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Why is Diwali important to Hindus?

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Quick Answer

The festival of Diwali, known as "the festival of lights," is important to the Hindu religion because it signifies the victory of good over evil and light over dark. Hindu families celebrate it by lighting oil lamps and candles, shooting firecrackers into the air and feasting with their neighbors.

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Why is Diwali important to Hindus?
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Full Answer

The Diwali festival is celebrated across India, but in the southern part of the country, it is more commonly known by its original Sanskrit name Deepavali. Northern and southern India celebrate this festival at different times, since they follow different calendars. It typically occurs in October or November on "Amavasya," or the new moon when the sky is dark.

In northern India, Diwali coincides with the last day of the Vikram calendar, making it similar to New Year's Eve. In the south, the festival commemorates the day when the god Krishna helped conquer the Assam King Asura Naraka, who had imprisoned or enslaved tens of thousands of people.

During Diwali, Hindus worship and offer thanks to the goddess, who is a symbol of goodness and prosperity. In the Hindu culture, darkness is linked to ignorance, and light is associated with prosperity, so Diwali celebrates the victory of prosperity over ignorance. The festival lasts for five days, with the third day being most prominent.

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    What do Hindus eat?

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    How do Hindus celebrate Diwali?

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    Hindus celebrate Diwali, the festival of lights, mainly by lighting earthenware oil lamps called diyas and placing them around temples, homes and businesses or setting them to float upon bodies of water. They also clean their homes, wear festive new clothes, exchange gifts of sweets and dried fruits, set off fireworks, start new business account books, open their doors and windows to admit prosperity, and indulge in gambling.

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    How long does Diwali last?

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    Diwali is a Hindu festival that lasts for five days, culminating in the Hindu New Year. Diwali starts on the fifteenth day of the month of Kartika according to the Hindu calendar. This is usually the month of October or November according to the Gregorian calendar.

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    What special clothing is traditionally worn for Diwali?

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    Special clothing that brings out inner light is traditionally worn for the Hindu festival of lights called Diwali. This holiday time is also known as the "festival of dresses." Men, women, young people and children make use of the opportunity to buy bright, ethnic clothing.

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