The word Diwali means a row of lights.
Diwali is celebrated in fall on a New Moon day (amavashya) in the
month of Kartika. It is the happiest of all Hindu festivals. Every
city, town and village is cleaned and decorated with numerous
little oil lamps.
This festival is celebrated for five days and each day has its own
significance with interesting mythological stories, legends and
beliefs drawn from the various Puranas.
What Christmas is to America Diwali is to India
Diwali is usually celebrated for 5 days.
Diwali is celebrated in the months of October or November.
Diwali means decorating the house with tiny lamps.
Small earthen clay lamps are lit in and around the house to
welcome the Goddess Laxmi
The first day is called "Dhanteras or Dhanatrayodashi".
The word "dhan" means wealth. Wealth is spiritualized
on this day by performing puja and praying to goddess
Lakshmi i the evening.
k h i in h i
The second day is called "Narka Chaturdashi”.
On this day Lord Krishna killed the demon Narkasur.
The third day falls on "amavasya" or no moon day and
people perform "Laxmi Pooja".
Mythology: Almost 5000 thousand years ago Hindu
scholars noticed that at the start of the fall season, when
the sun crosses the equator, the length of the day and night
They observed that at this time the sun
also crosses the constellation Libra and
believed that our solar system came to a
state of balance..
They also noticed that the pattern of the stars of the
constellation Libra looked like a scale of justice held by
This moment when the sun crosses Libra is
believed to be a very auspicious time and is
used by people in India to balance their
accounting books and worship Goddess
Lakshmi who is not only the goddess of
wealth and prosperity but also the one who
maintains balance of wealth on this earth.
The ritual of “Lakshmi Pooja” signifies the
conversion of “Dhan” to “Lakshmi”.
Interestingly the Greek worshipped Libra as A t
I t ti l th G k hi d Lib Astraea
the Goddess of Justice.
and the Romans honored Libra as G dd
d th R h d Lib Goddess Themis
for the same reason.
Th fourth day is "V h
th d i "Varshapratipada or Padwa" which is
ti d P d " hi h i
the coronation day of King Vikramaditya. The Hindu
"Vikram-Samvat" calendar also starts on this day.
Hence this day is also the begining of a New Year.
The fifth day the second day of the year is "Bhavbeej
day, year, Bhavbeej
or Bhayyaduj". This day is observed as a symbol of
love between brothers and sisters.