Yesterday we celebrated Diwali! Happy Diwali to everyone! Here are some photos to show you what we did.
Our family home was decorated all over with lights, candles, flowers, rangoli (patterns made from coloured powders) and flower petal designs.
As it was a holiday my whole family was at home and we had a lot of fun with everyone!
This is the puja room where we had our family Diwali prayers. Nani was making sure everything was in place and I was helping her.
Everyone wore smart and bright coloured clothes in the evening for when our celebration began with the puja (prayers).
Sitting with Bapa (grandpa) for the puja
After prayers we put our hands with the help of an adult around the aarti – oil candle flame and blessed the gods and ourselves. (Mummy has found more about that and we have put it in in case you would like to know more about why).
Aarti In Sanskrit, the term aarti can be broken up into two words – “aa’ meaning towards and “rati” meaning the highest love for God. Traditionally, aarati is done two or three times a day, at the conclusion of a puja, bhajan or havan. It is a mandatory ritual performed on all auspicious occasions of Hindus. The aarti lamp is circulated in front of the deity and arti song is sung by all members present there. When aarti is performed before God, it is believed that the light get blessed by the deity.
The person leading the prayers passes on the aarti from one person to another, present there, who cup the flickering fire lightly with their down-turned hands. Then, they put their hands over the flame and then touch their forehead, as a gesture of seeking holy blessings. Aarti is also performed in front of a person, either as a welcome gesture or to ward off bad influences from him. Infact, the whole purpose of arti is to ward off the evil spirits and bad omens.
After aarti my bhaiya Mudit (cousin brother) put a small dot on my forehead.
This is called a tilak and is the the ritual mark on the forehead. It can be put in many forms as a sign of blessing, greeting or auspicious (lucky). This is usually made out of a red vermilion paste (kumkum).
When we first came to India Rohan thought it was blood and was very worried why everyone had blood on their foreheads. He was sure he didn’t want blood on his head. He has now gotten used to it as you can see.
Ro with our really cute twin niece and nephew Ansh left and Saira right.
After the prayers were over we all had dinner together and then went outside to take some family pictures and watch the fireworks go off. We had a very long set of bangers which went all the way down the driveway! It was very noisy! I liked the sparklers and the fountains best. Ro didn’t like the banging at all, he went inside to watch with Nani, she doesn’t like bangs either!
Mummy and I with Mudit bhaiya and then Shweta, Siddhika my beautiful didi’s (cousin sisters) and Uddhav my favourite bhaiya (cousin brother).
Above pictures – My Nana, little Nani as Ro calls her, Mama’s Mami’s and all our family. Simran my lovely bhabi (my Sushant bhaiya’s wife and Ansh and Saira’s Mummy).
My Shweta didi, Uddhav bhaiya, Bantu Mama, Bhawna Mami and Siddi didi
My Mudit bhaiya, Shibani Mami and Ashu Mama
Below is Nani (or big nani as Ro calls her).
Ansh and Saira’s papa and mummy Sushant bhaiya and Simran bhabi with Munna Mama on the right
More photos to come!
Sending you lots of love Anisha, Ro and Mummy especially to Pa as we all missed you a lot today! x