Diwali – A Celebration of Our Internal Mild | Naming the Days


Diwali (or Divali) comes from the Sanskrit phrase Deepavali which accurately means “a row of lights.” This auspicious vacation, identified in English because the “pageant of lights,” is widely known by Hindus around the globe, and for many Hindus marks the start of the New 12 months. It traditionally symbolizes the victory of excellent over evil and celebrates gentle and life on each neighborhood and private ranges. On the one hand, it’s a time to rejoice and feast with family and friends. Houses are cleaned and embellished with brilliant earthen lamps in each nook, and scrumptious meals are ready and shared with all. Outdated accounts are closed, and arguments are settled.

On a extra private degree, nevertheless, Diwali is a time to show inward and light-weight the lamps of data and reality in our hearts and minds in order that we will dispel the forces of darkness and ignorance inside us and permit our innate brilliance and goodness to shine forth. Goddess Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, is the precept deity related to this pageant. Throughout Diwali we ask her for help in cultivating and accumulating religious wealth, equivalent to compassion, forgiveness, and loving-kindness.

Diwali is a time to replicate on and consider our ideas, phrases, and actions over the previous yr. It’s a time to acknowledge and higher perceive our prejudices, unfavourable behaviors, and unhealthy habits in order that we could start the method of remodeling ourselves. It’s a time to find how we could be extra loving, variety, respectful, and skillful in the direction of ourselves and others. And since all wealth, be it materials or religious, ought to be shared with others who’re much less lucky, Diwali can be a time to replicate on the assorted methods we will help others and shine our gentle out into the world.

Simply because the flame of a lamp all the time factors upward, Diwali is most significantly a time to have fun and respect life and to look ahead to the approaching yr with a renewed sense of objective and keenness. Within the phrases of Mahatma Gandhi, Diwali is a reminder and a possibility to “Be the change you wish to see on this planet!”

To Identify This Day:

Religious Practices

Mild a single candle and spend a couple of minutes softly gazing on the flame. Breathe deeply. Shut your eyes and film the flame that’s burning brightly in your coronary heart. Proceed to breathe deeply. Meditate in your innate brilliance, goodness, and wholeness. Let your coronary heart open huge and embrace your interior gentle.

Prayers & Mantras

Recite the next Vedic chant/prayer in Sanskrit and/or in English

Om Asato Ma Unhappy Gamaya
Tamaso Ma Jyotir Gamaya
Mrityor Ma Amritam Gamaya
Om Shanti Shanti Shanti

Lead us from untruth to reality
From darkness to gentle
From dying to immortality
Om Peace Peace Peace

Private Explorations

Take some to time to journal.

1. Make an inventory of the non-public qualities that uninteresting your interior gentle equivalent to greed, anger, and laziness. Commit your self to eliminating one in every of these qualities beginning within the right here and now.

2. Make an inventory of qualities that nurture your interior gentle equivalent to compassion, kindness, and generosity. Commit your self to additional cultivating one in every of these qualities beginning within the right here and now.

3. Establish some easy but transformative methods in which you’ll be able to share your interior gentle/religious wealth with others. For instance, saying “Whats up. How are you?” to all these you encounter and actually take heed to their reply, smiling at folks you encounter whereas sitting on the practice or standing in line on the put up workplace or grocery retailer, and quietly blessing others as they cross by you on the road. Commit your self to implementing one in every of these gestures beginning within the right here and now.

Ami Bhalodkar is an interfaith minister. She is a member of the school of the One Spirit Interfaith Seminary in New York Metropolis and lectures on Hinduism. Along with offering interfaith workshops, Rev. Bhalodkar performs personalized wedding ceremony ceremonies and affords religious counseling.


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