesh, the god of new beginnings are worshipped. Many households follow the ritual of keeping their entrance door open throughout the night, to welcome goddess Lakshmi i.e. wealth, prosperity and good fortune in the house. It is believed that goddess Lakshmi enters the house on Diwali night while everyone is asleep and stays put throughout the year.
Business people consider Diwali a favourable day to start a new financial year. Many corporates, offices and establishments organize Lakshmi Puja on their premises in the hope of seeking her blessings and bringing success to their work. Gambling parties during Diwali night are hosted and enjoyed in many homes, hotels, clubs and casinos. It is an age old ritual associated with this major festival and is followed till date.
Celebration of Diwali is incomplete without bursting a few firecrackers. Children look forward to this day, simply because they can indulge in blowing patakhas and rotating phuljharis. Although, this part of the festivities has taken a bit of backseat in today’s time, as people have become environment conscious and are aware of the ill effects of noise and air pollution.
Diwali festival is the harbinger of knowledge, peace, progress and success in life. It offers an opportunity to all of us to cleanse our soul, become aware of our inner light and turn a new leaf. We take this opportunity to wish all of you much happiness, prosperity and success this Diwali. Rejoice with loved ones and create stronger bonds this festive season.00
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