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nepal, Stories

Tihar (Diwali) festival in Nepal

Tihar (Nepaliतिहार), also known as Deepawali and Yamapanchak, is a regional variant of Diwali celebrated in Nepal and by the Nepali-speaking population living elsewhere in Darjeeling, the Indian states of Assam and Sikkim, etc. It is a five-day-long festival that comes soon after Dashain. It is popularly known as Swanti among the Newars. Set in the Vikram Samvatcalendar system, the festival begins with Kaag Tihar in Trayodashi of Kartik Krishna Paksha and ends with Bhai Tika in Dwitiya of Kartik Sukla Paksha every year. Tihar, in general, signifies the festival of lights, where diyas are lit inside and outside the houses to make it illuminate at night.

Tihar is the second biggest Nepalese festival following Dashain. It is considered to be of great importance as it shows reverence to not just the humans and the gods, but also to the animals like crows, cows and dogs that maintain an intimate relationship with humans. People make patterns on the floor of living rooms or courtyards using materials such as colored rice, dry flour, colored sand or flower petals outside of their house, called Rangoli, which is meant to be a sacred welcoming area for the gods and Goddesses of Hinduism mainly Goddess Laxmi. (from Wikipedia)

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