Diwali, the festival of lights is here. The time of the year is here when we dress up in our finery and light up our homes with diyas and lamps. But did you know that there is more than one reason why we celebrate Diwali? Here are some amazing facts that you might not have known before.
There are seven different reasons why different parts of India celebrate Diwali, which is being celebrated today:
1. According to Ramayana, Lord Rama, his wife Sita and brother Laxmana finally returned to Ayodhya after spending 14 years in exile and defeating the demon king Raavana. Diwali marks his return to his home.
2. According to the most popular tradition, Diwali is celebrated as the day Goddess Lakshmi was born from Samudra Manthan, the churning of the cosmic ocean of milk by the gods and demons. Lakshmi chose Vishnu as her husband on the night of Diwali, and the two were bonded in holy matrimony.
3. In the epic Mahabharata, the five Pandava brothers had been tricked into losing a bet in gambling after which the Kauravas banished them for 12 years. As per the epic, Diwali is the day on which the Pandavas return to Hastinapur on the night of Kartik Amavasya.
4. In Sikhism, Diwali is related to the event of Guru Hargobind’s release by Mughal emperor Jehangir.
5. In Jainism, the festival of Diwali is celebrated to observe the anniversary of Mahavira’s soul finally attaining Nirvana.
6. In some states in western India, such as Gujarat, the festival of Diwali signifies the start of a new year.
7. Eastern India, especially West Bengal, celebrates Diwali as Kali Puja, in honour of Goddess Kali, who is known to have gone on a destructive rampage to cleanse the earth of all demons.