This year Asian Star Radio is getting ready for Diwali one of the most well-known Hindu festivals and is usually known as the Festival of Lights. The word Diwali means ‘rows of lighted lamps’. Diwali is known as the ‘festival of lights’ because houses, shops and public places are decorated with small earthenware oil lamps called diyas.
The meaning of Diwali
The festival celebrates the victory of good over evil, light over darkness and knowledge over ignorance, although the actual legends that go with the festival are different in different parts of India:
- In northern India and elsewhere, Diwali celebrates Rama’s return from fourteen years of exile to Ayodhya after the defeat of Ravana and his subsequent coronation as king;
- In Gujarat, the festival honours Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth;
- In Nepal Diwali commemorates the victory of Lord Krishna over the demon king Narakaasura;
- In Bengal, it is associated with the goddess Kali.
Join Pundit Naresh live on 101.6FM, to learn more from 1pm! He will talk you through 5 days of Diwali, as every day has its own meaning. If you miss it, don’t worry you can listen again on our podcasts!
For many Indians this five day festival honours Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth.
People start the new business year at Diwali, and some Hindus will say prayers to the goddess for a successful year.
Lamps are lit to help Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, find her way into people’s homes.
They also celebrate one of the Diwali legends, which tells of the return of Rama and Sita to Rama’s kingdom after fourteen years of exile.
In Britain, as in India, the festival is a time for:
- spring-cleaning the home,
- wearing new clothes
- exchanging gifts (often sweets and dried fruits) and preparing festive meals
- decorating buildings with fancy lights.
- huge firework displays often celebrate Divali.
In India Hindus will leave the windows and doors of their houses open so that Lakshmi can come in. Rangoli are drawn on the floors – rangoli are patterns and the most popular subject is the lotus flower.
Celebrate Diwali this year with Asian Star 101.6FM. Our new Mid-morning presenter, Ram Bhatt will also be treating you to a special tribute programme on Diwali 13th November 2012.
Also join our special guest on Tuesday 13th November talking about the significance of Sikh Diwali.
Asian Star would like to wish all our listeners and clients a very happy Diwali.