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The five day of Deepawali with full story by Priest Rajendra Khanal

What is meaning of Diwali/Deepavali?
Deepavali  is also known as Diwali, Dipavali, Dewali, Deepawali or the Festival of Lights. It is celebrated on the  day of Kartika (October/November) in the Hindu calendar. That is called Yamapanchak or TIHAR or Deepavali. 
In this year Deepavali is Diwali/Deepavali  November 5-9, 2018 Monday thru Friday.
Diwali celebrations  for about five days.
written/collect By Priest Rajendra Khanal 
 

Diwali celebrations goes on for five days and each day has its significance and very importants.

1st Day of Deepawali Dhanteras or  KAAG TIHAR – WORSHIP FOR CROWS

Diwali begins with the first day known as ‘Dhanteras’ or the worship of wealth. Goddess Lakshmi is worshipped on this day and there is a custom to purchase something precious. People clean and decorate their homes. The first day of the festival is called Kaag Tihar. Crows and ravens are worshiped by offering them sweets and dishes, which are placed on the roofs of houses. The cawing of crows and ravens symbolizes sadness and grief in Hinduism, so devotees offer crows and ravens food to avert grief and death in their homes. Tihar, among Gorkhas, represents the divine attachment between humans and other animals .

 The Second Day of Deepawali -Naraka Chaturdashi or Choti Diwali or Worship for Dog

The second day of Diwali is Naraka Chaturdasi. On this day Lord Krishna killed the demon Narakasura and liberated the 16,000 princesses the demon held captive. The second day is Naraka Chaturdashi or Choti Diwali. People wake up early and apply aromatic oils on them before taking a bath. This is said to remove all sins and impurities. They wear new clothes, offer Puja and enjoy by lighting diyas and bursting few crackers.

The second day is called Kukur Tihar (worship of the dogs). It is also called the Khicha Puja by the Newars. Dogs, which are believed to be messengers of Lord Yamaraj, the God of Death, are worshiped each year on this day. People offer garlands, Tika and delicious food to dogs and acknowledge the cherished relationship between humans and dogs. This festival has garnered a lot of attention from western countries people for the love and respect that Nepali show to their dog on this day.

The Defeat of Narkasur by Lord Krishna: Lord Vishnu in his 8th incarnation as Krishna destroyed the demon Narkasura, who was causing great unhappiness among the people of the world. Narkasura was believed to be a demon of filth, covered in dirt. He used to kidnap beautiful young women and force them to live with him. Eventually, their cries for rescue were heard by Vishnu, who came in the form of Krishna. First, Krishna had to fight with a five-headed monster who guarded the demon’s home. Narkasura hoped that his death might bring joy to others. Krishna granted his request and the women were freed. For Hindus, this story is a reminder that good can still come out of evil.

The Third Day – Actual Diwali Lakshmi Puja : WORSHIP FOR COWS AND GODDESS LAXMI

This is the actual day of Diwali, commonly known as the Hindu New Year. The faithful cleanse themselves and join with their families and priests to worship the goddess Lakshmi, consort of Lord Vishnu, to receive blessings of wealth, prosperity, triumph of good over evil, light over darkness. This is also the day Lord Rama returned to Ayodhya, having successfully rescued Sita and defeated the demon Ravana. (See “Origins of Diwali” below.)The third day is the main Diwali festival. Lakshmi Puja is performed on this day. Goddess Lakshmi is believed to enter homes and bless people with good fortune. Tiny oil diyas, candles and electric lights are placed around the house. Families exchange gifts and gather together to burst crackers.

This day is the most important of all and is called Laxmi Puja. On this day, people worship cows. In Hinduism, a cow signifies prosperity and wealth. In ancient times, people benefited a lot from cows. Thus, on this day people show their gratefulness to cows by garlanding and feeding their cows with the best grass. Houses are cleaned and the doorways and windows are decorated with garlands made of Sayapatri (marigolds) and Makhamali flowers (chrysanthemums).

In the evening, Goddess Laxmi, the goddess of wealth is thanked for all the benefits that were bestowed on the families by lighting oil lamps (Diyo) or candles on doorways and windows to welcome prosperity and well being. At night, the girls enjoy dancing and visiting all the houses of the neighborhood with musical instruments singing and dancing known as Bhaili all night long collecting money as tip from houses and share the bounty amongst themselves.

History/story of Deepawali 

Deepawali is called the Festival of Lights and is celebrated to honor Rama-chandra, the seventh avatar (incarnation of the God Vishnu). It is believed that on this day Rama returned to his parents after 14 years of exile during which he fought and won a battle against the demons and the demon king, Ravana. People lit their houses to celebrate his victory over evil (light over darkness).  After this victory of Good over Evil, Rama returned to Ayodhya. In Ayodhya, the people welcomed them by lighting rows of clay lamps. So, it is an occasion in honor of Rama’s victory over Ravana; of Truth’s victory over Evil.The goddess of happiness and good fortune, Lakshmi, also figures into the celebration. It is believed that she roams the Earth on this day and enters the house that is pure, clean, and bright.

The Fourth Day of Diwali- Govardhan Puja or Padva,  WORSHIP FOR OXEN

On this day, Govardhana Puja is performed, a spiritual harvest festival. Thousands of years ago, Lord Krishna caused the people of Vrindavan to perform Govardhana Puja. For details, Krishna and The Mountain: In the village of Gokula, many years ago, the people prayed to the God Indra. They believed that Indra sent the rains, which made their crops, grow. But Krishna came along and persuaded the people to worship the mountain Govardhan, because the mountain and the land around it were fertile. This did not please Indra. He sent thunder and torrential rain down on the village. The people cried to Krishna to help. Krishna saved the villagers by lifting the top of the mountain with his finger. The offering of food to God on this day of Diwali is a reminder to Hindus of the importance of food and it is a time for being thankful to God for the bounty of nature.

Bali Maharaja was defeated on this day by Lord Krishna’s dwarf brahmana incarnation, Vamanadeva.

story about King Bali Raja and Vaman avatar God. 

Vamana Avatar

The Vamana Avatar is the first Avatar in which Lord Vishnu incarnated as a human. This is the fifth of the Dasavatar, where Lord Vishnu incarnates as a dwarf to protect Indra. [‘Vamana’ in Sanskrit means dwarf]
The Vamana Avatar starts with Mahabali the Asura King. Mahabali was the grandson of Prahlada and the son of Virochana. Mahabali was a a great ruler and his people loved him. The people were very happy and prosperous under his rule. He was taught the Vedhas by his grandfather Prahlada and after that by his Guru Shukracharya. [After the churning of the ocean, when the Devas had taken the Amrit, Indra had killed Bali. Shukracharya brought back Bali to life, with the help of his mantras and power.]
Mahabali performed severe penance to Lord Brahma. Finally Lord Brahma appeared him, ‘My Lord!’ Bali said bowing before Lord Brahma, ‘The people are always afraid of Asuras. I want to show the world that we are good. I want to have the power equal to Indra. I also should not be defeated in battle, sir!’
Lord Brahma sensed that Mahabali was a righteous man, meant for great things. Without asking any questions, he granted Mahabali his boon.
Shukracharya was a very good Priest and a very good battle strategist. With his help, Bali soon conquered the three worlds. Bali defeated Indra, the King of the Gods and took over the heavens. However Bali aided by his Guru was always righteous and was devoted to Lord Vishnu.
Shukracharya once called him, ‘Bali! You have now conquered the three worlds. However if you wish to always be the Lord of the three worlds, you have to perform 100 Ashwamedha Yagnas. It is befitting that a king like you should perform the Ashwamedha Yagna, then you will always be the king of the 3 worlds.’
Bali who respected his teacher nodded his head and started about making preparations for the Yagna. Preparations were going on full-scale.
Meanwhile, elsewhere Indra was lying dejected. Bali had not only defeated him, but was also showing the world, how a great ruler should behave! Bali was a good king and people loved him. Indra was actually feeling jealous of him. Indra had a feeling that all the Gods would also be on the side of the Asura – Bali.
He was sitting beside his mother Aditi in his father – Kashyap’s hermitage. Aditi looked at her son and asked him. ‘What is the matter son? You look unhappy…’
Indra looked at his mother and said quietly, ‘Mother, it is Bali…’
Aditi looked at his son, waiting for him to explain.
‘Mother, not only did he manage to defeat me, he is such a good king! People will always say that I am not that good a king as him…’ Indra said angrily, ‘They will compare me to that Asura and say he is better… I cannot bear it…’ He said burying his hands in his lap.
Aditi looked at her son and took pity on him. ‘I will see what I can do…But you have to promise me son that you will be a good king and not be hasty and act rashly henceforth…’
Indra looked at his mother, wondering what she could do. But Indra did not doubt even for a minute that his mother would solve his problem.
Aditi prayed to Lord Vishnu and started performing penance to invoke Lord Vishnu. After some time Lord Vishnu appeared before Aditi, ‘Aditi! Open your eyes!’
Aditi opened his eyes and bowed to Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu spoke, ‘Why did you pray to me, Aditi?’
Aditi said, ‘There is nothing you do not know. You know that Bali has taken over my son’s kingdom…’
Lord Vishnu interrupted softly, ‘Aditi, Bali is a great man and he is good devotee and he deserves to be the Indra…’
Aditi took a deep breath and spoke again, ‘My Lord! I have no doubt, Bali is a fit king. But are the other Asuras fit to rule? I am sure the other Asuras would fall to their old cruel ways and go back to hurting people…Is that what you wish?’
Lord Vishnu looked at Aditi thinking something, ‘Well what do you wish?’
Aditi smiled, ‘I wish that you are born as my son to end Bali’s menace…’
Lord Vishnu smiled, ‘Bali is not a menace. But there is one thing. Bali is destined to be the Indra.’ Aditi looked at Lord Vishnu with fear. ‘But… not just yet. It will be after some time.’ Lord Vishnu said smilingly.
‘I will take care of this. I will be born as your son, Aditi.’ Aditi left home a slightly happy woman.
Soon Aditi and Kashyap were the parents of a black, beautiful short boy. He was extremely intelligent and full of pranks and was the darling of the house.
In those days at the age of five, the sacred thread ceremony was performed, to send the children for their education. Vamana’s sacred thread ceremony was also performed.
Meanwhile Mahabali had performed 99 Ashwamedha Yagna and had to perform just one more yagna after which he could be crowned as the King of the Gods.
The last Ashwamedha Yagna was about to be get completed, when the entire kingdom saw a handsome dark boy approach the throne. He looked radiant and looked as if he had mastered all the arts in the universe.
Mahabali felt a surge of love towards the boy. He got up from the throne and offered it to the boy and bowed before him.
‘Sir ! I am honoured that you have come to my hundredth Ashwamedha Yagna. I now feel it will be a success.’ Mahabali said looking at the boy lovingly.
However Guru Shukracharya was looking at the boy suspiciously.
Mahabali said again, ‘Sir ! Today happens to be the day I give away any alms to any person. I will give you anything you want. Please…
‘Mahabali !’ Shukracharya interrupted. Mahabali turned around surprised. His Guru never spoke out of turn. Something was surely wrong. He looked at his Guru who spoke quietly, ‘I wish to talk with you, my Lord !’
‘You wish to talk with me now, sir !’ Mahabali spoke incredulously. The Guru nodded curtly and went inside the main hall to a private room. Mahabali hurriedly apologized to the dwarf boy and went to with his Guru.
‘Sir ! What hap…’ Mahabali asked in an agitated manner.
‘Silence !’ Shukracharya spoke firmly, ‘The boy is none other than Lord Vishnu. He has come here on behalf of Indra. If you give him what he wants, all will be lost…’
However it seemed as if Mahabali heard only half of what his Guru had said. ‘Lord Vishnu…! He looked like a man in a daze. ‘My Lord has come here to ask something from me…Than I must go…’ He said going towards the door.
‘Stop! You will do no such thing’ The guru thundered, ‘Will you disobey your guru and do what your enemy wants…’
‘There is no rule as far as my Lord is concerned. And…’ Mahabali looked with loving eyes, ‘He has come to ask something from me…I will give him anything…’ Mahahabli said with a simple devotion, from his heart.
‘You disobeyed me!’ Shukracharya said angrily, ‘You will lose your all your splendour, Mahabali!’
Mahabali listened to the sages words and remained unchanged. It did not matter to him anymore. He looked at his Guru, ‘Sir! I am not afraid of anything that will happen from giving my Lord what he wants’
Saying thus Mahabali walked out of the room followed by a furious Shukracharya.
Mahabali went to the boy again and spoke lovingly, ‘Sir! We were rudely interrupted…For that I am sorry. As I was saying, today is the day I will give anything to any person who comes asking from me. What is your wish sir?’
The dark boy looked at Mahabali quietly, ‘I want three steps of land, measured by my feet!’
Whatever Mahahbali had expected this was not it ! He expected the boy to ask for his life, his…anything but not this…this was simple…too simple. He almost laughed. ‘Three steps! That is all you want! I will give you….’
The boy interrupted, ‘If any person cannot be satisfied by three steps, of land there is nothing much he can be satisfied with, your Majesty! That is all I wish…’
Looking at the dark boy, the king felt the same magnetic effect. He nodded his head, ‘Anything you wish sir!’
As soon as Mahabali uttered these words, Vamana grew. Vamana grew…and grew and grew. He grew so huge, that from where Bali stood, he could see only the boy’s feet, nothing else. The boy had grown so huge that the earth itself seemed to measure up in his one step!
Next the boy lifted his other leg and measured up the entire skies with his other step! [The avatar where Lord Vishnu grew to such a huge size is called as Trivikrama Avatar]
Mahabali stood there astounded watching the Dark Lord’s brilliance! The boy called Mahabali. ‘Oh Great King ! You promised me three steps… I have measured the earth and the skies in two steps. I have nowhere to keep my third step. Where shall I keep my third step?’
Mahabali heard the boy and smiled, ‘My Lord! I am not someone who breaks his promises. I offer my head as your third step my Lord!’
Lord Vishnu gave a beautiful smile, a melancholy smile and kept his third step on the Asura’s head. The Asura was pushed to the Nether world [Paatala] by the force of the third step on his head.
Thus Mahabali was removed from his splendour of being the king of the Three Worlds and was pushed to the Nether worlds….
Indra and the other Devas came back to their skies grateful that they had got back their kingdom. They were happy.
However Lord Vishnu was perturbed. Mahabali had been his true devotee. He had not faltered even when his guru had warned him. He remained true to what he had said…Lord Vishnu went to the underworld.
In the underworld, Mahahbali was rebuilding his kingdom. He did not once regret that he was back in the underworld…He had served his Lord and had kept his promise. He was happy. He saw a dark man approaching him. ‘Your majesty! I hear you are rebuilding your kingdom. I will be your watchman your majesty! I will protect you and be part of your army!’
Mahabali looked at the dark strong young man. He agreed. The man stayed along as his watchman.
Meanwhile a very beautiful woman also came up to Mahabali. She looked powerful and graceful at the same time. She said to Mahabali, ‘Your Majesty! My husband…he has gone to fulfill some errands and is not yet home. I feel lonely without him. I also need protection. I heard that in Mahabali’s kingdom, you look after everyone like your own children. Please give me protection too!’
Mahabali was moved when he heard the woman. He said, ‘Lady ! You are like my sister to me. Please come and stay in my palace. You can stay there as long as you wish!’
The woman thanked Mahabali. Very soon the Nether world became a very prosperous place. People lived very happily and without any worries.
Soon Mahabali relied on the watchman and his sister’s counsel heavily. His kingdom was flourishing.
One day Mahabali heard the lady saying some prayers. ‘Whom are you praying for?’ Mahahbali asked the woman.
The woman turned and looked at Mahabali and said, ‘You are my brother! I am praying for you!’
Mahabali was moved and again said, ‘Whatever you want, I will give you, my sister!’
The lady smiled, ‘I want my husband, Mahabali. You are the only one who can give it to me…’
Mahabali looked confused, ‘Me..give your husband…?’
The lady pointed to the watchman, ‘That is my husband…’
Mahabali blinked and stared as the two people vanished and there stood Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi in their places. Mahabali was flabbergasted that the great Lord had been his watchman ! And that the Goddess of Fortune – Lakshmi had been with him all these days!
Lord Vishnu spoke, ‘Your devotion dragged me here Mahabali ! I had to be with you…’
Mahabali fell to his feet and looked at the Lord. The Lord continued. ‘After this Indra’s rule, you are the next Indra…That is my promise. Be a good ruler, my son!’
Mahabali then turned to the Goddess, ‘I am sorry for keeping your husband from you, sister! Take him and go back!’
The goddess smiled, ‘Thank you! And you did not keep him! He always is with people who love him most! May you always be prosperous…brother!’
Saying thus the two of them vanished to went back to Vaikuntha. The bond between Mahabali and Lakshmi is said to be one of the reasons for celebrating the Raksha Bandhan, where the sisters prays for the welfare of the brothers and the brothers protect the sisters from any harm with Vai Teeka ! At this point, the dwarf changed into Vishnu and his three strides covered the Earth, the Skies and the Universe ! King Bali was sent to the underworld. As part of Diwali celebrations, Hindus remember King Bali .
 

This day is Govardhan Puja or Padva. It is the day when Lord Krishna defeated Indra by lifting the huge Govardhan Mountain. People make a small hillock, usually of cow dung, symbolising Govardhan worship it.

On the fourth day of Tihar, there are three different known pujas, depending on the people’s specific cultural background. It is observed as Goru Tihar or Goru Puja (worship of the oxen). People who follow Vaishnavism perform Govardhan Puja, which is worship towards Goverdhan mountain. Cowdung is taken as representative of the mountain and is worshiped. Additionally, majority of the Newar community on the night also perform “Mha/ Ma Puja” (worship of self).

From this day onwards, Tihar is celebrated with Deusi. Deusi is mostly sung by the boys while the Bhailo is sung by the girls. Deusi is balladic in nature and tells the story of the festival, with one person in the group narrating and the rest as the chorus. In return, the house owners give them money, fruits and Selroti. Nowadays, social workers and politician along with young people visit local homes and sing these songs, and collect funds for welfare and social activities.

The Fifth Day of Diwali- Bhai Dooj or BHAI TIKA, WORSHIP FOR BROTHERS & SISTERS

The fifth day of the Diwali is called Bhratri Dooj, dedicated to sisters. We have heard about Raksha Bandhan, brothers day. Well this is sisters day. Many moons ago in the Vedic era, Yamaraja, the Lord of Death, visited His sister Yamuna on this day. He gave Yamuna a boon that whoever visits her on this day shall be liberated from all sins; they will achieve moksha, liberation. From then on, brothers visit their sisters on this day to ask about their welfare, and many faithful bathe in the holy waters of the Yamuna River. 

The fifth and last day of Tihar is called Bai Teeka and is observed by sisters applying teeka to the foreheads of their brothers to ensure long life and thanking them for the protection they provide.

This day is also known as Bhai Fota among Bengalis, when the sister prays for her brother’s safety, success and well-being.

This day marks the end of the five days of Diwali celebrations.

The fifth and last day is Bhai Dooj. On this day sisters invite their brothers for a lavish meal and perform a ‘tilak’ ceremony. Sisters pray for their brother’s long and happy life while the brothers give gifts to their sisters.

People display fireworks during Diwali but it should be kept in mind as to not create noise and air pollution which can harm the environment.

The first day of Diwali is called Dhanwantari Trayodasi also called Dhan Theras.This day worship for crows. The second day of Diwali is called Narak Chaturdasi. It is the fourteenth lunar day (thithi) of the dark fourteenthnight of the month of Kartik and the eve of Diwali. On this day Lord Krishna destroyed the demon Narakasur and made the world free from fear. The third day of Diwali is the actual Diwali. This is the day when worship for Mother Lakshmi is performed. On the fourth day of Diwali, Goverdhan Pooja is performed. The fifth day of the Diwali is called Bhratri Dooj or Bhai teeka. It is a day dedicated to sisters for their brothers. Diwali also known as the Festival of Lights, is one of the most popular Hindu festivals. 

What Do People Do In Deepawali ?

Millions of Hindus around the world celebrate Diwali with gift exchanges, fireworks and festive meals. The Diwali celebration in India takes place when the monsoon season ends and the weather is mild and pleasant. People try to pay off their old debts, make or buy new clothes and thoroughly clean their houses as part of the festival preparations. House exteriors are whitewashed and sometimes decorated with designs drawn in white rice flour and filled in with color. Buildings are traditionally illuminated with oil-burning bowls called dipa lights, or more recently, with strings of artificial lights. People spend time with their friends and family.

On the first day of the festival people pray, eat a special breakfast consisting of different foods, and the Hindu goddess Lakshmi’s statue is carried throughout the streets in procession. Children are sometimes given candy or toys from booths set up for the occasion. In southern India children wear flower wreaths on their heads or anklets of bells. Boys in some areas construct elaborate castles and forts of mud and display them for visiting guests. After dark there are fireworks and people who live near rivers float lighted lamps on tiny rafts. To add to the festival of Diwali, melas (fairs) are held throughout India and Nepal. These are found in many towns and villages also.

Diwali is a Public holiday in India and Nepal,  so government offices and many businesses (including local offices and shops) are closed. It is not a nationwide public holiday in countries such as Korea, Japan,  UAEAustraliaCanadaUnited Kingdom and United States but some cities hold large celebrations for the Diwali festival.

 

The Deepawali festival in southern India and Nepal often commemorates the conquering of the Asura Naraka, a powerful king of Assam, who imprisoned thousands of inhabitants. It was Krishna, a deity worshipped in Hinduism, who was finally able to subdue Naraka and free the prisoners. Diwali celebrations may vary in different communities but its significance and spiritual meaning is generally “the awareness of the inner light”. It is also the beginning of the new financial year for the business community.

Symbols

Lamps, fireworks and bonfires illuminate this holiday, as the word “Deepawali” means “a row or cluster of lights” or “rows of diyas (clay lamps)”. The festival symbolizes the victory of righteousness and the lifting of spiritual darkness. During Diwali, or Deepawali, the Goddess Lakshmi, who symbolizes wealth, happiness and prosperity, is also worshipped.

It is believed that Yamraj, the God of Death, visited his sister, Goddess Yamuna, on this day during which she applied the auspicious tika on his forehead, garlanded him and fed him special dishes. Together, they ate sweets, talked and enjoyed themselves to their hearts’ content. Upon parting, Yamraj gave Yamuna a special gift as a token of his affection and, in return, Yamuna gave him a lovely gift which she had made with her own hands. That day Yamraj announced that anyone who receives tilak from his sister will never die on that day.

Note: It is not possible to mention every activity that takes place on this occasion as celebrations vary in different regions. However, this article provides a general overview of the main celebrations that usually occur during this event. Moreover, the date in which Diwali is celebrated may vary depending on locations and calendar interpretations. The source of matter from Hindu mythology.

Happy Diwali/Deepavali 2018 to All. 

When is Diwali in 2018?

Calendar Event 

Yamapanchak Aarambha (Crows-Kaag Tihar): November 5, 2018 Monday 

Narak Chaturdashi (Dog-Kukur Tihar) : November 6, 2018 Tuesday 

Laxmi Pooja /Diwali/Deepavali : November 7, 2018 Wednesday 

Gobardhan Pooja (Cow- Gai Tihar : NOVEMBER  8, 2018 Thursday 

BHAI TIKA: November 9, 2018 Friday 
Note : This Calendar event use for USA and Canada.

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