Diwali in 2017 is on October 19. The festival of lights, Diwali lights up the lives with happiness, prosperity, and peace. Diwali enlighten ourselves from within and its grand celebrations last for 5 days. Read on to know more about the facts of Deepavali by reading this article at MyKundali.
Diwali or Deepavali is one of the biggest and most famous festival of Hindus. According to the Hindu Calendar, Deepavali is celebrated on the New Moon day or Amavasya of the month Kartik i.e. during the month of October-November.
Deepawali or Diwali refers to a row of lights and this festival provides real peace and happiness. The light of earthen lamps marks the glow of success and bliss of one’s life, it burns all the bad times and marks the new beginning of good times. People from different communities celebrate the festival with full enthusiasm and joy. There are different reasons for different communities for celebrating Diwali.
Diwali is a five days long festival and each day has its own significance. It starts with the festival of Dhanteras and ends on Bhai Dooj. Victory of good over evil, light over darkness is celebrated on Deepavali .
Deepawali eliminates the darkness of our ignorance and fills our lives with new light that shows us the right path of life. Diwali marks the end of summer season and beginning of new winter season.
Deepavali spreads the message of love and togetherness. The whole atmosphere gets filled with positivity and festivity of the festival. This brings the feeling of warmth and closeness among people.
According to the ancient stories, the great reason behind the celebrations of Deepawali is the legend of Lord Rama returning back to his kingdom, Ayodhya after defeating demon Ravana. Therefore, the festival of Diwali represents the victory of good over evil.
Deepawali is an important time for the beginning of new financial year, as every Deepavali does. So, the businessmen of North India can again start their new financial year this Diwali. They worship Maa Laxmi and Lord Ganesha on Diwali, who are considered as the lord of wealth and wisdom.
Diwali or Deepawali is also an important day for shopping as well. Throughout the year, people wait for Diwali shopping. Different schemes are introduced in the market on jewelery, electrical appliances, utensils and on automobiles that attract more and more customers on this special occasion. People shop for utensils, jewelry, or other precious stones and honor them as the gift of Goddess Lakshmi. People light Diyas (earthen lamps) in their houses for welcoming Goddess Lakshmi.
The festivities of this grand festival last for five days. People enjoy these holidays with their loved ones with lots of fun and enjoyment. The whole atmosphere fills with energy and spirit of the festival. Let’s talk about the significance and celebrations of these days of Deepavali.
Dhanteras Puja date is October 17.
Dhanteras is celebrated on the first day of Diwali or Deepavali. Dhanteras is made from the words Dhan and Teras, here Dhan refers to money or wealth and Teras refers to thirteenth; i.e. according to the Hindu Calendar it is celebrated on the 13th day of the month Kartik during the Krishna Paksha.
Goddess of wealth Maa Lakshmi is worshiped on Dhanteras. People worship Maa Lakshmi and invite her to their houses by lighting Diyas or mud lamps and creating beautiful designs or Rangolis in the entrance of their houses or workplaces on the day of Dhanteras. They worship Goddess Lakshmi and pray for increase in wealth and prosperity.
People decorate their workplace and worship Goddess Laxmi for increase in business. They shop for gold, silver, other precious metals or stones and utensils on this day, which is a mark of wealth and gift of Goddess Laxmi/Lakshmi.
Let’s talk about the legend of Dhanteras or the first day of Deepavali, for celebrating it with more joy:
Legend Of King Hima
The horoscope of 16 year old son of King Hima predicted that he will die because of snake’s bite, on the fourth day of his wedding. His wife was very clever, she did not allow him to sleep the whole night. She took out all her ornaments of gold and silver and accumulated them in a form of heap. These ornaments lighted up the room, she also lit lamps throughout the room that prevented her husband from falling asleep. She started singing, dancing, and telling stories to his husband. When Lord Yama came, he sat there on the heap of ornaments and started waiting for the King’s son to sleep. King’s son didn’t fall asleep the whole night and Lord Yama quietly went away the next morning. That’s how the intelligent newly wedded wife of King Hima’s son saved her husband’s life. This marks an important legend of Dhanteras.
Legend Of Dhanvantari
During the churning of ocean by gods and demons (Samudra Manthan), Dhanvantari (physician of gods) came out on the day of Dhanteras. She came out with a magical solution of healing. Dhanteras is also celebrated on this context and Dhanteras is also named after the Lord Dhanvantari.
Narak Chaturdashi 2017 date is October 18. It is also known as Chhoti Diwali.
Narak Chaturdashi or Kali Chaudas is celebrated on the second day of Diwali. Kali Chaudas is made from Kali and Chaudas. Here, Kali refers to Goddess Maa Kali and Chaudas refers to the fourteenth day of dark half of the month Kartik. This day is dedicated to Maa Mahakali or Kali.
People worship Maa Mahakali or Kali and pray to fade away all the evil powers from their lives.
Maa Mahakali blesses her devotees with a life free from evil things like anger, ignorance, and laziness. Some people also worship Lord Hanuman and offer him things like jaggery, Ghee (purified butter), and sugar on the day of Narak Chaturdashi or Chhoti Diwali.
There is also a tradition of washing and cleaning of houses on Narak Chaturdashi. It refers to getting rid of all the unwanted or waste things around in our environment for a fresh start. Along with the cleaning of every corner of our house, we should also clean every corner of our heart to give ourselves a fresh start on Narak Chaturdashi.
This day comes a day before Diwali, thus also known as Chhoti Diwali. On this day of Chhoti Diwali, people do preparations for further celebrations of Diwali, by lighting up lamps and by making beautiful Rangoli designs.
Legend Of Narak Chaturdashi
Let’s now talk about the legend of Narak Chaturdashi or Chhoti Diwali.
Once there was a very wicked demon named Narakasura who wanted to be worshiped in the place of God. Lord Krishna destroyed demon Narakasura on the day of Narak Chaturdashi. The name Naraka Chaturdashi is also inspired by the demon Narakasura.
The third day of Diwali celebrations is celebrated as the grand festival of Deepavali. This day is full of happiness and positivity. People celebrate Diwali with full zeal and enthusiasm; they wear new clothes, burn Patakhas and Phooljhadi (fireworks), and prepare good food for adding on to the festivities of Diwali.
People light up Diyas and candles for spreading light all around. This light is the mark of happiness and positivity. The original purpose of Diwali or Deepavali, the festival of lights, is to fill our lives with the divine light of spiritualism and positivity, or with the light of its real source that is the Almighty. This light fades away the darkness of ignorance and evil things from our lives.
Legends Of Diwali
Legends of different religions or different spiritual significances are connected to Diwali. These legends give us the actual reason for celebrating Deepavali. Different communities have different reasons for celebrating Diwali.
Legend Of Lord Rama
People of North India and most of the Hindus follow the legend of Lord Rama for celebrating Diwali. Diwali is the day when Lord Rama came back to Ayodhya after completing his 14 years long expulsion and after successfully rescuing Mata Sita by destroying the demon, Ravana. People of Ayodhya were very happy by the return of their kind prince, Lord Rama. They lighted up the whole Ayodhya with lamps and candles, they decorated their homes with flowers and lights, and also prepared great food for Lord Rama. They declared Lord Rama as the new King of Ayodhya. Till then, the day is celebrated as Diwali or Deepawali, which means the ray of light, hope, and a new beginning.
Legend Of Goddess Laxmi/Lakshmi
Goddess Lakshmi was incarnated on earth on the day of Diwali. During the churning of ocean by demons and gods, Goddess Lakshmi was incarnated as the goddess of money and wealth on earth on this special day of Diwali. Therefore, this day is considered important for worshiping Goddess Lakshmi. It is believed that she roam around the globe on the day of Diwali, and resides in the houses of her devotees who welcome her with full faith and devotion. People keep the doors and windows open to let Goddess Lakshmi enter.
Legend Of Lord Vishnu & Goddess Laxmi
Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi got married on this special day of Diwali. When Goddess Laxmi came out from the churning of ocean (Samudra Manthan), on that very day Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi got married. Thousands of lamps and lights were lighted for celebrating Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi’s wedding. This marks the celebrations of the festival of lights Diwali or Deepavali.
According to another story, Lord Vishnu in his fifth incarnation called Vamana Avatara saved Goddess Lakshmi from the clutches of King Bali on this precious day of Diwali. This is again an important reason for worshiping Goddess Lakshmi on Diwali.
Legend Of Mahabharta
According to a great Hindu epic Mahabharata, this was the day when Pandava brothers returned back to their birthplace Hastinapura after completing a long exile of 13 years. This expulsion was the result of their defeat in the game of dice or gambling by their cousin brothers, Kauravas. The Kauravas were cruel and vicious, whereas Pandavas were gentle and kind. The people of Hastinapura were very happy because of Pandavas’ return; they lighted up the whole place with lights and lamps for welcoming Pandavas.
Legend Of Swami Dayanand
On this important day of Diwali, Swami Dayanand Saraswati attained enlightenment or Nirvana and became Maharishi Swami Dayanand or the great sage Swami Dayanand. He founded Arya Samaj in the year 1875. Arya Samaj has given a new direction to spiritualism. Arya Samaj is a group or society of people who rely on Vedas for their spiritual enlightenment by discarding worshiping of any physical object as god. Enlightenment of Swami Dayanand is also an important reason for celebrating Diwali or Deepawali.
Legend Of Vardhamana Mahavira
The main reason for Jains to celebrate Diwali is the attainment of enlightenment by Vardhamana Mahavira. He was the founder of modern Jain society. Jains celebrate and remember this day as an important occasion of attainment of enlightenment by Mahavira Vardhamana.
Legend For Sikhs
On this special day of Diwali, the sixth Guru of Sikhs, Guru Hargobind Ji was freed from the clutches of Mughal Emperor Jahangir along with 52 other Hindu Kings. Also, the first stone of the foundation of Golden Temple at Amritsar was laid down in 1577 on the day of Diwali.
The coinciding of so many auspicious incidences on the same day shows us the greatness of the auspicious day of Diwali or Deepavali.
It is the day after the grand festival of Diwali, or the fourth day is celebrated as Govardhan Puja. Govardhan Puja is celebrated for honoring Lord Krishna by remembering the incident of lifting the Govardhan hill by Lord Krishna.
People build a replica of Govardhan hill, cows and bulls and also their family members by using cow dung, they worship them and pray Lord Krishna for saving them from any difficulties of life. They pray Lord Krishna for a safe and smooth life.
Legend Of Govardhan Puja
Govardhan is a sacred mountain in Braj. It is believed that Govardhan is an incarnation of Lord Krishna who was manifested in the form of a mountain. Lord Krishna had made the people of Braj to worship the sacred hill of Govardhan.
Once Lord Indra became arrogant and started showing off his powers. He started showering heavy rains and storms on earth, that became a trouble for mankind. Then, Lord Krishna raised Govardhan mountain on his little finger for saving the lives of people. He did that to provide shelter to the people of Braj below that mountain, as a great umbrella. All the people and animals of Braj went under the shelter of mountain and protected themselves from heavy rainfall and storms.
Bhai Dooj is celebrated on the fifth or last day of Diwali festival. The festival is called with different names at different places such as Bhai Phota in Bengal, Bhai Dooj, Bhau-beej or Bhav Bij in Gujarat, Maharashtra and Karnataka.
Bhai Dooj signifies the last day of the grand festival Diwali. It is a festival similar to Raksha Bandhan ,which celebrates the pure love and sacred bond of brother and sister. Sisters apply Tika on the forehead of their brothers and pray for their well being and success. This ceremony takes place in the presence of all family members. All family members come together and celebrate the festival with full fun and joy.
Legend Of Bhai Dooj
Long ago, the holy river Yamuna was very upset because her brother Lord Yama (lord of death) had not visited to her since very long. She told river Ganga about this. River Ganga reminded her brother Yama about his sister. Then, Lord Yama visited to his sister Yamuna on this particular day of Bhai Dooj. She welcomed him with lots of love, wishes and gifts. Lord Yama became very happy and declared that anyone who visit to his sister on this special day of Bhai Dooj, he will be blessed with a long and happy life, and will get Moksha (salvation).
Food is always a very important part of every Indian festival. Diwali is such a grand festival that some really exotic dishes are prepared for celebrating this special festival. So, on Deepavali, you can also prepare the dishes and increase the enjoyment of the festival of lights. Some of the dishes are listed below. However, it is said that non-vegetarian food is prohibited and traditional Indian vegetarian dishes are prepared. Hence, only the vegetarian and the best of sweet dishes will be prepared for celebrating Diwali.
Some Dishes For Deepavali In 2017
Some Desserts For Deepavali In 2017
Prepare these traditional exotic dishes at your home or bring them from the market to celebrate the festival of Diwali or Deepavali.
This was the description of five days of Diwali or Deepawali. The celebrations of these five festivals make a grand festival Diwali or Deepavali. Celebrate Diwali with full fun, joy, happiness and lots of good food.
Diwali comes with its grand celebrations, happiness and joy, and with a valuable message of triumph of good over evil. We should make our life like the Diyas or lights of Diwali or Deepavali that spread light and positivity in the lives of others. Light up these Diyas in your surroundings and within yourselves to enlighten from within.
‘MyKundali wishes you all a Happy Diwali ..’