Diwali: Festival of Lights

Diwali is a Hindu light festival that has many important meanings. One girl that I talked to tonight told me that, during the reincarnation of Vishnu as Rama, he was to reunited to his soul mate after defeating an evil demon. The people prepared for his arrival by lighting up the city with many candles and lanterns. These many names would make more sense to you if you knew the basis on Hinduism….

A very brief summary of Hinduism is that there are three main deities: Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva. They represent the beginning, continuation, and destruction of creation. These gods have been reincarnated throughout time, including as Buddah, Krishna, and Rama to name a few you might recognize. There are many different gods and goddesses focused on specific parts of God.

A common confusion for people is when they think Hinduism is a paganistic religion that worships multiple gods. This is incorrect; each of the gods they look to are all aspects of one God. When asking someone what their favorite deity is, they most always say that all deities are part of the one almighty ruler but they simply relate to one deity in an extra way for one reason or another.

I have personally been doing a lot of independent research on Hinduism and find it to be an amazingly passionate and beautiful religion. The art, dance, and music brings the faith to life in a breathtaking way.One project we did, along with getting some henna, doing arts & crafts, and eating some delicious food, was to make lotus flowers which we then put tea light candles in and let float out onto the lake. It was such a magical moment. Not only am I completely fascinated with the religion but even if I wasn’t, watching this beautiful piece of art that I had just created float away was very fulfilling.

We were surrounded by music and laughter and fire and it was beautiful!

I hope these pictures can give you even the slightest hint of how amazing this experience was. If you ever have some spare time, I highly suggest looking up traditional Diwali celebrations. It doesn’t really matter what religion you practice as long as you have a passion for it and show love and kindness to others. It has been amazing to learn more and really immerse myself in this religion and culture and I can’t wait to experience more things like this!

Hindu gods of Rama and Lakshmi lit up in fire at the Diwali Festival of Lights.
Branna with her handmade lotus flower for the Diwali Festival of Lights.
Handmade lotus flowers floating on the lake with tealight candles in them for the Diwali Festival of Lights.

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