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Diwali: celebrations scaled back with virtual options

By Shelly Khushal

Diwali is known as the Festival of Lights and symbolizes the Hindu New Year. It celebrates the victory of good over evil.

For one Richmond Hill couple, Meleen and Barkha Sheth, it is a celebration of little rituals.

“We clean our home, set up diyas (oil lamp made from clay, with a cotton wick dipped in ghee or oil) and make traditional Indian sweets,” said Barkha. “My mother-in-law makes a particular snack only during Diwali, and my husband would always remember it. So, now, I make that same snack for my children during Diwali. My girls look forward to it once a year on Diwali.

“It is these kinds of rituals that make the day special”.

In speaking to a few friends and neighbours, this year, most families are choosing to stay indoors and celebrate Diwali small scale with close relatives.

Dawali is celebrated 14 days after Dussehra, the day Ram defeated Ravan, and is celebrated for five consecutive days, this year from Nov. 2 to 6.

November 2, 2021 Dwadashi – Dhanteras

November 3, 2021 Trayodashi – Choti Diwali

November 4, 2021 Amavasya – Diwali

November 5, 2021 Pratipada – Padwa

November 6, 2021 Dwitiya – Bhai Duj

Diwali is celebrated differently depending on the region of India.

If you are from the South, Diwali is celebrated as a victory of Lord Krishna killing the demon Narakasura. In the North, Diwali was the day Ram and Sita returned to Ayodhya after their 14 years in exile. It was a moonless night and the whole city set out little lamps filled with oil to welcome their King and Queen. In modern day times, lamps continue to be lit to signify the end of ignorance and the beginning of knowledge.

Did you know?

Rangoli is an art of decoration drawn on the floor or the entrances of homes. It is thought to bring good luck and prosperity in the home and to the guests who enter the home. Some people display Rangoli during a festive occasion such as Diwali.

Diwali Events in York Region:

Diwali Rangoli

Wed., Nov. 3, 7:00 p.m.

Central Library (Richmond Hill Public Library), 1 Atkinson St, Richmond Hill, ON

This program will be presented Live through Facebook. All ages welcome

Celebrate Diwali by making a paper plate Rangoli. Free craft kits will be available for pickup one week before the program at Central Library to those who register before.

Read more here: https://www.rhpl.ca/index.php/whats-on/calendar-of-events/diwali-rangoli

Chopda Poojan – Diwali

Thu., 10:30 p.m.

9333 Woodbine Ave

Markham, ON

Every Year Sanatan Mandir Organizes Diwali Chopda Poojan and again this year we are inviting to all Business People and our Devotees for Chopda Poojan on November 4,2021 Thursday at 6.00pm

Tune in on Facebook or Youtube from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Nov. 2 and Nov. 3 to watch live performances from Aaman Trikha, Abhilasha Chellam, dancing with Jadoo Entertainment and more.

Richmond Hill’s Shelly Khushal is the mother of two children and spends every weekend exploring local attractions and events. From farmers markets, to concerts in the park to an abundance of other happenings in York Region, Shelly and her family need not wander too far – York Region has it all.

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