A day of Health, Happiness and Prosperity – Dhanteras

Festivals are a source of joy. They are a hope to life that come what may, life moves on and there is always place for goodness, health, happiness and love of near and dear ones. Lights are one of the most important representations of happiness and hope that any kind of great darkness can be removed away by one small diya of light, and marking the same is the auspicious day of Dhanteras.


Dhanteras is celebrated on the thirteenth day of the month of Ashwin, two days before Diwali. It is also known as the Dhanatrayodashi. This festival is a celebration of welcoming Bhagwathi Lakshmi into homes and blesses life with wealth and prosperity. On this auspicious day, houses are cleaned and lighted with earthen ghee lamps welcoming Bhagawathi Lakshmi.

There are many interesting stories as to why this festival is celebrated with so many lights. One of the popular stories is that once Bhagwathi Lakshmi wanted to take a stroll on Earth and requested Bhagwan Vishnu to accompany her. The Almighty agreed on one condition that she would not be tempted by anything on Earth. The goddess agrees. However, during their stroll, Bhagawathi Lakshmi sees a sunflower field and gets attracted to them. Bhagwan Vishnu gets upset by this and asks her to stay back there for twelve years. The field belonged to a poor farmer and with Bhagawathi Lakshmi staying back in his field, he grew prosperous and rich. After twelve years, Bhagwan Vishnu comes to take his wife, but the farmer refuses to let go. The compassionate goddess then blesses the farmer that she would come visiting him every year on this auspicious day. The farmer was quite happy and every year he cleaned his house and lit an earthen ghee map to appease the goddess. Since then, the day came to be called as Dhanteras and it has become a ritual to welcome Bhagwathi Lakshmi with ghee lamps and diyas.

Another popular story is that the divine Dhanvantari, the god of Ayurveda was born on this day from the Milky Ocean with the Amrit in his hand. The Amrit cured all diseases and sickness. Hence, one worships Shri Dhanvantari to gain good health and happiness.

The Dhanteras is also known as the Yamadeepdaan meaning gifting lamps to the God of death Yama. There was once a king named Hima, who had a sixteen year old son. It was prophesised that the son would die of a snake bite on the fourth day of his marriage. Listening to this, the young bride lit up the whole room with earthen lamps and lights on the appointed day. She then placed a heap of gold coins and ornaments in the middle of the room and started telling stories of bravery and courage to the groom.

In the middle of the night, Yamraj came in the form of a snake, but was blinded by the lights which shone with the radiance of lamps and the gold. The hour of death passed away as Yamraj could not find his way to kill the king’s son. Pleased with the intelligence and bravery of the young bride, Yamraj blessed them with a long life. As a mark of respect to Yamraj, earthen lamps are donated and hence the day is called as the Yamadeepdaan.

Dhanteras is a festival which marks the assent of positive light into life. Dhanteras is a festival which celebrates prosperity, health and happiness all which are signs of good hope in life.