This week Indians around the world will celebrate the festival of Diwali. A festival that celebrates good over evil, light over darkness through lighting decorations and spectacular fireworks.
As a child growing up in India, Diwali was anticipated with delight. Hundreds of earthenware saucers would be bought and the children would sit with adults in circles and roll wickers of cotton wool between their palms. The saucers would be placed in decorative fashion around home, the wickers placed in them, and oil poured carefully to fill the saucers. At dusk the wickers would be lit. It cast a soft glow. It was fairyland. Then came the fireworks. Huge explosions in the sky and the triangles that shot spouts of fire from ground level. The strings of red ‘crackers’ that skidded around or leapt in the air. The ‘bees’, tiny curled fireworks that buzzed unpredictably from the ground and into the sky. (How did that ever pass the safety inspection!). The nervous and raucous laughter of teens who loved the dance of danger. People would be dressed in new clothing. Homes would be thoroughly spring cleaned. Strangers were welcomed by genteel hospitality. Trays of sweets and goodies would be sent around the neighbourhood as a gesture of celebration and good will. The premise being, the more you give, the more blessings you receive in return. So largesse, was the order of the day.
Although my birth country may have changed now from when I left it, the memories remain and have shaped who I am today.
I believe in the bond of true friendship. The kind that gives, more than it takes. I believe when we engage with others this way, we celebrate life. We celebrate being alive.
I have no fireworks or earthenware sauces to light today except the fireworks that Mother Nature has provided and the wish that your heart, home and life be lit with love, light and prosperity at Diwali.
I will light a tea light at dusk scented with essential oils of ‘Peace’. When I do, I will think of you.
Until next time,
a dawn bird