Happy Diwali : Be a light to the world!
On the night of Diwali, Saint Vajashravas was performing an oblation (yagya) to give away all his possessions and wealth.His son Nachiketa was watching this and realized that his father is still attached to his possessions as whatever he was offering to saints, to God was either old or not fit. Nachiketa was surprised to see his father giving away a herd of old cows which couldn’t even walk or give milk. He asked his father whom will he gift his son to.Out of anger Sage Vajashravas said “ I give you to Yama,the God of death”.As an obedient son, Nachiketa decided to go to the abode of Lord Yama even though his father tried to stop him later and told him that he didn’t mean it. On reaching he found that Lord Yama was not at home and so he waited at the doorstep of Yama for 3 days without food and water. When Lord Yama returned home and saw Nachiketa waiting for so long, Yama was very pleased with his devotion and as a token of appreciation asked him to name any 3 boons that he would like to have. Nachiketa asked for these 3 boons and told Lord Yama that his first boon would be for his family, second for welfare of people and third one for himself. He asked for the happiness and welfare of his father as his first boon. For the second boon, he asked lord Yama as to how could people reach heaven where there is no sorrow, old age or death since he wanted everyone to learn this secret knowledge and be free from suffering. And finally as a third boon he asked Lord Yama what happens to a human after death. Lord Yama was very pleased with the maturity and selflessness of young Nachiketa and granted him all 3 boons. Lord Yama made Nachiketa’s father a king with all the wealth and prosperity. He also gave Nachiketa the knowledge of karma – free will to do deeds without ego & attachment and knowledge of detachment which will help people get out of birth death cycle and reach heaven. Finally, Lord Yama gave Nachiketa the knowledge of the soul (atman) and how soul is a part of Supreme Soul (Parmatma), the Almighty God and can never be separated from God. A soul has come from God and will merge in to God even when the body dies. On the night of Diwali, Nachiketa truly travelled from darkness of ignorance to divine light of knowledge which lit up not just his life but lives of everyone in the world because of his selflessness.
Let’s ask ourselves the true meaning of Diwali in our lives. Have we recognised the light within us?Are we being a light to the world? What does it even mean?
It simply means knowing that God’s light is present within each one of us and we shine even when we don’t know we are shining. It simply means showing up in the world day in and day out with truth, compassion and authenticity.
What you see in the world is a reflection of your own self. The light you see in others is a reflection of your own light.And so each one of us can be a light to the world by being true and authentic to ourselves and through smallest acts that make a difference in lives of others.
You can be a light to the world in so many ways.Be the light:
- by giving a kind word of encouragement and appreciation when you see goodness or admire someone
- by sharing your smile with people who cross your path
- by being joyful and spreading that joy wherever you go
- by loving God, loving yourself and loving others unconditionally and so much that there is no space for hate ever
- by bringing vulnerability & authenticity in conversations with friends so that they don’t feel they are alone
- by loving and accepting people in your life as they are despite their imperfections
- by helping and empowering people to overcome whatever they are facing
- by giving back to the society in whatever way you can and experiencing the joy of giving
- by being grateful, radiating joy and celebrating all the blessings of your life
- by being an eternal optimist
- by living in the now and making the most of the present moment
- by making work your worship and being grateful for talents and skills God has given you to allow you to make a difference in the world
- by simply being someone who cares, someone who listens, someone who is empathetic, compassionate and someone who understands self as well as others
Isn’t it easy to be a light to the world?
As Marianne Williamson wrote in her book, A Return To Love: “As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we’re liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
Make your own light shine brighter so that you can also help other people recognize the light that is within them.
HAPPY DIWALI 🪔