Diwali – The Festival of Lights is most celebrated festival. Diwali is more colourful and happening festival not only in India but also around the world. But Why we celebrate Diwali? Well, there are not only one but many historical reasons to celebrate Diwali.
Let’s check out 10 reasons to celebrate Diwali –
1) The Goddess of Wealth – Lakshmi’s Birthday
On Diwali, Goddess Lakshmi is said to have been incarnated from Deep Ocean. Goddess Lakshmi married to Lord Vishnu on amaavasyaa of the Kartik Month which is said to be darkest night of the year. Many lamps were illuminated and placed in Row to mark this holy occasion. Hence, Diwali is associated with Goddess Lakshmi and the tradition of lighting of lamps during the festival.
2) Vishnu rescued Lakshmi
On this day (Diwali), Load Vishnu in his fifth incarnation as Vaman-avtaara rescued Goddess Lakshmi from prison of King Bali during Treta Yug. Diwali marks this overcoming of King Bali – a powerful demon king by lord Vishnu.
3) Krishna Killed Narakaasur
As per Bhagavata Purana, Narakaasur, an evil demon king was killed by Krishna who is incarnation of Load Vishnu. Krishna killed Narakaasur on the day preceding Diwali and rescued 16,000 women whom demon imprisoned in his palace. The celebration of this freedom went on for two days including Diwali day as victory festival.
4) Rama returned to Ayodhya
According to “Ramayana”, Rama, Sita and Lakshman returned to Ayodhya on new moon day of Kartik after defeating Ravana. People of Ayodhya celebrated return of Rama by lighting lamps, firework and bursting of crackers. The festival gets name Deepawali or Diwali from Rows (avali) of lamps (Deepa) that the people of Ayodhya lit to welcome their king.
5) The Return of the Pandavas
As per Mahabharata, Pandavas return to their home in Hastinapura after completing 12 years of banishment on Kartik Amavasaya means on Diwali day. Common people of Hastinapura celebrated their return by lighting up lamps everywhere.
6) Coronation of Vikramaditya
It is also said that Vikramadiya, the legendary Indian King who is known for his wisdom, valour and magnanimity was coronated on the Diwali day following his victory over the Sakas in 56 BC. Diwali, thus, apart from being a religious festival also has a historical association.
7) The Enlightenment of Vardhamana Mahavira
For Jains, Diwali is special because on same day enlightenment of Vardhamana Mahavira occurred. This festival stands for the celebration of the emancipation of human spirit from earthly desires.
8) Special Day for the Sikhs
The third Sikh Guru Amar Das institutionalized Diwali as a Red-Letter Day when all Sikhs would gather to receive the Gurus blessings. In 1577, the foundation stone of the Golden Temple at Amritsar was laid on Diwali. In 1619, the sixth Sikh Guru Hargobind, who was held by the Mughal Emperor Jahengir, was released from the Gwalior fort along with 52 kings.
9) The Harvest Festival
Diwali also falls in the time of the Kharif crop; a time when rich rice cultivation gives its fruits. India being an agro-economic society, the significance of a rich harvest gives a new meaning to the celebrations.
10) Hindu New Year Day
Diwali is also the Hindu New Year, Hinduism being the third largest religion of the world. It is at this time that Hindu businessmen offer pujas, start new books of accounts, and pay off all debts to start a new year afresh.
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Happy Diwali 🙂