Diwali, Hindu (Sun 3-Nov-13)
|Special Greetings||Peace & Joy||Light the Candles||Gleam of Diyas|
Diwali or "the festival of lights" is the most important Indian festival. It lasts five days with each day relating to a different myth or belief. The celebration is based on Hindu calendar which is lunar, therefore falling on different dates every year in the western calendar, usually in October or November and always on a new moon day.
Festivities take place throughout India and in Indian communities worldwide. Traditionally small oil lamps and candles are lit and placed round home, in gardens and on roof tops. People exchange sweets, wear new clothes and jewellery and enjoy fireworks displays.
Although Diwali represents renewal of life, joy, happiness and preparation for winter season to all who celebrate it, it is related to a different myth in different parts of India. In some places it signifies the homecoming and coronation of King Rama, in others it honors Lakshmi, goddess of wealth and some communities celebrate goddess Kali. In northern parts of India it also marks the beginning of the new financial year.