The Most Popular Myth about Diwali, Ranked

Choose the myth you think is the most popular!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on May 26, 2024 07:05
During festive occasions like Diwali, numerous myths circulate, shaping how people celebrate and understand this significant event. Evaluating these myths not only clears common misconceptions but also enriches the cultural experience by highlighting diverse narratives. It’s helpful to view which myths resonate most with contemporary audiences, as it reflects current cultural values and knowledge. By participating in the ranking of Diwali myths, users contribute to a collective understanding of the festival’s lore. This process allows people from various backgrounds to share their perspectives and learn from others. The resulting rankings can offer insights into which stories are most compelling or widely accepted today, fostering a deeper connection with the tradition.

What Is the Most Popular Myth about Diwali?

  1. 1

    The Legend of Yama and Nachiketa

    Some narratives suggest Diwali commemorates the enlightening conversation between Yama, the god of death, and Nachiketa, a young boy. This story from the Katha Upanishad is sometimes cited as a reason for Diwali celebrations.
    • Text: Katha Upanishad
  2. 2

    Goddess Kali

    In Bengal and some other parts of India, it is believed that Diwali is when Goddess Kali defeated the demon Raktabija. This is a popular myth that associates Diwali with the worship of Goddess Kali.
    • Region: Bengal
  3. 3

    Day of the Sikh Gurus

    For Sikhs, Diwali is celebrated as the day Guru Hargobind Ji was released from imprisonment along with 52 kings. While it is a historical event, it is sometimes mythologized in popular culture.
    • Event: Bandi Chhor Divas
  4. 4

    Significance for Buddhists

    Some believe Diwali holds significance for Buddhists as the day Emperor Ashoka converted to Buddhism. However, this connection is more interpretative than a widely acknowledged myth.
    • Emperor: Ashoka
  5. 5

    A Harvest Festival

    A common misconception is that Diwali is primarily a harvest festival. While it coincides with harvest time in some parts of India, its origins and primary celebrations are not related to harvest.
    • Season: Autumn
  6. 6

    Special Day for the Jains

    Diwali is significant for Jains as it marks the nirvana of Lord Mahavira, the last Tirthankara, which is a common misconception as not specifically a myth related to Diwali's origins but an important aspect of the festival for Jains.
    • Event: Nirvana of Mahavira
  7. 7

    Return of Lord Rama

    The most popular myth is that Diwali is celebrated to mark the return of Lord Rama to Ayodhya after 14 years of exile and his victory over the demon king Ravana.
    • Epic: Ramayana
  8. 8

    Incarnation of Goddess Lakshmi

    Another widespread belief is that Diwali marks the birth of Goddess Lakshmi from the churning of the ocean, known as Samudra Manthan.
    • Scripture: Vishnu Purana
  9. 9

    Victory of Krishna over Narakasura

    It is believed that Diwali celebrates the victory of Lord Krishna over the demon king Narakasura, symbolizing the victory of good over evil.
    • Epic: Bhagavata Purana
  10. 10

    Coronation of King Vikramaditya

    Some believe Diwali commemorates the coronation of the legendary king Vikramaditya, marking it as a historical event.
    • Era: Vikram Samvat

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About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most popular myth about Diwali. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or myth is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 0 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each myth once every 24 hours. The rank of each myth is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

Additional Information

More about the Most Popular Myth about Diwali

The Legend of Yama and Nachiketa
Rank #1 for the most popular myth about Diwali: The Legend of Yama and Nachiketa (Source)
Diwali, the Festival of Lights, is one of the most celebrated events in many cultures. It marks a time for joy, family gatherings, and festivities. Many people know Diwali for its vibrant lights, colorful rangoli, and delicious sweets. But behind these celebrations lies a rich tapestry of myths and legends.

The most popular myth associated with Diwali is a tale of good triumphing over evil. This myth holds deep meaning for many who celebrate the festival. It serves as a reminder that light will always conquer darkness. This story inspires hope and positivity, encouraging people to believe in the power of good deeds and righteous actions.

Families come together during Diwali to honor this myth. They clean their homes, decorate with oil lamps, and create intricate rangoli designs. These acts symbolize the victory of light over darkness. The lighting of lamps is a key part of Diwali, representing the dispelling of ignorance and the welcoming of knowledge and wisdom.

Feasting is another important aspect of Diwali. People prepare a variety of sweets and savory dishes to share with loved ones. This act of sharing food reflects the community spirit and the joy of togetherness. It also echoes the myth's theme of abundance and prosperity following the victory of good.

Fireworks light up the sky during Diwali nights. The sound and light of fireworks are believed to drive away evil spirits. This practice ties back to the myth, reinforcing the idea that light and sound can banish darkness and negativity. The dazzling displays bring communities together, creating a sense of unity and shared celebration.

Exchanging gifts is a common tradition during Diwali. People give sweets, clothes, and other items to friends and family. This exchange symbolizes the sharing of goodwill and blessings. It is a way to express love and appreciation, strengthening bonds and fostering a sense of belonging.

Rituals and prayers are also central to Diwali. Many people perform pujas, or worship ceremonies, to honor deities. These rituals seek blessings for health, wealth, and happiness. They reflect the myth's themes of divine favor and the importance of faith and devotion.

The myth behind Diwali is not just a story; it is a guiding principle. It teaches lessons of resilience, faith, and the importance of doing good. It reminds people that no matter how dark times may seem, light will always prevail. This message resonates deeply with those who celebrate Diwali, giving the festival its profound significance.

In essence, Diwali is more than just a festival. It is a celebration of life, light, and hope. The most popular myth behind it serves as a powerful reminder of the enduring strength of good over evil. Through lights, food, fireworks, gifts, and rituals, people come together to honor this timeless story, creating memories and spreading joy.

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