Letting Diwali Shine Through
The festival of Diwali tends to be celebrated in superficial ways today. While there is no harm in indulging in the superficial, it is also important to remember that with every passing Diwali, another year has passed us by.
Diwali is among the most awaited, celebrated festivals by Hindus not just in India, but all around the world. After a rather dull spell through the first half of the year, celebrations kick off in the second part of the year with numerous festivals that comes through in quick succession, culminating in the celebration of Diwali.
The significance of Diwali is noted in many mythological stories from different eras. While each of them gives us a new reason to celebrate, there is one underlying element that is common through each of them – the victory of good over evil.
What is interesting to note is the way things have changed as we progress form one age to another. In the tretayug of the Ramayana, the evil Ravana lives across the seas in Lanka, and Rama builds a bridge to get across. In the next, the dwaparyug, good and evil co-existed in the same family and a fierce war ended in the good shining through. In today’s time, the progression of good and bad are, in fact, facets of the same personality, finding sanctuary within the same person.
To be able to enjoy a true Diwali in every sense of the word, it is critical that we not just confine ourselves to observances alone. Let us, instead look for ways to help the good surface and gain complete victory over evil.
While this may seem easier said than done, all it takes is a modest start. Allow yourself to forgive, place others before you, and stand by the truth. It has been established over centuries that it takes more courage to be honest than to find cover behind a lie. Instead of praying for greater material wealth this year, pray instead to have the conviction to be true to yourself and others, and every other form of happiness will follow.
This is a time for the light of love, prosperity and joy to flow freely. Let this also be a time for the light of compassion, wisdom and discrimination to shine through. Go beyond looking for just knowledge and the ability to give our family the best. Rather, pray that we understand the real meaning of ourselves and the purpose of our life. It is when we look for ways to share with not just those that we love, but also open up to others in extended circles that we move towards the light. Look for the chance to be able to discriminate between good and bad, right and wrong, and also fleeting and lasting pleasures.
The festival of Diwali tends to be celebrated in superficial ways today. While there is no harm in indulging in the superficial, it is also important to remember that with every passing Diwali, another year has passed us by. Instead of confining ourselves to our book of accounts and tallying our records, let us also take stock of all the good and bad that we have dealt with throughout the year, and look for ways to change ourselves in the coming year.
Today, we are witness to many struggles. Life is certainly a challenge that each us of must face, and we are largely responsible for all the unrest and turmoil around us. Though we have done nothing to necessitate the violence, we can play a role in combating the evil. When we can manifest the good qualities we praise in God, we know that we have done the festival more justice than simply praying and lighting lanterns.
There are many who decide to inspire action and not wait for change to happen. Rather than witnessing the change, they like to get the ball rolling and warrant the change. While you may look for everything around you to look favorable, we often forget that true change comes from within.
Let this Diwali play a different role in your family this year. Along with treating yourselves and your family to the tasty sweets and well-earned gifts, also try to find ways in which you can make yourself a better, more aware individual. Do not let this year be only about lighting the lamp. Instead, let it be about sharing the light and letting the warmth spread all around you. With the right attitude and approach, you will see the world soon become a much better place.