On Tuesday a Diwali celebration will be held at the Sikh Temple of Spokane, or gurdwara.
Diwali, known as the Festival of Lights, is one of the most celebrated Hindu holidays, which symbolizes the victory of dharma, and good over evil. Diwali commemorates the return of Lord Ram (the incarnation of Lord Vishnu), his wife Sita and brother Lakshman to their capital, Ayodhya, after 14 years of exile. The residents of Ayodhya, overjoyed at the return of their beloved king, lit lamps in his honor, according to the Religion Newswriters Association. Sikhs also observe Diwali as the time the Sixth Guru, Hargobind, was freed from captivity by the Mughal Emperor Jehangir.
Tuesday's celebration will begin with tea and vegetarian snacks at 6 p.m. Then, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. there will be a candlelight service and a Sikh prayer, inspired by the fifth master, Guru Arjan dev Ji called “Sukhmani” or the “Psalm of Peace.” The service will also include Kirtan, which is the singing of hymns.
The gurdwara is located at 1420 North Barker Road in Spokane Valley. All are welcome to attend.
Tracy Simmons is an award-winning journalist specializing in religion reporting and digital entrepreneurship. In her approximate 20 years on the religion beat, Simmons has tucked a notepad in her pocket and found some of her favorite stories aboard cargo ships in New Jersey, on a police chase in Albuquerque, in dusty Texas church bell towers, on the streets of New York and in tent cities in Haiti. Simmons has worked as a multimedia journalist for newspapers across New Mexico, Texas, Connecticut and Washington. She is the executive director of SpokaneFāVS.com, a digital journalism start-up covering religion news and commentary in Spokane, Washington. She also writes for The Spokesman-Review and national publications. She is a Scholarly Assistant Professor of Journalism at Washington State University.