It’s that time of the year again, when you need to spruce your home, make it bright and colourful and welcome Goddess Laxmi to your home. Yes, the most awaited festival of Indians, the festival of lights is just round the corner. Diwali has always been a special day for all Hindus spread all across the globe and is celebrated worldwide with great pomp and enthusiasm. Since time immemorial, this festival is celebrated by lighting earthen diyas all across the home and the courtyard. But, in the last few years, it has been seen that people are celebrating Diwali by lighting electric lights and lamps and the tradition of lighting diyas has slowly been fading. But there is nothing like the light of a diya, dispelling the darkness of ignorance.
Chinese Lights Versus Earthen Diyas
No doubt, the Chinese market of lights and crackers has flooded into the retail markets. The LED and Chinese lights are cheap, colourful and bright and are available in variety of styles and designs. The clay lamps, especially, the designer ones, are comparatively expensive. The electric bulbs are available between Rs 100 and Rs 500 per 20-piece pack. These are also available in shapes of big and small diyas. The colourful Chinese lights are cheap and you get a wide variety to choose from. A 5-metre string costs just Rs 25-30. So by spending a mere Rs. 500, you can get enough strings to illuminate your homes. On the other hand, for many, burning clay lamps is cumbersome as well as expensive. You have to fill it with oil, place wicks properly and then light them. This takes time. Plus, both oil and the diyas are expensive. That is why; lights have replaced the traditional diya lighting.
Diyas that Glow Dispel Lights and Divinity
Diwali is the time when our local potters, craftsmen, and artisans get busy with making lamps and diyas. Otherwise, for the rest of the year, they are busy in making ‘kullhads’ or earthen teacups. There has also been rise in the cost of ‘mitti’ (clay) used in making the pottery. Even then, potters start preparing well before in time during Durga Puja by casting and firing their wares and start spinning the wheels to create the earthen lamps for Diwali. Festivals are the times when they look forward to it as they can earn more than what they usually earn. Unfortunately, this was the not the case in the last few years as people opted for electric lights. With the emergence of mall culture, people were also more keen to buy these stuff from sophisticated malls and retails stores at double the price.
Thanks to Modi’s Make in India, earthen diyas are reviving
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has appealed to all Indians that they should buy earthen diyas and lamps from the street sellers instead of going to malls. With Narendra Modi’s insistence on “Make in India”, the potters of our country are busy in the making of earthen diyas in varied shapes, sizes, colours and designs. In fact, there are designer diyas available in the market beautifully studded with stones and beads, displaying a great artistic sense by our local potters and artisans.
Potters are hopeful this season. The traditional art of making earthen “diyas” is witnessing a revival this year as people are becoming environment-friendly and are willing to illuminate their homes in a traditional way. Besides the clay diyas, the metallic diyas are also a trend. Various fashionable metal diyas are available in the market. They are expensive but very beautiful and can be reused again and again for decoration.
Nothing can replace the divine light of a lamp. That simple brown clay diya holds a great significance and lighting of an earthen diya marks the commencement of something auspicious in our lives. Earthen lamps add a unique glitter and charm to the houses. The potters weave their own magic in the small colourful lamps and the flickering flame is simply enchanting.
Let us illuminate the lives of these poor people who wait eagerly for this time of the year. So, this Diwali, let us pledge to light clay lamps around the house, that is natural and beautiful.
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