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THOUGHTS ON DIWALI

             
“Ring out old sorrows and ring in new Joys”.

The festival of Lights is one of the major festivals in India observed by Hindus, Sikhs, and Jains.  Even countries like NepalSri LankaGuyanaTrinidadMalaysiaSingapore, and Myanmar where there are size-able population of the Indian origin celebrate Diwali, and it is a national holiday for these countries.

Diwali or Deepavali is a day when families gather in love and offer special prayers by lighting lamps filled with oil, by exchanging sweets to one another, and by sharing and caring for their fellow brothers and sisters.  This is done to commemorate the triumph of good over evil.  On this day, people flock to temples in large numbers to thank God for overpowering and annihilating evil and bringing peace, harmony, light, and victory.  They exchange clothes, sweets, love for one another, and others by bursting crackers to welcome light or bring light to their respective families.

For Jains, Diwali is the day when Mahavir attained Nirvana.  For Sikhs, Diwali is the day when their sixth guru, Hargobind was released from captivity.  For Hindus, Sikhs and Jains alike, Diwali is a day  of tremendous joy and happiness.

However, the deep spiritual meaning of Diwali is all about seeking inner light, purifying the soul, cleansing the athma and experiencing the grace and blessings that God bestows on the soul.  Just as we celebrate the birth of our physical being, Diwali celebrates the birth of inner light.  That inner light is God (Brahman).  The supreme God seeks to dwell in our soul and we have to prepare the place of His rest by keeping it pure and holy.  Every year, this is what Diwali does, it rekindles the inner light and brings us to this awareness of the importance of soul.

Let us wish our Hindu, Sikh, and Jain brothers and sisters in the name our supreme God, Brahman, a very HAPPY AND JOYFILLED DIWALI.  May Brahman bless you all and smile on each and every one of you.

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