Hindu Of Universe

“God’s light is within you, It never leaves you.”

Diwali is one of the most colorful and cheerful festivals celebrated in India.

It is the most auspicious festival of Hindus, but Jains, Sikhs, and some Buddhist communities observe this festival as well.

Diwali signifies the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, and clarity over ignorance.

It is celebrated during the Hindu lunisolar month of Kartika.

It is generally celebrated for 5 days.

The cultural diversity of India is so big; one can observe people celebrating Diwali in innumerable ways, according to their own culture and customs.

But unfortunately, most of the people celebrating these festivals don’t know their significance, their importance in our life.

That’s the main reason why our culture is withering away with time.

These festivals are not only about celebrations or rituals.

They hold tremendous spiritual significance as well.

In this article, we are going to explore the lost legends behind this festival.

We are not only going to explore its origins and significance, but we will also see how different communities celebrate this festival according to their own tradition.

Diwali is generally celebrated as a 5 days festival.

It begins on Dhanteras and ends on Bhai Dooj.

We will explore these days one by one, will understand the legends behind them, and will also explore the ways they are celebrated throughout India.

So, let’s begin with the first day.

Dhan Teras:

‘Dhan’ means wealth, and ‘Teras’ means thirteenth.

Dhanteras marks the beginning of Diwali on the 13th day of the dark fortnight of Hindu month Kartik. This day is celebrated by many by cleaning their home and offices.

Diyas are lit outside homes.

It is a common belief that one should bring home any form of wealth during this day.

That’s the reason many people buy jewelry on this day.

While some people worship Ganesha and Laxmi on this day, some people worship Kubera, the god of wealth.

Different people have different customs to celebrate.

In the Hindu legend ‘Samudra Manthan’, in which the ocean was churned to find ‘amrita’ or elixir, this was the day when goddess Laxmi came out of the ocean.

The God of Ayurveda, Dhanvantari, or the god of medicines, also appeared from the ocean on this day. Some communities also dedicate this day to lord Dhanvantari.

Choti Diwali/Naraka Chaturdashi:

The day after Dhanteras is celebrated as Choti Diwali or Naraka Chaturdashi. While Naraka means ‘Hell’, Chaturdashi means the 14th day of the Hindu month. The day also precedes Diwali, hence many celebrate it as ‘Choti Diwali’ or Small Diwali.


The name comes from the Hindu legend of Lord Krishna killing the demon Narakashur.

He had imprisoned over 16,000 girls in his castle.

On this day, Lord Krishna killed Narakashur and freed those girls.

The good won over evil.

This day has great spiritual significance.

The day is revered as an opportunity to free the souls from hell and show them their way in the eternal cycle of life and death.

This day also serves as a spiritual reminder to all those people stuck in the trap of ‘Samsara’ or the external world.

Generally, this day is celebrated as the main day of Diwali in southern states such as Kerala, Tamilnadu, and Goa.

People visit friends and families on this day to seek blessings.

They also buy sweets and other gifts for them.

This is the main day of 5 days long festival.

This day also marks the last day of the dark fortnight of the Hindu month.

This is no moon day. But the lights of temples and homes brighten up the night, hence calling it the ‘festival of lights’.

One really can’t know the beauty of this night unless he has seen it with his own eyes.

This is the most auspicious day for most of the people of India.

Even, over a dozen countries have declared Diwali as an official holiday.

During this day, businesses and offices are closed earlier so that everyone can enjoy the evening with their families.

Many people visit elder people to seek their blessings.

Everyone could be seen wearing new clothes.

In the evening time, the Puja rituals are performed.

After that, it has become a part of the culture to burst firecrackers.

That’s how this cheerful night goes on.

Now, there are many legends behind this day.

The most prominent one is the returning of Lord Rama along with Mata Sita to Ayodhya after an exile of 14 years.

It is said that the whole Ayodhya was lightened up on that day with Diyas to express their love and happiness on the return of their beloved lord.

That’s why diyas are lighted on this day.

It is also on this night, that Goddess Lakshmi appeared from the ‘Samudra Manthan’ chose to marry Lord Vishnu.

Some legends say that when Goddess Kali was angry and was on the verge of destroying everything, Lord Shiva laid on her way, and She stepped on Him, which made Her come back to Her senses.

While most of the people worship Lord Ganesh and Laxmi on this day, cultural diversity could be seen on this day.

Eastern India, and particularly Bengal worship Goddess Kali on this day.

Some communities also revere the God of wealth, Kubera on this day.

Diwali is the day of well-being and prosperity.

It is believed that Lakshmi arrives in only those homes which are clean and pure.

That’s why cleanliness and purity are maintained on this day.

Many people also let their door and windows remain open throughout the night believing strongly that the goddess Lakshmi will manifest.

Govardhan Puja/Annakut/Balipratipada:

On the 4th day of Diwali, almost every community celebrates the festival in their own way.

Many people do Govardhan Puja on this day.

Govardhan is the mountain that Lord Krishna lifted on his little finger on this day to save the lives of people and animals.

Many people celebrate this day as Balipratipada, the day when Bali was defeated in the hands of Vishnu. This day also celebrates the auspicious relationship between husband and wife, Shiva, and Shakti.

There are many communities that celebrate Annakut on this day.

Annakut means a heap of grain. Lord is offered various recipes on this day. In many Krishna temples, ‘Chappan Bhog’ or 56 different kind of recipes are prepared to offer to the god.


This day marks the end of the festival.

This day is dedicated to the auspicious relationship between brothers and sisters.

This festival could be seen celebrated with little differences in many parts of India.


Diwali is celebrated during the harvest season in India.

This is the time for the people to reap what they have sowed.

This is one festival that unites India as a nation.

However, there is much more to this festival than just external celebrations.

This is the time to light the diyas of our hearts.

This is time to illuminate our being.

It is believed that during this time, planetary alignments are such, that it helps one’s spiritual growth.

This is the time to turn inwards and recognize the true nature of our being.

Diwali is also mentioned in ancient scriptures.

Padma Purana and Skanda Purana mentions Diwali as the festival of lights.

According to Skanda Purana, diyas symbolizes Sun god who transitions in the Hindu month Kartika.

This day is celebration of the famous legend of Yama and Nachiketa.

It is a knowledge illuminating conversation that could be found in the Katha Upanishad.

This tale also marks the victory of knowledge over ignorance.

At the end of this article, now we not only know how to celebrate Diwali, but we also know the cultural and spiritual significance of the same.

Every Hindu festival reminds us about the significance and depth of Indian culture; and preserves the traditions from getting lost in the darkness of ignorance.

Diwali is all about Light, positivity, knowledge, prosperity, and well being of every human being.

One can sense the divinity in the air during this festival.

The lighting of diyas also reminds us that there is a source of light within us too.

It is the festival to reconcile the differences and become one with the spirit of the divine.


Diwali is also known as Deepavali, Dipavali, Dewali, Deepawali, or the Festival of Lights.

It is celebrated in October or November each year.

Diwali celebrations can last for about five days.

What Do People Do?

Millions of Hindus around the world celebrate Diwali with gift exchanges, fireworks and festive meals.

The Diwali celebration in India takes place when the monsoon season ends and the weather is mild and pleasant. People try to pay off their old debts, make or buy new clothes and thoroughly clean their houses as part of the festival preparations.

House exteriors are whitewashed and sometimes decorated with designs drawn in white rice flour and filled in with color.

Buildings are traditionally illuminated with oil-burning bowls called dipa lights, or more recently, with strings of artificial lights.

People spend time with their friends and family.

On the first day of the festival people pray, eat a special breakfast consisting of different foods, and the Hindu goddess Lakshmi’s statue is carried throughout the streets in procession.

Children are sometimes given candy or toys from booths set up for the occasion.

In southern India children wear flower wreaths on their heads or anklets of bells.

Boys in some areas construct elaborate castles and forts of mud and display them for visiting guests.

After dark there are fireworks and people who live near rivers float lighted lamps on tiny rafts.

To add to the festival of Diwali, melas (fairs) are held throughout India.

These are found in many towns and villages.


Diwali is called the Festival of Lights and is celebrated to honor Rama-chandra, the seventh avatar (incarnation of the god Vishnu).

It is believed that on this day Rama returned to his people after 14 years of exile during which he fought and won a battle against the demons and the demon king, Ravana. People lit their houses to celebrate his victory over evil (light over darkness).

The goddess of happiness and good fortune, Lakshmi, also figures into the celebration.

It is believed that she roams the Earth on this day and enters the house that is pure, clean, and bright.

The Diwali festival in southern India often commemorates the conquering of the Asura Naraka, a powerful king of Assam, who imprisoned thousands of inhabitants.

It was Krishna, a deity worshipped in Hinduism, who was finally able to subdue Naraka and free the prisoners. Diwali celebrations may vary in different communities but its significance and spiritual meaning is generally “the awareness of the inner light”.

It is also the beginning of the new financial year for the business community.


Lamps, fireworks and bonfires illuminate this holiday, as the word “Deepawali” means “a row or cluster of lights” or “rows of diyas (clay lamps)”.

The festival symbolizes the victory of righteousness and the lifting of spiritual darkness.

During Diwali, or Deepawali, the goddess Lakshmi, who symbolizes wealth, happiness and prosperity, is also worshipped.

Note: It is not possible to mention every activity that takes place on this occasion as celebrations vary in different regions.

However, this article provides a general overview of the main celebrations that usually occur during this event. Moreover, the date in which Diwali is celebrated may vary depending on locations and calendar interpretations.

Top 10 Facts about Diwali!

Learn all about the religious festival of Diwali with our Top 10 Facts

Diwali, or Deepavali, is one of the most important festivals in the Hindu calendar.

It is celebrated by millions of Hindus around the world and is known as the “Festival of Lights”.

Diwali celebrates the victory of good over evil and commemorates the return of Lord Rama to his kingdom, Ayodhya, after 14 years of exile.

In this article, we will look at 10 interesting facts about Diwali and it’s celebration.

1. Diwali is a Hindu Festival often called The Festival of Lights

Diwali originated in India but now is celebrated across the world.

It lasts 5 days and people light lamps and set off fireworks to celebrate.

2. People often think of Diwali as a Hindu festival, but it is also celebrated by Sikhs and Jains.

For the Sikhs, Diwali celebrates the victory of the sixth guru, Guru Hargobind, from Emperor Jahangir, who had imprisoned him.

For Jains it marks the anniversary of Nirvana or liberation of Mahavira’s soul, the twenty fourth and last Jain Tirthankara.

3. Diwali falls in the hindu calendar month of Karthik It marks the start of the Hindu New Year.

The exact dates change each year and are determined by the position of the moon but it is usually either in October or November. 

4. Diwali celebrates the return of Rama and Sita after defeating the evil King Ravana Hindus in northern India celebrate Rama and Sita defeating the evil King Ravana.

In different parts of India the story can be slightly different but they normally include Rama and Sita.

5. Diwali also celebrates the birth of Lakshmi It is believed that Lakshmi, the goddess of Wealth and prosperity, was born out of the great churning of the milk sea on Diwali.

Lights and lamps, lit during Diwali, are said to help Lakshmi find her way into homes so she can bring people wealth and good luck.

6. Annakut is celebrated on the fourth day of Diwali Annakut is celebrated on the 4th Day of Diwali and is the 1st day of the new year in the Hindu calendar.

It is a day of offering gratitude for Krishna, a Hindu God.

7. Different countries have different Diwali beleifs In the region of Bengal people worship the goddess Kali, the destroyer of evil forces.

In Nepal people celebrate Krishna’s victory over the evil king Narakaasura.

8. The word Diwali means row of lights In Sanskrit, which is an ancient language from India, Diwali can be translated as row of lights.

9. Rangoli is a popular Diwali tradition where patterns are made from colourful powders and flowers.

People draw rangoli on the floor by the entrance of their homes to welcome the gods and goddesses and bring good luck!

10. Leicester holds the largest Diwali celebrations outside of India.

Every year in Leicester tens of thousands of people gather in the streets to see fireworks, music and dancing.

13 Diwali Interesting Facts

Diwali is widely considered to be India’s most important annual holiday and is certainly the festival that has received the most attention from the international community.

Known as the “festival of lights,” every year observers celebrate Diwali as a festival of the triumph of light over darkness, and by extension of good over evil.

For five days during the festivities, the country is engulfed in celebration and the streets are ablaze with candles and lights. Underneath the fanfare though, what are the deeper origins and traditions of this major festival?

1. Diwali is celebrated over 5 days and the exact date changes every year.

One day is not nearly enough to contain the swell of celebration that is Diwali. 

The festival is celebrated over 5 days, with each day associated with its own traditions and means of celebration.

Individual days are also granted their own names:

Day 1 is Dhanteras (or Dhanatrayodashi),

Day 2 is Naraka Chaturdashi (or Chhoti Diwali),

Day 3 is Lakshmi Puja,

Day 4 is Annakut (also called Bali Padyami, Padva, Virapratipada or Dyutapratipada) and

Day 5 is Bhai Duj (or Bhau-Beej).

Don’t worry, you won’t be tested on these names.

The major takeaway is that Diwali is a marathon-like, tradition-filled celebration.

Each year, the exact date of the festival also changes according to the Hindu lunisolar calendar, with the festival typically falling between mid-October and mid-November.

2. Diwali is not just a Hindu festival but is also celebrated by Jains and Sikhs.

Many of India’s annual festivals are grounded in the Hindu religion, but Diwali is special in that it is observed across the religious spectrum. 

Jains and Sikhs have their own traditions and religious underpinnings associated with the festival, making it a truly expansive celebration.

Not just different religious sects, but different regions of India also vary significantly in their modes of observation.

Jains celebrate Diwali as the day that Lord Mahavir achieved Nirvana, while Sikhs celebrate the holiday as Bandi Chor Divas, the day that the Guru Hargobind was released from prison.

3. Lakshmi, the goddess of prosperity, is the major deity associated with Diwali

Indian mythology being so vast, there are accordingly many gods that are celebrated across the subcontinent at the time of Diwali.

The most prominent of all of these, however, is undoubtedly Lakshmi, the goddess of beauty, fortune, and prosperity. 

Observants of Diwali will make tributes and worship Lakshmi throughout the holiday, in hopes of welcoming good fortune in the upcoming year.

4. West Bengal celebrates Kali, the goddess of destruction, during Diwali.

Lakshmi is only one of the many major deities associated with the Diwali festival, others including Krishna, Vishnu, Rama, and many more.

One particularly notable deity associated with Diwali is Kali, the goddess of destruction.

Kali is typically depicted in a fierce manner, but she is actually the destroyer of evil forces, and thus fits positively in the celebration of light over darkness.

Natives of West Bengal often celebrate Kali Puja, or Kali Day, instead of celebrating a traditional Diwali. At this time, cities like Kolkata are filled with devotees who head to Kali’s temples to make offerings and pray.

During the celebration, large statues of the fearsome goddess are erected all over the state.

5. Diwali celebrates the triumph of light over darkness.

This celebration of light over darkness forms a major part of the core spiritual significance of Diwali, and also goes a long way in helping to explain all the lights you’ll see flooding the streets throughout the celebration.

Many of the stories and legends associated with Diwali center around the narrative of the triumph of light over darkness and good over evil, or involve the theme of light in one way or another.

6. The word Diwali means “row of lights” in Sanskrit.

The triumph of light over darkness which forms the crux of Diwali is not just metaphysical. Diwali literally translates into “row of lights” in Sanskrit.

Throughout the festival, you will see lights of all forms and brightness illuminating cities and towns.

The most characteristic among these are the oil lamps and lights strung across buildings and homes throughout the country.

Many believe that these lights guide Lakshmi into households to bring good fortune.

 Firework displays and firecrackers are also an extremely popular form of Diwali celebration.

7. Diwali is heavy on the decorating.

It’s not just all about the lights, though.

Indian households will often prepare for the five-day festival by cleaning their houses and making decorations such as rangoli on the floors.

Many families also hand garlands of marigolds across entrances and string lights all over their homes.

If you are traveling India around the time of Diwali, you will see some brilliant, colorful, and intricate displays bringing life to the country in anticipation of the festival.

Diwali markets are especially famous for their beautiful light displays.

The most decorated markets are often found in Rajasthan or Delhi.

8. Diwali is also heavy on the food.

Like many Indian holidays, a major focus of Diwali is the food.

Different regions and households observe different culinary traditions, but some of the most common staples you might come across include samosas, pakoras, and aloo tikki. 

Indian cuisine is vast and varied, so expect your tastebuds to be tested and tantalized from all across the spectrum.

On the day of Diwali, it is common for households to exchange holiday sweets such as barfi, laddoo, and kheer.

Many families also get together for a big Diwali feast.

9. Diwali is a national holiday in 11 countries.

While Diwali is primarily observed by the over 1 billion people of India, the Indian diaspora has also spread the celebration of the festival far beyond the borders of the subcontinent.

Diwali is observed by people of Indian descent around the globe and is also celebrated as an official national holiday in Fiji, Guyana, Malaysia, Mauritius, Myanmar, Nepal, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago, all countries with significant overseas Indian populations.

10. Diwali has been celebrated for over 2,500 years.

All of these facts and traditions relate to how Diwali is celebrated today, but it is also worth noting that the festival has a history that stretches back nearly 3 millennia.

While it is impossible to pin its exact origins due to it being associated with so many different religions and mythologies, this expansive history is a testament to the depth and richness of India’s cultural heritage.

11. Diwali has many similarities to Christmas.

Because it is the largest holiday of the year in India, Diwali often draws parallels to the role of Christmas in the West.

Usually occurring in late fall, it is a time to come together with family, take a week off work, and reset yourself for the coming new year.

There’s also plenty of sweets and gifts to be exchanged, too.

12. Diwali celebrations include huge firework shows and playing with firecrackers.

Fireworks are possibly the most noted tradition of Diwali to the outside world, as every year people across the subcontinent celebrate the triumph of light over darkness by both observing communal firework displays and lighting their own firecrackers as well.

The air may be a bit smokey the next day, but that doesn’t mitigate the fun to be had by kids and adults alike.

13. A rangoli is a decoration made from colored rice and flower petals.

In addition to firecrackers, rangolis are perhaps the most famous decoration associated with Diwali. These circular patterns are made together on the floor using colored rice or sand and flower petals and can range from simple shapes and designs to vastly intricate and ornate works of art.

Diwali 17 Interesting & Unusual Facts about the Festival of Lights

Diwali is the festival of lights that falls in the Hindu calendar month of Kartika.

It is celebrated with great enthusiasm across the world.

Let us have a look at some interesting facts about Diwali.

Diwali’s name is derived from the Sanskrit term Deepavali which means “row of lights”.

The festival symbolizes the victory of light over darkness. 

Every year, the date of this festival is calculated by the Hindu lunar calendar.

 For Diwali celebrations, the preparation begins weeks before the festival.

On this auspicious day, houses, shops, and other buildings are decorated with lights, candles, diyas, and rangoli. etc.

Everywhere we can see illuminations.

People meet with their relatives, and friends, and exchange sweets and gifts.

Lord Ganesha and Lakhsmi, the Goddesses of wealth are worshipped on Diwali night for wealth, health, and prosperity.

People and children play with crackers and sparklers.

Let us read 17 interesting and unknown facts about the Diwali festival through this article.

17 interesting facts about Diwali

According to many legends, the Diwali festival is associated with the victory of Rama over Ravana.

It is said that on this day Lord Rama reached Ayodhya along with Sita and Lakshmana.

The people of Ayodhya welcomed Rama, Sita, and Lakshmana with several decorations and illuminated the place with diyas. 

According to Jain, on this day Lord Mahavira attained “moksha or salvation”.

Diwali is an important religious festival in India.

Along with Hindus, the festival of light is also celebrated by Sikhs and Jains on account of different beliefs and values.

The history of facts and traditions related to Diwali dates back nearly 3 millennia.

However, there are no exact dates due to assorted religions, mythologies, and vast history.

The word Diwali (or Deepavali as it’s sometimes called) is derived from the Indian ancient language Sanskrit which means “row of lights”.

The exact dates for Diwali change every year and completely depend on the moon cycle.

The pompous festival is celebrated for 5 long days, with each day associated related to different traditions and values.

Day 1 is Dhanteras (or Dhanatrayodashi),

Day 2 is Naraka Chaturdashi (or Chhoti Diwali),

Day 3 is Lakshmi Puja,

Day 4 is Annakut (or Govardhan Puja) and day 5 is Bhai Duj (or Bhau-Beej).

Also mythologically, this day is celebrated as the birthday of the goddess of Wealth and prosperity, Lakshmi.

It is believed that the deity was born out of the Samudra Manthan, on the same day.

So, on Diwali people specifically lit diyas and lamps in the honor of the Hindu goddess of wealth, Lakshmi to help find her way into peoples’ homes, bringing prosperity.

Alongside Goddess Lakshmi, the God of intelligence Lord Ganesha is also worshipped.

Worship of the duo symbolizes opening the door of wealth with intelligence.

The part of Bengal celebrates Diwali as Kali Puja.

Kolkata, the city of joy usually gets filled with devotees worshipping the destroyer of evil forces.

Diwali brings extraordinary colorful, and intricate displays bringing life to the country amid the festival. Rajasthan and Delhi are among the cities to witness the joy of Diwali.

Buddhists celebrate Diwali to commemorate the time, in the 3rd Century BCE, when Emperor Ashoka adopted and embraced Buddhism.

Diwali is the only occasion when the rival country India and Pakistan put aside their hostilities and join hands to celebrate festivals of joy and also exchange sweets.

Apart from India, it is believed that the English city of Leicester hosts the biggest Diwali celebrations for its population.

The countries observing the official national holiday for Diwali in Fiji, Guyana, Malaysia, Mauritius, Myanmar, Nepal, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Trinidad, Tobago, and more.

Marking the beginning of winter Diwali also symbolizes the start of a new sowing season and new business accounts.

The celebration of light over darkness or good over evil is the core of the spiritual significance of Diwali. 

This year Diwali will is celebrated on 24th October.

Various cultural events are scheduled in different parts of the country to mark the importance of light festival.

 11 Reasons why we celebrate Diwali

Diwali, one of the most popular festivals in India is celebrated with pomp and glamour.

This festival is a symbolism of goodness; of right versus wrong; of good versus evil; of light versus darkness.

Diwali has been derived from the Sanskrit word ‘Deepavali’ which translates to ‘a row of lights’.

This is evident from the lighting of lamps in every household.

These lamps are small and kept together in a row marking the festival of Diwali.

Though this festival is mainly associated with India, people all over the world are now seen to be celebrating the festival of Diwali.

It is usually celebrated during the month of November and this year, Diwali is celebrated on 4th November .

As a festival, its origin is very ancient. Perhaps it originated when Lord Rama returned to Ayodhya after his exile.

But Diwali is not only attributed to Lord Rama; it is also attributed to Goddess Lakshmi, Lord Vishnu, Lord Krishna, Lord Ganesha and also Jainism’s twenty-fourth Tirthankara, Lord Mahavira.

Now, we shall read about the different stories related to Diwali to help us understand the different reasons why Diwali is celebrated.

1-The birth of Goddess Lakshmi:

According to Hindu scriptures, Goddess Lakshmi, on the day of Amavasya of the Karthik month, was married to Lord Vishnu on this day itself.

This day of Amavasya is the darkest day of the month and Goddess Lakshmi’s birth and marriage is a symbolism of light encompassing darkness wherein a number of oil lamps were lit to celebrate this auspicious occasion,

Hence, even to this day, Diwali is celebrated in honour of Goddess Lakshmi and marriage to Lord Vishnu.

2-Lord Rama’s return to Ayodhya:

As mythology has it, Ravana the king of Lanka captured Sita, the wife of Lord Rama; the seventh incarnation of Vishnu.

Lord Rama with the help of his brother Lakshmana, Lord Hanuman and many other monkeys built a bridge that went all the way to Lanka, defeated Ravana and rescued his wife.

On his arrival to Ayodhya, the citizens welcomed them by bursting crackers and lighting lamps.

From then on, Diwali is celebrated to honour and commemorate this auspicious occasion.

3-The return of the Pandava brothers:

The Mahabharata also serves as an origin to the Diwali story.

It is believed that when the Pandav brothers returned home after the great battle between the Pandavas and the Kauravas, they were welcomed with gaiety and jubilance.

Oil lamps made of earth were lit to celebrate their return hence enhancing the significance of Diwali.

4-King Vikramaditya’s coronation:

Not only does Diwali have a mythological and religious relevance, but it also marks an important festival in the history of India.

The great King Vikramaditya ruled India during 56-55BCE.

He was a renowned warrior and a wise ruler.

His coronation was much celebrated by the people of his kingdom by lighting lamps and bursting crackers and henceforth, Diwali is also being celebrated to honour the great monarch.

5-Lord Vishnu’s Vamana Avatar:

To rescue Goddess Lakshmi from King Mahabali during the Treta Yug, Lord Vishnu reincarnated as Vamana Avatar and tricked the evil king into giving all his wealth.

As such, the significance of Diwali is once again reiterated; good triumphs over evil.

6-Narakasura’s defeat at the hands of Lord Vishnu:

Narakasura was an evil demon king who was blessed with a great amount of powers but used his powers for his own selfish interest.

The Vishnu Purana mentions that there were about sixteen thousand women who were his prisoners.

On the night preceding Diwali, Lord Vishnu had reincarnated as himself as Lord Krishna and he killed the evil demon king, Narakasura in the Dwapara Yuga thereby rescuing all the sixteen thousand women.

To mark this event, the entire palace celebrated with much joy and exuberance.

7-Vardhamana Mahavira’s Enlightenment:

The twenty-fourth Tirthankara, Vardhamana Mahavira was born in Bihar to royalty.

But at the age of thirty, he gave away all his worldly pleasures in search of true nirvana or enlightenment. After twelve years of rigorous penance, at the age of 43, Mohair gained spiritual enlightenment or Kevela Jnana under a Sāla tree near Jrimbhikagrama on the banks of the River Rijubalika.

The event is recorded in the Harivamśa-purāņa and Uttar-purāņa texts. Not only is Diwali in the Jain tradition celebrated for the Mahavira’s enlightenment, it is also celebrated to ward off earthly desires which act as a hindrance to attaining nirvana.

8-The destruction of Goddess Kali:

For the protection of the good from all that is evil, Goddess Kali was born.

The earth was filled with malicious demons and Goddess Kali fought them off and protected the earth. She is symbolized as the woman with power, i.e., Narishakti.

However, after killing all the demons, the Goddess had lost all control and started killing all those that came in her way.

It was Lord Shiva who intervened and saved humanity.

Henceforth, on the occasion of Diwali, the Goddess’s followers pray to her for strength and courage to defeat evil in the world.

9-The lesson of Nachiketa

According to the Kanthoupanishad, There lived a boy named Nachiketa.

He believed that the Lord of Death was as dark as the Amavasya night.

However, on encountering Yama, the Lord of Death, he was surprised to see that the Lord was calm and had a dignified countenance.

Yama told the boy that death is a necessary path, a path to find the true light.

Therefore, the significance of Diwali is also highlighted by the enlightenment of Nachiketa.

10-Harvest Festival:

The harvest time of Kharif crops coincides with the festival of Diwali.

Diwali is thus also celebrated to glorify the harvests and the hard work of the farmers adding more joy to the celebration.

11-Diwali for the Sikhs:

On the occasion of Diwali, the third Guru, Guru Amar Das organized a festival of light for all his brethren to celebrate the unity of the Sikhs all over the world. 

On this same occasion, the sixteenth Guru, Guru Hargobind was released from the imprisonment of the Mughal king, Jehangir.

The foundation stone of the Golden Temple was also laid on this day.

Hence, Diwali is also a very special occasion for the Sikh community.

Reasons to celebrate Diwali

Why do we celebrate Diwali?

It’s not just the festive mood in the air that makes you happy, or just that it’s a good time to enjoy before the advent of winter.

There are several reasons why Diwali is a great time to celebrate.

And there are good reasons not just for Hindus but also for all others to celebrate this great Festival of Lights.

1.  Goddess Lakshmi’s Birthday:

The Goddess of wealth, Lakshmi incarnated on the new moon day (amaavasyaa) of the Kartik month during the churning of the ocean (samudra-manthan), hence the association of Diwali with Lakshmi.

2.  Vishnu Rescued Lakshmi:

On this very day (Diwali day), Lord Vishnu in his fifth incarnation as Vaman-avtaara rescued Lakshmi from the prison of King Bali and this is another reason of worshipping Ma Larkshmi on Diwali.

3.  Krishna Killed Narakaasur:

On the day preceding Diwali, Lord Krishna killed the demon king Narakaasur and rescued 16,000 women from his captivity.

The celebration of this freedom went on for two days including the Diwali day as a victory festival.

4.  The Return of the Pandavas:

According to the great epic ‘Mahabharata’, it was ‘Kartik Amavashya’ when the Pandavas appeared from their 12 years of banishment as a result of their defeat in the hands of the Kauravas at the game of dice (gambling).

The subjects who loved the Pandavas celebrated the day by lighting the earthen lamps.

5.  The Victory of Rama:

According to the epic ‘Ramayana’, it was the new moon day of Kartik when Lord Ram, Sita and Lakshman returned to Ayodhya after vanquishing Ravana and conquering Lanka.

The citizens of Ayodhya decorated the entire city with the earthen lamps and illuminated it like never before.

6.  Coronation of Vikramaditya:

One of the greatest Hindu King Vikramaditya was coronated on the Diwali day, hence Diwali became a historical event as well.

7.  Special Day for the Arya Samaj:

It was the new moon day of Kartik (Diwali day) when Maharshi Dayananda, one of the greatest reformers of Hinduism and the founder of Arya Samaj attained his nirvana.

8.  Special Day for the Jains:

Mahavir Tirthankar, considered to be the founder of modern Jainism also attained his nirvana on Diwali day.

9.  Special Day for the Sikhs:

The third Sikh Guru Amar Das institutionalized Diwali as a Red-Letter Day when all Sikhs would gather to receive the Gurus blessings. In 1577, the foundation stone of the Golden Temple at Amritsar was laid on Diwali. In 1619, the sixth Sikh Guru Hargobind, who was held by the Mughal Emperor Jahengir, was released from the Gwalior fort along with 52 kings.

 What is Diwali?

Diwali (also spelled Divali or Dewali) is the Festival of Lights or Deepavali, a widely celebrated holiday in India, South Asia, and the Hindu Diaspora.

In Sanskrit, the word Deepavali means ”row of lights.”

Therefore, the celebration of Diwali includes the illumination of lights, diyas (clay lamps), candles, and firecrackers.

These illuminations symbolize various concepts, such as the victory of good over evil, knowledge over ignorance, and inner light over spiritual darkness.

For those who celebrate it, Diwali is a special time of the year for families and loved ones to come together.

During this time, people commit to choosing the right decisions in life as well as celebrating life.

When considering who celebrates Diwali, it is critical to note that it is not generally oriented around a single religion despite its popularity within Hinduism.

On the contrary, Hindus, Buddhists, Jains, Sikhs, people of Indian heritage, and those of non-Indian heritage all celebrate Diwali.

While each faith has its history and honorary events, the uniting factor for everyone celebrating Diwali is what it symbolizes.

Celebrations can look slightly different worldwide, but the emphasis is always given to honoring the victory of good, light, and knowledge.

Many Diwali celebrations take place in the home, but other common places for gathering are community centers and mandirs (local temples).

Historical Background of Diwali

The origin of Diwali and the Diwali lights date back more than 2,500 years.

However, many scholars agree that this ancient celebration connects to multiple religious texts, and it is almost impossible to determine when Diwali was first celebrated.

Many ancient texts, such as early Sanskrit texts, associate Diwali with the triumph of good over evil.

In Northern India, the origins relate to a tale of King Rama (an incarnation of the god Vishnu).

King Rama is described as the embodiment of dharma and is destined to rescue his wife, Sita (an incarnation of the goddess of prosperity and wealth), from an evil king.

When Rama and Sita safely returned to the north, the citizens of the city of Ayodhya rejoiced and lit millions of lamps in their honor.

In Southern India, Diwali is linked to the story of the Hindu god Krishna (another incarnation of Vishnu).

In this story, Krishna frees thousands of women from an evil king, demonstrating a link again to the defeat of evil.

However, in Gujarat in Western India, Diwali coincides with the New Year and the practice of asking the goddess Lakshmi for prosperity within the coming new year.

The majority of the country celebrates Diwali, with about 80 perfect of Indians being Hindu, and all honor the unique stories tied to the celebration.

Diwali Holiday Traditions

While Diwali is celebrated worldwide, there are many traditions connected to the holiday festival that the majority of people honor.

The celebration of Diwali incorporates long-established customs into the five-day festival.

Most of the celebrations revolve around good food, family gatherings, the lighting of diyas (lights), and praising the gods.

The list below outlines the most common traditions for Diwali celebrations:

Interesting Facts about Diwali Festival

Diwali is a unique and significant holiday in India and other countries and regions worldwide.

Over the years, the festival has developed many distinctive traditions that people still follow today.

The list below outlines three intriguing facts about Diwali.

Lesson Summary

Diwali, also known as the Festival of Lights, is a popular holiday in India, South Asia, and the Hindu Diaspora.

It is largely celebrated and rooted in Hindu culture, but it is celebrated across the globe by Hindus, Buddhists, Jains, and Sikhs.

It has various origin stories, but it is commonly believed to be a celebration of the harvest season across India.

This celebration is a five-day long festival honored by families coming together, eating traditional food, exchanging gifts, and praising various gods.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Diwali and why is it celebrated?

Diwali is a holiday celebrated over five days, mainly by Hindus, across India, South Asia, and Hindu Diaspora.

It is commonly referred to as the Festival of Lights since it is a tradition to light candles, lamps, and firecrackers during the celebration.

These illuminations honor the triumph of light over darkness, good over evil, and knowledge over ignorance.

What are the 5 days of Diwali in order?

There are five days of Diwali that each have their own name.

The five days are as follows:

Day one, Dhanteras;

Day two, Chhoti Diwali, Kalichaudas;

 Day three, Diwali;

Day four, Annakut, Padwa, Govardhan Puja; and

Day five, Bhai Duj, Bhai Bheej.

How do people celebrate Diwali?

There are many traditions within the celebration of Diwali.

Most commonly, people will light diyas, create rangolis, come together for good food, exchange gifts, and praise various gods.

 Festival Date, History, Puja Vidhi, Importance

Diwali festival is one of the most famous, awaited, bright, and colorful festivals in Hinduism.

The Diwali festival is full of lights.

Diwali is also known as Deepavali and is celebrated for 4 to 5 days.

The Deepavali festival signifies the triumph of good over evil.

The word meaning of Deepavali is Deep means light, and Avali means a row.

Behind the celebration of Diwali festival, it has one own story, that is the king Rama and Sita returning to their kingdom from exile after defeating of evil Ravana.

So, the people in Lord Rama’s kingdom, they used to light the lamps and Diya’s to welcome them.

So, that day onwards, South and North Indian people started to celebrate this Diwali festival. It is a festival of lights, that is these lights remove darkness and welcomes light.

Diwali celebration is very famous in India.


The Diwali festival is celebrated for five days.

According to the Hindu Lunar calendar, the festival falls in October or November, it depends on the moon cycle.

In India, in many places, Diwali celebrations are done on the third day.

During those days mainly Goddess Lakshmi is worshiped.

In 2023 Diwali is celebrated from the date October 21st to 26th.

The First Day: The first day, is known as Dhanteras.

This day celebrated for prosperity. On this day, Lakshmi welcomes special pujas.

Dhanvantari is an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, so, on this day Ayurvedic doctors also honor.

Lord Vishnu brought Dhanvantari as Ayurveda to mankind on this day.

The Second Day: The second day is known as Naraka Chaturdashi.

It is also known as a small Diwali. On this day it is believed, Goddess Kali has defeated the demon Narakasura.

The Third Day: The third day is a new moon day or Amavasya.

This is the very darkest day in that month, and the most important day of Diwali in North and West India. On this day, Goddess Lakshmi worshiped with a special puja in the evening.

In Assam, Odisha, and West Bengal Goddess Kali can worship.

The Fourth Day: This day has different meanings over India. In North India, it is celebrated as Govardhana puja, because on that day Lord Krishna defeated Indra, he is the god of rain and thunder. In Gujarat, it is celebrated as the new year. Maharashtra, Tamilnadu, Karnataka, the triumph of Lord Vishnu over demon king Bali, and it is celebrated as Bali Padyami.

The Fifth Day: The fifth day, is called Bhai Duj.

It is similar to Raksha Bandhan, this day, dedicated to sisters and brothers.

Deepawali Day  

1 Govatsa Dwadashi, Vasu Baras         

2 Dhantrayodashi, Dhanteras Dhanvantari Trayodashi, Yama Deepam    

3 Kali Chaudas, Hanuman Puja

4 Narak Chaturdashi, Tamil Deepavali Lakshmi Puja, Diwali Kedar Gauri Vrat, Chopda Puja Sharda Puja, Kali Puja

5 Diwali Snan, Diwali Devpuja   

6 Govardhan Puja, Annakut Bali Pratipada, Dyuta Krida Gujarati New Year, Bhaiya Dooj Bhau Beej, Yama Dwitiya

History of Diwali Festival

Diwali is a famous worldwide celebrated festival.

Behind the celebration of the Diwali festival, there are many stories.

The most well-known story behind Diwali is in Bhagavata Purana, it tells us about Narakasura.

He is an evil demon king, he has many powers and conquered both heaven and earth.

The demon king is a very cruel and horrific ruler.

It is believed on the day before Diwali, Kali Mata killed demon king Narakasura and saved many women whom the evil demon locked in his place.

The heaven and the people on earth relieved from the demon.

So, they celebrated the festival with very grandly, a tradition that is trusted to be alive through the yearly celebration of Deepavali.

According to other ancient scriptures, long ago for the gods and demons had a battle, in that battle gods lost.

At that time to save heaven and earth, from the cruel demons, Goddess Kali took the birth from Goddess Durga Mata’s forehead.

After killing all demons, Goddess Kali lost her control and then started killing who are came to stop her.

At that time Lord Shiva went to stop her, she steps on lord shiva.

Generally, we are seeing many pictures of Maa Kali, with a big tongue and she steps on lord shiva.

So, for this reason, every year Maa Kali puja celebrated on Diwali festival.

Diwali Puja Vidhi

  1. During the Diwali festival, house cleaning is very important. After cleaning of the entire house, to purify the house sprinkle Gangajal to the surroundings.
  2. Set up a Puja Mandir, in your puja room or living room, keep one table and spread a red cotton cloth on it, then keep grains in the center of the table.
  3. Then place a silver or bronze Kalasha in the middle of grains. Fill the Kalasha with water, betel nuts, mango leaves, marigold flower, coins, and grains. Place mango leaves in a circular shape in the Kalasha.
  4. On the right side of the Kalasha, place the idols of Goddess Lakshmi and God Ganesha. Then take one small puja thali and make one flat mountain with the help of rice grains, and draw one lotus flower with turmeric powder, put some coins and place it in front of the idols.
  5. Then place business and money related books and items in front of the idols.
  6. Apply the tilak to the deities Lakshmi, Ganesha, and Kalasha.
  7. Then offer some flowers to the deities, and keep some flowers with you for prayer.
  8. Keep flowers in your palm, close your eyes, and join your hands to recite Diwali puja mantra. After finishing prayer offer flowers to the deities.
  9. Take Goddess Lakshmi idols and do bath it with water, Panchamrit followed by water. Then clean it with cloth, place it in the backside of the Kalasha.
  10. Put turmeric powder, kumkum to the goddess Lakshmi idol. And offer the garland to the goddess Lakshmi’s neck. Then burn Agarbatti and Dhoop in front of the idols.
  11. Then offer coconut, fruits, sweets, supari, pan leaf, coins to the goddess. Put it in front of idols.
  12. Then finally take one Diya in Puja Thali, Ghanta, and perform Lakshmi Maa puja Arthi.

Importance of Diwali

Diwali means a row of lights.

Diwali is a great olden Hindu festival.

It celebrates with great happiness, splendor, as well as the entire Nation illuminated with colorful rangolis, Diwali lights,and plenty of firecrackers.

Three religions Hinduism, Jainism, and Sikhism peoples celebrate this Diwali festival.

The Deepavali festival signifies the triumph of good over evil and the truth and knowledge.

It is celebrated for five days, each day has a specific story.

This Diwali festival has various legends.

On this day, Lakshmi puja performed.

In the evening of the Diwali day, Goddess Kali also worshiped, people light Diyas, candles, and burn firecrackers throughout the night.

It is a festival of lights, the main significance behind the Diwali lights is to remove the darkness and welcomes light.

Diwali Puja

Diwali Puja is much-loved amongst all festivals and auspicious too for every Indian.

From Dhanteras to Bhai Dhooj all Hindus will be busy in its preparations and worship different god and goddesses in these five days.

However, Hindus celebrate this festival unanimously but rituals vary everywhere according to regions.

Diwali is festival of lights and it won’t be wrong to call it a grandest occasion which is celebrated with enormous enthusiasm.  

The beauty of this festival is that neither it is limited to a region nor religion which makes it an occasion to flourish secular spirit of India.

In spite of religion, they preach goddess Lakshmi, Lord Ganesha and God Kuber to arrive their adobe and bless them with health, wealth and prosperity.

History of Diwali Puja

Diwali marks its presence on Hindu Granth since ancient times and falls on the month of Kartika as per Panchang.

The festival is stated in Padma Purana and Skanda Purana (Sanskrit Scriptures) which were both completed in second or first half of millennial though its core text has been expanded on an earlier era.

Earthen lamps or diyas are mentioned in Skanda Purana as a symbol of the sun, the energy source of life and a cosmic resource of light which according to Hindu calender transits in the month of Kartika.

Some parts of Indian regions associate Diwali with a legend of Yama and Nachiketa on Amavasya (Diwali night).

This story is recorded in Katha Upanishad which was composed in 1st Millenial BC and states victory of right over wrong, knowledge vs.

ignorance and true knowledge vs. material knowledge.

In the 7th Century Sanskrit play, King Harsha played Nagananda which mentions Deepawali as Deepapratipada Utsava in which clays lamps were lit and new bride and grooms were given gifts.

Later in the 9th century, Rajashekhara stated Diwali as Deepamalika. Similarly, Kavayamimasa referred it as a festival to light lamps, whitewash home, and decorate streets and market in the night.

Legend Of Diwali/Deepawali

As we know India is a diversified nation so each culture has different rituals.

Similarly, Diwali is celebrated in different ways across the country.

In North Indian states Diwali is associated with the legend of Lord Rama Returning home.

Especially states like Haryana, Punjab, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh seeks this day as Lord Rama returning abode after 14 years exile after epic war with MahaGyaani Ravana and seeking Lord Rama as the King of Ayodhya.

On this day Maa Lakshmi emerged from the Ksheer Saga, an ocean which was churned by the goddess evolved to prosper the universe with health, wealth and happiness.

Therefore this day remarked a legend on the pages of history and since then for the betterment of mankind thee goddess is thanked and worshipped each subsequent year.

Religious Significance of Diwali

Diwali has a significant place in Hindu Tradition which is not only for the celebration of prosperity and wealth but it is a reminder in the honor of Lord Rama who returned with his beloved wife Sita and brother Laxmana from 14 years of exile.

Diwali is the Last day of the financial year as per Hindu Calenders thus this festival marks as a closing of the financial year for a businessman in a traditional way by greeting the gods of wealth Devi Laxami and Dhan Ke Devta Kuber with intelligence souvenir Lord Ganesha as he is marked as Pratham Pujyaniya Devta.

Businessman and Traders on this day perform Chopada Pujn that is dedicated to the gods of wealth to seek blessings from them and request to fulfill their lives with health, wealth and riches.  

New account books are sanctified in this puja and worshipped known as BahiKhata Pujan and then used in another financial year and is requested to Maa Laxmi that please bless our business and eradicate all the issues related to borrowings.

Songs and prayers are sung in the honor of Maa Laxmi and the whole day is dedicated to the goddess seeks huge attention.

Why do we celebrate Diwali

We all celebrate Diwali in spite of any religious backgrounds but knowing the legends behind celebrating this festival is worthy and you will know that apart from spiritual side Diwali has many other reasons to celebrate.

Let us know about it one by one-

The Victory of Lord Rama – According to Ramayana, Lord Rama with Sita and brother Laxmana was abandoned by a stepmother Kaikai which wanted to see his son be the owner of the Kingdom.

She somehow managed to send the elder son Rama for exile for 14years.

Where Sita Mata was kidnapped by King Ravana and then a huge legendary battle took place between them and Lord Rama was able to win Sita again.

After this tale, they came back to Ayodhya after 14years in honor of his king returning back people of Ayodhya lit earthen ghee lamps and firecrackers to celebrate this moment with happiness.

The Return of Pandavas – The epic Mahabharata also has a story on Diwali.

They were also exiled from their adobe by Kauravas as they lose in the gambling but entire kingdom wanted to see Pandavas as their Kings thus when they returned after 13 years they were welcomed with lights and bursting crackers.

The incarnation of Goddess Lakshmi – This is the birth date of Goddess Lakshmi as when the ocean was churned she evolved to bless universe with wealth and prosperity.

She was married to Lord Vishnu on the same day and people celebrate this day as her birthday in many parts.

Killing of Narakasura – Another legend states that on this day Lord Krishna killed demon-king Narakasura and rescued many women from his bad fate.

Therefore Rangoli is drawn by women across the nation to show respect to Lord Krishna for this bliss.

Coronation of Vikramaditya – On the day of Diwali King Vikramaditya was coroneted thus this day remarks the legend of this king.

Goddess Kali- West Bengal and Orissa dedicate this day in the name of Mahakali Maa.

When gods were defeated by demons then Maa Kali emerged from Maa Durga’s forehead and rescued the world.

Because of this, her anger burst out and she became uncontrollable and started killing humans.

At that moment Lord Shiva intervened and lies down in front of Maa to stop her.

This momentous time is celebrated as Diwali.

Goddess Lakshmi was rescued by Lord Vishnu- Goddess Lakshmi was imprisoned by King Bali and Lord Vishnu rescued the goddess from him by taking 5th incarnation.

And this took place in Diwali.

How to perform Diwali puja at home or shop?

Many people worship Goddess Lakshmi and God Ganesha but ideally, Lord Kuber is also offered prayers for complete puja.

So let’s see how do perform this puja ideally for great benefits

Puja Samagri or items

  • Ganesh idol, Lakshmi Ji and Kuber idol (all made of mud)
  • A temple idol made of mud with four lamps
  • Choughada made of mud
  • Laayi and Batasha
  • Idol of a wealthy couple Sethji and Sethaniji
  • Mud idol of horse, cow, elephant, and lion
  • Kumkum, turmeric, rice, coconut, betel leaves, fruits, sweets, and mango leaves
  • Ganga Jal, coins, incense sticks, diyas, mouli
  • One garland of flowers, camphor, havan samagri

These items are significant as it includes everything one needs to be happy and fulfilling home.

Diwali Puja Process (Vidhi)

Diwali is on Amavasya day and on this day idols of Lakshmi, and Kuber is installed and apart from this Bahikhata is also worshipped.

On this day one has to keep fasting all day either without water Nirjal or with fruits Phalahar as per person’s willpower and capability.

Diwali puja should always be performed as per Muhurats and Lagna, Pradosh Kaal and Amavasya Tithi. Diwali puja in the detailed procedure is given below

The following given Mantra at the time of Pujan

Om sarvebhyo gurubhyo namah |

Om sarvebhyo devebhyo namah ||

Om sarvebhyo brahmanebhyo namah ||

Prarambha karyam nirvighnamastu |

Subham sobhanamastu |

Ista devata kuladevata suprasanna varada bhavatu ||

Anujnam dehi ||”

  1. Atma Shodhana- This is self-purification procedure where you need to sprinkle Gangajal everywhere in the house and yourself.
  2. Sankalpa- in this you need to take an oath before starting puja rituals that you will complete puja with a pure soul.
  3. Deep Sthapana– Lighting lamps are the first thing you do to begin puja with.

This is done before puja and kept in the place of worship so that god’s blessings are inherited in it and then you will light the house by them after puja.

Chant the mantra given blow while lighting diyas

Atha devasya vama bhage dipa sthapanam karisye |” (light lamp on the left side of the picture, if you have two oil lamps you can place both of them on either side otherwise on the left-hand side of the Devas)

“Om Kesavaya svaha | Om narayanaya svaha | Om madhavaya svaha |”

Given below are the mantras. Do Namskaram with each of the following mantras.

“Om govimdaya namah | om visnave namah | om madhusudanaya namah | om trivikramaya namah | om vamanaya namah | om sridharaya namah | om hrsikesaya namah | om padmanabhaya namah | om damodaraya namah | om sri krisanaya namah | om vāsudevāya namah | om pradyumnaya h| om aniruddhaya namah | om purusottamāya namah | om adhoksajaya namah | om narasiṁhāya namah | om acyutaya namah | om janardanāya namah | om upemdraya namah | om haraye namah | sri krisnaya namah ||”

  • Aachaman- Take a spoonful of water in hand and take a sip and revolve three times over your head then wash your hands. Recite following mantras

“Om Kesavaya svaha | Om narayanaya svaha | Om madhavaya svaha |”

Given below are the mantras. Do Namskaram with each of the following mantras.

“Om govimdaya namah | om visnave namah | om madhusudanaya namah | om trivikramaya namah | om vamanaya namah | om sridharaya namah | om hrsikesaya namah | om padmanabhaya namah | om damodaraya namah | om sri krisanaya namah | om vāsudevāya namah | om pradyumnaya h| om aniruddhaya namah | om purusottamāya namah | om adhoksajaya namah | om narasiṁhāya namah | om acyutaya namah | om janardanāya namah | om upemdraya namah | om haraye namah | sri krisnaya namah ||”

Lord Ganesha Pujan

  • Pranamayaha- Take a spoonful of water in your hand and chant

“Om pranavasya parabrahma rsih | paramatmadevata | daivi gayatri chandah | pranayame viniyogah ||”

( Say it in one breath)

“Om bhuh | om bhuvah | om svah | om mahah| om janah | om tapah| om satyam | om tatsaviturvarenyam bhargodevasya dhīmahī dhiyo yo nah prachodayāt || Om apojyoti rasomrtam brahma bhurbhuvassuvarom ||”

(offer flowers and unbroken rice or Akshata to Lord ganesha)

“Om Sri mahaganadhipataye namah |”

“Sri gurubhyo namah | Sri sarasvatyai namah | Sri vedaya namah | Sri Vedapurusaya namah | Istadevatābhyo namah | kuladevatābhyo namah | Sthanadevatabhyo namah | Gramadevatabhyo namah | Vastudevatabhyo namah | Sachipuramdarabhyām namah | Umamahesvarabhyam namah | matapitrbhyam namah | Padmavati narayanabhyam namah | Sarvebhyo devebhyo namo namah | Sarvebhyo brahmanebhyo namo namah | Karma pradhana devatabhyo namo namah ||”

  • Avighnamastu- Offer water and flowers to the lord and chant –

“Sumukhasca ekadmtasca kapilo gajakarnakah |

Lambodarasca vikato vighna naso gahādhipah || “

“Dhumraketurganadhyakso balacandro gajananah |

Dvadasaitani namani yah pathet srunuyadapi ||”

“Vidyarambhe vivahe ca pravese nirgame tatha |

Samgrame sankatascaiva vighnah tasya na jayate ||”

“Suklambaradharam devam sasivarnam caturbhujam |

Prasanna vadanam dhyayet sarva vighnopa samtaye ||”

“Sarvamangala mangalye sive sarvartha sadhike |

Saranye trayambake devi narayani namostute ||”

“Sarvada sarva karyesu nasti teasam amangalam |

Yesam hrdistho bhagavan mangalayatano harih ||”

“Tadeva lagnam sudinam tadeva tārābalam camdrabalam tadeva |

Vidya balam daivabalam tadeva padmavatipateh temghri yugam smarāmi ||”

“Labhastesm jayastesam kutastesam parajayah |

Yesam indivara śyamo hrdayastho janardanah ||”

“Vinayakam gurum bhanum brahmavisnumahesvaran |

Sarasvatim pranamyadau sarva karyartha siddhaye ||”

Sankalpah (Hold flowers, Akshata, a coin, water drops, betel nut in your both hands together)

“Om purvokta evam guna visesana visistayam subhapunyatithau mama atmanah sruti-smrti-puranokta phala-praptyartham mama sa-kutumbasya ksema sthairya ayu-rrogya caturvidha purusartha sidhyartham dipavalilaksmi pujam aham karisye ||”

“Idam phalam mayadeva sthapitam puratastava |

tena me saphalavaptirbhavet janmani janmani ||” (offer flowers, akshata, a coin, water drops, betel nut in front goddess)

Ganapati puja (hold a spoonful water in your right hand, chant following Mantra and offer the water at the end)

(Offer water in hand to Lord) “Adau nirvighnatasidhyartham maha ganapatim pujanam karisye |”

“Om gananam tva saunako grtsamado ganapatirjagati ganapatyavahane viniyogah ||” (offer water in hand to lord)

“Om bhurbhuvasvah mahaganapataye namah | avahayami |” (offer Akshata)

“Om bhurbhuvasvah mahaganapataye namah | dhyayami | dhyanam samarpayami |” (offer Akshata)

“Om mahagahapataye namah | avahanam samarpayami |” (offer Akshata)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | asanam samarpayami |” (offer flower petals, Akshata)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | padyam samarpayami |” (sprinkle water drops)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | arghyam samarpayami |” (offer flower petals, water drops and Akshata)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | acamaniyam samarpayami |” (offer a spoonful water)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | snanam samarpayami |” (offer a spoonful water)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | vastram samarpayami |” (offer akshata, flowers )

“Om mahaganapataye namah | yajnopavitam samarpayami |” (offer akshata, flowers )

“Om mahaganapataye namah | camdanam samarpayami |” (offer chandan paste)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | parimala dravyam samarpayāmi |” (offer kumkum)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | puspani samarpayami |” (offer flower petals)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | dhupam samarpayami |” (offer agarbatti)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | dipam samarpayami |” (show ghee lamp)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | naivedyam samarpayami |” (offer banana)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | tambulam samarpayami |” (offer betel leaf, betel nuts)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | phalam samarpayami |” (offer some fruits)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | daksinam samarpayami |” (offer coins)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | artikyam samarpayāmi |” (light ghee lamp, do arati three times)

“Om bhurbhuvasvah mahaganapataye namah | mantrapuspam samarpayami |” (offer flowers)

“Om bhurbhuvasvah mahaganapataye namah | pradaksinan namaskaran samarpayami |” (offer akshata, flowers)

“Om mahaganapataye namah | sarva rajopacaran samarpayami ||’ (offer akshata)

“Anaya pujaya vighnaharta mahaganapatih priyatam ||”

Maha Lakshmi Pujan

Lakshmi Puja is an important ritual follow the procedure given below

“Om namo mahalaksmyai namah | avahayami |” (offer akshata)

“Om namo mahālaksmyai namah | dhyayami | dhyanam samarpayami |” (offer akshata)

“Om namo mahalaksmyai namah | avahanam Samarpayami |” (offer akshata)

“Om namo mahalaksmyai namah | asanam samarpayāmi |” (offer flower petals, akshata)

“Om namo mahalaksmyai namah | padyam samarpayāmi |” (sprinkle water drops)

“Om namo mahalaksmyai namah | arghyam samarpayami |” (offer flower petals, water drops and akshata)

“Om namo mahalaksmyai namah | acamaniyam samarpayami |” (offer a spoonful water)

“Om namo mahālaksmyai namah | snanam samarpayami |” (offer a spoonful water)

Chant this mantra 108 times and offer curd, sugar, honey, and milk to the goddess

Once puja is completed wash the LakshmiJi idol with water and offer coins. Chant

“Om namo mahālakṣmyai namah |”

Kuber Pujan

Kuber Puja should be done similarly and following mantra should be recited

Om Yakshaya Kuberaya Vaishravanaya Dhanadhanyadhipataye

Dhanadhanyasamriddhim Me Dehi Dapaya Svaha

Om Hreem Shreem Kreem Shreem Kuberaya Ashta-Lakshmi

Mama Grihe Dhanam Puraya Puraya Namah

Om Shreem Hreem Kleem Shreem Kleem Vitteshvaraya Namah

Duwali puja is comprehensive and take hours to finish thus Lakshmi, Ganesha and Kuber puja should be done under the Muhurat time rest puja can be continued after Muhurat too.

 Always keep a clay lamp lit till night and next day after puja then do Visarjan in the morning.

 Lakshmi Ganesh Puja at Home During Diwali and Its Significance

Why We Celebrate Diwali Festival?

Diwali, also known as the festival of light, is celebrated over five days that starts with Dhanteras and is followed by Narak Chaturdashi, Lakshmi puja, and Bhai Dooj. All over India Diwali is celebrated for various reasons.

In northern India, Diwali marks the return of lord Rama from exile, along with Laxmana and Sita, after defeating the evil king Ravana.

Southern India celebrates Diwali as the day when lord Krishna defeated the demon Narakasura, hence Narak Chaturdashi.

In western India, they mark it as the day when lord Vishnu saved the goddess Lakshmi from the evil king Bali and sent him to rule the netherworld.

In Sikhism, Diwali was the day when Guru Hargovind Singh was released from Mughal prison along with other Hindu kings.

According to Mahabharata, Pandavas returned to Hastinapur on the day of Diwali.

Other popular traditions also say that the goddess Lakshmi was born on the day of Diwali and chose Lord Vishnu as her husband and married him.

In eastern India, kali puja is celebrated on the day of Diwali when Goddess Kali is worshipped.

What is Meant by Pooja During Diwali?

On the auspicious day of Diwali, most households perform Lakshmi puja at home.

It is believed that this would bless everybody with health, wealth, and prosperity. People light up their homes to invite the goddess to their abode.

During the mahurat lord Ganesha and goddess Lakshmi are worshipped as it carries its own meaning. The evening hours of the day are considered to be the best time to do the Lakshmi Ganesha puja.

People offer special prayers, chant mantras, do the aartis, and offer bhog to the gods and goddesses during this Laksmi Ganesh puja.

The shubh Diwali mahurat falls Amavasya is ending in the evening before 6 pm on the  The auspicious hour of Diwali puja.

How to Do Lakshmi Puja on Diwali?

Every household needs to have a clean and well-decorated house before the puja. So, it is better to clean the home days before the puja.

When you are done with all the pre-puja works set up the altar in the puja room to place Lakshmi and Narayana/ Ganesha on it.

The puja should be performed facing north so, make sure your setup matches the direction.

The one performing the puja should be wearing yellow clothes and should sit on a yellow seat.

The diya should be lit with cow’s ghee mixed with Haldi.

Only yellow-coloured flowers are offered to Lakshmi and Narayan, preferably marigolds. Offer yellow-coloured fruits like bananas or mangos.

Put a small tilak of Kesar on the murti of Lakshmi and Narayana and apply the same tilak on your forehead or the person doing the puja.

Later after the puja is done, add gangajal and rosewater to Haldi powder and mark a “Shree” symbol on your home locker and on the main door of the house for blessings from Ma Laxmi.

Offer prasad to the gods and goddesses.

Like everything else, it is better to prepare Prasad from something yellow such as besan or gram flour. 

Chant the “Om Shreem Satyalokapalakaya Namah” mantra 108 times.

You can also chant the Lakshmi Ganesh Katha at the end of the puja.

After this is done offer prayers to the deities along with your families.

Ask for blessings and forgiveness.

Distribute the prasad to family members and in the neighborhood.

Importance of Lakshmi Ganesh Pooja

Laxmi puja during Diwali is one of the most significant rituals that is celebrated in almost all households throughout the country.

People believe that on this auspicious day goddess Lakshmi descends on earth to bless everyone with wealth luck and prosperity.

People perform Lakshmi puja Vidhi at home and observe fast to do the puja.

What Items Are Required for Diwali Puja?

To do Lakshmi Ganesh Puja Diwali Vidhi at home you will need the following Diwali puja samagri-

Red cloth

Lotus flower

Tulsi leaves



Mango leaves




Incense sticks

Fruits for prasad

Yellow flowers

Spiritual Significance of Diwali-

Diwali in India is celebrated in the Kartika month which falls between the months of October and November.

Apart from the pujas, lights, and firecrackers Diwali also signifies new beginnings and each of the four days holds special meaning in the hearts of the people.

It is a festival of giving gifts to all our near and dear ones and forgiving all the mistakes made throughout the year.

The air is filled with love, joy, and laughter.

Waking up in the very morning during Diwali holds special meaning.

It is believed to be a blessing of health, discipline, work ethics, and most importantly spiritual refreshment.

It is a festival of unity. Children and all the other members of the family come back home during Diwali to celebrate it together with their loved ones.

According to ancient stories, it is the day when good won over evil. So, Diwali also signifies the journey of our hearts from the darkness to the light.

What is the Importance of Dhanteras?

On the day of Dhanteras, people buy new jewellery and new utensils to mark the beginning of Diwali.

The word Dahnteras comes from the word ‘Dhan’ which means wealth and ‘teras’ which means thirteen.

The day falls on the 13th lunar day of Krishna paksha of the Hindu calendar.

So, this day is celebrated to increase the wealth and prosperity of families.

Shri Lakshmi

Shri Lakshmi, the consort and dynamic energy of Lord Vishnu is worshipped by the Hindus as the Goddess of wealth, fortune, luxury and prosperity (both material and spiritual).

She is depicted in red clothes and adorned with gold jewelry. 

She has calm,soothing expressions and is always seen with a lotus in her hand which signify her as the symbol of Beauty. 

Her four hands represent the four goals of human life considered important to the Hindu way of life – Dharma (Righteousness and Duty) Kama (Worldly Desires), Artha (Wealth and Prosperity) and Moksha (Salvation). 

Her palms are always open and sometimes coins are seen pouring from them signifying that she is the giver of wealth and prosperity. 

She is shown sitting or standing on a lotus in a beautiful garden or in blue-ocean.

Around her are either two or four white elephants giving Her ‘Abhishekam’ with the water. Her ‘Vahana’ i.e. mounts are white elephant and owl.

As the Hindu Goddess of Good Fortune and Beauty, she represents and is seen as the personification of abundance, prosperity, wealth and harmony who is, hence, believed to relieve all sorrows caused by dearth of money. 

She is actively worshipped daily by millions of Hindus and interfaith practitioners of Goddess spirituality around the globe since she is considered as a universal Goddess.

Yet the festivals of Sharad Purnima(Kojagaari Purnima) and Deepvali (Diwali) are specially celebrated in her honour.

  • Gaja Lakshmi Puja is an autumn festival celebrated on Sharad Purnima in many parts of India on the full-moon day in the month of Ashvin (September–October). The Sharad Purnima, also called Kojaagari Purnima or Kumar Purnima, is a harvest festival marking the end of monsoon season. Along with the traditional celebration of the moon called the ‘Kaumudi celebration’ (Kaumudi meaning moonlight), on Kojagaari Purnima night, Goddess Lakshmi is thanked and worshiped for the harvests.
  • Many Hindus also worship Lakshmi on Diwali, the festival of lights. It is another festival celebrated in autumn, typically in October or November of every year. Before Diwali night, people clean, renovate and decorate their homes and offices. On Diwali night, Hindus dress up in new clothes or their best outfits, light up diyas (lamps and candles) inside and outside their house, and participate in family puja (prayers) celebrating this Goddess of Fortune as they invite Her into their homes, attempting to secure her favors for the year to come. Fireworks, a family feast including mithai (sweets) and an exchange of gifts between family members and close friends follow which signify auspiciousness, wealth, and prosperity. This festival dedicated to Shri Lakshmi is considered by to be one of the most important and joyous festivals of the year by the Hindus.

As we can see, Lakshmi is a Goddess who brings all good things to light and to life! To evoke Her energy of good fortune, countless hymns, prayers, shlokas, stotra, and mantras are dedicated and recited during the ritual worship of Lakshmi.

Lakshmi Mantra is a prayer not only to gain financial prosperity but also to give us the intelligence to enlighten our minds with understanding. There are many types of Lakshmi Mantras each of which creates its own vibrations.

Rosary to be used: Kamalgata mala and Sphatik mala.

Flowers to be used: Rose  and Lotus flower.

Total number of recitations: 1,25,000 times.

Best time: Suklapanchh, purnimatithi, Chandravalli, Subhnachhtra.

Collection of Lakshmi Mantras

Lakshmi Mantra – 1

This Laksmi Mantra is to be recited 1.25 lacs times within 72 days and do Havan after this. During this recitation worship goddess Laksmi with Shodashopachar vidhi.

श्रीं ह्रीं क्लीं त्रिभुवन महालक्ष्म्यै अस्मांक दारिद्र्य नाशय प्रचुर धन देहि देहि क्लीं ह्रीं श्रीं

Om Shring Hring Kling Tribhuvan Mahalakshmyai Asmaakam Daaridray Naashay Prachur Dhan Dehi Dehi Kling Hring Shring Om |

Lakshmi Mantra – 2

This Lakshmi Mantra is to be recited 21×108 times (21 mala of lakshmi Mantra) on the day of Diwali.

श्रीं ह्रीं क्लीं ऐं सौं ह्रीं ह्रीं ह्रीं सकल ह्रीं सौं ऐं क्लीं ह्रीं श्री ॐ।

Om Shring Hring Kling Aing Saung Om Hring Ka A Ee La Hring Ha Sa Ka Ha La Hring Sakal Hring Saung Aing Kling Hring Shring Om |

Lakshmi Mantra – 3

Chant this Lakshmi Mantra daily before going to your office.

ह्री श्रीं क्रीं श्रीं क्रीं क्लीं श्रीं महालक्ष्मी मम गृहे धनं पूरय पूरय चिंतायै दूरय दूरय स्वाहा

Om Hring Shring Kreeng Shring Kreeng Kling Shring Mahaalakshmi Mam Grihe Dhanam Pooray Pooray Chintaayai Dooray Dooray Swaha |

Mahalakshmi Mantra

Mahalakshmi Mantra is recited for getting the blessings from goddess Mahalakshmi for the gain of wealth and prosperity.

सर्वाबाधा विनिर्मुक्तो, धन धान्यः सुतान्वितः। मनुष्यो मत्प्रसादेन भविष्यति संशयः ।।

Om Sarvabaadhaa Vinirmukto, Dhan Dhaanyah Sutaanvitah | Manushyo Matprasaaden Bhavishyati Na Sanshayah Om ||

Meaning : Ode to the Goddess to eradicate all evil forces and bestow upon all a prosperous and a better future.

Benefit : Mahalakshmi Mantra is recited for getting the blessings from Goddess Mahalakshmi for the gain of wealth and well being.

Lakshmi Gayatri Mantra

By reciting Lakshmi(Laxmi) Gayatri Mantra one can get prosperity and success.

श्री महालक्ष्म्यै विद्महे विष्णु पत्न्यै धीमहि तन्नो लक्ष्मी प्रचोदयात् ।।

Om Shree Mahalakshmyai Cha Vidraahe Vishnu Patrayai Cha Dheemahi Tanno Lakshmi Prachodayat Om ||

Meaning : “Let me meditate on the greatest Goddess, Who is the wife of Lord Vishnu, Give me higher intellect, And let Goddess give me abundance and prosperity.”

Benefit : By reciting Lakshmi Gayatri Mantra one can get prosperity and success in every walk of life.

Lakshmi Beej Mantra

।।ॐ श्रीं श्रियें नमः ।।

|| Om Shring Shriye Namah ||

About Lakshmi Beej Mantra : Lakshmi Beej Mantra is considered as origin of all powers of Goddess Lakshmi.

The Beej Mantra of Goddess Lakshmi is only श्रीं (Shreem), which is combined with other words to form various Mantras.

Benefit : The intense vibratory energy produced by repetitive chanting of these powerful Lakshmi Mantras produce an energy field which attracts abundance and fortune.

Shri Dakshina Lakshmi Stotram

“Trilokya Poojithe Dhevee Kamala Vishnu vallabhe

Yaya Thawam Achalaa Krishne Thathaa-bhava Mayee Sthiraa

Kamala Chanchala Lakshmi Chalaa Bhoothir Hari Priya

Padma Padmalayaa Samyak Uchai Shri Padma-dharini

Dwada-saithani Naamani Lakshmi Sampoojya Ya Padeth

Sthiraa Lakshmir Bhaved Thasya Puthra-dhara Abhi-saha

Ithi Shri Dakshina Lakshmi Stotram Sampoornam”

Meaning :

‘Oh Goddess you are the one who is worshiped in all the three worlds, Oh Kamala, Oh Consort of Lord Vishnu, Oh Consort of Krishna, If only you are stable, And abide by me forever.

Oh Kamala, Oh unstable one, Oh Lakshmi, Oh Goddess who moves everything, Oh Goddess of prosperity, Oh Darling of Hari, Oh Padma, Oh goddess who lives in lotus, Oh Goddess who is pleasant, Oh Goddess who is exalted, Oh Goddess of wealth, Oh Goddess who holds a lotus. 

If these twelve names of Lakshmi are read and worshipped, Lakshmi would be stable and he (who chants) would be with wife and son. Thus ends the Dakshina Lakshmi Stotram.’

Jyesth Lakshmi Mantra

ऐं ह्रीं श्रीं ज्येष्ठ लक्ष्मी स्वयम्भुवे ह्रीं ज्येष्ठायै नमः ।।

Om Aing Hring Shring Jyesth Lakshmi Swayambhuve Hring Jyesthayai Namah ||

MahaLakshmi Yakshineevidya

ह्रीं क्लीन महालक्ष्म्यै नमः ।।

Om Hring kling MahaLakshmyai Namah ||

Shree Lakshmi Nrisingh Mantra

।। ह्रीं क्ष्रौं श्रीं लक्ष्मी नृसिंहाय नमः ।।

।। क्लीन क्ष्रौं श्रीं लक्ष्मी देव्यै नमः ।।

|| Om Hring Kshraung Shring Lakshmi Nrisinghay Namah ||

|| Om Kling Kshraung Shring Lakshmi Devyai Namah ||

Ekadashakshar Sidhda Lakshmi Mantra

।। श्रीं ह्रीं क्लीं श्रीं सिध्द लक्ष्म्यै नमः ।।

|| Om Shring Hring Kling Shring Sidhda Lakshmyai Namah ||

Dwadashakshar MahaLakshmi Mantra

।। ऐं ह्रीं श्रीं क्लीं सौ: जगात्प्रसुत्यै नमः ।।

|| Om Aing Hring Shring Kling Sauh Jagatprasutyai Namah ||

There are more stotrams and Lakshmi mantras sung to please the Goddess of prosperity and they include

Lakshmi Ashtottara Shatanamavali : This mantra comprises of the 108 names of Goddess Lakshmi and it is advised for everyone looking for positivity and to gain high and pure happiness.

Benefit : Chanting this mantra will bring youth, beauty, happiness and riches to one, which will make a great difference in life.

Lakshmi Sahasranama Stotram : This stotra is from the Skanda Purana where it is being documented as being taught by Sage ‘Sanath Kumara’ to a set of 12 sages.

Here, it also states that Goddess Lakshmi states that even if this stotra is chanted without belief, she would stay for ever in their clan.

Another Maha Lakshmi Sahasranamam occurs in Brahma Purana in the chapter of description of Kashmir in the chapter on Hiranya Garbha Hrudaya.

Benefit : This is one of the strongest invocations of Shri Lakshmi which is wonderful to listen and to absorb in. Reading of this strotram makes the Goddess stay in favour of the individual.

Sri Sthuthi : Sri Sthuthi of Swamy Desikan has 25 beautiful and powerful slokams that on recitation confers Sarva MangaLams (Ishta Kaamya Siddhi) to the reciter.

Benefit : This is a prayer to Sri Devi for the conferral of many kinds of auspiciousness and wealth.

The word ‘Lakshmi’ is derived from the root word ‘laksha’ which means ‘goal’ or ‘objective’.

To take a ‘laksha’ means to ‘take an aim’. The Lakshmi Mantras are recited to know your goal and as a means to fructify that goal.

Thus, one bows to Maa Lakshmi who is known to grant favors to all, to terrorize the evil and remove the misery of all.

The divine Goddess is the provider of success and intelligence and the benefactor of both worldly pleasure and freedom.

She is the JagaathMata (Ultimate Mother) who is without beginning and without end and resides in the hearts of devotees as the Auspicious Goddess of generosity and wealth.

According to Hindu Mythology, chanting of Lakshmi Mantra regularly is the most powerful way to please Goddess Lakshmi.

This is because all the Mantras mentioned and many more are just the paths which lead an individual to the feet of the Mother and help dispel the different sorrows of life by getting her blessings.

To get best result, one should chant the Lakshmi Mantra sitting in front of a Laxmi idol or picture early in the morning after taking a bath and freshening the mind from all engaging thoughts.

Regular chanting gives peace of mind and keeps away all the evils from one’s life, making him/her healthy, wealthy and prosperous.

What is Diwali?

The five-day celebration honors the triumph of light over dark and features its main festivities

The name Diwali is derived from the Sanskrit word dipavali, meaning “row of lights.”

Since Diwali is so widely celebrated across religious and cultural groups, some aspects of its significance varies.

For many people, the celebration is associated with the Hindu goddess of wealth and good fortune, Lakshmi, and the main festive day centers around a puja or pooja (ceremonial worship) in her honor to welcome luck and prosperity.

“(Diwali) celebrations usually contained fireworks, intricate rangoli patterns (designs made on the floor with bright colored sand) and lighting clay lamps called diyas (inside and outside homes),” says Contractor, a data science student. “Diwali typically brings up feelings of content and excitement.”

Generally, the five days of Diwali include:

  • Dhanteras: This day involves household cleaning and preparing for upcoming Diwali events and shopping. For some it is also a day of worship for Lakshmi, and it is customary to purchase something precious or gold.
  • Choti Diwali: This day honors Krishna’s defeat of the demon god Narakasura. Decorating ones’ home, including hanging lights, is customary.
  • Diwali: On the main day of Diwali, an even larger celebration of Lakshmi is observed. Household cleaning, decorating, such as making rangolis, lighting diyas, gathering with family, exchanging gifts, sharing sweets and praying to Lakshmi are common practices.
  • Padwa: This day honors Krishna defeated of Indra by lifting the huge Govardhan Mountain. Many people make clay and cow-dung figures to depict the event.
  • Bhai Dooj: Inspired by the sibling love shared between Lord Yama and his sister Yami, this is for siblings to honor one another. Sisters often pray for their brothers’ success and well-being and apply a red tilak (a mark typically on the forehead).

Like most celebrations worldwide, food is also a major part of the holiday, especially sweets such as jalebi (a fried bread soaked in syrup) and barfi (a fudge made with condensed milk and other flavors like pistachio).

“The foods that are eaten at Diwali are typically traditional foods, such as samosas (fried pastries with a savory filling, typically potato), biryani (a spiced, mixed rice dish made with or without meat), gulab jamun (fried balls of dough soaked in syrup) and other mithai (Indian sweets),” Contractor says.

 “Celebrating Diwali at UCF has helped me meet new people in my culture (and a chance to) learn about the different aspects of Diwali that I do not typically celebrate with my family,” Contractor says.

“Over time, Diwali has evolved from simply being a time for going to celebrations, having a feast, and meeting new friends to understanding the importance of Diwali and how it impacts Indians all around the world. ISA has been a strong part in helping me appreciate my culture.”

Facts about Diwali

1) Diwali is an important religious festival originating in India. People often think of Diwali as a Hindu festival, but it is also celebrated by Sikhs and Jains.*

2) Diwali takes place annually and lasts for five days, marking the start of the Hindu New Year. The exact dates change each year and are determined by the position of the moon – but it usually falls between October and November.

3) The word Diwali (or Deepavali as it’s sometimes called) means “row of lights” in an Ancient language of India, called Sanskrit. During this festival, people decorate their homes with lights and oil lamps, called diyas.

4) For many people, Diwali honours the Hindu goddess of wealth, Lakshmi. The lights and lamps are said to help Lakshmi find her way into peoples’ homes, bringing prosperity in the year to come!

5) It’s also a celebration of good triumphing over evil, and different legends based on this theme are associated with Diwali. In northern India, Hindus celebrate the return of the deities (gods) Rama and Sita to the city of Ayodhya, after defeating the evil king Ravana!

6) In the region of Bengal people worship the goddess Kali, the destroyer of evil forces, during Diwali. And in Nepal (a country bordering north-east India), people celebrate Lord Krishna’s victory over the wicked king Narakaasura.

7) But it’s not just about lights and legends –– Diwali is a time to have fun with friends and family! People exchange gifts and sweets, enjoy delicious feasts, watch firework displays and wear new clothes. It’s a time to clean and decorate your home, too.

8) Rangoli is a popular Diwali tradition –– beautiful patterns made using colourful powders and flowers. People draw rangoli on the floor by the entrance of their homes to welcome the gods and bring good luck!

9) Today, this fascinating festival is celebrated by thousands of people in countries all around the world. During Diwali, Hindus living outside India gather at places of worship called mandirs to leave offerings to deities, watch firework displays and eat yummy food together!

10) The city of Leicester, in the United Kingdom, holds the largest Diwali celebrations outside of India. Every year, tens of thousands of people gather in the streets to enjoy vibrant shows of light, music and dancing!


Diwali is a significant festival in Hinduism, Jainism and Sikhism.

In a multicultural and diverse country like India, everyone has their own way of celebrating this festival. Even though their belief in it may be different, the enthusiasm, vivaciousness and joy it brings to people’s lives is what binds everyone together.

Diwali is celebrated as the festival of lights, during which homes are decorated with candles.

Diwali projects the rich and glorious past and teaches its observers to uphold the true values of life.

For the Hindus, the holiday symbolizes the return of Prince Rama of Ayodhya with his wife, Sita, and brother, Lakshman, from a 14-year-long exile and a war in which Prince Rama stood victorious.

People of Ayodhya lit lamps along the way to light their path in the darkness.

To the Jains, it has a whole different meaning.

For them, Diwali is the day when the last of the Jain Tirthankaras, Lord Mahavira, attained nirvana, also known as complete knowledge and enlightenment.

Lord Mahavira established the dharma followed by the Jains worldwide.

For the Sikhs, Diwali is a story of the struggle for freedom.

It celebrates the victory of the sixth guru, Guru Hargobind, from the designs of Emperor Jahangir, who had imprisoned him and 52 other princes with him, in 1619. Guru Hargobind refused to leave the prison for freedom until he was able to bring all of the princes with him.

Diwali is celebrated with worship, sharing sweets, fireworks and lights.

While the story varies from region to region, its essence remains the same.

People learn to rejoice in the inner light and the underlying reality of things.

What is Diwali and how is it celebrated?

Diwali, the festival of lights, marks the time when millions of Hindus, Sikhs and Jains across the world celebrate the triumph of good over evil with beautiful rituals such as festive lights, fireworks, sweet delicacies and family gatherings.

We delve into the Diwali story, history and traditions, to find out how Diwali is celebrated and how you can take part in the magical festivities.

What is the story behind Diwali?

Each religion marks a different Diwali story and historical event. 

In one of the main stories in Hindu mythology, Diwali is the day Lord Rama, his wife Sita Devi and brother Lakshmana return to their homeland after 14 years in exile.

The villagers lit a path for Rama, who had defeated the demon king Ravana.

Reenactments of this story are part of celebrations in some regions.  

Another Diwali story in Hindu mythology is that Diwali marks the day Lord Krishna defeated the demon Narakasura and freed the people of his kingdom.

After he slayed the demon, Lord Krishna declared it a day of festivities.

In some parts of India, people burn effigies of the demon kings in both stories as part of the celebration.

People also celebrate the Hindu Goddess Lakshmi during Diwali.

As the goddess of prosperity, wealth and fertility, the romantic Diwali story says that she chose Lord Vishnu, one of Hinduism’s most important deities, to be her husband on the night of Diwali.

In other cultures, Diwali coincides with harvest and new year celebrations.

No matter which Diwali story you celebrate, it’s always a day of new beginnings and light over darkness.

How is Diwali celebrated?

The word Diwali comes from the Sanskrit word “deepavali”, which means “rows of lighted lamps”. Households across India celebrate by decorating their space with small lamps called diyas and other colourful lights. 

People cover streets and buildings in festive lighting and there are lively songs and dance.

Dazzling fireworks go off, creating a spectacle of noise and light.

This helps to scare away evil spirits and celebrate the victory of good over evil. 

Many consider Diwali to be a fresh start, similar to the Lunar New Year in January.

Many people clean, renovate, decorate their homes and buy new clothes in preparation for the upcoming year. 

Diwali is also a time to settle debts and make peace.

It’s common for people to reach out to loved ones who may have lost touch and organise family reunions. In the past, Indian and Pakistani soldiers have exchanged sweets along the disputed border, as a gesture of Diwali goodwill. 

If you’ve got a sweet tooth, Diwali is the festival for you.

The most delicious tradition is the gifting of mithai (sweets). Friends and family exchange colourful boxes of Indian delicacies, like pedas, ladoos, jalebis, barfis and dried fruit and chocolates.

When is the Diwali festival?

The dates for Diwali change each year, as they are based on the Hindu lunisolar calendar.

The festival usually falls between mid-October and mid-November.

This year (), Diwali begins on Tuesday 2 November, with the peak day of celebrations happening on the third day, Thursday 4 November.

The final day of celebrations this year take place on Saturday 6 November.

How long does the Diwali festival go on for?

Diwali Lasts For Five Days.

The peak day of celebrations is usually on the third day, which is similar to New Year’s Eve.

Brothers and sisters reserve the last day of celebrations to spend time together.

Although the Diwali festival officially lasts for five days, preparations begin well in advance.

Fireworks and festivities often last for days afterwards.

Temples are always busy with religious rituals during Diwali, so remember to be respectful and cover yourself inside temples. Avoid taking photos of worshippers.

Traveling during the Diwali festival

Diwali is a fun and beautiful time in India, but the widespread celebrations can affect your travel plans. Many people return to their home villages during the festival, so hotels and public transportation systems fill up quickly.

If you want to visit India during Diwali, you’ll need to book well in advance.

Experiencing Diwali with Trafalgar

When you travel to India during Diwali with Trafalgar, we’ll take care of all the details so you can relax and enjoy the magic of the festival of lights.

You’ll experience Diwali in the city of Jaipur.

First stop is a local market to see the lamps, fruits, flowers and sweets used in the celebrations, along with the puja items used for traditional worship of deities.

You’ll have a front-row seat to this incredible festival, watching how locals light candles, lamps and ornate lanterns. 

Later, you’ll join a local family in their home for the Diwali festivities and a traditional dinner.

You’ll learn about the Diwali story and take part in the puja sacred ritual and offering to Goddess Lakshmi.

We’ll end the day on a high note, watching the skyline of Jaipur illuminate with a glittering fireworks display. 

How to say Happy Diwali

The easiest way to spread some Diwali cheer is by saying “Deepavalee mubarak ho”, meaning “Happy Diwali”.

You pronounce it “dee-wall-ee moo-bar-ak ho”.

Pakistani Hindus Celebrate Diwali

Diwali symbolises the spiritual “victory of light over darkness, good over evil and knowledge over ignorance”.

Diwali is a main religious feast that Hindu people celebrate.

Diwali is celebrated at the end of every autumn to commemorate the victory of Hindu god Lord Ram over evil Ravana and how he spent 14 years in tranquillity.

Remembering the event when Lord Ram rescued Sita from the captivity of Demon Rawan.

The feast celebrates the return of Ram, his wife Sita, and his brother Lakhshmi, after many years of exile in the forest.

Diwali is celebrated with a variety of rituals which centre on the lighting of candles, electric lights and fireworks.

Fireworks are very loud indeed and I needed to put my hands to my ears so as to lessen the effect of the deafening sound. People exchange gifts and homemade sweets, clean and decorate homes, wear new clothes, dance, feast and forgive one another.

There are approximately one billion Hindus in the world, making it the third largest religion with about fourteen per cent of the world’s population. It is an Indian religion and Dharma (‘Way of Life’).

It is the major religion in India practised by about 970 million people or 80% of the population. 95% of Hindus live in India, with the remaining 30 million living in Nepal, Bali (Indonesia), Pakistan and other countries.

Pakistan’s population of 207.7 million is made up of approximately 96% Muslim, 1.7% Hindu and 1.6% Christian. Therefore there are about 3.3 million Hindus living in Pakistan.

Many Hindus live in Tharparkar (Province of Sindh) , with most living in the many outlying villages. Most work as landless peasant farmers and are poor.

St Paul’s School, situated in the church compound in Tharparkar district.

The Pakistani Hindu community also lit earthen lamps in the night and fireworks were also be exhibited to celebrate the festival.

Apart from Karachi, Lahore, and other major cities, festivities were also held in Umerkot, Mithi, Matiari, Tando Allahyar, Tando Muhammad Khan, Jamshoro, Badin, Sanghar, Hala, Tando Adam, and Shahdadpur.

The homes and temples were brightly lit with many candles and lights.

The “Row of Lights” for which the Dewali Festival is named are lit on the ‘New Moon Light’ to welcome Lakhshmi, ‘the goddess of wealth’.

For many Hindus, Diwali is also New Year’s eve as Diwali is held on the final day of the Vikram (Jantri) calendar.

Diwali symbolises the spiritual victory of light over darkness, good over evil and knowledge over ignorance.

It also celebrates a good year of harvests and honours the goddess of wealth.

While we were guests in a room, a member of the family came in with a flaming fire on a stick and circled this around the room.

This was to chase away any evil that may be in the house.

On the first day, the celebration takes place within one’s own family.

On the second day, visitation is made to relations with gifts and sweets exchanged.

Over these days they also visit the graves of loved ones where they offer prayers, clean the graves, and place candles, incense sticks and roses on them.

Prayer is an important part of the Diwali celebration as well as also in their daily lives.

Prayer is offered before sunrise, at sunset and other times.

On entering the temple, a bell is rung.

The bell calls the divinity to attend to the devotee’s prayer.

Although Hinduism is often understood as being polytheistic, supposedly recognising as many as 330 million gods, it also has ‘one god’, that is Supreme Brahma. Brahma is an entity believed to inherit every portion of reality and existence throughout the entire universe.

Scholars describe Hinduism as the product of religious development in India that spans nearly 4,000 years, making it perhaps the oldest surviving world religion.

It is often referred as “the Eternal Tradition” on “the Eternal Way” beyond human history.

Celebrating Diwali in India

At this time of year, the skies above our homes light up with fireworks as Diwali is celebrated around the world. But what is Diwali and how is it celebrated among different religions and cultures around the world?

About Diwali 

This five day multi-faith festival is celebrated at the start of the Indian astrological calendar, (around the end October/early November) all over India by Hindus, Sikhs, Jain’s and some Buddhists and marks a bountiful harvest, the start of an auspicious new year.

On the first day of Diwali, homes are spring cleaned and something new is purchased for it, to welcome good fortune.

 From the second day onwards, clay lamps and rangolis (floor decorations with with flower petals or coloured powder) are used to decorate and brighten the home.

The third day is the main event when prayers and religious rights take palce followed by fireworks, feasting and merriment.

The fourth is the most exciting for children as this is when gifts are exchanged between friends and families, while the fifth day celebrates Bhai Dooj, an eternal bond between brothers and sisters.

How each of India’s religions celebrate Diwali

Whilst each religion is incredibly different with their own beautiful traditions and cultures, the festival of Diwali is a constant and shared celebration.

Each religion celebrates Diwali for slightly different reasons however, and the way they mark the occasion also varies. 


Hindu’s celebrate it to rejoice the return of Lord Rama from a 14 year exile and defeating the evil Lord Ravana marking the awakening of good over evil and pay homage to Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity.


The Jains celebrate Diwali to mark the spiritual awakening of their Lord Mahavira, marking the enlightenment of mankind from darkness.


The Sikh’s celebrate Diwali to commemorate the return of their young spiritual leader Guru Hargobind, the sixth guru to the holy city of Amritsar on release from wrongful imprisonments symbolising understanding & common goals


Some Buddhists also celebrate the festival to honour their Emperor Ashoka’s decision to convert to Buddhism and follow a path of peace and enlightenment.

Although these four religions each have different reasons for celebrating Diwali but they all have the concept of spirituality, new beginnings, peace, harmony and unity at their heart. 

About Diwali

Diwali (also known as Deepavali, which means “a row of lights”) is the Hindu festival of lights celebrated every year on the darkest, new moon night of the lunar month known as Kartika (this generally occurs at some point between mid-October mid-November).

Diwali is one the largest and most popular festivals within Hinduism, cutting across linguistic, regional, and theological lines. While there are several different narratives associated with Diwali, it mainly signifies the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, knowledge over ignorance, and hope over despair. 

Hindus typically celebrate Diwali by lighting traditional oil lamps or candles, and using lights to adorn homes, temples, and other buildings in the community.  

On Diwali night, people generally dress up in new or festive clothes, light diyas (lamps and candles) inside and outside their home, participate in puja (worship), and enjoy meals with family and friends. Fireworks and mitthai (sweets) have also become mainstays of the celebration, and some families exchange gifts as well.

Some of the narratives and sacred legends that are evoked at Diwali include:

  • The triumphant return of Sri Rama, the avatar of Vishnu in the form of a righteous king, with his wife Sita Devi, to the kingdom of Ayodhya.
  • The slaying of the demon Naraka by the avatar Sri Krishna.
  • The charming childhood activities of Sri Krishna, particularly with his mother Yashoda Mayi.
  • The victory of the divine feminine, particularly the goddess Lakshmi Devi, over misfortune and adversity.

In addition to the Hindu significance of Diwali, Jains also celebrate Diwali to mark the attainment of moksha (spiritual liberation) by Mahavira, and Sikhs celebrate Diwali to commemorate the release of Guru Hargobind from a Mughal prison.

Newar Buddhists also celebrate Diwali by worshipping the goddess Lakshmi.

Our Diwali at the Chapel celebration marks the spiritual significance of this day through worship and reflection, devotional music and dance, and the coming together of community.

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The History of Diwali and Why It’s Diwali or Dipavali – The Hindu Festival of Lights

Deepavali or Diwali, is one of the most popular festivals of India and of Hindus.

It is also one of the most eagerly awaited festivals in the Indian subcontinent.

Business men and commercial establishments, consider it an opportunity to boost their sales and increase profits, while individuals use the occasion to celebrate life and strengthen relationships.

For children it is a great opportunity to experience the joys of growing up and become acquainted with all types of firecrackers.

It comes during autumn in the Hindu month of Ashwayuja, (also known as Ashwin or Aippasi), according to the lunar calendar and corresponds roughly with either October or November depending upon the movement of the sun and the moon and their relative positions in space and time.

History, meaning and significance

In Sanskrit, “Deepavali” means, a row of lights. Its origins are a mystery, steeped in the myths and legends of ancient India.

It was said to be originally a harvest festival.

It was meant either to celebrate the harvest or to commemorate the ancestors who departed to the ancestral world.

Vedic people believed that upon death souls who were not destined for liberation ascended to the ancestral world which was located in the moon by the path of ancestors (pitrmarg).

Since the path was not as bright as the sunlit path of the immortals (devayana) people might have held lights, lamps and torches towards the sky on that day in the hope that it would help them ascend to the ancestral world.

References to the festival are found in the Padma and Skanda Puranas.

According to the latter, the lamps that were lit on that day symbolized aspects of the Sun. Diwali is associated with several ancient legends, such as the ascent of Nachiketa to the heaven, the victory of Rama over Ravana and his return to Ayodhay to ascend the throne, the return of the Pandavas from exile, and the victory of Lord Krishna over the demon Narakasura.

In Kerala people believe that on this occasion the demon king Bali who was granted salvation by Vishnu, visits the earth to see people celebrating the festival.

People also believe that on this occasion goddess Lakshmi visits the homes of her devotees and blesses them.

Hence, people try to keep their homes clean. Outside India community celebrations are a common feature.

We have references, which suggest that celebrating Diwali in India has been a very ancient custom, which continues even today.

A Sanskrit play, named Nagananda which was composed during the time of Harsha, states how it was celebrated with lamps, and how newly married couples received gifts on that occasion.

Another scripture, Kavyamimansa, composed during the 9th century suggests how the homes were whitewashed and decorated with lamps.

Al Beruni, the Persian historian who visited India in the 11th century mentions that Hindus celebrated Deepavali on New Moon day in the month of Kartika.

Diwali is celebrated not only in India but in all the countries such as Nepal, Sri Lanka, Mauritius, where Hindus are present.

Whatever may be the practice, in a world ridden with the forces of ignorance, sorrow and conflict, we can feel its strong connection with the highest of our aspirations and deepest yearnings.

In many ways, it is a ritual set in motion characterizing our natural inclination for things that are bright and beautiful, as expressed beautifully in the Vedic hymn, “tamasoma jyotirgamaya” (From darkness unto Light).

Symbolically, it represents our divine nature and reminds us of our primary responsibility to pursue the path of light and attain liberation.

While we do not clearly know the antecedents of this remarkably unique, Hindu festival, currently Maha Lakshmi, the goddess, who symbolizes all the positive forces of life and the divine aspect of wealth and abundance is revered as its principal deity and main object or veneration.

Truly, the festival is a celebration of wealth and abundance in which people from all sections of society, both rich and poor participate. Goddess Maha Lakshmi is associated with a number of legends and divine entities.

Just as she represents universal health, wealth, happiness, victory, courage, facility, fertility, harmony, beauty, joy and enlightenment, Diwali represents the brilliance and the abundance of life and happiness in its full glory.

Many Hindus regard Diwali as the beginning of a new year.

Historically, for traditional Hindu businesses it marks the beginning of a new accounting year.

As the name suggests, Diwali is celebrated with lights and lamps, sounds, and joyous festivity.

People consider the occasion an opportunity to start anew, to renew hopes, and to explore new relationships, possibilities and opportunities.

The festival provides an opportunity to our senses to grasp their share of enjoyment and to our minds and hearts to experience the joys of life, belongingness, love, and universal brotherhood.

As the festival approaches, memories of previous Diwalis fill the minds of people, as they await with eager expectations of yet another exciting and joyous occasion to celebrate life and kinship.

When the day dawns and the night comes, the earth wears a glittering robe.

You can see the homes and streets being lit up with the brilliance of lights and lamps, while flashes of light from the firecrackers fill the sky and the mid-region as if to express gratitude and invite the celestial beings of those planes to participate in the festivity and offer their blessings.

On the night of Diwali, streets and public places all over India (and several other places) become filled with adults and children alike and reverberating sounds from the firecrackers.

People from all backgrounds gather in streets, public places, lawns and front yards, house tops, or in front of their own houses to witness the celebration of joy and the victory of gods in the glow of auspicious lights.

It is as if the mortal beings upon earth have discovered a way of lifting their minds to God to express their rejection of evil and their devotion and commitment to Dharma, righteous living, duty, morality, and all the good things that life and divinity represent.

However, Diwali is not a mere festival of lights where wealth is worshipped and people congregate to indulge in vanity and ostentatiousness.

Traditionally, the festival is a ritual worship of light and divinity to express the allegiance of human beings to gods rather than the demons.

It involves a series of complex rituals for five continuous days by devotees to express their gratitude to gods for their services and in return discharge their obligations towards them through prayers and sacrificial offerings.

The lights that are lit on the night of Diwali are part of those offerings only.

Hence, the celebration of Diwali with lights and firecrackers constitutes divine worship only, in which discipline, faith and sincerity play an important role.

The occasion offers innumerable opportunities to devout Hindus to focus their minds upon their gods and practice devotional service through karma yoga (the yoga of action) with detachment amidst distracting festivities and worldly activities.

During Diwali time, people clean and decorate their homes and prepare for family gatherings.

Nowadays the onset of Diwali season triggers a lot of buying activity, gambling and gift giving. Many projects are also started around this since Diwali is an auspicious festival.

In the following paragraphs we will describe how Hindus celebrate Diwali during the five days, in addition to presenting a few interesting facts about the festival.

In the end we will also focus upon the practice of burning firecrackers during Diwali and whether it is justified in today’s world.

The first day – Dhantrayodashi

The first day of the festival is known as Dhanteras or Dhantrayodashi. Dhan means wealth, and Trayodashi means 13th day.

Thus, as the name implies, this day falls on the 13th day of the first half of the lunar month. On this day, it is believed that, Lord Dhanwantari emerged from the waters of the ocean holding the knowledge of the spiritual medicines of Ayurveda, to help the mankind fight against sickness, disease and death.

On this day people purchase valuables, light lamps using oil filled clay cups and worship the Goddess of Wealth.

They also worship Yama, the Lord of Death, seeking protection against untimely death. Parents and elders accompany children to the market looking for firecrackers and sweets, if they have not purchased already.

Those who have brought them home spread the crackers in the sunlight and allow them to dry, so that when the time comes they do not fail to perform.

The second day – Narak Chaturdasi

The second day of the festival is known as Naraka Chaturdasi.

Narak means the purgatory or hell and Chaturdashi means the fourteenth day.

Thus, this day falls on the 14th day of the first half of the lunar month.

Religiously, the day marks the end of an evil empire in some prehistoric past and the beginning of a new era of Light and Knowledge.

According to the legends, on this day Lord Sri Krishna, supported by his consort Satyabhama and his huge army, killed the demon Narkasura, in a legendary battle between the gods and demons and released the world from the darkness of fear and oppression.

In the process, he also freed 16,000 divine Shaktis (energies) of the Mother Goddess, which were held forcibly until then by the evil demon.

On this auspicious day, people usually take a ritual bath before sunrise, using traditional herbs and materials, just as Lord Krishna was believed to have done after He returned from the battlefields victoriously.

They spend the remaining day restfully in the company of friends and family.

Some play cards and test their luck. It is also believed that on this day Lord Vishnu incarnated upon earth as Vamana and put his foot on the head of the demon king Bali.

With his foot he pushed Bali down into the nether world and freed the earth and the goddess Lakshmi from his control.

The third day – Diwali

The actual Diwali is celebrated on the third day of the festival, when the moon completely wanes and total darkness sets in the night sky.

It is in this darkness that Diwali finds its true expression.

On this day people worship Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and express their gratitude for previous favors.

Usually, the pooja is performed both in the morning and again in the evening when the sun is ready to set or has already set.

People believe that the Goddess will not visit those homes which are not kept clean or properly lighted. So everyone strives to keep their houses clean, the doors and windows open and all the lights and lamps glowing brightly.

During the worship, devotees make offerings to Lord Vinayaka and Mother Goddess also, in addition to the principal deity, with traditional chants, rituals, purified water, new clothes, fruit and flowers, sweets, light, sandal paste, incense, rice, turmeric and vermillion.

Money and valuables are placed before the principal deity during the invocation.

At the end of the worship, prasadam is offered to the family members and visitors.

In wealthy households, the assistance of a temple priest is sought to conduct the worship according to the scriptural injunctions.

After worshipping the goddess in one’s own house, people start making rounds to the nearby temples, and the houses of friends and relations to see how the celebration has been going on and distribute sweets and gifts.

Elsewhere, the goddess is worshipped ceremonially in temples, public places, business houses and offices.

As the evening comes, houses and streets are decorated with innumerable lights, lamps and candles. People keep the doors and windows open and all the lights on, expecting the goddess to come inside and take a survey of the things that have been done for her sake.

Outside, people gather in the streets and front yards to burn firecrackers, or watch others burning them or keep an eye on the oil lamps.

Some habitual card players, use the occasion as an opportunity to play cards and gamble their money.

According to a legend, on this day Lord Krishna completed his incarnation upon earth and left this world, leaving the pandavas and his kinsmen in utter confusion.

In Jain tradition it is believed that Lord Mahavira, the last of the Thirthakaras, attained Nirvana on this day only.

According to another prevailing legend, it was on this day, young Nachiketa of the Kathopanishad, received divine and secret knowledge of immortality from Lord Yama, the Lord of Death.

The fourth day – Padwa

The fourth day is variously known as Padwa, Varshapratipada and Kartika Shudda Padyami.

According to a legend, at the behest of Lord Krishna the people of Braj worshipped the hillock Govardhan on this day to save themselves from an impending storm unleashed by the fury of Indra, the Lord of Heaven.

Even now, in northern India, in the land of Braj, people continue the tradition of worshipping Govardhan on this auspicious day. In a sense, this is an act of invocation to appease the forces of Nature to prevent the occurrence of floods and cyclonic storms, a tradition that is probably rooted in the Vedic times.

In the temples of Mathura and Nathdwara priests give a special bath to the principal deities on this occasion and decorate them with glittering robes and eye catching jewelry.

They heap a mountain load of food infront of the deities in a symbolic way and later distribute it to the devotees as prasadam.

In traditional households, women worship their husbands and receive gifts and blessings in return. Business people open new account books to begin the new financial year and offer prayers for luck and prosperity.

The fifth day- Bhai Duj

The fifth and final day of the festival is known as Bhai duj (Bhayiduj, Bhayyaduj, Bhavbij or Bhayitika).

On this day brothers and sisters get together to strengthen their bonds of love and affection and celebrate the occasion.

Sisters put a ceremonial mark, usually with vermilion, on their brothers’ foreheads and wish them long lives.

According to a legend, the tradition began when Yamuna, the sister of Lord Yama honored her brother with a tilak on his forehead and wished him long life.

Miscellaneous facts about Diwali

  1. It is believed that the festival of Diwali commemorates the return of Lord Rama to Ayodhya.

After spending 14 years in the forest of Dandaka and slaying the demon king Ravana, when Rama returned to Ayodhya, his capital city, people were overjoyed by the news of his arrival and started the tradition of Diwali by celebrating the day with lights and lamps.

However, it must be noted that although the tradition links Rama to the festival, the Ramayana does not mention it by name.

We do not find any reference to it in the Ramacharitmanas of Tulasidas.

  • It is suggested by some historians that the tradition of Diwali could be traced to the Harvest festivals of ancient times when people observed the end of a harvest season with some kind of festivity to celebrate the occasion.

Since Diwali usually comes at the end of the harvest season, it lends credence to this theory, although we do not have any historical or scriptural evidence to prove it.

3.Two eminent Hindus, Swami Dayananda Saraswati and Swami Ramathirtha, left their mortal bodies on this auspicious day.

4. In West Bengal, people worship Goddess Durga during the Diwali festival. According to a legend, Durga killed Mahishasura in a fierce battle and continued her victory dance even after the demon was slain.

Diwali and Sikhism

1. Not only Hindus, but Sikhs also celebrate Diwali as an important festival. It is said that the foundation stone for the Golden Temple was laid during the time of Diwali in 1577.

2. Diwali played an important role in the life of Sri Guru Hargobind Ji, the sixth Guru of the Sikhs. When Jehangir, the Mughal emperor, arrested Guru Hargobind and put him in a prison in Gwalior, gloom descended upon Sikhs.

However, Jehangir relented and freed the Guru.

Accompanied by his followers and to the joy of many Sikhs, the Guru returned to Amritsar and made an appearance before his followers.

The occasion was Diwali and it prompted the followers to celebrate the day with joy and happiness.

Diwali and Jainism

  1. It is said that the first scriptural reference to Diwali is found in the Jain scripture Harivamsha Purana, by Acharya Jinasena.

None of the principal Hindu scriptures mention the festival in particular. It prompted some to conclude that Diwali was originally a Jain festival and later adopted by Hindus as a festival of their own.

  • Lord Mahavira, the last of the Jain Thirthankaras, said to have attained Nirvana on this day at Pavapuri.

Accoriding Jain legends the first disciple of Mahavira, Ganadhar Gautam Swami also attained complete knowledge on this very day, thus making Diwali a special occasion for Jains to celebrate.

  • The way Jains celebrate Diwali is different in many respects.

There is an element of asceticism in whatever Jains do, and the celebration of Diwali is not an exception. The Jains celebrate Diwali during the month of Kartik for three days.

During this period, devoted Jains observe fasting and chant the Uttaradhyayan Sutra which contains the final pravachans of Lord Mahavira and meditate upon him.

Diwali in other parts of the World

  1. Diwali is celebrated in various parts of the world, in countries such as Britain, Guyana, Fiji, Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mauritius, Myanmar, Nepal, Singapore, Srilanka, Trinidad and Tobago, Thailand, Africa, and Australia. With more and more Indians now migrating to various parts of the world, the number of countries where Diwali is celebrated has been gradually increasing. In most of these countries Diwali is celebrated on the same lines as described in this article with some minor variations.

Some important variations are worth mentioning.

2. In Malaysia, people call Diwali as Hari Diwali and celebrate it during the seventh month of the Hindu solar calendar. In many respects it resembles the traditions followed in the Indian subcontinent.

3. Diwali is celebrated in Nepal with a lot of fanfare as in India, during the period of October and November, where it is known as Tihar. Here though the festival is celebrated for five days, the traditions vary from those followed in India. In Nepal animals are worshipped during the first two days. On the first day cows are worshipped and given offerings. On the second day, dogs are revered and offered special food. During third day the celebrations follow the same pattern as in India, with lights and lamps and lot of social activity. On the fourth day Yama, the Lord of Death is worshipped and appeased since on this occasion he said to have spared some legendary people from a certain death. On the fifth and final day, brothers and sisters meet and exchange pleasantries.

4. Diwali is celebrated in the Caribbean Islands also. Especially in Trinidad and Tobago Diwali it is marked as a special occasion and celebrated with a lot of fanfare. It is observed as a national holiday in this part of the world and some Ministers of the Government also take part in the celebrations publicly.

5. Diwali is celebrated by Hindus in the USA at homes, temples, and community halls. However due to restrictions in various states on the use of firecrackers, Hindus are presently not using firecrackers during Diwali. Many hesitate even to light lamps, or celebrate the festival in open, since it attracts attention and complaints from the neighbors who do not know what the occasion means. It is time Hindu associations in the USA to take up the matter with the State and Federal authorities and obtain permission to celebrate Diwali with firecrackers just as people have the permission to celebrate the Fourth of July.

Diwali in the Modern World

A growing number of scholars and people question the need and justification of using firecrackers to celebrate Diwali and demand for its discontinuation citing several reasons which are stated below.

Every year a lot of money goes into flames in the name of celebrations towards firecrackers.

It serves no purpose except a little excitement and could be used by people for more productive purposes or humanitarian aid.

Many companies that are engaged in the manufacture of firecrackers employ child labor.

They hardly follow the safety rules or regulations. Because of negligence and lack of oversight, occasionally it leads to fire accidents and deaths.

The manufactures do not maintain quality due to slack regulations and corruption. When people use them, they expose themselves to the hazard of injuries and accidental deaths.

Miscreants use the opportunity to use firecrackers and create in streets and public places or tease women.

Many fire accidents also happen in areas where people live in houses with thatched roofs and temporary constructions.

Excessive and unchecked use of firecrackers is a source of public nuisance and often leads to communal clashes, street fights, and social tensions.

The festival brings out into open the social and economic disparities that prevail in society. While rich families celebrate the festival with great abandon, poor people and children experience despair and frustration when they see others celebrating.

The firecrackers used during the festival on a large scale are a source of pollution.

However, on the positive side it is said that the smoke and smell coming from them drive away insects and mosquitoes and keep people safe from their bite.

Some of the points mentioned above are valid and justified. Hence, some introspection may be required. If we can separate emotion and belief for a moment and examine the issue with reason, it makes sense for each family to minimize the expenditure on firecrackers, at least by avoiding the purchase of certain types which are expensive and hazardous, or which create noise pollution.

Instead, they can spend that money for a good cause such as giving charity to a temple, organization, or a needy person.

They can still celebrate Diwali with lamps, and other festivities.

Diwali symbolizes the triumph of light over darkness, and of good over evil.

We celebrate light because it represents life.

Apart from the traditional methods of celebrating it, you can celebrate it in other ways too such as lighting the lamp of knowledge in the minds of others or bringing hope and happiness in their lives through selfless service.

Goddess Lakshmi will be truly pleased if you become a lamp to others and channel her light, wealth, and abundance to them.

Let you be a lamp in the darkness of ignorance and suffering and spread light in the lives of others.

It is better than living selfishly and accumulate karmic darkness.

Wealth is truly divine. It remains divine and force of light only when it is spent for good causes and with right intentions to promote harmony, happiness, and spiritual wellbeing.

Those who know the Maha Lakshmi know how she is pleased when wealth is spent for the purpose for which it is intended, which is the performance of obligatory duties for the preservation of life, order and regularity upon earth In today’s world, let us therefore celebrate Diwali as an auspicious occasion and a sacred opportunity to bring cheer and happiness in a world which is oppressed by the darkness of egoism, greed, vanity and selfishness.

History and Significance of Diwali, the Festival of Lights

A Significant Celebration of Light, Love, and Joy

Deepawali, Deepavali, or Diwali is the biggest and the brightest of all Hindu festivals.

It is the festival of lights: deep means “light” and avali “a row” to become “a row of lights.

” Diwali is marked by four days of celebration, which literally illuminates the country with its brilliance and dazzles people with its joy.

The Diwali festival occurs in late October or early November.

It falls on the 15th day of the Hindu month of Kartik, so it varies every year.

Each of the four days in the festival of Diwali is marked with a different tradition.

What remains constant is the celebration of life, its enjoyment, and a sense of goodness.

The Origins of Diwali

Historically, Diwali can be traced back to ancient India.

It most likely began as an important harvest festival.

However, there are various legends pointing to the origin of Diwali.

Some believe it to be the celebration of the marriage of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, with Lord Vishnu.

Others use it as a celebration of her birthday, as Lakshmi is said to have been born on the new-moon day of Kartik.

In Bengal, the festival is dedicated to the worship of Mother Kali, the dark goddess of strength. 

Lord Ganesha—the elephant-headed god and symbol of auspiciousness and wisdom—is also worshiped in most Hindu homes on this day.

In Jainism, Deepawali has the added significance of marking the great event of Lord Mahavira attaining the eternal bliss of nirvana.

Diwali also commemorates the return of Lord Rama (along with Ma Sita and Lakshman) from his 14-year-long exile and vanquishing the demon-king Ravana.

In joyous celebration of the return of their king, the people of Ayodhya, the capital of Rama, illuminated the kingdom with earthen diyas (oil lamps) and set off firecrackers.

The Four Days of Diwali

Each day of Diwali has its own tale to tell.

The first day of the festival, Naraka Chaturdasi marks the vanquishing of the demon Naraka by Lord Krishna and his wife Satyabhama. 

Amavasya, the second day of Deepawali, marks the worship of Lakshmi when she is in her most benevolent mood, fulfilling the wishes of her devotees. 

Amavasya also tells the story of Lord Vishnu, who, in his dwarf incarnation, vanquished the tyrant Bali and banished him to hell.

Bali is allowed to return to earth once a year to light millions of lamps and dispel darkness and ignorance while spreading the radiance of love and wisdom.

It is on the third day of Deepawali, Kartika Shudda Padyami, that Bali steps out of hell and rules the earth according to the boon given by Lord Vishnu.

The fourth day is referred to as Yama Dvitiya (also called Bhai Dooj), and on this day sisters invite their brothers to their homes.

Dhanteras: The Tradition of Gambling

Some people refer to Diwali as a five-day festival because they include the festival of Dhanteras (dhan meaning “wealth” and teras meaning “13th”).

This celebration of wealth and prosperity occurs two days before the festival of lights.

The tradition of gambling on Diwali also has a legend behind it.

It is believed that on this day, Goddess Parvati played dice with her husband Lord Shiva.

She decreed that whosoever gambled on Diwali night would prosper throughout the ensuing year.

The Significance of Lights and Firecrackers

All of the simple rituals of Diwali have a significance and a story behind them.

Homes are illuminated with lights, and firecrackers fill the skies as an expression of respect to the heavens for the attainment of health, wealth, knowledge, peace, and prosperity.

According to one belief, the sound of firecrackers indicates the joy of the people living on earth, making the gods aware of their plentiful state.

Still another possible reason has a more scientific basis: the fumes produced by the firecrackers kill or repel many insects, including mosquitoes, which are plentiful after the rains.

The Spiritual Significance of Diwali

Beyond the lights, gambling, and fun, Diwali is also a time to reflect on life and make changes for the upcoming year.

With that, there are a number of customs that revelers hold dear each year.

Give and forgive. It is common practice that people forget and forgive the wrongs done by others during Diwali. There is an air of freedom, festivity, and friendliness everywhere. 

Rise and shine. Waking up during the Brahmamuhurta (at 4 a.m., or 1 1/2 hours before sunrise) is a great blessing from the standpoint of health, ethical discipline, efficiency in work, and spiritual advancement.

The sages who instituted this Deepawali custom may have hoped that their descendants would realize its benefits and make it a regular habit in their lives.

Unite and unify. Diwali is a unifying event, and it can soften even the hardest of hearts. It is a time when people mingle about in joy and embrace one another.

Those with keen inner spiritual ears will clearly hear the voice of the sages, “O children of God unite, and love all.”

The vibrations produced by the greetings of love, which fill the atmosphere, are powerful.

When the heart has considerably hardened, only a continuous celebration of Deepavali can rekindle the urgent need of turning away from the ruinous path of hatred.

Prosper and progress. On this day, Hindu merchants in North India open their new account books and pray for success and prosperity during the coming year.

People buy new clothes for the family. Employers, too, purchase new clothes for their employees.

Homes are cleaned and decorated by day and illuminated by night with earthen oil lamps.

The best and finest illuminations can be seen in Bombay and Amritsar.

The famous Golden Temple at Amritsar is lit in the evening with thousands of lamps. 

This festival instills charity in the hearts of people, who perform good deeds.

This includes Govardhan Puja, a celebration by Vaishnavites on the fourth day of Diwali.

On this day, they feed the poor on an incredible scale.

Illuminate your inner self. The lights of Diwali also signify a time of inner illumination.

Hindus believe that the light of lights is the one that steadily shines in the chamber of the heart.

Sitting quietly and fixing the mind on this supreme light illuminates the soul.

It is an opportunity to cultivate and enjoy eternal bliss.

From Darkness Unto Light…

In each legend, myth, and story of Deepawali lies the significance of the victory of good over evil.

It is with each Deepawali and the lights that illuminate our homes and hearts that this simple truth finds new reason and hope.

From darkness unto light—the light empowers us to commit ourselves to good deeds and brings us closer to divinity.

During Diwali, lights illuminate every corner of India, and the scent of incense sticks hangs in the air, mingled with the sounds of firecrackers, joy, togetherness, and hope.

Diwali is celebrated around the globe.

Outside of India, it is more than a Hindu festival; it’s a celebration of South-Asian identities.

If you are away from the sights and sounds of Diwali, light a diya, sit quietly, shut your eyes, withdraw the senses, concentrate on this supreme light, and illuminate the soul.

What is Diwali

Diwali, sometimes written as Deepavali or Dipavali, is an important religious festival which honours several deities and celebrates good triumphing over evil.

Families will gather to enjoy meals and possibly exchange gifts, often amusing themselves with small fireworks.

Some areas of India have recently banned the sale of fireworks during Diwali for environmental reasons, but the practice still continues on throughout India.

Diwali is also a time for creating rangoli art.

These colourful artworks are placed on the floor, often at the entrances to homes to encourage good luck.

The colourful patterns are created using coloured rice or sand.

In addition to rangoli art, temples, homes, and business are illuminated for the holiday.

People often clean their homes, pay off old debts, and create new debts by making new purchases.

Cities and towns throughout India and abroad will often host community parades and festivities for Diwali.

In India, the holiday marks the end of the monsoon season and the ushering in of more comfortable mild weather.

What Is Diwali? 5 Things to Know About the Hindu Holiday

Diwali is one of the most important Hindu festivals celebrated in India and among the massive Indian diaspora worldwide.

Known as the festival of lights, it takes place over five days and has varying customs depending on what part of India a person is from.

It is also celebrated by Sikhs and Jains and in neighboring countries like Nepal.

Also known as Deepavali, literally meaning “row of lights” it celebrates the triumph of good over evil, a recurring theme in the Hindu epic Ramayana which tells the story of Lord Rama and his 14 years of exile and return to his kingdom.

But the worship of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, is also a dominant Diwali tradition.

Diwali falls on the darkest night of the Hindu calendar “Kartika” which is usually between mid October and November and it coincides with the Hindu New Year.

Here are five things you should know about Diwali:

1. Cleanliness is essential!

Hindus clean every nook and cranny of their houses and yards several days before Diwali arrives.

Not just the regular sweeping, vacuuming, and dusting but the wiping of ceilings, walls, re-washing bedroom linens, and cleaning kitchen cupboards top to bottom are common chores among many others. Hindus believe that goddess Lakshmi’s entry into their homes is an immense blessing so they do their part in welcoming her, by keeping a clean house. Some even draw red-colored footprints leading to their house as a representation of her arrival.

2. Lamps and lights are used to decorate homes

Diyas, or small clay lamps, are lit all over the house.

They’re also neatly lined outside of homes too.

It is said that when Lord Rama returned from exile his people celebrated by lighting lamps all over the kingdom.

Rangoli, which is a type of decorative design made at the entrance of homes, is very colorful and made out of colored rice powder.

But nowadays, especially in the U.S.,

Hindus also decorate their houses with Christmas lights and motifs.

Except the latter decorations go up in October or November (whenever Diwali falls that year) instead of December.

3. You get to wear your best clothes

Hindus dress up in their best or in their newest clothes on Diwali.

Family, friends, relatives, and neighbors visit each other’s houses and exchange sweets and in some cases, dried fruit.

Mouthwatering Indian sweets are not only made at home but are made in bulk, lasting for many days after the festival.

4. There are different types of puja, or prayer rituals

Diwali is a five-day festival that consists of different types of puja or religious prayer rituals each day.

The first day is called Dhanteras and Hindus offer puja to Yamraj (Lord of death), they pray against untimely death.

The second day, puja is offered to Lord Krishna who is an incarnation of Lord Vishnu (one of the three trinities of Hinduism), the third day is the actual Diwali day where puja is offered to goddess Lakshmi, the fourth day is Govardhan puja celebrating spiritual harvest, and the fifth and last day is Bhai Dooj, a day dedicated to sisters.

Keep in mind that these pujas and rituals are not set in stone over the five days, different parts of India celebrate in different ways.

5. It wouldn’t be Diwali without fireworks

Fireworks are synonymous with Diwali celebrations.

Loud and crackling, it is often a sound that is expected on Diwali night wherever there are large Hindu communities.

From the smoky haze on the ground with children running in all directions to the visual spectacle in the sky enjoyed by parents entertaining guests in their living rooms, fireworks are easily the most enjoyable part of Diwali.

It is also said that when Lord Rama came back from exile, his return was celebrated with light i.e. diyas and fireworks.

Fireworks are also believed by some to ward off evil spirits.

Diwali, the Festival of Lights: Keeping Hindu Culture Alive

Diwali is an annual Hindu festival that represents the triumph of good against evil and light over darkness. It is more commonly known outside of India as the Festival of Lights, one of the most colorful and extravagant celebrations, steeped in Hindu culture and beliefs.

Diwali is one of the means by which Hindu traditions are kept alive and for the younger generation to stay in touch with their culture.

If you’re traveling to India during this time of the year, do remember that the extent of the celebration depends on where you are at the particular time.

If you are in one of the affluent urban areas, the celebration is often more flamboyant, with more color, activities (including ceremonial gambling), fireworks and gift giving. In the more sedate rural areas, the celebrations tend to be more traditional, with simple family feasts and modest offerings.

Celebrating Diwali is not exclusive to Hindus.

Other religious groups, such as Newar BuddhistsSikhs and Jais celebrate Diwali as well.

While their religious belief may differ, the meaning of Diwali for all of them is the same.

Meaning of the name: Diwali, which is called Divali, Deepavali or Dipavali, means a row of lampsAside from the other previously mentioned meanings, Diwali can also symbolize knowledge conquering ignorance.

Traditional Preparations For Diwali

Diwali is celebrated during springtime in the southern hemisphere, which coincides with fall season in the northern hemisphere.

It typically takes five days for the preparation, rituals and the celebration of Diwali.

The most important one is the third day, which is the darkest night in Kartika, the Hindu lunisolar month.

 In a lunisolar calendar, the phases of the moon are used to divide the year.

The length can be adjusted depending on the cycle of the sun. In the Gregorian calendar, the celebration of Diwali typically occurs between the middle of October and the middle of November.

Day 1 – Dhanteras

Traditional colorful Kolam, Rangoli decorated by hand

Weeks before the event, Hindus will be cleaning their homes from top to bottom, inside and out.

They will do repairs, paint their homes and generally spruce up their dwellings and offices so they will be worthy to receive Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth.

On the 13th day of Kartika, they will put out their earthen oil lamps called diyas. 

The women prepare colored sand, flower petals and rice flour to create the colourful and intricate designs called rangolis for the doorways of homes and offices.

The men will decorate the walls and roofs of their homes, temples, markets and offices.

Families (depending on their budget) typically buy gold, jewelry, new clothes, utensils, firecrackers, home equipment and various other items on Dhanteras.

In the evening, they will light the lamps, offer prayers, food and sweets to Ganesha and Lakshmi.

Day 2 – Choti Diwali (Naraka Chaturdasi)

The second day, called Choti Diwali, is marked with prayers and rituals.

 Families spend the day buying the food and special sweets in varied shapes they will share with family and friends.

Families will prepare their homemade specialties, visit relatives, friends, neighbors and business associates, which often includes the exchange of gifts. Diwali is somewhat similar in activities to Christmas or New Year.

Remember this: In Karnataka, Goa and Tamil Nadu, the second day is celebrated as Diwali Day.

Day 3 – Diwali Day

This is the most exciting and awesome part of the Diwali festival.

People will be wearing their newly bought clothes.

They will also ensure that their houses are very clean, as they believe that Lakshmi will be very happy to visit the cleanest houses first.

The third day or Diwali Day is the time to worship (puja) Lakshmi.

In the evening, all the diyas placed on balconies and windowsills are lit, literary turning the areas into festivals of lights. Offerings of food and sweets are part of the puja, which involves an intricate ritual.

Doors are left open to welcome Lakshmi.

After they have done the puja, Hindus will troop to the streets to light up their fireworks (patakhe). Afterwards, everyone goes back home to enjoy their festive food.

On this day, the hard work of mothers throughout the year is recognized by the family.

The youngest members of every family visit older relatives and community members.

Some business owners take this time to present bonuses or gifts to their employees.

Another thing to note: While other religious celebrations typically involve fasting, during Diwali, Hindus indulge in a feast.

Day 4 – Annakut (Padwa or Govardhan puja)

The darkness of the nights during the first three days of the festival ushers in the brightness of the coming days.

On the fourth day or Annakut, the bonds between husbands and wives are celebrated.

Typically, the husbands present their wives with gifts while in some areas, they are treated to a festive meal by the family.

Day 5 – Bhai Duj (Bhaiya Dooj)

Bhai Duj is the day to honor the bonds between brothers and sisters.

On this day, brothers travel to meet their sisters.

Female family members pray and make offerings to their gods to request for the safety of their brothers. Later, they will hand-feed their brothers.

In turn, the brothers present their sisters with gifts.

Earlier we mentioned ceremonial gambling.

According to their belief, gambling is an auspicious activity when celebrating Diwali.

It seems that during ancient times, a Hindu deity gambled with his consort and the woman won.

Today, some communities still observe the activity and play card games for fun and a small amount of money.

These are some of the most essential things you ought to know about Diwali, a very colorful and wonderful Hindu tradition that you should not miss if you are in India in the fall.

Difference Between Diwali and Deepavali

The festivals a community celebrates, be it a religious community, a community sharing a common land, or a community of any other kind, tell us their history and way of living.

It tells us what the people believe in and how their society is built on these beliefs.
India is a land of rich cultural integrity; thus, it is no surprise to find such many festivals and occasions happening throughout the country throughout the year.

One of the most prominent festivals of this country, which is not only celebrated here but all across the world, is Diwali or Deepavali.

It is a common doubt as to why these have such different dates, yet their method of celebration is quite the same.


  1. Diwali and Deepavali are two names for the same Hindu festival, celebrated to mark the victory of light over darkness and good over evil.
  2. Deepavali, originating from the Sanskrit words “deepa” (light) and “avali” (row), indicates the central practice of lighting lamps and candles during the festival.
  3. Although the festival’s name varies regionally, Diwali and Deepavali are celebrated with similar customs, such as cleaning homes, exchanging gifts, and feasting festive food.

What is Diwali?

Diwali is the festival of lights, significant in most north Indian states.

This occasion marks the return of Lord Rama from his exile.

This is part of the epic Ramayana, where Lord Rama was sent to exile from his father’s kingdom in Ayodhya when he was still a prince.

After the completion of fourteen years, he returned with his wife, Sita, and brother Laxman.

All the villages and the capital city in the kingdom had lit diyas (small clay lamps) to celebrate the good ruler’s return.

The five days of this festival are Dhanteras, Choti Diwali, Diwali and Lakshmi Puja, Govardhan Puja, and Bhai Dooj.

Dhanteras celebrates the birth of Lord Dhanvantari. Lord Dhanvantari is regarded as the physician of gods.

On this day, the goddess Lakshmi is worshipped and is prayed to for wealth and prosperity. 

The day of Choti Diwali holds significance because Lord Krishna slew the demon Narakasura on this day. Choti Diwali is the day when Deepavali starts.

The main occasion, Diwali, is the third day in this series of festivals.

This commemorates Lord Rama’s return to Ayodhya after the defeat of Ravana.

Also, Goddess Lakshmi emerged from the sea of milk on this day, so Lakshmi Puja is also performed on this day.

The fourth day mythologically celebrates the event where Lord Krishna saved the people from floods. Lord Indra had rained heavy rains to flood everywhere, but Lord Krishna had protected all his people by lifting the mountain Govardhana on his little finger.

The fifth and final day, Bhai Dooj is celebrated, an occasion between brothers and sisters, where sisters pray for the well-being of their brothers.

The brother presents his sister with gifts. 

This is the main essence of Diwali and all the festivals during this period.

What is Deepavali?

Deepavali is also the festival of lights, just like Diwali. However, it has a few differences as compared to Diwali.

Deepavali starts on Ashvina Krishna Chaturdasi.

Mythologically, this marks the event where Lord Krishna, the incarnation of Lord Vishnu in the Dwapara Yuga, defeats the demon Narakasura.

He was a demon king.

Similar to Diwali, there are a bunch of festivals around the period Deepavali is celebrated.

They are Deepavali, Lakshmi Puja, Kartika Suddha Padwa, and Yama Dvitiya.

Deepavali, as mentioned before, is the festival that signifies the occasion of Lord Krishna defeating the demon king Narakasura.

On this day, people take a bath early in the morning when the first rays of the sun appear, and there are still stars in the sky.

The second day is Lakshmi Puja. Same as on Diwali, Goddess Lakshmi emerged from the Kheer sagar (sea of milk) on this day.

She is worshipped for wealth and prosperity.

The Karthika Suddha Padwa is also known as Bali Padyami.

This signifies the appearance of Lord Vishnu incarnating on Earth as a Vamana (dwarf) and defeating the demon king Bali. 

The fourth day, Yama Dvitiya, is when Yama (God of Death) feasted with his sister, and she put a tilak on his forehead for his well-being.

So, similarly, sisters put a tilak on their brothers’ forehead to pray for their well-being.

Main Differences Between Diwali and Deepavali

  1. The main difference between Diwali and Deepavali is that Diwali is celebrated mostly in the North Indian states, whereas Deepavali is celebrated in the Southern ones.
  2. Diwali is the festival that celebrates the return of Lord Rama to his kingdom Ayodhya. Deepavali signifies the time when Lord Krishna defeated the demon king Ravana.
  3. Diwali is a shortened version of the word Deepavali, a Sanskrit word. 
  4. Diwali is celebrated for five days, while Deepavali is celebrated for four days.
  5. Diwali starts on Ashvina Amavasya. Deepavali starts on Ashvina Krishna Chaturdasi.



Diwali is the most important annual holiday in India and billions of people around the world, mainly Hindus, celebrate the festival every year.

Diwali is a celebration of light triumphing over darkness and, more spiritually, good over evil.

Let’s explore the history of the festival and some of the most interesting and important facts about this celebration.

The everchanging Festival of Light

Diwali is a five-day festival, and in 2022 it is celebrated between the 22nd and 26th, with the 24th marking the height of the festival.

Every year the dates of the festival change as the moon’s position determines them.

It usually falls between October and November.

Each day of the festival has its own name and significance in which worshippers celebrate and immerse themselves in ancient traditions.

The stories and history behind Diwali

Hindus celebrate Diwali, but it is observed in different religions as well.

Jains and Sikhs also have their own traditions, with their own religious significance surrounding the festival.

Each religion and some subsects have their own stories at the heart of the celebration.

In one of the key stories in Hindu mythology, Diwali is described as the day Lord Rama, his wife Sita Devi and brother Lakshmana return to their home after fourteen years spent in exile.

In the tale, villagers lit a path for the return of Rama and in some areas, re-enacting this pathway is a central part of the celebrations.

Another Hindu story that is often told and at the heart of Diwali is that it marks the day Lord Krishna was triumphant over the demon Narakasura and freed the people of the kingdom.

Once the demon was slain, Krishna called for a day of festivities.

Some regions of India burn effigies of the demon to celebrate Diwali.

Diwali is closely linked with harvest and the new year for other cultures.

The five days of Diwali

There are many traditions and superstitions closely linked with Diwali.

Two days before the main festival day, many people go out and buy a metallic kitchen implement, which is considered a good luck charm.

The day before the main Diwali festival is known as little Diwali (Choti Diwali), and traditionally it is an opportunity to get ready for the big day itself.

These days it is more commonly used for last-minute errands and swapping gifts with family.

It is also the day when traditional ornate floral and geometrical patterns, known as rangoli, are spread across floors using bright-coloured powders, petals, and rice flour.

The five days of Diwali

There are many traditions and superstitions closely linked with Diwali.

Two days before the main festival day, many people go out and buy a metallic kitchen implement, which is considered a good luck charm.

The day before the main Diwali festival is known as little Diwali (Choti Diwali), and traditionally it is an opportunity to get ready for the big day itself.

These days it is more commonly used for last-minute errands and swapping gifts with family.

It is also the day when traditional ornate floral and geometrical patterns, known as rangoli, are spread across floors using bright-coloured powders, petals, and rice flour.

The third day is the main Diwali celebration.

When the sun sets, prayer time begins, and clay lamps are laid out to signify the lights that the festival is known for.

Firework displays are also closely linked to the festival and are common across India and many other nations.

The day after Diwali is a little more subdued, and celebrations differ from area to area.

In some regions, such as North India, the morning is dedicated to worshipping the tools of work such as kitchen implements, artist’s palettes, pens, and paper.

The final day of Diwali is a chance for sisters to pray for the well-being of their brothers and be rewarded with gifts of sweetmeats in return.

Celebrating Diwali

The weeks leading to Diwali are of great significance to many cultures.

It is traditionally a time for redecorating the home, buying new clothes and trinkets, and exchanging trinkets, including food and jewellery.

Dinner parties and outdoor food festivals help build up the excitement for the main Diwali festival.

Drinks, finger food and parties packed with music and celebrations build fun and a sense of excitement throughout the festival.

Top facts about Diwali

There are many different facts about Diwali as it is honoured across religions, and here are just four facts you may not have known about this special celebration:

1. Diwali occurs on a no-moon night

Diwali falls within the Hindu lunar calendar month of Karthik and is chosen as it falls on Amavasya, which translates to moonless night.

Choosing the night of a new moon means the lights, lamps and fireworks are even more vivid, distinguishing between light and darkness.

2. Diwali means “row of lights” in Sanskrit

Diwali translates directly from Sanskrit as “row of lights”.

It is the celebration of light over darkness and the triumph of good over evil; this name is chosen to signify this.

The festival is a celebration of all things luminary and settlements across the world, of all sizes, light up in festivity.

3. Diwali is a celebration of the goddess Lakshmi

The goddess of prosperity, Lakshmi, is the major deity associated with the festival.

There are many gods related to the celebration, with many different religions relating to the story, but Lakshmi is the most prominent.

Lakshmi is the goddess of prosperity but also beauty and fortune, and many celebrants make tributes and worship her in the hope she will bestow good fortune on them and their loved ones.

4. Diwali is a national holiday in eleven countries

Diwali is mainly considered an Indian holiday, with over 1 billion people in the country celebrating the festival.

However, the Indian diaspora is much more widely spread, and Diwali is observed by people of Indian descent in almost every country on the planet.

It is celebrated as an official national holiday in these eleven nations:

Trinidad and Tobago, Fiji, Mauritius, Guyana, Malaysia, Singapore, Suriname, Nepal, Myanmar, and Sri Lanka.

Your Guide to How Diwali Festival is Celebrated

Diwali is one of the most coveted and anticipated festivals of the year for Hindus.

During this holy festival, Hindu families decorate their homes and offices with festive flowers and leaves.

Diwali lasts for five days, and light is celebrated in many forms. Find out how Diwali festival is celebrated!

Questions and curiosity abound over how Diwali Festival is celebrated.

What is Diwali and why is it celebrated?

Diwali is a 5-day festival of lights that is celebrated globally by Hindus, Jains and Sikhs each year.

Diwali is known for celebrating the following themes:

A festival of new beginnings

The victory of good over evil

Light winning over darkness

There is so much more to Diwali, and we have a road map for you below on how to celebrate and cherish this special holiday.

Why is Diwali Called the Festival of Lights?

Diwali is most commonly known as the festival of lights.

It’s a derivative of the Sanskrit word “dipavali”, which translates to “row of lights.”

For Diwali, people were known for clay lamps lit with bright light that would line the outside of their homes at night to let their neighbors know they were united in celebrating this special festival.

When Is Diwali Celebrated?

Many people ask this question:

Is Diwali the same date every year? It is not.

The date of this special Indian festival is always determined by the Hindu Lunar Calendar. 

How Long is Diwali Festival of Lights Celebrated For? 

The Diwali Festival of Lights lasts for a total of 5 days.

The festival lasts for five days from the 13th day of the dark half of the lunar month Ashvina to the second day of the light half of the lunar month Kartika. 

How is Diwali Observed? 

Diwali has one constant though. It’s always on the 15th day of the Hindu month of Kartik, which is the eighth month on the Hindu calendar.

This means the festival typically takes place every year on the calendar sometime between October and November, purposefully falling on the day of the new moon, called Amavasya.

The night before the festival is the darkest night of the year in Hindu mythology and is one of the holiest days on the Hindu calendar that leads into this wonderful Diwali celebration of light and rebirth. 

Diwali Pronunciation

Many people mispronounce the word Diwali. When pronouncing the word, it should be pronounced like duh.vaa.lee.

South India calls the celebration Deepavali and is known for celebrating one day earlier.

How to Say Happy Diwali 

It’s as simple as saying, “Happy Diwali!” That works as a greeting among others that celebrate the holiday.

If you want to be more traditional with your greeting, you can greet someone with, “Wishing you a Diwali that brings happiness, joy and prosperity to you and your family this year!”

Diwali Message

How is the Diwali Festival of Lights celebrated, you might be asking?

For starters, you want to come up with other good Diwali greetings to start the celebration with friends and family! Some other suggestions for Diwali greetings include: 

  • This Diwali we pray for good health for our family, our friends and blessings of God lifetime!
  • Celebrate this Diwali festival in its truest sense by spreading cheer and light up the world to show others!
  • Have a safe, happy, and blessed Diwali!
  • Here’s to many blessings from Goddess Lakshmi! Happy Diwali!
  • May the beauty of this Diwali season fill your household with light and happiness!

How Do You Celebrate Diwali Festival?

The highly anticipated Hindu festival is celebrated across India and wherever Hindus live around the globe.

The festival also symbolizes the victory of good over evil and that’s worth celebrating in this world now more than ever. 

How is Diwali Celebrated in India?

Diwali is celebrated in India in much the same way that Hindus in the United States celebrate the festival. This includes: 

  • Spending quality time together with family and friends
  • Cooking up a spectacular Indian feast worthy of the celebrations
  • Lighting up the holiday with both lamps, more modern lights and even fireworks both inside and outside homes
  • Shopping
  • Presenting gifts
  • Puja (prayers)
  • Sweets

How to Celebrate Diwali at Home

Celebrating Diwali at home is what it’s all about! Celebrating the season of light with those you love in the comfort of your own home. Celebrating Diwali at home involves: 

Diwali Decorations for My Home

  • Cleaning and preparing your home for the 5-day celebration comes first. Cleaning is part of the celebration and meant as a reminder that Diwali is a time of rebirth and a fresh start.
  • Drawing footprints to put throughout the floor on the first day of Diwali to celebrate the arrival of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth. 
  • Shop for new clothing, jewelry and new household items like utensils and kitchen tools to celebrate a new year. 
  • Decorate your home on the second day with rangoli designs that are bright in color. Place them in your home’s entryway and throughout the home. 
  • Light diyas, candles and other festive lights around your home.
  • Hang strings of lights up inside and outside. 

Diwali Gift Ideas

There are many different types of Diwali gift ideas when you are figuring out what to buy and how Diwali festival is celebrated with gifts.

The best way we can come up with some suggestions for you is to break these down by category: 

What Are Traditional Gifts Given During Diwali?

Traditional Diwali gifts include: 

  • Lakshmi Ganesh idols
  • Rangoli
  • Diyas
  • Wall hangings

What is the Best Diwali Gift for Family?

Some family Diwali gift ideas include: 

  • Home decor
  • Candles
  • Unique Lights
  • Chocolates and other sweets
  • Flowers
  • Plants for Diwali
  • Clothing and other apparel

Serve Diwali Meals and Teas

What kind of food and drink do you plan on serving at your Diwali?

Some suggestions to consider are: 

• Dahi kebabs and yogurt dips with chips or bread.

• Serve a Masala for a main dish with variations that include vegetarian, chickpea, chicken and more.

• Try a spicy dish like a pindi chole, a wonderful simmering of spices and chickpeas in a creamy sauce with a kick.

• Enjoy a paneer makhani dish to add a wonderful cheesy flavor to your Diwali festival.

Paneer is an unsalted version of cottage cheese that you can spice to taste.

• Don’t forget bread like naan to serve on the side.

Naan is an Indian-style bread to help calm your taste buds from a spicy overload of flavors.

• Remember the sweets like pastries, pudding, and barfi.

Barfi is a creamy and delicious Indian dessert that combines condensed milk, sugar and nuts that is turned into tasty cut squares.