Last update: 06-Dec-2013 8:12 am
Friday, December 06, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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Divali a time to develop closer link with God
Divali is a Hindu religious festival of lights, which is celebrated throughout the world wherever there are Hindus. The word “Divali” or “Depavali” means rows of sacred lighted deyas or earthen lamps. It is one of the main festivals of India, T&T and Guyana and other countries where Hindus were transported as labourers. Divali is an occasion when lighted deyas and other forms of light are used at nighttime to dispel the darkness.
Lighting of deyas and using other forms of light are only two parts of the celebration. It also includes cleaning of homes and bodies, fasting and prayer and puja. Just as light removes darkness, Hindus believe that by celebrating Divali, human ignorance is removed. Knowledge and understanding take its place.
The actual worship at Divali time is supposed to develop a closer link with God. This develops the light within the heart which is important for people to live in peace. This year at falls on Saturday November 2, and a public holiday has been declared by the State. Divali is always celebrated on the 15th day of the dark fortnight of the Hindu month of Kartik. This corresponds to a period during October and November. In T&T Divali was first declared a public holiday in 1966.
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