The longest night of the year inspires, infuses and enthuses feeling-people to emphasise more LIGHT. Winter solstice 2020 in the Northern Hemisphere will be at 14:30CET on Monday, 21 December. However, in these dark & VUCA[mfn]term first used in 1987, drawing on the leadership theories of Warren Bennis and Burt Nanus to describe or to reflect on the volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity of general conditions and situations[/mfn] times we each need to max-out on light bringing activities and celebrations: Diwali, observed on the 15th day of Kartik, the holiest month in the Hindu lunar calendar, this year falls on November 14.
It is a five-day festival, the height of which is celebrated on the third day coinciding with the darkest night of the lunar month. Derived from the Sanskrit word ‘Dipavali’, which means a row of lights, Diwali has been celebrated since time immemorial.[mfn]always 20 days after Lord Rama (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rama) killed Ravana (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ravana) and rescued Sita (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sita) from captivity in Lanka. The celebration marks the return of Lord Ram to Ayodha after 14 years of exile.[/mfn] The festival is widely associated with Lakshmi, goddess of prosperity, with many other regional traditions connecting the holiday to Sita and Rama, Vishnu, Krishna, Yama, Yami, Durga, Kali, Hanuman, Ganesha, Kubera, Dhanvantari, or Vishvakarman.
- Indians light the outside of their homes or businesses to symbolize the victory of light over darkness, or good over evil.
- Diwali is five days long:
day1, many will clean their homes and shop for gold
day2, it is customary to decorate the home with clay lamps and use colored sand to create patterns on the floor
day3 is the main festival where families gather to feast and pray
day4 is the first day of the new year when friends and family visit to exchange gifts and well wishes
day5, brothers visit their married sisters who welcome them with a meal.
- Throughout the five days of Diwali, different types of religious prayer rituals, or “puja”, will take place. Hindus will offer puja to various lords or goddesses, signifying that particular day’s dedication and celebration.
- Rich and savory dishes served during Diwali play a central role in the celebration. Families will prepare and share food at home with guests who come to exchange gifts.
- Gold is considered to be auspicious, particularly in Hindu and Jain cultures as it is a store of value and symbol of wealth and status.
The founders of the Park Ecovillage, Findhornwere inspired to create one of many Communities of Light around the globe, by practising especially Inner listening, Love in action=work, and co-creation with the intelligence of Nature. In the words of the “Still small voice,” recorded by Eileen Caddy:
“GIVE Me the opportunity to work in and through you to bring about My wonders and glories. Hold the vision of MY limitless love ever before you, of My limitless abundance and of My wonders and glories coming about. Hold the vision of the new heaven and new earth, of My will being done, and of peace and harmony on earth and good will towards all. Hold the vision of vast cities of light springing up all over the world where peace and love reign supreme. Never at any time lose the vision, for it is by holding the vision firmly and dearly ever before you that you help to bring it down from the etheric, and see these wonders manifest on the earth plane for all to behold. The clearer the vision, the quicker will it be manifested. Give constant thanks that your eyes have been opened and that you know what to do. Now go ahead and do it, and stop thinking about it!” － Opening Doors Within
Let’s be light, not just make it — our communities, relations, neighbours and co-workers need all of us to (think/speak/act=)be it!