6 Things This Muslim Girl Loves About Diwali
As a Muslim girl, I’ve only got two holidays throughout the year so I try to cash in on all the other religions to hook me up with festivities and goodies. So every year I’m out here like:
I love the meaning behind Diwali; the concept of overpowering the darkness with light. Who doesn’t cherish the idea of good triumphing over evil? This is a belief all religions teach. Besides the religious background of the holiday, the preparations and celebrations revolving Diwali have a lot to offer to us non-Hindus.
Here are six things I love about Diwali:
1. Shopping Sales
If I want to do some heavy duty desi girl shopping I need to make sure I am walking those hard streets of little India on all holidays. During Diwali, especially, there are some great sales happening on everything from lehenga choli’s to jewelry to shoes! Sure it can get rowdy and you do have to fight off little old aunties who are hassling shop owners for every last penny but the deals are always worth the trouble. Plus, there’s always online shopping, Websites offer great deals with special Diwali discounts.
2. Endless Mithai
Mithai, mithai, mithai everywhere. For anyone with a sweet tooth, Diwali is the perfect excuse to gorge on sweets. Desi desserts are absolutely delicious and there is so much variety. It’s tradition to eat something sweet on this day as you start a new year. Families and friends also exchange sweets on this day. Hey, it’s tradition, you gotta eat the sweets!
3. Diwali in Times Square
Indian associations and event companies hold magnificent Diwali melas during this time to invoke the community spirit. There is food, clothes, jewelry, dancers, singers, actors, special guests and more every year. New York’s Diwali event at Times Square always stands out even though it’s relatively new. The organizers embrace the South Asian-American culture and include a variety of artists from India, England, Canada, and America. This year they had Indian-American artist Mickey Singh as their main performer along with choreographer Terrence Lewis, singers Hamsika Iyer and Raman Mahadevan perform, as well as real-life couple and actors Sanjeeda Sheikh and Aamir Ali. They also had various dance performances and a diya lighting ceremony,
4. Sparklers and Fireworks
Who doesn’t love the beauty of fireworks? Americans always go all out for July 4th with them and it’s my favorite part of the day. It’s no surprise that one of my favorite parts about Diwali is the sparklers! Roaming the yard with sparklers always makes me feel like a kid again. It reminds you of the simple joys in life. However, be very careful with explosives and crackers.
5. Movie Releases and Marathons
Diwali brings some of the biggest Bollywood releases of the year. Whether it’s movie marathons on Indian TV channels or big releases at the theaters, Bollywood definitely shines during Diwali. It’s the perfect time for families to get together on the holiday and go for a day out. Although this trend is slowly losing to the box office record-breaking hits that release during Eid and Independence day, there once was a time that the best of the best would battle it out during Diwali.
Did you know films like “Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge,” “Hum Aapke Hain Koun,” “Pinjar,” “Hum Saath Saath Hain,” “Raja Hindustani” and more all released on Diwali? This year we have Ajay Devgn’s sequel, “Golmaal Again” and Aamir Khan’s “Secret Superstar” releasing during Diwali.
6. Diyas… Diyas, Everywhere!
For South Asian families that celebrate Diwali, holiday lights and decor start as early as October. For me, though, I am terrified of the dark. My parents used sitting in a walk-in closet as a punishment for my brother and me. Yikes. That’s why I absolutely love diyas and colorful lamps. They clear out the darkness. They come in all types. There’s simple and elegant, there’s the intricately detailed, there’s diyas in a variety of bright colors. It’s perfect.
Basically, this is my long-winded way of saying Diwali shows up to light up my life and take all my money for food, clothes and movies and I love it.
Wishing a very Happy Diwali to all of our beautiful readers celebrating this month!