As the golden hues of autumn give way to the vibrant lights of Diwali, the world prepares to immerse itself in the festival of joy, prosperity, and new beginnings. This Diwali 2023, Mihitravel invite you to join us on a mesmerizing journey through the heart of this ancient festival, where traditions meet modern celebrations in a symphony of lights and happiness. Let’s illuminate our hearts and homes with the radiant glow of Diwali, fostering unity, love, and a spirit of togetherness.
History & significance
Diwali, also known as Deepavali, is a traditional Indian festival of lights that spans over five days, usually held between mid-October and November. This festival commemorates the return of the deity Rama, his wife Sita, and his brother Lakshmana after 14 years of exile, marking the victory of light over darkness, and good over evil.
During Diwali, various religious rituals are performed, including prayers at temples and private homes. One of the most significant aspects of this festival is the lighting of oil lamps and candles everywhere to create a sparkling, radiant atmosphere. People also decorate their homes with flowers and rangoli, a traditional form of floor art, along with fireworks being set off to celebrate the occasion.
Diwali is also a time when people exchange gifts with each other, especially sweets and jewelry. It is an opportunity for families and friends to gather, share joy, and celebrate prosperity and good fortune. This festival is not only celebrated in India but also in many other countries with significant Indian communities.
When is Diwali in 2023?
In 2023, the vibrant festival of Diwali, also known as Deepavali, will grace us on Sunday, November 12th, predominantly celebrated in India.
The exact date of Diwali fluctuates annually, typically falling between October and November, as it is dictated by the Indian lunar calendar. This festival is commemorated on the 15th day of Kartik, the eighth month in the Indian calendar, coinciding with ‘new moon day’ or Amavasya. This year, the Amavasya Tithi, a time when the moon is in a specific alignment with the sun, spanning a 12° angle, extends from 02:44 pm on the 12th of November to 02:56 pm on the 13th.
A pivotal part of the Diwali celebration is the worship of Goddess Lakshmi, the deity of wealth, who is revered to bring happiness, prosperity, and renown. The auspicious time to offer prayers to Lakshmi, known as Lakshmi Puja Muhurat, is slated for a duration of 1 hour and 56 minutes, starting from 05:40 pm to 07:36 pm on November 12th, 2023.
The term Diwali originates from the Sanskrit word ‘Deepavali’, translating to ‘Row of Lights’. It stands as a significant festival in India, heralding the onset of a new year, drawing parallels to the Christmas celebrations in the Western world.
|Diwali 2023 Date:
|November 12, 2023
|Laxmi Puja Muhurat:
|Sunday, November 12, 5:40 PM To 07:36 PM
|Amavasya Tithi start:
|02:44 PM on November 12, 2023
|Amavasya Tithi end:
|02:56 PM on November 13, 2023
The festivities of Diwali 2023 span over a period of five days, each day holding its unique significance:
Diwali Day 1: November 10th, 2023 – Trayodashi, marked as Dhanteras
Diwali Day 2: November 11th, 2023 – Chaturdashi, celebrated as Choti Diwali
Diwali Day 3: November 12th, 2023 – Amavasya, the main Diwali day
Diwali Day 4: November 13th, 2023 – Pratipada, observed as Padwa
Diwali Day 5: November 14th, 2023 – Dwitiya, known as Bhai Duj
Details of activities during 5 days of Diwali 2023
The festival of Diwali unfolds over a span of five days, each marked with distinct rituals and traditions. Here, we delineate the significance of each day along with their respective dates and the customary practices observed:
Day 1 — Dhanteras: November 10th, 2023 (Friday) – Trayodashi
The inaugural day of the festival witnesses households bustling with cleaning activities, setting the stage for the forthcoming celebrations. It is also a prosperous day for shopping, with many venturing out to purchase gold or new utensils, believed to bring good fortune.
Day 2 — Choti Diwali: November 11th, 2023 (Saturday) – Chaturdashi
On this day, the festive spirit is visibly palpable as homes begin to sparkle with decorative string lights and vibrant rangolis, intricate patterns artistically crafted on the floors, adding a splash of color and joy to the surroundings.
Day 3 — Diwali and Lakshmi Puja: November 12th, 2023 (Sunday) – Amavasy
This day stands as the pinnacle of the festival, characterized by profound rituals and ceremonies.
Clay oil lamps, known as diyas, are kindled, casting a warm glow in every nook and corner. Devotees gather to venerate Goddess Lakshmi, the deity of prosperity, in a ceremony steeped in reverence and devotion. The prime time to conduct the Puja is between 05:40 pm and 07:36 pm. This sacred ritual can be performed either at temples or within the confines of one’s home. The ceremony involves placing an idol of the goddess on a red cloth draped over a puja chowki (‘worship table’), followed by offerings of flowers, fruits like water chestnuts, pomegranate, quince, and coconut, and delectable sweets including kesari bhaat — a saffron-infused semolina pudding garnished with nuts and sugar. Devotees then prostrate before the idol, joining their palms in solemn prayer.
The day culminates with families coming together to exchange gifts and indulge in a grand feast. Dressed in their finest attire, people greet each other with warm wishes, echoing the joyous refrain of “Happy Diwali”.
Day 4 — Padwa: November 13th, 2023 (Monday) – Pratipada
As the festivities progress to the fourth day, the focus shifts to celebrating the bond between spouses. This day is marked by husbands showering their wives with thoughtful gifts, a gesture of love and appreciation. Additionally, it is seen as a propitious day for businesses to inaugurate new accounts, ushering in a phase of prosperity and growth.
Day 5 — Bhai Duj: November 14th, 2023 (Tuesday) – Dwitiya
The grand festival reaches its conclusion with Bhai Duj, a day that epitomizes the deep-rooted bond between siblings. On this day, sisters conduct a special ceremony to invoke protection and well-being for their brothers, solidifying the sacred sibling bond. In return, brothers express their gratitude and affection by presenting their sisters with gifts, sealing the festivities with love and mutual respect.
What are Diwali Dates from 2022 to 2030?
The timing of this vibrant festival is determined by the lunar calendar, which results in a shift in dates each year, typically landing in late October or November. Below, we have outlined the anticipated dates for the main day of the Festival of Lights in India, spanning from 2020 to 2030.
It’s important to note that while the table highlights the central day of festivities, the Diwali celebration extends to encompass two days preceding and following this date, making it a grand five-day affair.
|November 12, Sunday
|November 1, Friday
|October 21, Tuesday
|November 8, Sunday
|October 29, Friday
|October 17, Tuesday
|November 5, Monday
|October 26, Saturday
Is Diwali/Deepavali a Public Holiday?
Diwali is recognized as a public holiday across the vast majority of India, granting the populace a day off to immerse themselves in the festivities. The exact day of the holiday might vary depending on the region, but it’s a common practice for many Indians to take an entire week off to reunite with their families. The preparation for this grand celebration often commences weeks in advance, with Diwali fairs and markets springing up to offer an array of decorations and delectable sweets.
During this period, a majority of banks and commercial establishments remain closed. Additionally, while many restaurants and retail outlets might either be closed or operate with limited hours, public transportation usually maintains its regular schedule to facilitate the travel of individuals returning to their familial homes. However, it’s advisable to confirm the schedule with your hotel or local guide to avoid any inconvenience.
Interestingly, the southern state of Kerala doesn’t engage in Diwali celebrations as fervently as the rest of the country. Despite observing a public holiday, you’ll find that several shops and eateries remain open, offering a semblance of normalcy amidst the nationwide celebration.
Diwali Celebration Date in Different Regions of India
While the core essence of Diwali, which embodies the victory of good over evil and the replacement of darkness with light, remains universal, the festival is embraced and celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs, and Jains for distinct reasons, each adding a unique flavor to the festivities.
India, with its rich tapestry of cultures and languages, witnesses a diverse range of celebrations during this festival. Each state, distinct in its traditions and linguistic nuances, brings its own unique touch to the Diwali celebrations. Let’s delve into the myriad ways this vibrant festival is commemorated across the different regions of India.
|Deepavali in Tamil Nadu includes Ayurvedic medicine and rituals to appease the ancestors.
|Goa and West India
|November 11th (usually the day before Diwali)
|In Goa, people believe that Diwali celebrates the defeat of the evil demon Narakasura by Durga and Krishna. To celebrate they burn large effigies of the demon and parade through the streets.
|Dev Diwali a celebration unique to Varanasi’s that takes place 15 days after Diwali. At this time, the gods are believed to gather at the Ganges in Varanasi and to celebrate the city lights clay lanterns, decorates, and sets of fireworks.
|West Bengal, Orissa, and Assam
|While most of the country celebrates Lakshmi, West Bengal and other east Indian states worship Kali, the goddess of destruction. During Kali Puja, large statues of the fearsome goddess are erected around the city and she is given offerings and worshipped.
|All over India, but some of the best places include Maharashtra, Rajasthan, and Gujarat
|While Diwali is mainly a Hindu holiday, it is also celebrated by Jains. Jains believe that Diwali is the day that Lord Mahavir achieved Nirvana and freedom from the cycle of death and rebirth.
|Bandi Chhor Divas
|Diwali is also celebrated by Sikhs in India. For Sikhs, this holiday commemorates the day when the 6th guru, Guru Hargobind was released from unjust imprisonment. To take in the beauty of the Sikh celebrations, head to the Golden Temple in Amritsar.
As the vibrant hues of rangoli adorn the thresholds and the flickering lamps cast a golden glow on the festivities, Diwali 2023 promises to be a beacon of hope, joy, and renewed prosperity. Whether you find yourself immersed in the familial joy of North India or witnessing the unique traditions in Tamil Nadu, the spirit of Diwali binds every heart in a shared celebration of light triumphing over darkness. At Mihitravel, we invite you to join us in embracing the rich tapestry of cultures and traditions that come alive during this auspicious festival. Let’s step into the new year with joyous hearts and enlightened spirits, cherishing the universal message of love and harmony that Diwali embodies. Happy Diwali 2023!