We love Diwali. Don’t we? The festive mood, spending time with friends and family, and eating good food makes everyone happy. But do you know why we celebrate this festival of lights? We all have heard the popular story of Lord Rama defeating Ravana and returning to Ayodhya. But shashtras and people have a different take on it. There are many historical and mythical reasons for why we celebrate Diwali with great enthusiasm.
Here, we are listing some of the reasons for celebrating Diwali, not just for Hindus but for other communities as well.
- 1. The victory of Lord Rama
- 2. Birthday of Goddess Lakshmi
- 3. Return of the Pandavas
- 4. Rescue of Goddess Lakshmi
- 5. Killing of Narakasura by Krishna
- 6. Crowning of King Vikramaditya
- 7. Attainment of Nirvana by Dayanand
- 8. Attainment of Nirvana by Tirthankar
- 9. Diwali speech of the Pope
- 10. Auspicious Day for the Sikhs
1. The victory of Lord Rama
As we have mentioned above, the victorious return of Lord Rama to Ayodhya after defeating the demon king, Ravana and conquering Lanka is one of the biggest reason why Diwali is celebrated. Rama returned with his wife, Sita, and brother, Lakshman on the new moon day of the month Kartik. The people of Ayodhya illuminated the whole city with clay diyas to welcome Lord Rama. It is also the reason why Diwali is known as the festival of lights.
2. Birthday of Goddess Lakshmi
Lakshmi is the Goddess of wealth and the wife of Lord Vishnu. It is believed that on the night of Amavasya (new moon day) of Kartik, she was incarnated for the first time during the churning of the ocean. She is associated with Diwali as she is one of the most popular goddesses of the Hindus.
3. Return of the Pandavas
According to the epic ‘Mahabharata’, the Pandava brothers namely Yudhishthira, Arjuna, Bhima, Sahadeva, and Nakula returned from their 12 years of banishment after losing in the game of dice from the Kauravas. This day was celebrated by lighting lamps by the people who loved Pandavas.
4. Rescue of Goddess Lakshmi
On the Amavasya night, Lord Vishnu took the Vaman-avatar which is his fifth incarnation in order to rescue Goddess Lakshmi from the prison of King Bali. This is another reason why Hindus worship Maa Lakshmi.
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5. Killing of Narakasura by Krishna
Lord Krishna killed Narakasura, the demon king on the day preceding Diwali and released 16,000 women from the captivation. The demon king had conquered the three worlds and tortured the being there and took a great pleasure out of it. This is the reason why the second day of Diwali is celebrated as Naraka Chaturdasi. The celebration continued onto the next day as well.
6. Crowning of King Vikramaditya
Vikramaditya was one of the greatest kings of the Hindus. He was crowned on the new moon day of Kartik. The legendary emperor is said to be the ideal king because of his bravery, generosity, and patronage of scholars.
7. Attainment of Nirvana by Dayanand
Maharshi Dayanand, the 19th-century scholar and the founder of Arya Samaj, attained nirvana on the day of Diwali. He asked the mankind to treat each other as brothers and it was his great mission.
8. Attainment of Nirvana by Tirthankar
The founder of modern Jainism, Mahavir Tirthankar, is believed to attain his nirvana on the Diwali day. In order to become an ascetic and undertaking fasting and bodily mortifications, he left his family and abandoned the royal life that he used to lead.
9. Diwali speech of the Pope
In an Indian church, Pope John Paul II, in 1999, performed a special Eucharist. There was a mark of ‘tilak’ on Pope’s forehead. With Diwali lamps, the altar was decorated and he drew references from the festival of lights.
10. Auspicious Day for the Sikhs
The Golden Temple’s foundation stone, which is situated in Amritsar, was laid on Diwali day in 1557. The sixth Sikh Guru, Guru Hargobind was released after being imprisoned by Jahangir, the Mughal emperor in 1619. Along with him, 52 other kings were also released. Also, the Diwali day was institutionalized as a Red-Letter Day by the third Sikh Guru Amar Das. On this day, to receive the blessings of the Guru, all the Sikhs would gather.
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Hence, we have concluded the top 10 reasons why Diwali is celebrated in India and other foreign countries by the Hindus and other communities as well. Whatever may be the reason behind celebrating it, people gather, form bonding with each other and have a good time.
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