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Diwali festivals in India – Diwali is the most important festival in India and it is also known as Deepawali in some regions. This festival falls on the darkest night of Kartik so people light up their houses with Diyas and candles and therefore, it is considered as festival of lights. It is celebrated with full enthusiasm and happiness among people in India. The celebrations include various things like lighting of lamps, bursting of crackers and exchanging special sweets with friends and family which enlighten the mood of people and thus give them relaxation from their busy lives.
Diwali is celebrated because on this day Lord Rama, his wife Sita and his Brother Lakshmana came back to Ayodhya after 14 years and conquering the demon King Ravana. So, it symbolizes old culture of India which teaches us to vanquish all evils which subdue humanity to drive away darkness from our mind, body and soul. Diwali is one of the festivals that even in this modern world project glorious past of India which spreads knowledge among people.
It is the most glamorous festival which creates an atmosphere of joy and festivity among people. It is considered auspicious to buy new clothes and jewelry at this festive time. People clean their houses thoroughly and bring new items to decorate their houses. Even many parties are held in many homes for celebrating this occasion.
There are many traditions and customs followed during Diwali celebrations. On this day, lamps are filled with oils or candles are used to light up the house and symbolize that you should uphold the true values of life. Moreover, in many regions of North India gambling is done on large scale on this day. Shopkeepers start decorating their shops many days before Diwali and make the markets colorful. Lakshmi Pooja is also held during the celebrations in order to gain wealth and prosperity. It gives an opportunity to enjoy with family and friends and create many special memories with them.
Though with modernization the way of celebrating Diwali has changed but the ethics remain the same. Every year when this festival comes back, it brings a feeling of rejoice and merriment among Indians. Now, lamps are replaced with stunning electric illuminations and even many of them do not prefer to buy traditional clothes but still Diwali remains a wonderful festival where people get to share sweets and happiness and thus they get a joyful experience during this season.
As Diwali is celebrated by people residing in different parts and regions of India; so the festivities and flavors differ from northern tip of Kashmir to Southern end of Kanyakumari. That is way celebrations of Diwali may differ from region to region but the principles of Diwali remain the same. Let us read which customs and relations are associated with Diwali in other states of India:
Delights of Diwali in Karnataka:
Out of five day celebrations, the first and third day of Diwali hold special significance for Kannadigas. On the first day, Ashwija Krishna Chaturdashi is celebrated which signifies the death of evil demon named as Narakasura. It is believed that in past Lord Krishna took oil bath to get rid from the blood of this demon so even today people take oil bath to get rid of evil spirits.
On the third day, Diwali is also called Bali Padymi. To celebrate this day women make beautiful designs of rangoli on the doorsteps of their houses. In addition they build forts which are made of cow dung and these festivities continue till the day of Tulsi Pooja is held in their houses.
It is very amusing to see people performing this ritual thus it makes the event profound in Indian contexts. This festival has been celebrated since ages but its fascination grows with every passing year. Everyone enjoys the glamour and endless zest of Diwali that grips the people around this time.
Enjoy the charm of Diwali in Maharashtra:
The fairs and festivals in Maharashtra symbolize the jest for life that fascinates the onlookers. Every festival in Maharashtra is celebrated with great enthusiasm and eagerness thus it makes the state a vibrant state. Diwali is a colorful riot in this state and is celebrated very interestingly when compared to other parts of India.
The celebration starts with Vasu Baras which comes on Ashwin Krushna Dwadasi according to Marathi Calendar. According to Vasu Baras, celebration is held in the honor of cows and various rituals are performed, like married women perform Pooja of cows which have calf as it symbolizes gratitude towards cow who is serving them and their children.
Dhanatrayodashi which is popularly known as Dhanteras is celebrated in Maharashtra in the same week. On this day, Yama – Deep –Dan is held where mothers or married women make diyas for each male member in the family. These diyas are made of kneaded flour which is offered to Lord Yama in the evening.
Choti Diwali is also known Narak Chaturdashi in Maharashtra because on this day lord Krishna has defeated Narakasur. On this day people get up early and massage their bodies with scented oils and as a custom they use Utanah for bath instead of soap; this is also called Abyang-snam. Utanah is made up of several Ayurvedic things like sandalwood, rose, kapoor and haldi.
On the day of Diwali, Lakshmi Pooja is a ceremony which is celebrated in the evening. It is believed that on every Diwali Goddess Lakshmi visits every house which symbolizes prosperity and wealth in homes. On this day, variety of mouth watering food is made which includes Chidva, Shankar- pale, Anarse, Kadaboli and many more which mark the uniqueness of this day.
Celebrate a scared Diwali in Amritsar:
Diwali is a grand festival celebrated among Sikhs too. Huge celebrations take place and decorations are done in the whole city and this way it enhances the glory of this festival. There is a renowned quote, “Dal Roti Ghar Di, Diwali Amritsar Di” because people from distant places came here to witness Diwali of Punjab. Another significance of this day was that, on this day the Sikh Guru, Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji returned from prison along with 52 princes who had been his fellow prisoners of Mughal emperor Jahangir. The striking feature of ancient history was that all the 52 prisoners have to hold the strings of Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji’s attire to get released from the jail. That is why it is known as Bandi Chor act which symbolizes freedom from imprisonment.
You can see mesmerizing views in Amritsar because this day two festivals, Diwali and Bandi Chor Diwas are celebrated together at the same time which marks the triumph of good virtues. Moreover, it teaches us that we should have best intentions for our fellow human beings.
Exciting fireworks in Varanasi:
Varanasi is one of the best places to visit during the time of Diwali. People of Varanasi enjoy the constant stream of fireworks which is continued all night. If you stay in any of the riverside hotels in Varanasi you can enjoy fabulous and mesmerizing views over the river Ganga. Other than firecrackers there are many other highlights of Varanasi which boost the charm of the city during this festival.
Special Aarti is conducted on the banks of River Ganga and then candles and diyas are floated down in river which is a breathtaking view. In addition, procession of Hindu Deities is carried in the streets and even Ghats are decorated during this time.
The city looks beautiful and magical during Diwali celebrations because it is lined up with glowing lamps. Millions of saints came here to take bath in the river in early hours of the day.
Admire the beauty of Diwali in Jaipur:
All over India people decorate their homes with colorful lights but in Jaipur the entire markets and other places are illuminated on the occasion of Diwali. Even the government contributes on this occasion by lighting the whole city.
The pink city is known for Diwali celebrations because the celebrations start from a week before the Diwali. It is quite enjoyable to visit local markets during this season because you will find variety of things like an amazing range of earthen Diyas. Along with this you can shop for traditional dresses, handicrafts and other gift items from the famous markets, such as Johari Bazaar and that too at affordable prices.
When it comes to Diwali celebrations every state of India stands out with different traditions and customs. Various landmarks, palaces, malls and even historic monuments are decorated in order to enhance the beauty of the festival. In addition to increasing the happiness many shopkeepers offers discounts so that everyone can celebrate this festival with extreme joy and happiness.
Throughout, Diwali people hang Akash-kandil to light up their houses and many of them make rangolis at doorstep which depicts the colorful tradition followed in many regions in India. It is mainly celebrated in the month of October or November each year and the date figured out by the cycle of the moon. In 2014, Diwali is on 23rd October whereas in 2015 it will be on 11th November and in 2016 it will be celebrated on October 30.