This memo is from John R. Raymond, Sr., MD, President and CEO, and the MCW Indian community
Nov. 13, 2012 College News - Popularly known as the “Festival of Lights,” and thought to have originated as a harvest festival, Deepavali (Diwali) is one of the most important and vibrant of Indian festivals and is celebrated all over the world with much zeal. Derived from Sanskrit, Deepavali means row (avali) of clay lamps (deepa), which are lit in recognition of the victory of light over darkness, in deference to the light of higher knowledge driving out all ignorance and enabling an awakening within us, with which comes compassion, joy and peace. Diwali is thus a celebration of self-enlightenment and this Inner Light.
Over the centuries, Diwali has become an international festival that is enjoyed by most Hindus, Jains, Buddhists and Sikhs. While the associated legends and the festivities during the five days of Diwali, which encompass the new moon between the lunar months of Ashvin and Kartik, vary from region to region, families and friends gather to rejoice, worship and celebrate with flowers, delectable food, festive fireworks, decorative lights and twinkling lamps.
On the first day, homes are cleaned and something new is bought for the home. Entrances are adorned with intricate colored powder patterns called rangolis and homes decorated with lights, lanterns and lamps on the second day. The fragrance of delicate flower garlands ushers in the dawn on the third and focal Diwali day when families gather to pray, share mouth-watering feasts and fireworks at dusk, when millions of glittering lamps illuminate hearts and the dark new moon evening alike. The day after Diwali for many communities is the first day of the New Year, when businesses mark the new fiscal year and friends and relatives visit with gifts and best wishes. The last day of Diwali commemorates the special relationship between brothers and sisters.
Deepawali, the Auspicious Festival of Lights, is upon us today - a time to be grateful for the blessings in our lives, to allow good & truth to prevail, and to cultivate an omnipresent awareness of our inner light. May the glow of joy, good health, prosperity and peace illuminate your days in the coming year!
If you have questions, please contact Kalpa Vithalani, email@example.com or 955-4884.