Diwali is here-a time of the year for festivity and rejoicing and I love all of that. The sweets, the gifts, the general feeling of gaiety and energy in the air-its invigorating.
There is another image, a slightly different one that also stays with me which I want to share with you. It is the image of the lamps burning away into the night, much after all the noise and the gaiety subsides. After the crackers have exploded and their echoes have faded away; and after people have slept, the silent flames of the lamps continue to illuminate the doorways deep into the night. For me these lamps signify the quiet light and strength that is underneath all the festivity, which connects more to the “inner space” within us.
In the spirit of this image of light and silence, I invite you to a five minute silence and meditation ritual that I feel connects beautifully to Diwali. Those of you who have been connected to us as readers of this website or clients, you know what being mindful, meditative and being in the present is all about. For others, you can read a bit about mindful living here.
The Ritual: 5 minutes of silent meditation with the Diwali lamp
This is something I have been doing for the past few years on Diwali and would love you to share this space with me in your own homes and minds. This Diwali, as you light the lamps, attempt to be silent for just five minutes, while you light them, being mindful of the oil you pour in them, of the wick as you wet it with the oil and of the flame as it lights, flickers and begins to burn.
Once lit perhaps you can take a minute or so to just watch its light, being conscious of the color, movement and warmth, before you move on to the next lamp. Light these lamps very slowly.
After completing a few lamps and when you feel you have been able to sense within you the quiet and silence within the flames, check in with yourself. Just observe how you feel in your heart and body. Sense the light, sense the inner space…
Do tell us in your comments what your experiences were.
Wishing you all a very Happy and mindful Diwali.
P.S.: The technique of meditating upon a lamp has been practiced for long. The kabbalah traditions, Sathya Sai baba’s jyothi meditation and several Buddhist traditions recommend this practice. In the early hours of morning especially, when you have awoken and are refreshed from your sleep but before the daylight has set in, is considered to be a good time. For those of you who liked this small ritual that I suggested, maybe you can go ahead and read on about meditating upon the lamp.