What is Diwali?
It is often called the festival of light, which comes from the Sanskrit word dipavali, meaning “row of lights”. During Diwali people celebrate new beginnings and the triumph of good over evil, and light over darkness, when the return of Lord Rama and his wife Sita from an exile is celebrated. This year, the third day of Diwali, often the most prominent celebration, falls on Nov. 4th, 2021.
How is it celebrated?
It is celebrated over five days featuring different ceremonies each day.
The first day, people usually start the celebration by cleaning their homes. They also shop for gold or kitchen utensils which are believed will bring good fortune.
The second day is often spent preparing the celebration that is taking place on the third day. Houses are decorated with clay lamps called “diyas”, to upend the darkness with goodness and purity. It’s also a time when intricate floral and geometrical designs, known as ‘rangoli’, are created on floors using coloured powders, rice flour and flower petals.
The third day is the main event during the five days. People visit temples or worship service, lighting diyas, and also enjoying fireworks. It’s also the time to gather with loved ones.
The fourth day marks the first day of the New Year for many regions of India. It’s just the perfect time to feel thankful for the past year and to look ahead. This day is often celebrated by exchanging presents and best wishes.
The fifth day celebrates the bond between siblings, which often celebrated with a feast of traditional meals and sweet delicacies to celebrate the bond between siblings.
Wait, did I just read sweet delicacies?
Yes...a wide range of choices of flavours and endless types of sweets are a must at Diwali celebration. There are a hundred types of varieties ranging from Jalebi, Laddoo, Barfi, Besan, Gulab jamun, Gujjia, Petha, Halwa, and so many more.
Having sweets is an old tradition symbolizes purity and offering to the gods and it is a universal gesture of greeting people, family and friends while celebrating the festival.