Karthikai Deepam (Tamil: திருகார்த்திகை தீபம் / கார்த்திகை விளக்கீடு, Malayalam: തൃക്കാർത്തിക / കാർത്തിക വിളക്ക്), also spelled Karthigai Deepam or Karthika Deepam is one of the most ancient festivals that has been celebrated since ages according to Indian history. It is symbolic of the festival of lights in Tamil Nadu, Kerala and some regions of Andhra Pradesh and is dedicated to the infiniteness of The Almighty.

Karthikai Deepam 2021 is on November 19, Friday

7 months and 8 days to go for the event

Karthika Nakshatram start & end time : November 19, 1:29 am - November 20, 4:29 am

Image Source: IANS

When is Karthikai Deepam celebrated?

Karthikai Deepam is celebrated on the day of full moon in the Tamil month of Karttikai according to the Indian calendar. The festival originally continues for a month commencing on the day of Diwali. According to the Gregorian calendar, it is held in the months of November-December.

The story behind Karthikai Deepam

The most ancient mythology associated with this festival is when Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu once started quarrelling with each other over their individual supremacy in terms of power and strength. Distressed by their arguments, Lord Shiva emerged in front of them as a flame of fire. Lord Brahma and Vishnu decided to compete with each other to find the start and end of this flame. For this Brahma took the form of a swan and Vishnu took the form of a boar. Finally when none of them won, Lord Shiva emerged back into form and thus emphasized about the infiniteness and ultimate existence of God that is beyond all measurements.

Lord Muruga took the form of six flames that emerged from the eyes of Lord Shiva. These flames took the form of six babies and accumulated in a lake known as 'Saravana Poigai'. On this day, these nymphs were accumulated by Goddess Parvati and thereafter Karthikai Deepam is also the day when Lord Muruga is worshipped.

Other names of Karthikai Deepam

Karthikai Deepam is also called Karthikai vilakkidu in Tamil Nadu. In Kerala, it is Thrikarthika or Karthika Deepam. Here is the different names by with Karthikai deepam festival is known - Karthika Deepam, Trikartika, Kartika Villaku, Tirrukarttikai, Karthikai Natchathiram, Bharani deepam, Vishnu deepam.

Image Source: IANS

Rituals during Karthikai Deepam

Houses are cleaned and washed on this day. Floral patterns called 'Kolams' are made with rice flour paste in front of the house to welcome the deities of worship.

Lamps called 'agal' are then placed in front of God and are also used as decorations in the Kolams.

Fasts are kept until sunset and special dishes are prepared to be eaten after closing the fast.

The entire house is decorated with numerous lamps. Different patterns of lamps symbolic of mythological tales are used - Lakshmi villaku shaped like a woman with folded hands, Kuthu villaku shaped like a five petal flower and the Gajalakshmi villaku—the elephant lamp.

This festival also rejuvenates the sister-brother bond as sisters pray and fast for the long life and well-being of their brothers.

In Andhra Pradesh, on the day of full moon or Karthika pournami, a big lamp with 365 wicks is lit to ward off any evil and the holy text of Kartheeka puranam is recited to invite auspiciousness and good fortune.

This festival is celebrated with much pomp and glory at the Shiva temples of Tirruvanna malai hills of Tamil Nadu. On Karthikai Deepam, a huge fire is atop the hill that is visible from several kilometers around it.

Important Timings On Karthikai Deepam

SunriseNovember 19, 2021 6:47 AM
SunsetNovember 19, 2021 5:37 PM
Karthika Nakshatram StartsNovember 19, 2021 1:29 AM
Karthika Nakshatram EndsNovember 20, 2021 4:29 AM
Place : Ujjain [ India ] See More

Karthikai Deepam festival dates between 2018 & 2028

2018Friday, 23rd of November
2019Tuesday, 10th of December
2020Sunday, 29th of November
2021Friday, 19th of November
2022Tuesday, 6th of December
2023Sunday, 26th of November
2024Friday, 13th of December
2025Thursday, 4th of December
2026Tuesday, 24th of November
2027Saturday, 11th of December
2028Friday, 1st of December

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