Choti Diwali or Small Diwali is celebrated after Dhanteras and day before main Diwali. It is also known as ‘Naraka Chaturdashi’ because the demon Naraksur was killed on this day. Choti Diwali is celebrated on the fourteenth day of Krishna Paksha in the karthika month. It is celebrated with fewer lights and fireworks.
Why is CHOTI DIWALI celebrated?
Legends of Choti Diwali Celebrations:
According to the story in ‘Bhagavatha Purana’, Mahabali was the most powerful king. His power was increased to immense. He was being cruel to Gods; he conquered both the heavens and the earth. Gods approached Lord Vishnu for help; he made a way to defeat Bali. Lord Vishnu disguised himself as a dwarf Brahmin and appeared in his court. Bali offered to fulfill any of the Bharhmin’s wishes. Then the dwarf Brahmin asked for the land he could cover in three paces and the king agreed to it. Lord Vishnu then took the gigantic form and claimed the heavens, and the earth in two paces. He asked for King Bali’s head for the third pace and Bali agreed to it. Thus, prevail of Bail was overthrown.
Narakasur attacked Lord Indra and defeated him. He snatched the earrings of the ruler Suraloka, Goddess Aditi who is the relative of Lord Krishna’s wife Sathyabhama. Narkasura conquered both heavens and earth and imprisoned 16,000 daughters of Gods and Saints. Lord Krishna with the help of his wife Satyabhama killed the demon Narakasura on the day before Diwali and rescued 16,000 women from his palace and restored Goddess Aditi’s earrings. Death of the demon was a great relief for the people of heaven and earth.
What are the rituals of Choti Diwali?
People wake up before sunrise and prepare a mixture of Kumkum and oil representing blood after they break a bitter fruit that symbolizes the head of Narakasur. By applying that mixture they will have an oil bath will sandalwood. People decorate their houses with rangoli and light up their houses with earthen lamps.