One of India’s biggest and most important festivals, the Festival of Lights, Diwali/ Deepvali gets its name from the diyas (a small cup-shaped oil lamp made from baked clay) that are lit around the house. It signifies the victory of good over evil and is a time for family to come together.
Since I am not in India any longer, today has been a pretty normal day for us but if I was back in India it would have been very different. The whole house would have been cleaned from top to bottom, the idols of Gods and their “house” would have been renovated, with new clothes and decorations. After a delicious lunch(and loads of cleaning later), at about 5pm we would start lighting the diyas. Now this might seem simple, but is a very long process. To light a diya, a little bit of ghee(Indian butter) or oil is poured into the diya and then a wick is inserted into the ghee/oil and a fire is then lit. So much work for 1 diya! And in my house, roughly 100 diyas were lit every year! Oh, and did I mention, every single diya has to be painted and decorated as well!
After all that hard work, the diyas are spread around the house and line the fences of your house and garden. Then the preparations for a grand party starts, from foods and beverages to enough seating- every little detail has to be taken care of! Just before we get into the swing of the party, we do a puja and sing hymns worshipping the gods. After all, that is why the festival exists,right?
Once the party starts, one more important thing that happens is the fireworks we let off! From sparklers to rockets, the whole town is treated to a grand impromptu firework show all through the night. It is amazing, despite all the sound that constantly surprises you!
As you can see, Diwali is an amazing festival full of sparkle and splendour. So, on this high note I wish you a very happy and prosperous Diwali, whether you celebrate the festival or not, and many more Diwalis to come!