Diwali is not all about celebrations, revelry and merry making. It is also a time for contemplation, self introspection and an opportunity to remove spiritual darkness created by ignorance and ego by remembering the victory of good over evil mentioned in the Hindu scriptures. Hindus also conduct important Diwali pujas and rituals like Lakshmi and Ganesh Puja, Kuber Puja, Chopda Puja and Sharda Pujan. The main Diwali Puja date in 2017 is October 19.
New Beginning: Diwali is the time for a fresh and new beginning. People forget and forgive misdeeds and resolve to live in peace, harmony and purity by observing dharma.
Personal discord and family conflicts are forgiven and unity and harmony is welcomed.
Diwali Pujas: All pujas and rituals on Diwali day begin after praying to Lord Ganesh.
Special prayers are also offered to Lord Hanuman on Diwali day. Sindhur and oil are offered to Hanuman.
To welcome Goddess Lakshmi women and girls make a 'Rangoli' at the entrance or near the door on the morning of Diwali. Foot prints of Goddess Lakshmi are also drawn on the day.
There is also a tradition of eating ‘vadaa’ and food prepared using lentil especially udad dal on Diwali day in some regions.
Businessmen and people dealing in trade, export and import perform Sharda Puja on the day. Pujas are performed on new ledgers and account books and is known as Chopda Puja in some regions. This puja is usually conducted with the help of a priest or by an elderly person.
Lakshmi Puja: The most important puja performed on the day is Lakshmi and Ganesha Puja and Kuber puja for the prosperity of the family and businesses. This is usually performed in the evening.
Symbolism: Diyas are lit in the home on the evening. This lighting of lamps on the darkest day (Amavasi) of the month is in remembrance of the return of Lord Ram, Mata Sita, Lakshman and Hanuman to Ayodhya after completing the exile. Symbolically, the lights remind us for the need for self realization and inner enlightenment.
There are also people who conduct elaborate pujas as all the family members are present on the day.
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