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Diwali Story – The Many Stories Associated with Diwali Festival

The story of Diwali is associated with the victory of the Good over the Evil. There are three popular stories associated with Diwali. The first story is that of the commemoration of the return of Lord Rama to Ayodhya after 14 years of exile – this story is the reason given for observing Diwali in North and western parts of India.

In South India, Diwali is the day in which demon Narakasura was annihilated by Sri Krishna and Satyabhama. Diwali here is observed on the 14th day of the waning phase of moon – mostly a day earlier to Diwali in North India.

Another story is associated with Goddess Lakshmi (goddess of wealth). It is believed that the goddess emerged from the ocean on this day during the samudra manthan (churning of ocean) by demons and gods. So for the business people, the new business year begins on Diwali.

Another legend has it that Diwali is observed on the darkest day of the year and the world is lit by the arrival of Goddess Lakshmi.

Story of Diwali and Sri Ram

It is believed that Sri Rama, Mata Sita, Lakshman and Hanuman returned to Ayodhya after the 14-year exile on this day. People of Ayodhya welcomed the arrival of Sri Ram on Pushpaka Vimana by lighting lamps.

Story of Diwali and Sri Krishna

Demon Narakasura was the son of Bhu Devi. He had attained boons from Brahma and Vishnu. He used the boons to spread Adharma. He ruled with help of five generals named Hayagriva, Nishumbha, Panchajana, Virupaksha and Mura.

Sri Krishna killed the five generals and finally put an end to the tyranny of Narakasura by killing him with his Sudarshana Chakra. In some stories, it was Satyabhama, an incarnation of Bhu Devi, who killed Narakasura with the help of Sri Krishna. (Naraka Chaturdasi)

In Orissa, the Diwali lights are lit to show the path to the spirits of ancestors returning to heaven.

In Bengal, Diwali is celebrated as Kali Puja. It is believed that Goddess Kali killed the demon Raktabija on this day.

It must be noted that worship of ancestors and Yama, the god of death, during Diwali is common in most regions in India.