Happy Diwali!

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Happy Diwali!

Tara Geigel, Impact Staff

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As a first generation Indian American, I’ve had to opportunity to celebrate the best holidays around. From throwing vibrant colors at one another to celebrate the beginning of spring to dancing with friends to celebrate a revered goddess, being raised with such an exuberant culture made for beautiful memories.

My all-time favorite Indian holiday is Diwali, in which celebrations actually start today, on the third day of the holiday. The celebrations span for four days and is a celebration of life, its enjoyment and goodness. The reason for all the lights signifies the difference between good over evil and light over darkness.

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Hundreds of lights will be lit in honor of the goddess Lakshmi, who is the goddess of wealth and prosperity.

Hindu mythology is extremely daunting with its various gods and goddess. Every region in India has their own take of what Diwali means to them. Also, during the five days of celebration, every day recounts a different story and ritual done on that day.

Every Hindu has their own way of celebrating Diwali with different rituals, so some temples that host Diwali events do a sort of generalized celebration. There are many interpretations of this holiday and it’s different for everybody.  Since I’m not Hindu, it’s always fascinating to see others partake in rituals important to their religion.

In America, 1.8 million Hindus will be celebrating Diwali. Because of the growing numbers of Hindus residing in America, Diwali has even been considered a religious holiday in some schools.

Today, many venues and temples will be holding celebrations which will include prayer and other ceremonies.

One aspect I love about celebrating any Indian holiday is that anyone is welcome to join the festivities. Tonight, I will be dragging my friends and mom to witness to beauty behind the ceremonies that will be performed tonight. Also, watching millions of YouTube tutorials on how to wrap ten yards of fabric (aka the infamous sari, the national costume of India) around my friends and I should be interesting.