Saturday, 2 November 2013

Happy "Festival of Lights"!!!

Today (and it's tomorrow for some) is the festival of lights in India.  The festival is called Deepavali or Diwali, for short.

While there are many different myths for this festival, the one in my locality is this..

It is believed that Narakasura, an evil demon, tortured common people and took all happiness from them. People started praying to Lord Krishna to defeat him.  I suppose you know him - the cute little mischievous kid and then a man (incarnation of Lord Vishnu) who was said to by adored by many women for his charms and looks.

Anyway, God did just that - he killed Narakasura. The people then celebrated narakasura's defeat with sparkles, lights and crackers. This celebration was continued down the generations as deepavali.

Although the story and the way of celebration changes from religion to religion, this festival internally is the day to be aware of your 'inner' light.

The day begins with an early morning oil bath, wearing new clothes, bursting of crackers and visiting  temples.  This is one of the biggest festivals in India, where neighbours and relatives come together and spend time with each other.  Mom makes great sweets and snacks at home and we all sit together and eat.  And let's not forget the holidays.

Yeah, there are some little problems here.  In today's life, people just sit around in front of the television all day, while kids celebrate with crackers. And the roads and buses are so crowded that people are afraid to come out of their homes to visit the family.  And yeah, there is air and noise pollution due to all those non-stop cracker celebrations.  And above all, the fire accidents will be high during these days.

In spite of all these problems, Diwali is still my favorite festival.  Well, who doesn't like these lighted world?


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