The five-day festival of Diwali begins today with Dhanteras. Celebrated on the thirteenth day of the Krishna Paksha (waning moon phase), Dhantrayodashi gets its name from the words “Dhan” which means wealth and “Trayodashi” or “Teras” which means the thirteenth day. Hindus celebrate this day by purchasing new utensils or jewellery and even electronic items, which symbolises “Dhan”, and worshipping Goddess Lakshmi, Kubera, Lord Dhanvantari and Lord Yama.
How Dhanteras originated
One story is from the Churning of the Ocean (Samudra Manthan). Which gave us the gift of Ayurveda and the blessings of Lakshmi. It was on this auspicious day of Dhanteras that Lord Dhanvantari, the god of medicines who brought the knowledge of Ayurveda to earth and Goddess Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity merged from the Kshirasagara (ocean of milk) during Samudra Manthan.
All forms of “wealth”, be it precious stones, minerals, ores or food have always come from beneath the Earth, therefore the Samundra Manthan gave us the blessings of Goddess Lakshmi who emerged from the earth, just like all forms of wealth. People worship Lord Dhanvantari for good health and long life, while prayers are offered to Goddess Lakshmi for wealth and prosperity, on this day.
Another popular story is about a young wife who saved her husband’s life. The son of a king, he was prophesied to die on the fourth day of his marriage, but was saved when his wife made a clever plan to stop Yamraj from taking his life. She laid out all her gold and jewels at the threshold of their home, so when Yamraj arrived in the form of a serpent at night, he was dazzled by all the gold and its shine and did not take the young prince’s life. Hence, Lord Yama is also worshipped on this day, for a long life and to ward off the untimely death of family members
What to buy
One can buy gold, silver, brass and copper items; purchase electronic appliances and other home items; new property or new house is also bought on this day; you can also make a good investment on Dhanteras.
There are certain items that are avoided on Dhanteras like: Black coloured items, objects made of iron, steel or aluminum, any sharp objects like knives and scissors.
Celebrating our greatest wealth
Dhanteras is a festival celebrating wealth, and in all forms. The biggest wealth we have been bestowed with is our life, our good health and our family. So, this Dhanteras let us celebrate our greatest wealth, our life; express gratitude for our good health, and cherish our loved ones with prayers for their prosperity. Happy Dhanteras!
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