'Festival of Lights‘ Diwali Festival
Diwali is a popular Hindu festival which takes place in late October to early November.
The festival of Diwali celebrates the return of Rama and Sita to their kingdom after they had spent 14 years in exile. This triumph of good over evil brought back the light of knowledge and truth to mankind. During Diwali the goddess of wealth, Lakshmi, is welcomed into Hindu homes as it is believed she will bring prosperity,
Part of the preparation for welcoming Lakshmi is the lighting of many small Diva lamps to greet her and light her way.
The Hindu New Year celebration lasts from one to five days and is also known as the ‘Festival of Light’. This takes place on the third day of the festival of Diwali.
Diwali is one of the biggest festival of Hindus and it is celebrated with great enthusiasm and happiness all over India and in other countries too.
Hindus perform Laxmi Puja in the evening and they seek the blessings of the goddess of Wealth, Lakshmi
At the festival of Diwali people exchange Diwali gifts with their family and friends.
The meaning of 'Diwali' is 'a row of lamps'. The most popular tradition of Diwali is filling little clay lamps with oil and wick and lighting them in rows all over the house.
Light is important in Hinduism because it means goodness. So, during the Festival of Lights, 'deeps', or oil lamps, are burned throughout the day and into the night to ward off darkness and evil.
Homes are filled with these oil lamps, candles and lights. Some people use decorated light candles, some use decorated diva, or clay lamps, and other people use decorative lights and put them in their windows for the festival.
In order to welcome the goddess Laxmi, houses are kept clean and Rangoli patterns are drawn on doorsteps.
People decorate their houses and business places and the entrances are made colourful with lovely traditional Rangoli designs to welcome Laxshmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity. To show that they are waiting for Laxmi Hindus celebrating Diwali draw small footprints with rice flour and vermilion powder (kumkum) all over the houses and burn the Diwali lamps.
Rangoli is Indian traditional art, usually created on the floor during festivals.
During the Diwali festival, people usually make various types of Rangoli patterns that are geometrical designs. Between these designs they place the oil lamps (Divas).