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Dev Diwali the Gods Celebration in Varanasi India

Updated on November 27, 2016

Varanasi, the most sacred and spiritual city for Hindus in India

Varanasi is the oldest city of India and one of the oldest cities in the world that is located on the banks of the Holi River Ganga in the Uttar Pradesh state of North India. Varanasi is the most sacred and spiritual city for Hindus in India, which is also sacred for Buddhists, Jains and known as the spiritual capital of India. The thousands of ancient Hindus temples are located in the city, and ancient Hindu tradition and Vedic convictions are still monitored in Varanasi. Varanasi is also known as Benares, Banaras, Benaras, Varanasi and Kashi.

Varanasi is the one of the holiest city of the seven sacred cities and has been a traditional Centre of for Hindus, Buddhists and Jains from several thousand years. Varansi is known as the land of Hindus Supreme Lord Shiva and sacred for Hindus. The city is also scared for Buddhists because the Lord Buddha founded Buddhism from Sarnat in Varanasi, around 528 BC when he gave his first sermon. The City is also sacred to Jains, the three sacred Jain Temples situated on the banks of the River Ganga, including the one most ancient temple of Jain Tirthankara Suparswanath.

Dev Diwali

Dev Diwali is the Diwali celebration of Hindu Gods, celebrated every year after fifteen days of Diwali festival that falls on the full moon of the Hindu month of Kartika (November - December) on the occasion of Kartik Poornima. The dev Diwali celebration is reflected as a festival by visitors and outsiders, but for the Hindus and devotees it’s a worship of Holy River Ganga.

Dev Diwali in Varanasi, India
Dev Diwali in Varanasi, India

Why Dev Diwali is Celebrated

Dev Diwali is also known as Dev Deepawali and Tripurotsava and celebrated every year at the bank of Holy River Ganga, only in Varanasi city of India. But it should not be mistaken with the Diwali festival of lights. Dev Diwali is an entirely different celebration and has its own trust and determination.

The Dev Diwali is celebrated to mark the Victory of Lord Shiva over Evil king Tripurasur. Dev Diwali is the Celebration of Hindu gods, devotees believe that the Hindu Gods are landing to the earth on the day of Kartik Poornima, to have a dip at early morning in the Holy River Ganga and celebrate the Victory of Supreme Lord Shiva.

Source

Rituals of Dev Diwali

Dev Diwali rituals have five stages,

  • 1. Kartik Snan: Taking early morning bath in the Holy River Ganga
  • 2. Ganga Aarti and Deep Daan: Evening prayer and donation of lights in River Ganga
  • 3. Ganpati Vandana: The prayer of Lord Ganesha
  • 4. Chanting mantras
  • 5. Cultural events

The celebrations start at early morning with Ganga Snan (Having a bath in river Ganga) and remaining rituals happen in the evening that starts with Ganpati Vandana (the prayer of the god Ganesha).

1. Kartik Snan

Kartik Snan has the most religious expects of the festival, Thousands of Devotees are reaching at bank of Holy River Ganga at early morning to have a dip on the auspicious day of Kartik Purnima. They take a dip in River Ganga and lit earthen Diyas in the evening. The millions of Diyas at the Ghats (Bank of River Ganga), temples and floating earthen lams in river Ganga is an attraction for tourists.

2. Ganga Aarti and Deep Daan

  • Ganga Aarti: The prayer of Holy River Ganga at evening.

The evening rituals start with the decoration of the Ghats, Devotees light the millions of earthen audios' (oil field lights) before to start the evening Ganga Aarti (Daily prayer). Every year, thousands of Devotees and tourists gathers at Dasasawamegh Ghat to attend the evening prayer. Taking a dip in the holy river Ganga and attending the Ganga Aarti is an immense pleasure and attraction for the devotees.

Ganga Aarti

Deep Daan

  • Deep Daan: Donating oil lighted earthen Diyas to River Ganga.

The Deep Daan event is the tradition of offering oil lighted earthen lamps (Diyas) to Holy River Ganga. That start after evening prayer (Ganga Aarti), the millions of Devotees are reaching at the Ghats to donating Diyas and flowers, to Holy River Ganga.

Deepdaan in River Ganga
Deepdaan in River Ganga | Source

3. Ganpati Vandana (Prayer of God Ganesha)

  • Ganpati vandana: The Prayer of God Ganesha, followed by laying garland and flowers.

The most of Hindus festival starts with the prayer of the Lord Ganesha (The son of Hindus supreme God, Lord Shiva). The Hindus start their ceremony and festivals with the worship of Lord Ganesha. The worship of Ganesh followed by laying garland, is called Ganpati Vandana or Ganpati Aarti.

4. Chanting Mantras

  • Chanting mantras- chanting Vedic mantras is performed by 21 Brahmins (total 62 members).

Chanting of the Vedic mantras is being performed by a group of 62 members that include 21 Brahmins and 41 girls, and at last a Maha Aarati (Big prayer) is conducted at the holiest ghat of river Ganga. Devotees have religious trusts attend the prayer. After this prayer, People distribute and exchange sweets (called, Prasad).

Performing Aarti at Ganga Ghat
Performing Aarti at Ganga Ghat | Source

5. Ganga Mahotsav and Cultural Events

Cultural Events

According to Hindu rituals, the Dev Diwali rituals are completed after chanting the mantras. Once the rituals are over, a cultural program is being organised on this day that is an extended event of the festival.

When rituals are completed, The local club of dance and cultural programs known as “Nritya Ganga group” organizes the cultural event. That includes dance and cultural performance participated and conducted by the respected personalities of Varanasi.

ganga-mahotsav
ganga-mahotsav

Remembrance for brave soldiers

The Remembrance for brave soldiers is the last event of the festival. The thousands of local people gather at this occasion to honor the brave sacrifices of soldiers, who lost their lives fighting for their country. Organization comity and native people, offer a remembrance of the brave soldiers of the city and at last, a traditional last post is also performed by the three armed forces (Army, Air Force and Navy).

A memorable moment when prime Minister of India and japan attended Gaga Aarti.
A memorable moment when prime Minister of India and japan attended Gaga Aarti. | Source

Dev Diwali Celebration

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