Diwali is an auspicious Hindu festival celebrated across India each year. This is a festival of lights and celebrations are carried out though out the country by bursting crackers, distributing sweets to near and dear ones etc., But few in the present generation kwon the purpose of celebrating Diwali. So, in a short note, let us understand for the benefit of our readers as to why is Diwali Celebrated?
At first, Diwali is observed on the 15th day of Kartik, the holiest month in the Hindu lunar calendar, coinciding with Amavasya in the same month. Accordingly, in 2018, Diwali would be celebrated on 7th November 2018. Diwali as a festival is celebrated across the country with much significance; culturally and traditionally. It also has many spiritual significances such as victory of light over darkness or good over evil and knowledge over ignorance etc. Apart from this, there are many reasons (estimated to be 12 in numbers as per Hindu mythology) for celebrating Diwali. However, one of them, with high prominence, have been mentioned below:
It is believed that Diwali is celebrated as the victory of Lord Ram over Demon king Ravana. After slaying Ravana, the King of Lanka, and completing his 14 years of exile, Lord Ram returned to Ayodhya along with his wife, Sita, and brother, Lakshmana. The day when Lord Ram entered Ayodhya was the new moon day in the month of Kartik. The People of Ayodhya welcomed Lord Ram by bursting firecrackers and lighting diyas and lamps. From then onwards, fireworks and diyas have come to symbolize the festival. Thus, even today it is believed to be festival of Lights and celebrated with much fanfare.
The important days during Diwali:
The celebration of Diwali is for Five days. The first day is called as Dhanteras. Where "Dhan" means wealth and "teras" refers to the 13th day of a lunar fortnight (Trayodashi) on the Hindu calendar. This day is dedicated to celebrating prosperity. Goddess Lakshmi is welcomed to one’s home and gold is purchased as a mark of welcoming the goddess.
The 2nd days or the day of Chaturdashi 14th day of a lunar fortnight is celebrated as Chota Diwali.
The 3rd day or the day of Amavasya This darkest day of the month is the most significant day of the Diwali festival across India. Goddess Lakshmi is worshiped on this day too, with a special puja performed usually during the evening.
Then on the 4th day is celebrated as Govardhan Puja. This is the Prathama tithi of the Fortnight.
And Finally, the last day or the 5th days which is of Dwitiya tithi. It's dedicated to celebrating sisters, in a similar way that Raksha Bandhan is dedicated to brothers.
Diwali And Laxmi Pooja:
This day is very auspicious to obtain the grace of Goddess Laxmi- the Goddess of wealth. For happiness and wealth in the house and forever lasting prosperity, one should always fast the whole day and after the sun sets, should pray to Goddess Laxmi in the “Sthir Lagan” or Fixed lagna (which is Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius) of “Pradosh Kaal”. The correct time for the pooja should be found out according to the place one is worshipping in. In Inia this would fall on 7th November 2018 (Amavaya tithi). Accordingly, with both the tithi and auspicious Sthir lagna, it would be starting from 17:57 till 19:53 hours in the evening. This is also the day where Lakshmi Puja is carried out. Lakshmi Puja Muhurta is highly auspicious and it is believed that the whole house or office should be cleaned to welcome the Goddess. By doing this, one is assured of inviting prosperity to one’s residence.
Thus, the below is a small tithi calendar for the benefit of the readers.
Lakshmi Puja Muhurta - 17:57 to 19:53
Pradosh Kaal- 17:27 to 20:06
Vrishabha Kaal - 17:57 to 19:53
Amavasya Tithi Begins- 22:27 (6th November)
Amavasya Tithi Ends- 21:31 (7th November)
Laxmi Puja Preparation can be carried out as follows:
Most Hindu Festivals are celebrated by decorating their home, and Diwali is no exception. Here the offices too are decorated. The common flowers used during Diwali are Marigold, Ashoka, Mango and Banana Leaves. Especially on the eve of Laxmi Puja.
Again, on the day of Laxmi puja, it is believed that Mangalik Kalash is covered with unpeeled coconut are kept at both the ends of the entrance of the home.
Many at home maintain a raised platform where they place the idol of goddess Laxmi and lord Ganesh. Then many stotra and chalisa are chanted to please goddess Laxmi and Lord Ganesh. Lord Ganesh is also worshiped to ward of any obstacle during the day.
Thus, the celebration of Diwali is done with great fanfare and reverence by offering prayers to goddess Laxmi. It is believed that when Goddess Laxmi is offered pooja on this day, the coming year would be filled with prosperity.
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