By Hansika Chenna

    Seen a lot of houses with beautiful lights up? Heard loud music as you were driving through the street and the sounds of firecrackers and celebration. Wondering what it was? It was Diwali. 

    The main celebration occurs on amāvasyā (new moon) day and the darkest one in the Hindu lunisolar calendar. On this dark day, families come together and perform worship ceremonies of various gods. They illuminate the interior and exterior of their homes and light fireworks. They spend time together, cook up a feast and celebrate. They celebrate new beginnings and cherish the old victories and memories. 

    However the most notable celebration that occurs is the lighting of lamps. In Sanskrit (an ancient and classical language of India) Diwali (or Deepavali) means ‘row of lamps’. ‘Deep’ meaning light or a lamp of light and ‘avail’ which means a row or sequence. Hence families light lamps on the day to display that light is more powerful than dark and that good always wins over evil. 

    The day itself originated from and is celebrated for many reasons such as: 

    • It being the day Lord Rama triumphantly returned to his kingdom along with his wife Sita and brother Laksmana after killing the evil demon Ravana, symbolising new beginnings and the victory of good over evil. 
    • It was also the day on which Satyabhama (the divine consort of Lord Krishna) killed Narakasura (an evil demon king), symbolising righteous winning over unrighteous. 
    • It was also the day on which Lord Krishna as a baby performed the Damodar lila (when he was bound to a wooden grinding mortar by the love of his Mother). 

    Ultimately, Diwali is a day of joyous gathering and sweet celebrations. It is a day of recollection, gratitude and hope. It is a day that reminds us to be true to ourselves and act righteously. It is a celebration of light.  

    Our content is a labour of love, crafted by dedicated volunteers who are passionate about the west. We encourage submissions from our community, particularly stories about your own experiences, family history, local issues, your suburb, community events, local history, human interest stories, food, the arts, and environmental matters. Below are articles created by community contributors. You can find their names in the bylines.

    Your feedback

    Please enter your comment!
    Please enter your name here



    Latest Articles

    Latest edition

    #97 June 2024

    Recent editions


    Become a supporter

    The Westsider is run on the power of volunteers. Your contribution directly contributes to ensuring we can continue serving and celebrating our community.

    Related articles