Diwali 2019: The Festival of Lights
Diwali is celebrated after 20 days of Dussehra (Vijay Dashami) on Amavasya of Kartik month of Hindu Calendar. It is said that when Shri Ram returned to Ayodhya after winning the war with Ravana at Lanka, it was Amavasya, the dark night. However, to welcome Shri Ram and to celebrate the win of good over evil, the residents lightened up the earthen lamps, throughout the city. Now, Diwali is celebrated all over the world with light shows and fireworks.
Diwali or Deepawali or Deepavali is celebrated after the harvesting of summer crops and change of season to winters. The people are in festive mood and exchange gifts and sweets. In olden days, the businessmen used to start their new financial years, though it has now been changed to April to March.
Diwali starts with Dhanteras. On this day, the people clean their houses, whitewash and paint their walls, sheds, doors, windows etc and keep their house attractive for Lakshmi maa to enter. They purchase new utensils, ornaments, gold, silver etc and worship the same on Diwali night.
Next day is Naraka Chaturdashi. On this day Lord Krishna killed Narakasur, a demon and set free 16000 girls who were kidnapped by Narakasur and kept in his Harem.
Next day, on Amavasya, the earthen lamps are lightened everywhere with Mustard oil. People also burst firecrackers to celebrate this festival. However, due to the air pollution level rising in Delhi, there is a ban on bursting of firecrackers in Delhi. To augment this, green firecrackers are allowed but are short in supply. Delhi government will be doing a laser show instead of firecrackers at cannaught place for four days starting 26th October 2019 at 5pm onwards.
Diwali Lakshmi Puja Vidhi : How to do Lakshmi Puja on Diwali
Diwali Lakshmi Puja falls on 27th October 2019, Sunday. The auspicious timings for Lakshmi Puja 2019 are between 6:42 pm to 8:12 pm. During this auspicious time the puja should begin. During the preparation for Diwali Puja the following activities are undertaken:
- Bring earthen lamps from market in sufficient quantity to cover all the boundary wall, rooftop, balcony, doors, windows etc.
- Bring sufficient cotton to make small wicks (batti) to put into these earthen lamps or Diyas.
- Also get sufficient quantity of mustard oil to pour into these earthen lamps.
- Get one big earthen lamp with four sides separately.
- Soak these earthen lamps into water for one hour before puja. Take them our at the time of puja and make them ready to be lightened after pouring mustard oil and placing cotton wick.
- Get a fresh pair of earthen idol of ganesha and Lakshmi and place them in puja.
- For the purpose of puja a separate place to be prepared avoiding normal place of worship.
- Keep the old idols of ganesha and Lakshmi also in puja. Keep gold and silver coins in puja. Keep the newly bought utensils in puja.
- Now request all deities to come and take their respective places here. Ghat sthapana may be done as per procedure, if required. (For details kindly follow this link to my earlier post http://www.mustfrills.com/2019/09/28/how-to-worship-during-navratri-2019/)
- Recite prayers of at least Ganesha, Lakshmi and Vishnu (Lakshmi Ramana) followed by standard Aarti of Om Jai Jagdish Hare. The family may recite other prayers also as per their choice.
- After the Aarti, bhog is to be offered to all deities present. Then Prasadam is distributed to all present. The bhog should consist of sweet, fullian, sweet toys in different shapes and batasha.
- After this, the Diyas are lightened from the jyot of maa Lakshmi and placed at various points of entry to the house and on boundary. A lamp is also kept at the Tulsi plant and water source.
- The people exchange gifts, sweets and Prasadam with each other and enjoy the night of togetherness.
- During this period the buildings are beautified with trails of different types of lightings everywhere.
- After the puja is over all deities are requested to go back to their heavenly abode except Lakshmi who is requested to stay with the family and grant prosperity.
- The single four faced Diya will be allowed to burn the oil throughout the night and till it has oil in it.
- 17. The next day, all things are cleared. All deities are placed back to their position in Mandir. The newly purchased idols of lord Ganesha and Lakshmi are kept at home and the old idol of previous year is disposed of in a water body nearby.
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