Celebrating the festival of lights
Deepavali is an important religious festival in India that is mainly celebrated by Hindus.
It is known as the Festival of Lights, a celebration of the triumph of good over evil. There are several Deepavali customs.
A Hindu would get up early in the morning to take an oil bath, symbolic of the cleansing of one’s past misdeeds.
They would then say prayers with their family at home and even worship in the temple.
Kolam (or rangoli), beautiful intricate floor designs made with dyed rice and colourful powders, decorate homes.
Deepavali is also, of course, a day of feasting. Family and friends gather for delicious food such as thosai, string hoppers, chicken curry, kurma, and many others.
Recently, we asked Starchild readers to send in letters on the topic: Deepavali. Let’s hear what they have to say.
Nine-year-old Dora Chang
Zhi En shares that Deepavali to her means unlimited snacks of muruku, crisps and peanuts at her parents’ Indian friends’ homes.
“Some of them even serve us chapati and thosai. The Indian sweets are a bit too sweet for me, butIlove muruku.”
“A kolam is created for Diwali, and is thought to bring prosperity to the home,” Taneshwari A/P Kovellan, 10, says.
Shreyan Chakraburtty, 11, and Saiesha Chakraburtty, 5, both say that they designed an intricate Bengali kantha. “We call it Pattern of Nature. We wanted to incorporate organic shapes into our artwork.”
Melissa Mae Ganesh, seven, says, “Deepavali celebrates good over evil. Hindus celebrate with lights, kolams, food and plenty of friends. I like muruku and ghee balls.”
“On Deepavali morning, we take an oil bath, after which we wear new clothes,” says seven-year-old Inesh Dhayal. “We then go to the temple to pray. My favourite food on Deepavali is putu mayam, muruku and laddu. We light many oil lamps in the house for the Festival of Lights.”
“During the festival of lights, let’s wish each other Happy Deepavali. Let us live in peace and harmony because Deepavali symbolises the victory of light over darkness and good over evil. Happy Deepavali,” says Sarah Celina, nine.
ITEM: Good nutrition is important for everyone, especially growing kids! Eating healthily – that means no junk food, sugary foods, fatty foods, highcholestrol foods, deep-fried foods and fizzy drinks – is beneficial for you in the long run. Lunchtime at the school canteen is the one of the best places to start. What kind of healthy food or snack does your school canteen serve or do you think it should serve? Describe the food. Don’t forget to send us a drawing too!
All letters must include your full name, age (open to children aged 12 and below), gender, e-mail, phone number and address. Please write your name behind the drawing and the topic, Healthy Food For My School Canteen, on the envelope. All letters must reach us by Oct 27. Send your letters to:
Starchild, c/o Star2
Star Media Group Bhd Menara Star, 15, Jalan 16/11 46350 Petaling Jaya, Selangor You can also e-mail your contributions to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please put “STARCHILD” in the subject line of your e-mail. Scanned drawings should be in jpeg format, with a resolution of 200 dpi.
Dora Chang Zhi, 9