The Festival of Lights celebrations is expected to kick-start with the annual “National Diya Light-up” which is being held on Sunday at Rahaman’s Park, Greater Georgetown.
This spectacular event is hosted by the Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh-Hindus for Selfless Service (HSS) and will mark the fourth consecutive year of the Festival’s celebrations since the first National Diya was lit back in 2015.
The diya light-up is expected to have the usual attendee which include heads of leading Hindu and other religious organisations, young leaders and the general public. The aim of the National Diya lighting is to promote, preserve and spread awareness of oneness and national unity. The theme for this year’s Diya Light up is “Atma Deepo Bhava” or You Become the light.
The festival ‘Diwali’ in Sanskrit has a literal meaning of ‘a row of lamps’. This festival usually falls between the middle of October and the middle of November, although this is decided upon by the Hindu lunar calendar.
The most popular tradition of celebrating Diwali is filling little clay lamps (Diyas) with oil and wick and lighting them in rows all over the house, this reflects the rich and glorious past of culture and teaching to uphold the true values of life.
Lights and diyas are lit to signify the driving away of darkness and ignorance, as well as the awakening of the light within one’s self. It is viewed as a time for family gatherings and foods as well as a celebration that reminds us of our original virtues; the light of which brings joy and hope.
Diwali celebrates victory over evil or darkness and the coming of a New Year. The light refers to following a path virtue such that our thoughts are always pure in heart; meanwhile the darkness refers to negative thoughts which bring about hurts and sorrow.
Diwali should be experienced as a country, as this would signify the closing of old account books such as any unpleasant relationships, and the beginning of new ones. Diwali should be a festival of removing all the crackers of evil characteristics within one’s self.
Additionally, apart from the spectacular display of the National Diya Light up, there will be a cultural evening of dances, skits and music to portray the significance of the national holiday. This event will commence at 18:00h and conclude at 20:00h.