Celebrating Diwali, the Festival of Lights

To view more photos and videos from Diwali as the festival unfolds, browse the #Diwali hashtag on Instagram.

Diwali, the “festival of lights,” is one of the most important festivals in the Hindu calendar. Taking place over five days (November 3-7), the festival marks the start of a new year for many and is celebrated by millions around the world. The name Diwali is actually a shortened form of “deepavali,” or “row of lights,” representing the iconic seas of candles and eye-popping fireworks displays that have attracted Instagrammers across the world.

Diwali signifies a triumph of good over evil, symbolized as the triumph of light over darkness. Small, clay, oil-filled lamps called diyas are lit and left to burn overnight to help the goddess of wealth, Lakshmi, find her way into homes. The fireworks are set off to ward off any evil spirits.