Diwali is a time to celebrate a number of things from family and friends to good triumphing over evil. It is a blessed festival with peace, harmony, and enlightenment at its core.
Growing up in Canada or abroad, each of us has a different experience and a set of memories of this revered festival. We are happy to share the following Diwali memories with you. Wishing you all a Happy Diwali, may you and your family be blessed with happiness, health, and prosperity!
I celebrate Diwali with friends and family and with people all around. It is the most magical time of the year. As it is the Festival of Lights, I make sure that our house is well lit up with diyas, lamps, and candles all over. I visit friends, relatives, and business clients and distribute sweets and goodies as it’s the Hindu new year. At home my family and I celebrate by making sweets and delicious food. Of course Diwali is incomplete without fireworks so I do burst crackers and burn fuljariyaan (sparklers).The best part of Diwali is that the feeling you get when it’s the beginning of good times and festivities all around. So many parties to attend and meet people at gatherings. Music, dance , good food, and sweets are in full force. Even though I am from a Sikh family, I participate in religious celebrations of other communities as well without any discrimination. With the Diwali Pooja I engage in with family holds special meaning as it is a time of prayer and blessings for my family as well as the whole world. It’s one of the best time with friends and relatives at home and outdoors as we all cherish the time spent with each other. I am looking forward to this year's Diwali which is being celebrated at our home and a trip to the Gurdwara for prayers.
Diwali is a festival that is very close to my heart. It is not just a time with family and friends but a time to shed away the darkness and negativity from our hearts and welcome light and love into our lives. Each year on Diwali my family and I worship Goddess Mahalaxmi who symbolizes unity, fortune, and prosperity. Diwali the Festival of Lights as it is rightly called is also a time of reevaluation for myself and I reflect upon family goals and make a vow within my heart to stay in harmony with others and sustain health and happiness- a real fortune. We do the Puja at home but then I also head to the mandir as I love watching Ram Lila and the kids understand the deeper meaning of the tale of Ramayan through the theatrical production with narration and actors bringing characters of Ram, Sita, Lakshman and others to life. Diwali is incomplete without great food and mithai. The delicious paneer sabzi, daal makhni, jeera rice, Gulab Jamun, and jalebi are some of my favourites. I am once again looking forward to the warmth of the festivities on the joyous occasion of Diwali by donning on beautiful ethnic wear and going to the temple with my children so they also understand the importance of culture, religion, and celebration.
I am deeply religious and love all the festivals in the South Asian culture and celebrate them with a ton of enthusiasm but the one that I really cherish over others is Deepawali or commonly known as Diwali. Diwali has now become a global celebration and many communities around the world know about it and look forward to celebrating it. A week before Diwali I start cleaning the home, start readying items needed for the puja, go shopping for new clothes, and buy gifts for family and friends. On Dhanteras, which marks the first day of Diwali I buy gold as well as new utensils. On Diwali day, I get up early in the morning and then head to the temple to start the day with blessings from Lord Ram. In the evening, the real festivities of Diwali begin and the sound of fireworks can be heard in the neighbourhood. It gets busy at my place with friends and relatives over as we light diyas together and then we all gather in the puja room and seek blessings of Goddess Laxmi also known as the Goddess of Wealth. Prayer is a time for gratitude welcoming new beginnings, and wishing peace and prosperity for my family and the world for years to come. Once the Pooja is over that is when the fun begins with indulging in great food including special Gujarati dishes. Dhokla, Rasmalai, Halwa, Kaju Barfi and Jalebi our some of my favourite. Wishing everyone a Happy Diwali. May you enjoy this auspicious occasion with your dear ones and welcome love and light into you hearts and homes.
Rinku & Puneet Agrawal
Diwali is the celebration of overcoming negativities in our lives with a positive mindset and effort. There is no better way of celebrating your victories than being with your family and friends coupled with good food, fun, and fireworks.
Rahul & Ritu Vir
At Diwali we love to illuminate our house and hearts and convey the message of friendship and togetherness. During Diwali, we love to wear our finest clothes, illuminate the interior, and exterior of our homes with diyas and rangoli, perform worship ceremonies of Lakshmi, the goddess of prosperity and wealth, light fireworks, and partake in family feasts, where mithai (sweets) and gifts are shared. Like most families we prefer purchasing gold during Diwali, especially on Dhanteras (2 days before Diwali). Purchasing gold during Diwali is religiously significant to us as buying gold during Diwali is considered auspicious. The ritual of buying gold during Diwali is like equivalent to inviting Lakshmi, the Goddess of wealth and prosperity to your home. Apart from jewelry, the most preferred items we love to purchase gold coins especially molded for Diwali with Goddess Lakshmi embossed on the front and her symbol Shri embossed on the other side of the coin. We are truly blessed to live in such a multi cultural and diverse city. Over the years Diwali has evolved into a day that is respected and acknowledged by people of all races , cultures, and nationalities in Vancouver.
JJ & Harpreet Toor
Diwali has always had and continues to have a special place in our home. The celebration has so many different aspects and each gives the opportunity to put aside work, come together as a family and enjoy each other's company. As children, we enjoyed the sweets, the fireworks, the clothing but as we grow, we learn about how there's more it offers. New beginnings, new ventures and prosperity is only a few to name but such a core part to Diwali. Lighting up the house and celebrating with friends and family brings so much joy that we don't get to experience as we get lost in the daily hustle and bustle.