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Hindu Festival: Narak Chaturdashi

This festival is also known as Minor Deewali (Choti Deewali) or Narak Chaudas. It is celebrated one day prior to Deewali (Kartik: Amaveseye. On this night Hanuman, the son of Anjana, the divine son of the god of air (Pavan) was born. So it is also observed as Hanuman Jayanti. This festival is observed since the day lord Krishna killed the demon Narkasur.

Narkasur was a very powerful demon king, who had a big army. He over powered every other king and imprisoned them with their queens. His terror was so much that even the gods were frightened. The earth trembled and the life had become miserable.

To counter act this terrorism, Lord Vishnu incarnated as Krishna, so as to end these demoniac cruelties. Krishna appeared, massacred Narkasur, released the kings and queens, who in remembrance and reverence of lord Krishna ordered illumination in their domains, on this day. This day is observed as Narak Chaturdashi and Hanuman Jayanti, since then.

This festival is also the day of worship of Yama, the god of death. So after oil massage and bath in early morning (before sunrise), gratification should be shown to him. After that offer handful of water three times to Bhishaift Pitameha of MahSbharata. According to Hindu scriptures, libation to the ancestors should be offered particularly by those whose fathers are alive. This is the only day in the whole year when a son with a living father can offer libations and water to the ancestors, which is very pleasing to them and the fear of death vanishes.

In the evening, burn four lights in reverence to Yama and then other lamps are lit. The lamps lit in name of Yama make year long good deeds in the household permanent, failing which there may be obstacles in life. The system of
burning lights commences with the thirteenth of Kartik Krishna Paksh and ends on the fifteenth (Amaveseya), these three days are said to be the three when Visnu incarnation Vaman, in three steps covered the whole heaven land and netherland. After burning lights for Yama, at night worship of Hanuman should be performed. Hanuman is the lord of eight supernatural powers (Siddhi) and nine treasures (Niddhi). He is the incarnation of peril destroyer Sankara (Siva). He is the son of Pavan (God of air) and an attendant of Rama.

He is the form of Virtue, the lord of wisdom and power. His very birth was for the protection of saints and for the destruction of demons. By his worship, one gets his all ambitions fulfilled. Hanuman worship can be done in any temple, in the house before his image, on which oil and vermilion should be rubbed and invoked with the offering of whatever little, you have. Sunder Kaand of Valmiki’s Ramayana, which contains the importance of Hanuman should be recited everyday to be healthy and wealthy. “Narak Chaturdashi” is a festival of worship of Yama, Krishna, Bhisham Pitameha and Hanuman.

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