Diwali Dhanteras: Exploring Legends, Rituals, and Prosperity during Diwali Festival

Dhanteras, also known as Dhanatrayodashi or Dhanvantari Trayodashi, marks the first day of the five-day Diwali festival in India. Celebrated in the Hindu month of Kartika, typically falling in October or November, Dhanteras holds immense cultural and spiritual significance. The word “Dhanteras” is a combination of “Dhan,” which means wealth, and “Teras,” which refers to the thirteenth day of the moon cycle.

Legends and Mythology:

Dhanteras is associated with several legends, and one of the most prevalent stories revolves around the churning of the ocean or Samudra Manthan. According to Hindu mythology, during this cosmic event, Dhanvantari, the physician of the gods, emerged carrying a pot of elixir. On Dhanteras, people worship Lord Dhanvantari, seeking his blessings for good health and well-being.

Another popular legend is that of King Hima’s son. It is believed that his horoscope predicted his death by snakebite on the fourth day of his marriage. To save him, his wife cleverly laid out all her gold and silver ornaments along with bright lamps at the entrance of their chamber. When Yama, the god of death, arrived in the form of a serpent, he was blinded by the brilliance of the lights and dazzled by the gold. Yama could not enter, and the young prince’s life was spared. This tradition of lighting lamps and buying new utensils on Dhanteras is said to symbolize the triumph of light over darkness.

Rituals and Traditions:

  1. Cleaning and Decoration: In preparation for Dhanteras, homes are thoroughly cleaned and decorated. Rangoli, made with colorful powders and flowers, adorns the entrances.
  2. Buying Gold and Utensils: It is customary to buy gold or silver jewelry, coins, and new utensils on Dhanteras. The belief is that acquiring such items brings prosperity and good luck.
  3. Lakshmi Puja: In the evening, a special puja (prayer) dedicated to Goddess Lakshmi is performed. Devotees light lamps and diyas to welcome the goddess of wealth into their homes.
  4. Mantra Chanting: People chant sacred mantras and hymns to invoke the blessings of Lord Dhanvantari and seek protection from illnesses.

Significance in Business:

Dhanteras holds special significance for business owners and traders. It is considered an auspicious day to start new account books or initiate business transactions. Many businesses conduct a special puja in their establishments to seek prosperity and success.


Modern Celebrations:

In contemporary times, Dhanteras is not only a religious occasion but also a commercial one. Markets are bustling with activity as people indulge in the purchase of gold, silver, and household items. The fervor of the festival extends to online shopping, with e-commerce platforms offering special discounts and deals.


Dhanteras, with its rich mythology and cultural practices, serves as a reminder of the importance of wealth, health, and prosperity. Beyond the material aspects, the festival encourages spiritual reflection and the pursuit of goodness in one’s life. As families come together to celebrate the triumph of light over darkness, Dhanteras sets the stage for the joyous festivities that follow during the Diwali season.

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