Dhanteras, also known as Dhanatrayodashi, is an auspicious Hindu festival celebrated every year in India. It falls on the thirteenth lunar day of the dark fortnight in the month of Kartik (October/November). Dhanteras marks the beginning of the five-day Diwali festival and holds great religious and cultural significance. In 2023, Dhanteras will be celebrated on Sunday, 15th October.
Significance of Dhanteras
Dhanteras is considered one of the most important days in the Hindu calendar, especially for the business community and those seeking prosperity and wealth. The word “Dhanteras” is derived from two words: “Dhan” meaning wealth, and “Teras” meaning the thirteenth day. It is believed that on this day, Goddess Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity, showers her blessings upon devotees and brings them good fortune.
According to Hindu mythology, it is believed that on the day of Dhanteras, Lord Dhanvantari, the physician of the gods, emerged from the ocean with the divine nectar of immortality. Hence, people worship Lord Dhanvantari and seek his blessings for good health and well-being.
Dhanteras 2023 Date and Muhurat
Dhanteras 2023 will be celebrated on Sunday, 15th October. The auspicious timing for performing the Dhanteras Puja is during the Pradosh Kaal, which starts after sunset and lasts for about 2 hours and 24 minutes. It is believed that performing the puja during this time brings maximum blessings and prosperity.
Celebrations and Rituals
Dhanteras is celebrated with great enthusiasm and devotion. Here are some of the common rituals and traditions associated with Dhanteras:
- Cleaning and Decoration: Before Dhanteras, homes and shops are thoroughly cleaned and decorated to welcome Goddess Lakshmi. Rangoli designs are drawn at the entrance to invite good luck and prosperity.
- Lakshmi Puja: In the evening, families gather for the traditional Lakshmi Puja. Prayers are offered to Goddess Lakshmi, along with Lord Ganesha, to seek their blessings for wealth, prosperity, and abundance.
- Lighting Diyas: Rows of oil lamps (diyas) are lit to illuminate the surroundings and ward off darkness. It is believed that the light of the diyas attracts the blessings of Goddess Lakshmi into the homes.
- Buying Gold and Utensils: It is customary to buy new gold ornaments or utensils on Dhanteras, as it is believed to bring good luck and prosperity. People throng to the markets to make their purchases.
- Gambling: In some regions, playing card games or gambling is considered auspicious on Dhanteras. It is believed that winning during this time brings good fortune throughout the year.
Dhanteras is a festival that symbolizes the worship of wealth and prosperity. It is a time for families to come together, offer prayers to Goddess Lakshmi, and seek her blessings. The festival not only holds religious significance but also brings joy and excitement as people indulge in the tradition of buying gold and utensils. Dhanteras sets the stage for the grand celebrations of Diwali, spreading happiness and prosperity among households. So, mark your calendars and get ready to welcome abundance and good fortune on Dhanteras 2023.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q1: Can Dhanteras be celebrated only at home?
No, Dhanteras can be celebrated at home, in temples, or in community gatherings. The important aspect is to perform the rituals with devotion and seek the blessings of Goddess Lakshmi.
Q2: Is it necessary to buy gold or utensils on Dhanteras?
While buying gold or utensils is a common tradition on Dhanteras, it is not mandatory. The focus of the festival is on invoking the blessings of Goddess Lakshmi through prayers and rituals. The purchase of gold or utensils is a symbolic gesture and a personal choice.
Q3: Can unmarried individuals observe Dhanteras rituals?
Yes, unmarried individuals can observe the Dhanteras rituals and seek the blessings of Goddess Lakshmi. Dhanteras is not limited to married couples and is open to people of all ages and marital statuses.
Q4: What should be offered during the Lakshmi Puja on Dhanteras?
During the Lakshmi Puja, offerings such as flowers, incense, fruits, sweets, and diyas are made to Goddess Lakshmi. Additionally, it is customary to offer special dishes, such as kheer (rice pudding) and puri (fried bread), as prasad.
Q5: Can Dhanteras be celebrated without performing the Lakshmi Puja?
While the Lakshmi Puja is an integral part of Dhanteras celebrations, if one is unable to perform the puja for any reason, they can still observe the festival by lighting diyas, making offerings, and seeking the blessings of Goddess Lakshmi through prayers and chanting.
Q6: Can Dhanteras be celebrated by people of other faiths?
Dhanteras is primarily a Hindu festival, but its essence of invoking wealth, prosperity, and positivity is universal. People of other faiths are welcome to join in the festivities, appreciate the cultural significance, and embrace the spirit of joy and abundance.