#TheHeritageLife: Karthigai Deepam

"Karthigai deepam is a festival of lights very similar to Diwali. This festival is celebrated on the full moon day of the Karthigai month and is dedicated to Lord Shiva and his son Lord Karthikeya. He is also known as Lord Shanmugam or Arumugam as he had six faces with each face having a different meaning. 

Similar to Raksha Bandhan this day too celebrates the relationship between brothers and sisters. 

One thing that makes this festival special is when the entire house enlivens with the diyas. We light our diyas only after the lamp is lit on a hillock in Thiruvannamalai, Tamil Nadu, a temple town. 

Apart from the prayers and rituals the laddoos made of puffed rice and jaggery add to the festivities. Appams and Dal Vadas are my favourite festival delicacies. 

It is believed that lighting a lamp illuminates our lives by eliminating darkness within. 

Festivals are very close to my heart, each one having its own significance and importance. Preparing sweets and savouries for the special days is a tradition that has been followed through the generations. 

Karthigai deepam is a day to eliminate the darkness from our lives and celebrate with our near and dear ones."

- KHAKI follower Vidya Ravindran on how she and her family maintains Karthigai (or as we Mumbaikars call it, Dev Deepawali) traditions