PPP/C’s Diwali Message
Diwali is universally recognized as the festival of light; the triumph of knowledge over ignorance and the substitution of all that is negative with that which is positive.
As we celebrate this most auspicious occasion of the Hindu calendar, we call on all Guyanese, in particular our Hindu brothers and sisters, to reflect upon the significance of this great festival and to inculcate its message into our daily lives, as we strive together, to remove the darkness of hate, discrimination and racism and replace them with the illumination of love, unity and brotherhood.
Occasions like Diwali continue to present the opportunity for all of our people to display to the world, as one nation, the beauty and uniqueness of our cultural, ethnic and religious diversity and tolerance. It is from this perspective that we continue to note the division which has recently erupted in respect of the date when we are to celebrate this great festival.
Notwithstanding, the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) expresses the hope that in the near future, these differences will be reconciled so that this pious occasion can continue to be observed in an atmosphere and environment which is devoid of any controversy and overwhelmed with divinity and mutual respect.
The PPP wishes to extend warm Diwali greetings to every Guyanese, especially our Hindu brothers and sisters.
PNC/R’s Deepavali Message
Indian Action Committee (IAC)
The Indian Action Committee (IAC) extends Diwali greetings to the entire nation, especially persons who are adherents of Sanatana Dharma on the occasion of the now global festival of Deepavali or Diwali. Deepavali means a row of lights from the words deep (light) and avali (row); this festival is physically characterized by homes being illuminated during the dark hours by rose of lit deeyas.
The Goddess Maha Latchmi is revered at this time and is believed to bestow wealth and prosperity upon all of her devotees.
The bright lights of Diwali are considered to signify the illuminatory power of knowledge which destroys the darkness of ignorance and also to represent the triumph of good over evil.
The IAC realizes that Diwali of 2017 is very significant coming at the time when there is uncertainty facing many families given present economic difficulties particularly in the sugar and rice industries.
The IAC is calling upon the various Hindu organizations to agree upon one date for Diwali in 2018.
The IAC calls upon all Guyanese to respect the sanctity of Diwali and engage in appropriate and fitting observances and activities.
Shubh Diwali to all Guyanese.
Today, Hindus in Guyana, other parts of the Caribbean and North America are observing Diwali, the festival of Lights. This annual feature is embraced by every distinction and strata of society. The festival transcends all barriers, economic, social and religious.
The occasion is unique in every regard as it exhibits man’s faith and determination to convert Amawaasya (Dark Night), the darkest period of the lunar month into a mist illuminated night. The high point of the Hindu Life is self-realisation. Diwali provides the opportunity for introspection and self-analysis, i.e., to rekindle the flame of positivity within. The deep significance of Diwali must never be allowed to elude us as a people, instead, the festival should be used to build bridges of love and unity rather than to construct walls of division.
The universal principle is to ignite the light of wisdom so that it could permeate our entire being and of those whom we connect with. Maha Lakshmi is a total representation of the eight cardinal virtues of life (Ashta Siddhi). Diwali, like other Hindu festivals, depicts spirituality transcending physical acquisition which is a product of our lower nature. Man in general is a product of duality. He is unnecessarily affected by the pairs of opposites which is influenced by ignorance. Diwali, in essence, is the sum total of that principle which is rooted in wisdom, truth and goodness. May this Diwali increase the capacities of all those who act in conformity with the principles of truth and goodness. Happy Diwali to All from the Viraat Sabha – Guyana.
GAWU’s Diwali Message
The Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU) is once again pleased to join with all Guyanese and especially our Hindu community, to celebrate Diwali, widely regarded as the Festival of Lights. The Diwali observances give us an appropriate occasion to urge that the light of peace, tolerance, understanding and compromise in today’s conditions lighten our pathways and guide us in our daily lives. Like the thousands of Diwali diyas in many regions which will light up the darkness of the night, let our existence be unobstructed by the darkness that and prevent our development and well-being.
The Diwali celebration is one that today transcends one community and is supported nationally. The symbol of the lighted diyas is not only lovely to behold in the evening but it impacts the message of the value of spiritual enlightenment in our collective efforts to bring about conditions for our peace of mind and a satisfying life.
With such sentiments in mind, GAWU is encouraged by the usually wide interest shown in the expectedly dazzling celebrations that are traditionally associated with Diwali.
GAWU is aware of the current differences surrounding the actual dates for this year’s Diwali celebration but do earnestly hope that this would not detract from full participation in the festivity nor will it serve in any way to obscure its enduring significance.
We wish all the practitioners of the Hindu faith, and indeed, all Guyanese a happy and enjoyable Diwali, the festival of lights.
Let the lights, at this time, light up our pathway to harmony, economic well-being and our general upliftment.
Minister of Social Cohesion
Today Hindus in Guyana and across the world are celebrating Diwali, known as the ‘Festival of Lights’. This festival is one of the most auspicious occasions on the Hindu calendar and is believed to have been first celebrated in Guyana in 1853 by Indian indentured servants, who had first started arriving in this country in 1838.
Diwali, which is now celebrated by all Guyanese, occurs on the night of Amawasya (New Moon) in the month of Kartik, which is considered to be the darkest night on the Hindu
calendar and commemorates the return of Lord Rama from a 14 year exile.
According to the legend, his return was celebrated with the lighting of rows of clay lamps and ‘diyas’. This became a tradition, which is practiced all over the world today.
A time of great religious significance, Diwali signifies the triumph of light over darkness, knowledge over ignorance and hope over despair.
In Guyana, the festival is marked by the lighting of diyas, the stringing of lights to illuminate homes, along with rich cultural presentations, motorcades, Rangoli competitions and the distribution of sweet-meats.
Guyana is a richly diverse nation, strengthened by the contributions of all our people and festivals such as Diwali help us to preserve and share our cultural heritage. Guyanese are given the opportunity to experience the rich Indian culture and traditions, allowing for greater understanding and appreciation.
Celebrations transcend the Hindu community in Guyana since it is anxiously awaited with great enthusiasm by Guyanese from varying religious and cultural backgrounds, who embrace the message of hope for a brighter future.
At a time when the Government of Guyana is intensifying its efforts towards deepening Social Cohesion, Diwali must, more than ever before, be seen as a unifying festival, bringing together a wide cross-section of Guyanese.
This festival reminds us of the need to look beyond our differences and work together towards building a society illuminated by love, peace, harmony and understanding among its people.
As we celebrate Diwali in our various communities, let us commit to uplifting each other and being a light of hope in each other’s lives. Making Guyana brighter requires the triumph of unity over all forms of division.
I urge all Guyanese to celebrate this festival in an atmosphere devoid of conflict and misunderstanding but filled with peace, love and harmony.
Shubh Diwali to all Guyanese!