Last week, many parts of the world celebrated Diwali, the Hindu lights festival that spans over a five-day period and coincides with the Hindu New Year. It’s a celebration of light over darkness and good over evil.
Many of our friends and coworkers in our Vadodara office celebrated Diwali and shared their experiences with us. Here’s what they had to say:
“It was my daughter's first Diwali! We celebrated along with my paternal family. My family was very excited especially my grandparents as they were celebrating the first Diwali with their great-granddaughter.
I tried my hands on Rangoli, which came out to be pretty well as a beginner. The days were spent following our family custom of doing "pooja", visiting temple and spending time with family.
In a nutshell, it was a complete blast of fun with family.” -Rahul Upadhyay
“Diwali is one of the most awaited festival in India. It is the festival that must be celebrated with family and friends, so we've traveled to our native place Valsad (about 225 km from Vadodara.) This time it was special for us as it was first ever Diwali for my son Jimit (9 months old).
It is the festival of lights, so we have decorated our house with colorful lights, candles and Diyas. We did beautiful Rangolies. We did lots of shopping and busted crackers, visited the temple and had blessings from elders.
And of course, Diwali cannot be ended without sweets and chocolates. We took lots of pictures too.
Overall this year, our Diwali was wonderful. We all really enjoyed it!” -Sagar Modi
“Every Diwali, In the church we have Vacation Bible School for the kids. I took my kiddo every day there. She enjoyed my company a lot and learned new songs of worships, dance steps and also studied Bible. I enjoyed a lot with her during these days, as we both get to have a good time together. She performed on last day of the VBS in church, where she did very well which make me so much proud as a father. We also burst the cracker late night. We had house party with family & friends, and really enjoyed a lot every moment of the vacation.” -Nayankumar Dave
“It was a Diwali with my parents after a few years. Pre-Diwali, we spent time with them on laxmi pujan and chopda pujan and helping my dad on Diwali preparations. On Diwali night, we had a good time with friends over dinner and lighting some fireworks. On New Year day morning, we took blessings from God and my parents along with my elders. Then after, we met friends and family to wish everyone a happy New Year. On Bhai beej, we went to Ahmedabad to my cousin sister's home for lunch and spent the day with her family.” -Viren Bhavsar
“We (I mean me and my family) celebrate Diwali Festival always at our native place. This year also, we have celebrated Diwali Festival at our Village Dakor on the auspicious day of Diwali. We had done Pooja by 7 p.m. Also, we had lightened up Diya surrounding home & fire-crackers nearby space!
The Diwali is also known as Deepavali or Dipavali. Diwali falls on Amavasya, i.e the new Moon day, in Hindu calendar, and that is the reason why Diyas are light everywhere, to dispel the darkness, and homes are decorated to welcome Goddess Laxmi.
During Diwali, we also visited few nearby picnic spot with family. More than anything, Diwali is an occasion, when people (Family & Friends) Pray & Wish each other for Prosperity and Fortune. Diwali is last day of the year & the next morning of Diwali; it starts a New Year according to Hindu/Indian calendar. Happy New Year Everyone!” -Sagar Bhatt