Diwali in Manhattan

By Deisy Ayala. One of the most important holidays in India, Diwali is marked by feasts, prayers, and fireworks. This celebration was sponsored by the Bhakti Center, a spiritual culture organization in New York City's Lower East Side. The term "festival of lights" refers to the burning of candles or oil lamps as a representation of the triumph of good over evil and light over darkness. Here the community chanted along with the Kirtan band.

Volunteers welcomed us and offered the Bindi as decorations for the celebration upon arrival. The neighborhood came together to see an Indian musical dance performance and eat at food stalls serving authentic Indian street cuisine and drinks. There were henna vendors, face painters, and photo booths.

The Bindi (red dot on forehead) is a customary decoration for various types of occasions and is associated with the third eye.

Blowing the shankh uplifts spirituality and frequencies of divine energy are emitted.

Taking in the blessings from candle offerings from Goddess Mahalakshmi.

Most of the women who attended the event chose to dress in a traditional saree.

It's not a complete Diwali celebration without some henna.

Guests were served traditional food, beverages, and dessert.

Lakshmi, Radha, and Rukmini altar.

Adults and kids alike participated in traditional face painting.

Attendees learned about the significance of Diwali and the evening came to a close after giving everyone an opportunity to offer lamps.

Widgetized Section

Go to Admin » Appearance » Widgets » and move Gabfire Widget: Share into that BigPicture-Share zone