Celebrating Diwali this week with Siva

Diwali is one of the biggest Indian festivals celebrated throughout the world and this week we are delighted to learn more about the Hindu festival of joy and prosperity, as we celebrate with Siva.

Siva joined us in June this year as our IT administrator and over the next couple of days we will share some of the wonderful traditions of her culture.  We will be sampling some of her home baked traditional sweets and some of our team will also enjoy the tradition of having their hands adorned with Henna, signifying good luck and happiness. Mark Marshall, Managing Director said...

Diwali is something we celebrate at home as my wife is Hindu, it’s such a warm celebration with friends and family and something we wanted to bring to life for the team to share in. We are committed to hiring a diverse and inclusive team and we are delighted to share in the spirit of Diwali with Siva this week.

We spoke to Siva to learn more about Diwali and what the festival means to her and her family…

Why is Diwali celebrated and what activities usually take place during Diwali?

Every region in India has distinctive traditions for Celebrating Diwali. This is linked to the ancient legend of Lord Rama, who was deprived of his kingdom and sent into exile for 14 years. Diwali celebrates Rama’s eventual defeat of the evil spirit Ravana, and his return to his home and is celebrated for 5 days.

  • The first day of Diwali is designated for buying small gold items and cleaning our homes. Goddess Lakshmi is also worshipped on that day

  • On the second day, people offer prayers for their ancestors’ souls

  • On the third day, families seek Goddess Lakshmi’s blessings to ensure their success; set off fireworks and light diya’s; and visit temples

  • Fourth day is considered as a start of a new year

  • Fifth day is celebrated for brothers in the family. Brothers promise to protect the sisters in all situations. Sisters and brothers share their love for each other and makes the bond strong

Why is Diwali also known as the ‘Festival of Lights’?

The word ‘Diwali’ means ‘row of lights’ (Ancient Indian Language Sanskrit). Diwali represents the triumph of Good over the Evil, Light over darkness and Wisdom over Ignorance. To celebrate this day, dozens of clay lamps are arranged around the house. Many lights and oil lamps are lit on the streets as well. Firework displays follow, but in recent years these have been avoided due to noise and air pollution concerns.

How will you and your family be celebrating Diwali this year?

This year we have planned to celebrate Diwali by spending time with family and we will offer prayers to God and spend the day eating a variety of foods and sweets prepared at home. We also exchange sweets with the neighbours on Diwali day.

What are some words that come to your mind when you think of Diwali?

Diwali makes me to think about family getting together, as that’s when all family members get to meet travelling from different places.

What is your favourite part of Diwali?

My favourite part of Diwali is decorating our home and trying my hand in making new sweets 😊

What kinds of food are eaten during Diwali?

During Diwali day its always special foods unlike the other days. Sweets and savoury snacks are eaten. Foods especially prepared in oils like Poori’s (made from wheat flours), Vada’s etc. Sweets like Ladoos (sweetened gram flour balls), Jalebi, Gulab Jamuns, Mysore pak (sweet prepared in ghee), Rasgulla (Milk Sweet), Halwa etc.. to name few 😊