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THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE FIVE DAYS OF DIWALI

five-days-of-diwali-7Deewali is a festival of joy, splendor, brightness and happiness. It is the festival of lights and is celebrated with great enthusiasm by all Indians all over the world. The uniqueness of this festival is its harmony of five varied philosophies, with each day to a special thought or ideal. People celebrate each of its five days of festivities with true understanding, it will uplift and enrich the lives. The first day of Diwali is called Dhanvantari Triodasi or Dhanwantari Triodasi also called Dhan Theras. It is in fact the thirteenth lunar day of Krishna Paksh, the dark forthnight of the month of Kartik. On this day, Lord Dhanwantari came out of the ocean with Ayurvedic for mankind. This day marks the beginning of Deepawali celebrations. On this day at sunset, Hindus bathe and offer a lighted deeya with Prasad to Yama Raj, the Lord of Death and pray for protection from untimely death. This offering is made near a Tulsi tree, the Holy Basil or any other sacred tree that one might have in their yard. Devotees believe this day to be auspicious women purchase gold, silver or new utensils. The second day of dipawali is called Narak Chaturdasi. On this day Lord Krishna destroyed the demon Narakasur and made the world free from fear. This is the day when worship unto Mother Lakshmi is performed. Hindus cleanse themselves and join with their families and worship the divine Goddess Lakshmi to achieve the blessings of wealth and prosperity, the triumph of good over evil and light over darkness. On this day, Govardhan Pooja is performed. Many thousands of years ago, Lord Krishna caused the people of Vraja to perform Govardhan Pooja. From then on, every year Hindus worship Govardhan to honour that first Pooja done by the people of Vraja. The fifth day of the Diwali is called Bhai Dooj. This is the day after Goverdhan Pooja is performed and normally two days after Diwali day. It is a day dedicated to sisters. Many moons ago, in the Vedic era, Yama (Yamraj, the Lord of death) visited his sister Yamuna on this day. He gave his sister a boon that whosoever visits her on this day shall be liberated from all sins. They will achieve Moksha or final emancipation. From then on, brothers visit their sisters on this day to enquire of their welfare. This day marks when sisters pray for her brother’s safety, success and well being marks the end of the five days of Deepavali celebrations ! Innumerable communities with varying cultures and customs mingle together to make Diwali celebrations a very happy occasion for all. The festival has been very beautifully described in poetic lines by Rabindranath Tagore, which is The night is black Kindle the lamp of LOVE With thy life and devotion.”

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