Round up of the Indian Festive Season 2019

December 15, 2019

Collage of festivals

Introduction –

Firecrackers of Diwali
Firecrackers of Diwali

In India, there is a saying that roughly translates to ‘celebrating thirteen festivals in twelve months‘. In an earlier article, I wrote about the grandeur of this year’s Durga Puja (check it out!!)

Shining bright through the darkness
Shining bright through the darkness

In this blog I will give you all a glimpse into to the other festivals we celebrated during the last one or two months.

The Festivals – 

Ganesh Chaturthi

The Indian festive season starts with Ganesh Chaturthi, worship of Lord Ganesha – the remover of obstacles, the collector of knowledge and wisdom

Lord Ganesha worship
Lord Ganesha worship

and the beginner of good things. As the God with an obese belly and an elephant like trunk, Ganesha is almost a friendly brotherly God with whom everyone feels very familiar.

Offerings to Lord Ganesha
Offerings to Lord Ganesha

Mainly a festival of the states of Maharashtra and around, Ganesha Chaturthi is celebrated with pomp and flair in almost every part of India these days.

Lord Ganesha
Lord Ganesha

People bring the God home, keep him for either three or seven days and worship him, feed him and gather around him to share their stories. Ganesha becomes part of the family for these days and it’s said that he removes all obstacles and dangers from the worshipers’ lives.

Offerings to the God
Offerings to the God

If you are in Mumbai or Maharashtra, be sure to visit the Siddhivinayak Temple and the LalBaugcha Raja. These are the world renowned Ganesha worship places and you will be bowled over by their grandeur and magnificence.

Lakshmi Puja

Spreading light...
Spreading light…

Bengalis celebrate Lakshmi Puja, a week after the Durga Puja. However in other parts of India, Lakshmi Puja is done around Diwali which is another huge festival here.

Worshiping Goddess Lakshmi
Worshiping Goddess Lakshmi

Goddess Lakshmi is the deity of wealth and prosperity. Ideally done in the evenings, the worship of Goddess Lakshmi is more often than not, a very homely affair. The priest comes to peoples’ homes and we have an elaborate ritualistic offering made to the Goddess.

The decor of the Gods
The decor of the Gods

The houses are decorated, the pedestal on which the deity sits is decorated and then the offerings are prepared with devotion and love and spread out in front of the Goddess as humble offering. In hope that the deity will bless the family with wealth, wisdom and prosperity, almost every household in India celebrates Lakshmi Puja at some time or the other throughout the year.

Diwali

Last but definitely not the least (well actually not the last also!!), we will go into Diwali. I guess everyone has heard about this grand festival of lights.

Candles and diyas
Candles and diyas

Every place, every house, everywhere in India is decked up like a newly wed bride with candles, diyas (earthen pots where oil is added and a

Lighting up the homes
Lighting up the homes

wick is ignited that gives light) and a variety of electric lights adding the charm.

There are many phases of this festival. In West Bengal, Diwali coincides with Kaali Puja where Bengalis worship Goddess Kaali, the deity of power, death and doom. She is the ultimate power to fight against evil. With much pomp and fan fare, Kaali Puja is celebrated in West Bengal and also I some other parts of the country.

Diwali magic
Diwali magic
Decorating homes on Diwali
Decorating homes on Diwali

In other regions, Lakshmi Puja is done. Some business men and industrialists seek blessings from Lakshmi-Ganesha by doing their worship. Diwali is associated with buying new silver or gold items and jewelry which is known as Dhanteras.

Decorating homes on Diwali
Decorating homes on Diwali
Firecrackers
Firecrackers

Another big aspect of Diwali is bursting of fire crackers. The magnificent crackers light up the night skies and lend the ultimate grandeur to the gala festival.

More lights
More lights

However, due to the impact on climate and the pollution these crackers cause, their bursting has reduced a lot over the years. There are a lot of regulations in place now in what type of crackers people can sell and buy. And thinking about the pollution, people have themselves become a little more aware about firecrackers.

Conclusion –

Diwali decor
Diwali decor

As the Indian festive season draws to an end this year, the eager wait for the next year’s festivities begin. Here’s hoping that I could give you all a peak into the fantastic Indian festivals and celebrations. See you all soon with some other topic on another blog.

Some more firecrackers
Some more firecrackers

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