While Deepavali or Divali is popularly known as the "festival of lights", a more appropriate significance is "the new year of luck and wealth". Central to Hindu philosophy is the assertion that there is something beyond the physical body and mind which is pure, infinite, and eternal, called the Atman. Just as we celebrate the birth of our physical being, Deepavali is the celebration of this Inner Light, in particular the knowing of which outshines all darkness (removes all obstacles and dispels all ignorance), awakening the individual to one's true nature, not as the body, but as the unchanging, infinite, immanent and transcendent reality. With the realization of the Atman comes universal compassion, love, and the awareness of the oneness of all things (higher knowledge). This brings Ananda (Inner Joy or Peace). Diwali celebrates this through festive fireworks, lights, flowers, sharing of sweets, and worship. While the story behind Deepavali varies from region to region, the essence is the same - to rejoice in the Inner Light (Atman) or the underlying reality of all things (Brahman). Well, how did I know all the details above? Well I just checked out Wikipedia . But I'm grateful to be living in Malaysia to be able to take all the pics below in Johore Bahru just across from Singapore where I caught the spirit of Deepavali a week earlier.While the family did their usual shopping and other banking business in Johore Baharu.. I too the opportunity to stock up some Indian favorite goodies of ours!
Muruku, Indian coconut candies.... yum yum
Such festivals besides enriching our multi-racial culture and giving us more holidays in a year from work has helped me in my life to gain an appreciation of Group or Community Interests
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