Hindu Diwali Festival Lights Up Cities Worldwide

  • Share
  • Read Later

Diwali, the vibrant Hindu festival of lights, kicked off Sunday as thousands celebrated across the world, illuminating skies with sparklers, flickering candles, fireworks, and oil lamps.

The luminous five-day festival, derived from the Sanskrit word Deepavali or “row of lights,” honors the triumph of good over evil, light over dark, and knowledge over ignorance. The Hindu holiday is significant for several reasons, but pays tribute to the Hindu god Rama’s return to his kingdom after 14 years in exile and defeat of the demon king Ravana in the ancient Sanskrit text Ramayana.

The internationally recognized festival is an official holiday in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Burma, Malaysia, Singapore, Mauritius, Guyana, Fiji, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago. Diwali is celebrated by Hindu, Sikh, and Jain communities.

The festival begins on Dhanteras, when most Indian businesses mark the beginning of their financial year. Families decorate their homes with oil lanterns and diyas, or tiny candle bulbs, rangolis, or bright floral designs, to worship Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth. Eating sweets, exchanging gifts and wearing new clothes are practiced throughout the multi-day fete.

More Photography from Time

5 comments
VenusPsychic
VenusPsychic

nice pics.. that make me want to visit india

madhavaraob2002
madhavaraob2002

Importance of removing darkness or ignorance and replacing it with divine or spiritual or 

scientific knowledge is symbolic meaning of Deepavali.

madhavaraob2002
madhavaraob2002

Deepavali signifies symbolic importance Hindus place on removal of ignorance represented by darkness and learning knowledge either not spiritual or scientific kind.

bsa
bsa

One correction/addition to this story. Diwali is not a Sikh festival. Sikhs celebrate this day for an entirely different reason. We also call it Bandi Chod (or freeing the prisoners).  Please read the following:

http://www.sikhiwiki.org/index.php/Bandi_Chhorh_Divas

"Bandi Chorh Diwas and Diwali are separate festivals and the events actually fall on different days; however, commonly in the popular calendars, they are celebrated on the same day. For this reason, many people often think of these events as if they are the same. In real terms, the day of release of the sixth Guru with the 52 rajahs (kings) was actually a few days before Diwali in 1619"

vaishnavjagdip
vaishnavjagdip

Diwali is a festive of light , joy, 

We pray God /Almighty ,  light & joy  be bestowed to all beloved citizens .

Let joy be shared by all  people of all communities, & let new year bring in peace 7 prosperity for all.