The festival of lights is here again. The time to celebrate, rejoice, enjoy with family and friends, to feel the excitement. We all know the story behind Diwali, have heard it a gazillion times if not more, so I won’t bore you by retelling it, but what I want you to keep in mind is that we celebrate the return of Ram to the land, who brought in light, happiness, and peace to the land. Lord Ram to me is more about ideology than a godly person. And this Diwali I want you to bring that ideology to the party. Every year we concentrate and tell you how to keep safe and healthy on Diwali. This year too we want you to consider health on Diwali, but this time on a larger scale and not limited to the personal self. We want you to go global, and make it a healthy Diwali for everyone by protecting and prospering the environment. Yes, this is about a Green Diwali.
For the past few years there has been some tussle about how we are celebrating Diwali (mostly related to pollution), and for the greater good crackers have been limited. Some are happy about this decision while some fight against it. I was an in-between party. But today I want to discuss with you why Green Diwali is true Diwali in the spirit of the festival and healthy.
Let’s get to why crackers although interesting to watch and even burn, are unhealthy:
· They create noise pollution which irritates babies, animals, and elderly people. People who we are supposed to take care of and their wellbeing is our responsibility. Very unlike Ram who cared for all. Next they create air pollution, the smoke thickens the atmosphere creating smog, mixed with pollution, it turns dangerous for everyone. Asthmatic attacks increase, more issues of breathing problems, damage lungs, bronchitis, and many more health issues. And this air doesn’t clear in a day or two, in fact, it never does clear up completely. Some particles always remain. Again to damage our environment is kind of against the ideology of the man who is the reason behind this festival.
Another factor to consider, burn injuries and not to mention the fact that many underprivileged children are employed in cracker making factories. Meaning so many lives at risk, just for a few minutes of enjoyment.
I don’t think that Lord Ram could have supported any of this and felt welcomed with such chaos. So yes, this year I want you to say no to crackers, and even if you can’t resist the temptation, buy only the green crackers that will not pollute the air. Make sure to burn them in a safe area, and please see to it that you don’t leave the mess around to be someone else’s problem. Consider this extra credit from Mata Lakshmi when you not only clean your home but also the place where you litter or spread any garbage.
I am sure some of you must be aware that Diwali is also the new-year for the businessman. And protecting the environment and safeguarding it for ourselves and future generations is everybody’s business. So this Diwali let’s renew our logs, and start over afresh. Let’s ensure we follow in the footsteps of the ideology that we so love, our proud heritage that tells us to respect everyone including our environment.
So this Diwali, I urge you to consider the health of our planet, coz let’s face it, we cannot be healthy on an unhealthy planet.
Healthy Diwali is Happy Diwali!