Diwali: The Festival of Lights, Legends, and Auspicious Celebrations
India’s much awaited festival is here. Diwali, the festival of lights, the occasion of joy and the celebration of happiness. Every year it’s celebrated on the 15th day of Hindu luni-solar month of Kartik and this year it falls on November 12.
One of the most famous Diwali legends revolves around Lord Rama, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. After defeating the formidable King Ravana of Lanka, Lord Rama returned to his homeland, Ayodhya. In celebration, the people of Ayodhya lit countless diyas (oil lamps), a tradition that continues today to commemorate his return. Another interpretation of Diwali links it to the Pandavas, who returned home after a 12-year exile following their loss to the Kauravas in a game of dice. The festival is also deeply connected to Goddess Lakshmi, the embodiment of wealth and prosperity. According to legend, Goddess Lakshmi emerged from the churning of the ocean, an event known as the Samudra Manthan. She chose Lord Vishnu as her husband, emphasizing the festival’s significance.
In 2023, Diwali will be celebrated on November 12, falling on a Sunday. The most auspicious time for the Diwali puja is after sunset, during the period known as ‘pradosh.’ This time is chosen based on the presence of Amavasya tithi (new moon) during pradosh, and it is believed to be the most auspicious moment for the observance of Diwali, even if it lasts for only about 24 minutes. This time allows for a spiritually significant and auspicious observance of Diwali.
May this Diwali bring light, joy, and prosperity to all who celebrate, symbolizing the victory of good over evil and the triumph of knowledge over ignorance.