Last weekend we celebrated Diwali with family and friends and had an outstanding time with all! Saris, Food, Sparklers, & Great Company. This turned out to be an awesome fun evening filled with laughter, delicious food, sparklers, and gorgeous saris.
Every year, we host a Diwali party for our close family and friends to celebrate the most important Indian festival Diwali – Festival of Lights. This is the equivalent of Christmas for Indians. In India, the entire country celebrates Diwali with every home decked with lights and diyas (clay oil lamps) and fireworks and sparklers. A huge feast is had on Diwali with plenty of sweets and treats and a celebration where not just families, but entire neighborhoods gather together on the streets with sparklers and fireworks.
While here in America it’s hard for us to go this elaborate with our Diwali celebrations we do try to make it as festive as we can. For us that involves getting together with family and friends to enjoy a scrumptious feast and light a few sparklers. And for the ladies, a chance to get decked in our finest saris!
Here are a bunch of pictures from this year’s Diwali party at our home in Los Gatos, California. For more information on Diwali, take a look at a brief description at the end of this post.
Getting ready for our Diwali Party:
Let’s get this party started!
A feast worthy of royalty:
Thank you to all the ladies who brought the most delicious food for the celebration.
Saris, Saris, and More Saris!
Hanging with close friends:
Guys & Gals:
Time for Sparklers!
A special thanks to our friends Radhika and Michael for supplying us with sparklers.
What is Diwali: Diwali, also known as the Festival of Lights in India, is a celebration that is at its core the observance of the triumph of good over evil. National Geographic has a great description of Diwali and I thought it best to just quote them here. Diwali. Festival of Lights
From National Geographic: “Diwali or Dipawali, is India’s biggest and most important holiday of the year. The festival gets its name from the row of clay lamps (deepa) that Indians light outside their homes to symbolize the inner light that protects us from spiritual darkness. This festival is as important to Hindus as the Christmas holiday is to Christians.
Diwali, celebrated in October or November each year, originated as a harvest festival that marked the last harvest of the year before winter. India was an agricultural society where people would seek the divine blessing of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, as they closed their accounting books and prayed for success at the outset of a new financial year. Today this practice extends to businesses all over the Indian subcontinent, which mark the day after Diwali as the first day of the new financial year.
Indians celebrate with family gatherings, glittering clay lamps, festive fireworks, strings of electric lights, bonfires, flowers, sharing of sweets, and worship to Lakshmi. Some believe that Lakshmi wanders the Earth looking for homes where she will be welcomed. People open their doors and windows and light lamps to invite Lakshmi in.
Hindus interpret the Diwali story based upon where they live in India. In all interpretations, one common thread rings true—the festival marks the victory of good over evil.
- In northern India they celebrate the story of King Rama’s return to Ayodhya by lighting rows of clay lamps after he defeated Ravana.
- Southern India celebrates it as the day that Lord Krishna defeated the demon Narakasura.
- In western India the festival marks the day that Lord Vishnu, the Preserver, sent the demon King Bali away to rule the nether world.
Over the centuries, Diwali has become a national festival that is enjoyed by most Indians regardless of faith.”
Wishing you a Prosperous and Happy New Year!