Saturday, 27 September 2014

Festivals of India - Diwali

The only festival that brings light in our lives and makes us feel that our lives are bright is the festival I'm gonna talk abt.. Yeah you're  right.. Its nothing but DIWALI.... As we all call diwali as festival of lights.. Its also the festival of victory over darkness and evil.... It is celebrated mainly by Hindus but, jains and Sikhs also celebrate it by a different way...
Often jains celebrate a festival of lights to mark the attainment of moksha by Mahavira and Sikhs celebrate it as bandi chhor divas.

  The word diwali has its origin from the Sanskrit fusion "DEEPAVALI" which has two words in it I.e deepa( light or lamp) and avali(series or line).. Thus the two words complete the meaning of deepavali which means a "row of lights"....

  Diwali dates back to ancient times in India, as a festival after summer harvest in the Hindu calendar in the month of karthikai...

   Historically, the origin of diwali can be traced back to ancient India, when it was probably an important harvest festival. However, there are various legends pointing to the origin of diwali.

Some believe it to be the celebration of marriage of goddess lakshmi devi with lord Vishnu. Whereas in Bengal the festival is dedicated to mother Kali... The dark goddess of strength.. It also commemorates the return of lord rama along with sita and lakshmana from his 14 year long exile and vanquishing the demon king ravana... In joyous celebration of the return of their king, people of ayodhya illuminated the kingdom with earthen diyas and burst crackers... There are many more stories connected to this day like.. Goddess lakshmi's birthday.. Lord Vishnu was in his fifth incarnation as vamna and rescued lakshmi devi from king bali... The pandavaa returned after 12 years to the kingdom..

Diwali is also associated with wealth and prosperity...

On the first day lakshmi pooja is  celebrated and it is given great importance in India... Houses and business premises are  decorated.. Entrances are made colour full with lovely traditional motifs of rangoli to welcome goddess 'lakshmi devi'. To indicate her arrival, small foot prints are drawn with rice flour all over the house.. Lamps are kept burning throughout the night.. Believing this day to be auspicious, women purchase gold or silver.
  On the day before diwali naraka chathurthi is celebrated.. This falls on the second day of the festival.. The history behind celebrating this festival is.. It is believed that  MAHAKALI devi killed the most wicked evil NARAKASURA... On this day, it is believed that laziness and evil which creates hell in our lives is abolished and shines lights on our lives..
 
  On the day of diwali... People wake up early in the morning, and apply oil and the elders in the house perform aarthi to all the younger ones.. Then they are asked to have bath with gram flour. Then, pooja is done and a wide variety of delicious sweets and food are made... At night people burst crackers and to kill the darkness and evil...

Thus, diwali brings light, joy, happiness in everyone's life and kills darkness And evil.... So it is called the "FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS" :) :) :) :)

- by Venkatesh Bharadwaj