Diwali, also known as Dewali, Divali, or Deepavali, is a socio-cultural festival celebrated annually in the month of October or November. This five-day festival holds immense significance in Hindu culture and beyond. In this article, we will delve into all aspects of Diwali, its history, significance, and the important dates associated with it.
The Origins of Diwali
The term "Diwali" is derived from the Sanskrit words "dīpa," which means lamp, light, lantern, candle, or knowledge, and "āvali," which signifies a row, range, continuous line, or series. While Diwali is associated with various religious events, deities, and personalities, it is most famously celebrated to mark the return of Lord Rama to his kingdom in Ayodhya after 14 years of exile. Additionally, it is closely linked with the worship of Goddess Lakshmi, the harbinger of prosperity, and Lord Ganesha, the remover of obstacles and the god of wisdom.
Diwali Around the World
Diwali goes by different names in various countries and religions, such as Jain Diwali, Bandi Chhor Diwas, Tihar, Sowanti, Sohrai, Bandna, and more. However, the essence of the celebration remains the same everywhere - it symbolizes the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, and knowledge over ignorance.
When is Diwali in 2023?
Diwali follows the Amanta tradition and spans five days in the Hindu lunisolar months of Ashvin and Kartika, which generally fall between mid-October to mid-November. According to the ancient calendar, Diwali is celebrated annually on Amavasya, the fifteenth day of the month of Kartik. In 2023, Diwali will be celebrated on Sunday, November 12th.
Let's take a closer look at the key days of Diwali and the auspicious moments:
Diwali Date and Muhrat
Diwali: November 12, 2023
Laxmi Puja Muhurat: 04:21 PM to 06:02 PM
Amavasya Tithi Begins: 11:14 AM on November 12, 2023
Amavasya Tithi Ends: 11:26 AM on November 13, 2023
All 5 Days of Diwali
November 10, 2023 - Friday: Dhanteras
November 11, 2023 - Saturday: Chhoti Diwali
November 12, 2023 - Sunday: Diwali
November 13, 2023 - Monday: Govardhan Puja
November 14, 2023 - Tuesday: Bhaiya Dooj
Now, let's explore each of these days in detail:
- Dhanteras: This marks the start of Diwali and falls on the thirteenth day of the dark fortnight of Ashwin or Kartik. It symbolizes wealth and health, with a connection to the Ayurvedic deity Dhanvantari.
- Chhoti Diwali: Also known as Naraka Chaturdashi, it falls on the fourteenth day of the dark fortnight of Ashwin or Kartik. This day commemorates Lord Krishna's victory over the demon Narakasura.
- Diwali: The main celebration takes place on the fifteenth day of Ashwin's or Kartik's dark fortnight. Diwali, the "festival of lights," symbolizes the triumph of light over darkness and involves illuminating temples and homes.
- Govardhan Puja: Celebrated on the first day of Kartik's bright fortnight, it honors Lord Krishna's act of lifting the Govardhan mountain to protect villages from floods.
- Bhai Dooj: Occurring on the second day of Kartik's bright fortnight, it celebrates the bond between sisters and brothers.
The Joy of Diwali
Diwali, known as the Festival of Lights, is not just a religious event but also a major shopping period worldwide. During these five days, homes are adorned with oil lamps and colorful rangoli designs. People exchange gifts, don new clothes, and indulge in delicious sweets and festive meals. The night sky lights up with fireworks, symbolizing the victory of light over darkness. Families come together for prayers and rituals, seeking blessings for prosperity and well-being. Diwali is a time of joy, togetherness, and the triumph of good over evil.
In conclusion, Diwali is a cherished festival that transcends borders and religions, spreading the message of hope, positivity, and the eternal victory of light. It is a time when people come together to celebrate life and embrace the goodness within and around them. So, mark your calendars for November 12, 2023, and join in the festivities of Diwali with enthusiasm and zeal.
1. What is the significance of Diwali?
Diwali, also known as the Festival of Lights, holds great significance in Hindu culture and beyond. It symbolizes the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, and knowledge over ignorance. It is celebrated to mark Lord Rama's return to his kingdom after 14 years of exile and is associated with the worship of Goddess Lakshmi and Lord Ganesha.
2. When is Diwali in 2023?
Diwali in 2023 will be celebrated on Sunday, November 12th. It typically falls in the Hindu lunisolar months of Ashvin and Kartika, which span from mid-October to mid-November.
3. How do people celebrate Diwali?
Diwali celebrations include lighting oil lamps and creating colorful rangoli designs at homes. People exchange gifts, wear new clothes, and enjoy sweets and festive meals. Fireworks light up the sky, and families gather for religious rituals and prayers to seek blessings for prosperity and well-being.
4. What are the different days of Diwali and their significance?
Diwali spans five days, starting with Dhanteras, which signifies the start of the festival and wealth. Chhoti Diwali celebrates Lord Krishna's victory over the demon Narakasura. The main Diwali day symbolizes the triumph of light, while Govardhan Puja honors Lord Krishna's protective act. Bhai Dooj celebrates the bond between sisters and brothers.
5. Is Diwali celebrated only in India?
No, Diwali is celebrated in various countries and by different communities worldwide. While it is most prominent in India, it is also observed in countries with significant Hindu, Jain, and Sikh populations, such as Nepal, Sri Lanka, Fiji, and parts of the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. The essence of Diwali remains the same - the celebration of light and goodness.