Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Diwali - Indian festival of lights
दीपावली की हार्दिक शुभकामनाएं!
Today is the last day of this 5 day Hindi festival of lights - so here's a little background info:
For Hindus, Diwali is the most important festival of the year. The name Diwali is itself a contraction of the word Deepavali, which translates into "row of lamps". Diwali involves the lighting of small clay lamps filled with oil to signify the triumph of good over evil.
There are many legends about the history of Diwali that vary depending on the religious sect. In each legend, myth and story of Diwali lies the significance of the victory of good over evil. From darkness unto light — the light that empowers us to commit ourselves to good deeds, that which brings us closer to divinity.
During Diwali, all the celebrants wear new clothes and share sweets and snacks with family members and friends, watch fireworks, and perform traditional activities together in their homes. Lights illuminate every corner of India and the scent of incense sticks hangs in the air, mingled with the sounds of fire-crackers, joy, togetherness and hope.
Diwali is celebrated around the globe. Outside India, it is more than a Hindu festival, it's a celebration of South-Asian identities.
In honor of Diwali and all of our South-Asian brothers and sisters, here is a Bollywood song, Aayee Hai Diwali, from the Hindi film "Aamdani Atthanni Karcha Rupaiya" - in which the characters celebrate the festival of lights!