As in previous years, this year we again celebrated Diwali, The Indian Festival of Lights, in Triform on Oct 27th. Everyone gathered outside Phoenix Center and was welcomed with traditional Bindi's (colorful stickers for the forehead) and Tikka (a red mark made on the forehead with a paste of Saffron Crocus that grows in India). It turned out to be a perfect sunny day.
Once this introduction was given, along with instructions for the celebration, houses were asked to go to their designated spots within the semi-circular space just outside the bakery in the Phoenix Center to create traditional Indian Rangolis (colorful mandalas that are drawn on the ground with pavement chalk). Everybody seemed to have taken this task up very seriously, and the result was exceptional. The gray cemented space was now beautifully decorated with Rangolis in vibrant colors. As it was a chilly October afternoon, people also enjoyed some hot chai tea and ginger, lemon, turmeric tea.
Soon it was time for the grand finale, as the sun set, painting the sky in shades of beautiful reds and purple, paper lanterns were lit. The lanterns were sent into the evening sky much to the amazement of the crowd that was left below. We closed the night by singing a song that described the essence of this Festival of Lights.
Finally around we gathered around a bonfire and a few houses joined in for the meal by the fire. We were inspired to remember the inner light that would conquer the darkness of the winter.
What a wonderful evening!