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Adorable Kindred Spirit,

Heartiest greetings and earnest blessings on the occasion of Dipāvalī (also popularly known as Diwali). This is the joyous Festival of Lights, when lamps are lit to invite prosperity and plenitude. On a more practical level, this evening is a time for welcoming the divine mother of plenitude, Śrīlaxmī. Traditionally, the lighting of lamps peaks on the new moon evening and the festival typically lasts five days centered on this night. The translation of this simple Sanskrit word implies arrays of lights – consisting of strings of lights linked as in a garland or a necklace.

Dipāvali also reminds us to kindle discrete lights and arrange them in a pattern in remembrance of the ultimate divine wealth – the lamp within. Devotees take this opportunity to be peacemakers – silently illuminating the darkness of ignorance. All worldly hankerings and becomings ultimately arise out of ignorance, continue to be fraught with errors and mushroom as mere aberrations. Deliverance therefrom is brought about through the light of seeking which matures into a devotional understanding. Faithful service directed to the supreme personality of God kindles the lamp within bereft of the clutches of affliction.

Saturday, 14th November evening is celebrated as Dipāvali worldwide. Let this New Moon evening of Dipāvalī be celebrated as a Peacemakers’ Illumination honouring the lamp within. May the Dipāvalī inspire you to save and protect the lighted paths attained by truthful deeds.

दीपावली शुभाशयाः – Happy Dipāvalī,
Swami Vidyadhishananda

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