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Diwali is about opening gifts, sharing mithai sweets, dressing up and placing diya lamps along our walkway so that Lakshmi, the goddess of prosperity, could find her way to our home on the night of the new moon.  Diwali is all about the triumph of light over darkness, knowledge over ignorance, and hope over despair. With our public health crisis which has disrupted our lives beyond recognition, caused so much disappointment, and wrought an incomprehensible number of deaths in our communities, we ask ourselves, can light be found in all of this darkness? Family celebrations will look different. There will...

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An Introduction1 Naraka Chaturdashi, more commonly known as Kali Chaudas, is a Hindu festival that falls on Friday, November 13 this year. It is a Hindu festival that falls during the Hindu month Kartik and is the second day of the five-day long festival of Diwali. The word Kali means darkness or black, and Chaudas means the fourteenth. For some parts of India, Kali Chaudas is the worship of Shakti or Mahakali, as it is believed that on this day Kali assassinated the demon Narakasura. This is where the name Naraka Chaturdashi came from. Significance2,3 This festival is celebrated around...

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Karva Chauth -

Celebrated annually either in the month of October or November, Karva Chauth is a Hindu festival celebrated in Northern India. During the year 2020, the number four is very significant for Karva Chauth customs. There are four days of Karva Chauth, and there are four tales of the origin of Karva Chauth. Karva Chauth takes place on the fourth of November, and it is important to know how this day has come to be. The lunisolar calendar, which is based on the Moon phases and times of the Solar year, sets positions of astronomical objects straight and allows us to...

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Imagine you’re a prince, you get exiled from your kingdom due to your step mom’s jealousy, and during your exile your wife gets kidnapped, and now you have to walk to the other side of the country, build a bridge, and go find the kidnapper.  Sheesh that sounds like a journey and a half doesn’t it.  This is not a sci fi or an action movie.  This is a Dusshera story! The Hindu festival of Dusshera is coming up on October 25th, and it is one that makes me very excited every year as it represents one of the most...

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Durga Ashtami is a 5 day period of worship, of a 10 day long celebration, to the Hindu Warrior Goddess Durga.  It is one of the most sacred periods of worship within the Hindu calendar as the Goddess is one of the most revered forms of the feminine divine power of being a creator, a protector, and a destroyer of evil. So who is the Goddess Durga, what’s her significance, and how is she worshipped during this period? Goddess Durga came about as a manifestation of the Goddess Parvati, consort of Lord Shiva, in the form of the Goddess of...

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