“Diwali means a social gathering, I get in touch with all my relatives including distant ones and closer ones. In India we celebrate in a different fashion, we go to the houses of neighbours and give special sweets. It’s a holiday for everyone, I’d compare it to Christmas for Christians.
“Deakin has been celebrating Diwali for 11 years and I appreciate being able to celebrate here with my friends in our cultural dresses. The best part is that all of Deakin and community get to see what Diwali is about. We’re pleased to be able to educate the community on what Diwali is and its significance for Indians.” Quote from Sanjay Sharma who’s studying a Masters of Engineering at Deakin University and is a member of Study Geelong. He is pictured here with friend, Priyanka Polagani who’s studying a Masters of Cyber security.
Diwali originated in India and is one of the most popular dates on the Hindu calendar. It is also celebrated by Sikhs and Jains. Diwali symbolises the spiritual victory of light over darkness, good over evil, and takes place each year after the harvest, to coincide with the new moon. The exact dates change each year. Diwali 2019 falls on Sunday 27th October. It takes place annually and lasts for five days, marking the start of the Hindu New Year.
The word Diwali (or Deepavali ) means “row of lights” in Sanskrit, the Ancient language of India. People decorate their homes with lights and oil lamps, called diyas. For many people, Diwali honours the Hindu goddess of wealth, Lakshmi. It is believed the lights help Lakshmi find her way into peoples’ homes, bringing prosperity in the year to come.
We have video footage of the Geelong Bollywood Dance Group on our facebook and instagram. https://tinyurl.com/yyqwre5c
Story and photo: Jacqui Bennett.