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An Overview of Diwali Celebration
Diwali, also known as Deepavali, is a widely celebrated festival in India, signifying the victory of good over evil. This Indian festival is observed with great enthusiasm and is deeply rooted in the country’s cultural and religious traditions. Diwali’s significance is multifaceted, commemorating joy, harmony, and the return of Lord Ram from his exile, a story narrated in the epic Ramayana.
The word “Diwali” is derived from the Sanskrit term “Deepavali,” which translates to “row of lights.” This festival is marked by the illumination of lamps, typically earthen ones, throughout homes and offices, symbolizing the triumph of light over darkness. Deepavali generally falls in the months of October or November, occurring around 20 days after Dussehra, and is observed during the Hindu month of Kartika.
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Diwali, also known as “Deepavali,” is one of the holiest festivals for Hindus living in India and around the world. ‘Diwali’ is derived from two Sanskrit words – ‘Deep’ meaning ‘lamp’ and ‘Aavali’ meaning ‘row,’ which signifies a row of lamps or lights. It is celebrated on the day of Kartik month’s new moon. It is a festival celebrated with great enthusiasm by people all around the world. Although it is considered a Hindu festival, people from various communities also celebrate this bright festival with fireworks and firecrackers.
The preparations for Diwali start several days before the festival itself. People believe that cleaning and decorating their homes well in advance is important because it is believed that on the day of Deepavali, the goddess Lakshmi visits homes that are clean and blesses them with prosperity. As Deepavali approaches, people start decorating their homes with lamps and various kinds of lights.
Shopping during Diwali
During this auspicious occasion, people purchase idols of Lord Ganesha, Goddess Lakshmi, Lord Rama, and more from the markets. This period sees a lot of hustle and bustle in the markets. People buy new clothes, utensils, and sweets. Business owners start their new account books on the day of Deepavali. It is believed that this beautiful festival brings wealth, prosperity, and success for everyone. People eagerly exchange gifts with their family, friends, and relatives on the occasion of Deepavali.
Significance of Firecrackers in Diwali
Diwali is often called the “Festival of Lights.” On this day, people light clay lamps and decorate their homes with colorful lights of different shapes and sizes, which can leave anyone mesmerized. In this festival, children love to burst firecrackers and enjoy various kinds of fireworks like sparklers, rockets, fountains, and more.
Effects of Festival Diwali on the Environment
Considering the environmental pollution and safety concerns, it’s advisable to avoid bursting too many crackers during Deepavali. These crackers are often made of harmful materials, and there have been instances where children have injured themselves while using them. It’s recommended to burst crackers only under the supervision of adults. Moreover, it’s best to reduce the number of crackers you ignite as they contribute to air and noise pollution, which can also distress animals.
Noise pollution can be particularly distressing to animals. So, let’s not forget the impact on the environment and the well-being of animals that these crackers can harm. You can still enjoy the festivities by focusing on the lights and having a great time. To maintain the tradition, you can choose to burst only a few crackers and celebrate in an eco-friendly manner.
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History of Diwali
According to Hindu beliefs, on the day of Deepavali, Lord Rama, after his 14 years of exile, returned to Ayodhya with his wife Sita, brother Lakshman, and the devoted Hanuman. Since Deepavali falls on the new moon night, it is quite dark. To make sure Lord Rama’s arrival was well-lit and to avoid any obstacles, the people of Ayodhya lit lamps and decorated the entire city with flowers. Since then, Diwali has been celebrated as the festival of lights and the victory of light over darkness.
Social Evils Related to Diwali
Despite being a festival of great religious significance, Deepavali is sometimes marred by certain social ills such as the consumption of alcohol, gambling, black magic, and misuse of fireworks. If these issues are kept at bay, Deepavali can truly become a joyous and auspicious festival for all.
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