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101 Facts About Diwali Every Hindu Must Know

Diwali
Diwali is a global festival in the modern world. Almost every single country on the planet celebrates this Hindu festival in some form or another.

Being a Catholic born and raised in Mumbai, my family has celebrated Diwali every single year. After getting married to a Hindu girl, Diwali has become the Number 1 festival that we celebrate in our home every year.

Diwali is in my blood. Though I wasn't aware about the history, traditions and actual reasons for celebrating this great Indian festival.

So, I decided to do research, both on the internet and offline, to create a complete collection of facts directly connected with the festival of Diwali.

In this in-depth post on Gobog, I share with you 101 facts and trivia about Diwali. Do share this page with your friends if you appreciate my efforts. Here goes...

1. The celebration of the Diwali festival revolves around honoring Goddess Lakshmi, who is the Hindu goddess of prosperity.

2. Diwali is celebrated as a remembrance for the time when Lord Rama and Sita returned after completing 14 years in exile.

3. Goddess Lakshmi visits Earth on the 3rd night of Diwali. Hence windows, doors and openings to homes are left open after it gets dark.

4. On the 4th day of Diwali, it is Kartika Shudola Padyani, a day which celebrates when Bali took over his new kingdom.

5. Diwali always falls on the 15th day of the Hindu month of Kartika.

6. It is the best time to purchase new things, from homes to cars, clothing to phones, jewelry to toys. It has strong similarity to how Christmas is celebrated in Europe and South America.

7. Bhai Dooj, celebrated on the last day, the 5th day, is a celebration that honors the sacred brother and sister relationship among Hindus.

8. Diwali is the start of the New Year as per the Hindu Calendar.

9. Diwali celebrates the marriage of Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi as well.

10. Diwali is also celebrated as the victory of knowledge over ignorance, good over evil, and hope over despair.

11. It is the most common thing to notice rockets shooting up into the sky all through the night on the main day of Diwali. In recent years, the burning of firecrackers has been limited till a certain time such as 10pm.

12. The main aspect of Diwali celebrations is the lighting of firecrackers on the 3rd night of the festival. Both children and male adults light crackers while the female folk watch from the sidelines due to their silk dresses, colorful saris and heavy ornaments that could catch fire.

Diwali
13. In the Indian state of Odisha, the people call upon the spirits of their dead ancestors so as to ease their path with light in order to find the way to heaven easily.

14. It is becoming common for Indian leaders to spend the morning of Diwali with the armed forces. Especially those who are in remote areas on their own, without their families present.

15. Unfortunately, during Diwali, the highest number of 1st and 2nd degree burns are recorded at hospitals all over India. This is due to the burning of crackers all over the place. Children are the most affected.

16. Another reason that some Hindus celebrate Diwali is to honor the return of Pandavas after 12 years of Vanvas and one year of agyatavas in the other ancient Hindu epic called the Mahabharata.

17. On Diwali, Maharshi Dayananda, one of the greatest reformers of the Hindu religion and the founder of Arya Samaj attained Nirvana.

18. For businesses and chartered accountants, the God Kuber is prayed over. She is the goddess of book keeping, treasury and wealth management.

19. In places where it is legally allowed, gambling is a common occurrence since it is said to heighten one's chances of winning and becoming rich in the year ahead.

20. It is common for religious Hindus to visit temples and shrines where Goddess Lakshmi is the deity. People wear traditional clothes and visit the temples in the mornings or the evenings. Though the prayer ceremonies after dark are always more crowded.

21. The festival of lights is celebrated for almost a week in India. Five days to be precise.

22. Many other gods and goddesses are honored and prayed over during this time of year. Some include Goddess Kali, Lord Ganesha, Goddess Saraswati, and God Kuber.

23. In India, the highest levels of air pollution are recorded on the 10 days following Diwali.

24. The wearing of expensive ornaments, designer clothing, and precious jewels is considered a great way to celebrate this festival as it is essentially a celebration of wealth and prosperity. People dislike looking poor and dirty at this time. Special care is taken to be clean, smelling good and wearing new clothes.

25. The internet and cell phone networks are exceptionally busy on Diwali with more than 3 Billion messages and greetings exchanged during the 5-day celebrations.

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26. On the day following Diwali, machines and heavy equipment do not operate at any cost. It is a day not to work at all. And a complete break must be given to the machines and metal equipment.

27. For the farmers, the start of this great Indian festival also marks the end of the harvest season.

28. Most popular sites and monuments, from Trafalger Square to the Empire State Building, and Washington Monument to the International Airports in Mumbai and Delhi are completely lit up and decorated on Diwali night.

29. In Nepal, Yama, the god of death, is prayed to so as to increase the life span of the older people living in the country.

30. On the 5th day of Diwali, Lord Vishnu gets married to Goddess Lakshmi after she chooses him as her husband.

31. Dhanteras is the first day of the 5-day celebrations. It is common for businesses and people to invest in metal and buy gold on this first day.

32. Sivakasi in the state of Tamil Nadu is where more than 80% of the country's firecrackers come from during Diwali. In recent years, China has become the largest exporter of fireworks to India during the month before Diwali.

33. Padwa, celebrated on the day after Diwali, the 4th day is when Hindu married couples celebrate the love and mutual devotion between the wife and husband.

34. The burning of noisy firecrackers on Diwali is said to be good to ward off evil spirits and scare them all away.

35. In Kashmir, the Hindus also celebrate and follow Sukhssuptika which is to sleep in a state of happiness.

36. Even though Pakistan is an Islamic State, Diwali is given as an optional holiday there.

Diwali
37. Religious Hindus fast on the second day of the festival and break this fast at sunset by consuming just a bowl of cracked wheat, butter and sugar.

38. Diwali is essentially a Sanskrit word that combines dipa meaning light and avali meaning row. Therefore, Diwali means row of lights.

39. The end of this wonderful festival of lights marks the beginning of Winter in India.

40. The Indian soldiers offer tasty sweets to Pakistani soldiers across the border on the occasion of Diwali. In the near future, this might happen between Indian and Chinese soldiers as well.

41. Just like Christmas, gifts are given and received during the festive season.

42. Just like Christmas and Chinese New Year, it is extremely common to see every single Indian restaurant in the world being heavily decorated with lights on the 3rd or main day of Diwali.

43. Diwali has the hallmark of being the only religious festival in the world where so many different celebrations take place during the same time.

44. Lord Mahavira attained Nirvana or Moksh on this day at Pavapuri on 15 October 527 BC. This is the main reason why Jains also celebrate Diwali.

45. It is customary and important for a Hindu to keep his or her home spotlessly clean during the entire duration of the festival.

46. Environment-conscious groups have been spreading awareness about the massive pollution caused during Diwali celebrations. They plead with Hindus to celebrate the festival without lighting fireworks.

47. Diwali is the only festival in the world where every single temple and Hindu monastery is lit up with doors kept open all night long.

48. In many homes, Lord Ganesha is worshiped along with Goddess Lakshmi, both placed side by side at the prayer altar.

49. Lakshmi Puja, a prayer to honor Goddess Lakshmi, is performed in the evening of the third day of the 5 days of Diwali.

50. More than 1 Billion people celebrate Diwali every year.

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51. Malaysian Hindus celebrate 'Hari Diwali' and is a grand celebration all over the country. Streets and public places are brightly lit for a period of 15 days during this month.

52. The sale of Prayer Flowers are supposed to be the highest during the festival of Diwali in India.

53. Sikhs celebrate Diwali for their own reasons. They celebrate it to mark the release of Guru Hargobind Sahibji who was freed from captivity along with 52 other kings and princess of India during the rule of mogul emperor Shah Jahan.

54. Narakasura Vadha is the main celebration day in South India during the same period.

55. Another reason to celebrate Diwali is the solid victory of Lord Krishna over the demon Naraka.

56. Lamps and firecrackers are used to celebrate Diwali. It is common for homes, public areas, leading monuments, and commercial places like malls and restaurants to be decorated with lights, lights and more lights.

57. The Hindu name 'Laxmi' and 'Lakshmi' are the most popular names given to girls born at this time of year. Boys are named Laxman.

58. Diwali is celebrated by Jains as well. Though their celebration is for different reasons. They celebrate it to mark the attainment of moksha by Lord Mahavir.

59. In large homes, the main doors are left completely open all night long to make it easier for the Goddess of Wealth to enter their homes easily.

60. The oil lights and lamps are lit only after Sunset and are kept lit right till the break of dawn.

61. Goddess Saraswati who symbolizes music, literature and learning is the main Goddess apart from Lakshmi that is celebrated during this festival.

62. The tradition of giving away cashew nuts and eating foods (mainly sweets) with abundant nuts and raisins in them is also a practice followed every year till today.

63. The highest consumption of electricity is recorded during the month of the festival of lights.

Diwali
64. Women decorate their hands with intricate Henna designs on Narak Chaturdasi, which is the second day of festivities, and is also called Little Diwali.

65. Strikingly, in the whole state of Bengal in India, Diwali honors Goddess Kali not Goddess Lakshmi.

66. At dawn on Diwali day, Hindus wake up in the morning and take a rigorous holy oil bath to wipe off all the sins of the previous year. This symbolic bath is said to clean the sins and impurities of the man too.

67. The date on which Diwali will be celebrated is calculated based on the Hindu lunar calendar.

68. Many Hindu businesses start operations on Diwali and the most likely name chosen for their business is "Lakhsmi".

69. 'Shubh Deepavali' is the common greeting sent via email, phone and social apps. It means 'Have an auspicious Diwali'.

70. The festival literally celebrates the victory of light over darkness.

71. In India, most schools and colleges are closed for Diwali holidays ranging from 15 to 25 days. Children are supposed to relax, pray and celebrate the festival, not study during this time.

72. The concept of a Diwali Bonus is common in Indian companies and small scale businesses. Employers give their employees a generous bonus and gifts to show their appreciation during this time.

73. It is common for Hindus to stitch new clothes and wear them on each of the 5 days of Diwali. The rich wear 5 different outfits on each of the festival days.

74. Pottery shops and businesses have their biggest earnings before Diwali. The ones that benefit the most are makers of the traditional holders for the oil lamps placed outside Hindu homes.

75. Golden Temple is fully lit up every Diwali. Why? Because the foundation stone of the temple was laid on the first day of Diwali in the year 1577.

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76. It is calculated that over 4 Billion dollars worth of firecrackers are burnt each Diwali.

77. The popular firecracker called Anar or Fountain is the main reason for most of the burn injuries to people during Diwali.

78. With the rise of online retailers in India, there are big shopping festivals held in the days and weeks leading up to Diwali. Amazon and FlipKart are the biggest income earning online stores during the month before Diwali.

79. Despite doors and windows being open in most Hindu homes, quite a low number of house robberies are reported to the police during Diwali.

80. Indian residents who live abroad usually come back to India during the month of Diwali to celebrate the entire holidays with their loved ones. In all honesty, there is no place on Earth where Diwali is celebrated better than right here in India.

81. It is a designated public holiday in India, Nepal, Malaysia, Maldives, Trinidad & Tobago, Myanmar, Mauritius, Guyana, Singapore, Suriname, Sri Lanka and Fiji.

82. Diwali has been mentioned in Padma Purana, the Skanda Purana, and several other ancient Hindu scriptures. It could well be one of the oldest festivals in the whole world.

83. On the last day of Diwali, females who have brothers pray over them. Brothers get special gifts for their sisters and in return sisters also give them gifts and prepare their favorite meals.

Diwali
84. It is is the biggest shopping season of the whole year in Hindu countries and places where a majority of people living are Hindus.

85. It is believed that Lord Vishnu banished King Bali to hell and allowed him to visit earth only on the day of Diwali.

86. In the year 1999, in an Indian church, the then leader of the Catholic church, Pope John Paul II, wore a Tilak on his forehead and performed a special service at an altar lit up completely with lights to celebrate Diwali that year. Ever since then, many churches in Hindu dominated places hold special masses at night time to celebrate Diwali.

87. In India, a smart phone has become one of the leading gifts to give near and dear ones on Diwali. And the pricier, the better.

88. With the social media boom, the number of greetings and messages that occurs on the main Diwali day is said to run into over 2 Billion.

89. The largest quantity of sweets and chocolates are sold in India, Malaysia and other Hindu-dominated places during the week prior to Diwali.

90. Cancer patients, orphanges, old age homes and other such places are often the most visited by charitable Hindus during this festive season. Spending time with the people there along with having a fun celebration are the most important things.

91. The higher the number of Diyas placed outside the home, better are rumored to be the chances that the Goddess of prosperity will enter that house.

92. Giving away gifts, clothes, food, sweets, and cash is common during the Diwali season. Philanthropic Hindus who wish to attract more wealth to themselves tend to do so by giving some of theirs away. It is believed to multiply their blessings and wealth many times.

Diwali
93. In Hindu businesses, the new accounting books are brought out as it is the start of a new financial year for them on Diwali.

94. In the Braj and north central regions of India, the Lord Krishna is honored and not specifically Goddess Lakshmi.

95. The largest celebrations of Diwali outside India are in Singapore, Malaysia, Nepal, and Hindu-dominated parts of USA, UK, Canada, and Germany.

96. The meaning of this festival is basically a row of lit lamps.

97. Diyas or oil lights and Rangolis or circular designs are kept outside the front of the home of Hindus to welcome Goddess Lakshmi into their homes.

98. It is the second largest festival that is celebrated in the world after Christmas.

99. The Indian king famed for his wisdom, valour and magnanimity, whose name was Vikramaditya, was officially anointed as King after his victory over the Sakas on the day of Diwali in 56 BC. The celebration is still done in certain parts of India today for this very reason too.

100. In New York City, there is a grand celebration done during Diwali every year, wherein Bollywood celebrities are called as chief guests and performers. The celebrations includes the lighting of fireworks into the sky as well.

101. It is said that Goddess Lakhsmi was born on the first day of Diwali. She was born from the churning of cosmic ocean of milk during the tug of war between the battle of Good and Evil.

Happy Diwali
This extensively researched article has taken me 4 hours to create. My efforts will be in vain if you don't share this post on Gobog with every single Indian and Hindu that you know using the popular social media buttons provided below my photo and name.

Savio DSilva
Savio DSilva
Audio Book Creator. Life Coach. Soft Skills Trainer. Counselor.
Meditation Practitioner. Food Technologist. Frugal Marketer.

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