Authors / photo source: Pixabay.
- Immerse yourself in the legends of India during Diwali.
- Celebrate the Diwali festival of lights on every day of the fete.
- Light up the Diwali lights and enjoy the fun.
Diwali is the main Indian holiday. It has been celebrated for over 7,000 years! The Festival of Lights usually lasts 5 days and is celebrated by about a billion people. This year it will last from November 10 to 14. The celebration symbolises the victory of good over evil and as a sign of this victory, lights are lit everywhere and people have fun. Celebrated in many states, Diwali is considered the largest holiday in India, comparable to Thanksgiving and Christmas in the United States.
Authors / photo source: Pixabay.
There are several legends associated with the origin of Diwali. Although the legends differ geographically, almost all of them ultimately symbolise the victory of good over evil. In North India, Diwali is associated with the triumphant return of the god Rama to his homeland after 14 years of exile (due to the plot of an evil stepmother) and the heroic rescue of his wife Sita, an incarnation of the goddess Lakshmi, who was kidnapped by the demon king Ravan. According to legend, when the gods returned at night, local residents illuminated their path with lights. During Diwali, this episode is often re-enacted in the northern states of India. Meanwhile, in South India, Diwali commemorates the victory of the god Krishna over the demon Narakasura, who imprisoned 16,000 women in his palace and promised to severely punish any of his subjects who dared to rebel against him and release the women.
In East India at this time it is customary to worship the goddess Kali, who personifies strength. However, most believers revere the Hindu goddess of wealth and fertility Lakshmi during Diwali. According to legend, being the goddess of prosperity and fertility, she chose the god Vishnu, one of the most important deities of Hinduism, as her husband on the night of Diwali.
Authors / photo source: Pexels.
Just as the legends of Diwali differ from state to state, so do the rituals of the festival of lights. But there are many common features: an abundance of sweets, family gatherings, prayers, offerings to the gods and the lighting of clay lamps, which symbolise the inner light and protect the house from evil spirits.
Each of the five days of Diwali has its own significance. On the first day, it is customary to honour Goddess Lakshmi, prepare sweets and clean their houses, which the next day are decorated with lamps and rangolis — designs made on the floor from coloured sand, rice or flower petals. The third day of Diwali is the most important: on this day, people go to temples, gather with family for celebrations and light katori lamps. The fourth day of Diwali marks the beginning of the new year. On this day it is customary to give gifts and offer food as a sacrifice to the gods. Finally, the fifth day is usually dedicated to honouring one's brothers and sisters.
Authors / photo source: harpreet singh/Flickr.
Katori is the main symbol of the festival of lights. These are oil lamps that are lit throughout India throughout the days of the celebration. They are traditionally made from clay and painted with paints, and filled with ghee inside. They symbolise the five elements from which the world was created and must be placed in rows. It is believed that when the fire burns in them, a person maintains a connection with God. Diwali falls on the New Moon, when the Moon does not yet illuminate the path. In memory of the safe return home of God Rama at night, people light lamps. So Diwali came to be considered both a festival of lights and a symbol of the triumph of good over evil.
Diwali is celebrated wherever Indians live: in Singapore, Sri Lanka, and now it is celebrated even in large Western cities where there are many Indian emigrants. This is a beautiful and fun holiday, but such events may affect your travel plans. At this time, everyone is trying to come to their relatives, which is why taxis and public transport are overcrowded. To get to your desired location during the celebrations calmly, you can book a holiday transfer in advance. By booking a car in advance, you can be sure that it will be available and will not be booked by other travellers. A polite driver will pick you up at the time and place you specify in your booking, and you will go to your destination. Book a holiday transfer and enjoy the magic of Diwali without the hassle of transportation!
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Petrichenko Rimma & Intui travel