Diwali, the Festival of Lights is celebrated throughout India. But what makes Diwali so special? Why is it celebrated with such pomp and show nationwide? Let us checkout some amazing facts about Diwali.
1. Diwali is a 5 days celebration and just not of 1 day, though in most places only a day is given as Diwali holiday. Diwali is celebrated by Hindus worldwide and it marks the start of Hindu New Year. Business owners and traders open their new account book for the customers while farmers end the harvest season as Diwali marks the start of winter.
2. Diwali is also the occasion of complete house cleaning; often known as Spring Clean. Every Indian family ensures that their houses turn spotless clean before Diwali.
3. Though gambling is not considered as legitimate but during Diwali you will find people gambling. No, it is not done for money but because it is considered to bring prosperity and wealth if played on the occasion of Diwali.
4. Diwali comes from the word Diya, meaning oil lamps. Every corner of the house is lightened with such lamps to eliminate darkness. Darkness symbolizes evil and the soothing light from oil lamps brightens the world; light denotes knowledge over ignorance. There is another reason for decorating homes and restaurants with earthen oil lamps; it is believed that Goddess Lakshmi finds her way to homes following the lights.
5. Diwali is incomplete without buying gifts for friends, family members and acquaintances. People visit each other’s house and exchange gifts on the occasion; dry fruits and sweets are considered the main gift items. A grand feast is arranged on the occasion of Diwali; it is a gala event and a get together of friends and family. Ladies prepare meals wearing new clothes on this occasion; it is considered a good omen.
6. Goddess Lakshmi and Lord Ganesh are placed side by side and worshipped on the occasion of Diwali. Lord Ganesh is considered the savior from obstacles while Lakshmi, is worshipped as the provider of wealth and prosperity. Every business and household worship the duo as Diwali is considered incomplete without this ritual.
7. Diwali is also the festival of colors. Rangoli is a must on this festivity. Ladies use flower petals and different colors to adorn the courtyards and place of worship. Diyas are placed at the heart of the Rangoli which generate an awesome aura inside the home.
8. The Great Indian Epic, Ramayana has strong connections with this festival. It is believed that every house in Ayodha, the kingdom of Lord Rama was lightened with diyas to welcome him and Sita back from their 14 years of exile. On the other hand Jains celebrate Diwali to mark the attainment of Moksha by Mahavira.
9. Look at the evening sky on the eve of Diwali and you will find the night sky glittering with sparkles of lights. No one celebrates Diwali in India without fireworks and crackers. Millions of rupees are spend every year by Indians on annar, rockets and starlights.
10. Lastly Diwali is the mega shopping festival. Dhanteras is celebrated on the first day of Diwali; symbolizing wealth and prosperity. People buy expensive metals like gold, silver, gemstones, electronic appliances, utensils, vehicles, furnishing and other such items on this day.
So it can be said Diwali is just not an occasion to engage in fun and frolic but it is also an auspicious day when the rich Indian culture emerges in its full glory!