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All About Diwali

Oct 26, 2016

Many people immediately think of Halloween and Christmas when it comes to winter holidays, but in Hindu culture there’s another major winter holiday that can’t be missed – Diwali. Diwali is also known as the festival of lights, and is celebrated by millions of people around the world. This year it falls on October 30th 2016. Find out more in All About Diwali!

Little clay lamps called diyas are lit during DiwaliLittle clay lamps called diyas are lit during Diwali

What is Diwali?

Diwali originated in India as a celebration of light, in fact the world Diwali comes from “deepavali”, meaning “row of lamps.” It is traditionally celebrated by Hindus, Jains, Buddhists and Sikhs,  although over the years it has been incorporated into many different cultures around the world. It is known as the festival of lights because in celebration people light many small clay lamps called "diyas" around their homes to represent the victory of good over evil and to invite good luck and prosperity from the Hindu Goddess Lakshmi and the God Ganesh, who represents good luck, wealth and enlightenment.

Elaborate lights are set up in homes for DiwaliElaborate lights are set up in homes for Diwali

How to Celebrate

For Hindus this is one of the most important days of the year, and it involves spending time with family and performing traditional activities. Families clean their homes from top to bottom so that when the lamps are lit it will be suitable for the Goddess of wealth and knowledge, Lakshmi, to enter their home and bless them with good fortune for the upcoming year, as well as the God of good luck, Ganesh. Traditional families will make an offering to the goddess of fruit, rice pudding, flowers and other assorted gifts. To offer these goods the family performs a “puja,” which involves saying sacred words and singing. Unlike Western holidays, it’s also considered very important to refrain from eating meat and drinking alcohol in honor of the divine spirits being invited into your home.

On Diwali you make offerings to Lakshmi and Ganesh for wealth and good luckOn Diwali you make offerings to Lakshmi and Ganesh for wealth and good luck

Traditionally every home will set out tiny clay pots with wicks and oil all around their home, and in places where Diwali is a national holiday public places are also lit up with lots of beautiful candles and lamps. Some families exchange gifts and make a big dinner for family and friends

Diwali Fun Facts!

  • Diwali is a national holiday in India, Trinidad & Tobago, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Mauritius, Guyana, Surinam, Singapore, Malaysia and Fiji.
  • Diwali is the beginning of the financial year for Indian businesses
  • Diwali marks the end of the harvest season in India

Diwali is known as the festival of lightsDiwali is known as the festival of lights

Have Your Say

Do you celebrate Diwali? Let us know in the comments section below.

 

78 Comments

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What's your fave winter holiday?

  • Christmas
  • Diwali
  • Halloween
  • Hannukah

General In The Forums

Kirsteeeeen
This thread has been moved. Click here to see the new thread.
reply about 2 hours
Abbergrl
Abbergrl posted in Random:
Aww, this is so sweet :3 I'm a day late, because when @Mermaid_Author14  sent me this it was night time for me. Happy belated birthday @SnowflakeAngelKitten  !!!! I love roleplaying with you because you make things so fun and exciting! Your excitement also reminds me of a younger version of myself. Welllll.. I'm still like that but I don't show that side of me much XD Maybe it's because of the timezones that we haven't been able to talk much, but who cares? I hope you enjoyed your day because you deserved to (: May this year hold lots of chances for you to fangirl since you love it so much! :3
reply about 6 hours
Nisya-
Nisya- posted in Random:
Mommy  :D
reply about 11 hours
Annabeth808
Annabeth808 posted in Random:
Happy birthday[s:p/1jkj]
reply about 12 hours
Prelaxation
Prelaxation posted in Debating:
Love it or hate it, the crazy theory of Flat Earth is gaining a lot of popularity and movement world wide. What's your opinion? Remember, regardless of what anyone says, keep an open mind and don't bash. I'm curious to see why people believe the way they do, or if they have facts and evidence to support their claims. So, do you believe the Earth is flat....or spherical?
reply about 16 hours