What is Diwali?
Diwali is known as the Hindu Festival of lights. It is an official holiday in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Mauritius, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, Suriname, Malaysia, Singapore, and Fiji.
When is Diwali?
Diwali is celebrated during the fall season for five consecutive days. It is usually celebrated between mid-October and mid-November. Originally, it was the harvest before the winter season. The exact date is not known because this celebration is based on the lunar calendar. Each year, Hindus figure out the exact date of Diwali my observing the cycles of the moon.
Why is Diwali celebrated?
Diwali is an important festival for Hindus. Hindus celebrate the day when Lord Rama came home after he won a battle against the demon king Ravana. Diwali is also the birthday of the Lakshmi, the Goddess of wealth.
It is celebrated as a special time to remember that: light overcomes darkness, good overcomes evil, and knowledge overcomes ignorance.
Diwali also has religious significance in Jainism, Sikhism, and Buddhism.
How is Diwali celebrated?
Diwali celebrations, rituals, and ceremonies vary based on the region of India a family comes from. In general, Indian families may clean and decorate their house with Rangoli designs. They dress up in new clothes and light lamps inside and outside their house. They exchange presents with one another. They do a special prayer for Lakshmi, the Goddess of wealth. They end the celebration with fireworks and sweets.
How Can I Teach My Children About Diwali?
1. Talk to children about India. Show them where India is on a map and address any questions or misconceptions they may have about India or (Asian) Indians.
2. Activate background knowledge. Ask children if they have heard of Diwali before? Provide them with the background information above.
3. Make Connections. The book Lights, Camera, Diwali! provides all children with an understanding of how Indian families celebrate Diwali in their homes.
5. Participate in a Diwali Celebration in your community or celebrate by taking the family out to an Indian dinner.