As the most important and joyous festival in Hinduism, Singapore’s five-day celebration of Deepavali begins on October 27, 2019. Light up the night with celebratory lamps and don henna tattoos to get into the spirit during the festival of lights!
Deepavali, or Diwali as it is referred to in Northern India, literally translates to “row of lights” and takes place at the end of the monsoon season in India. It falls on the new moon in the month of Ashwina in the Hindu calendar, beginning on the dark half of the month and ending on the bright half of the new month Kartik. More common tradition tells the tale of tyrannical King Narakasura’s defeat by Lord Sri Krishna, occurring on the night of a new moon. The kingdom celebrated the end of Narakasura’s oppressive reign by lighting beautiful lamps in celebration of light over darkness. So let’s light up the night!
During this time it is custom to wear new clothing and clean out the home to usher in new beginnings and a new year. Hindus pray to Lakshmi, the goddess of light, prosperity, wisdom and wealth for a prosperous new year, and also to Ganesha, the Lord of Beginnings. Statues of Lakshmi are carried through the streets as dipa lamps are placed in doorways and outside of homes. On the day of Deepavali, people light fireworks, enjoy festive meals and exchange gifts to one another. In Singapore, it is also custom to get a henna tattoo (exceptionally stylish on little hands) to ring in the new year.
Little Steps has pulled the top 10 recommendations for celebrating Deepavali with kids in Singapore. Click here to get involved!