7 Tips For an Eco-Friendly Diwali

Diwali is a 5-day festival that starts with Dhanteras and concludes with Bhai Dooj. This year, it begins on Oct 22. On the 3rd day, people celebrate Diwali and perform Lakshmi Pooja. Diwali Pooja 2022 is on 24 October, a Monday, and the Pooja muhurat is from 7.26 pm to 8.39 pm.


Diwali is celebrated all over India. Diwali rituals include lighting diyas, bursting firecrackers, making sweets, exchanging gifts, and even playing cards! It is a very popular festival, and even non-Hindus celebrate it with great enthusiasm.


Diwali festival is synonymous with good times. It means the glow of shimmering diyas which light up the dark, new moon night, bright sparklers, dazzling firecrackers that explode into a million colored stars in the night sky, mouth-watering sweets prepared in pure ghee, gifts, and joyous reunions and meetings with friends and family.


But sometimes we forget that celebrations come with their own baggage. After each celebration, we find mounds of plastic and food waste and other things that litter and pollute the earth. And during Diwali, there is sound pollution, too, due to high-decibel crackers. This causes great trauma to old people, the sick, pets, and stray animals that live on the streets.


So how can we celebrate Diwali in a way that does not affect our planet too much?


Here are 7 tips for an eco-friendly Diwali festival. Let Diwali 2022 be an occasion to show that you care about the earth and everything on it.


1. Use Eco-friendly Materials for Rangolis

One of the myriad Diwali rituals is to draw colorful rangolis. This is believed to attract Goddess Lakshmi into our homes. It is an opportunity for women to show their creative side. But many people use powders with synthetic colors to create these beautiful rangolis. This is harmful to the environment. So why not use flowers, natural colors, or rice flour for your rangolis? The dried flower petals will nourish your soil, too, when the celebrations conclude.


2. Use Earthen Diyas

Legend says the people of Ayodhya lit earthen lamps or diyas to welcome Lord Rama, Sita, and Lakshmana home when they returned from exile after Rama killed Ravana. Light your homes with earthen lamps for Diwali, as they do not harm the environment. You can buy beautiful hand-made ones from the market. But it is better not to go for the painted diyas as they the paints are made with chemicals which can pollute the earth.


3. Avoid Loud Crackers

Sound pollution is a serious hazard. It is heartbreaking to see pet animals and stray animals cowering in fear when people set off loud crackers. They also affect old and sick people terribly. So avoid them completely and buy only the less noisy ones.


4. Donate your Gently-used Things

When spring cleaning your home, you might throw away many things that you no longer need. These will most likely end up in landfills and pollute the environment. Instead of throwing things away, donate them to the needy who might have some use for them. But make sure that they are not too old and are still usable. Of course, some things will have to be disposed of anyway. Just try to dispose of them in a responsible manner. For instance, if they include electronic items, remove the batteries. Use e-waste bins to dispose of such items.


5. Make your Own Sweets

People buy sweets for themselves and also as gifts for friends during Diwali. But synthetic ingredients in store-bought sweets can be harmful. A better idea is to make the sweets at home. This way, you can ensure the quality and safety of the ingredients to be used for making the sweets.


6. Go for Hand-made Gifts

When buying gifts for family and friends, choose hand-made ones. Not only are they more beautiful, but they are also eco-friendly. And in the process, you could be helping someone, too. Many NGOs train poor women to make handmade things as a source of livelihood. Such articles include jute bags, cloth pouches, candles, earthen lamps, paper lamps, paintings, quilts, purses, etc. Often, they use recycled materials, which helps the environment as well.


7. Use Newspapers to Wrap Gifts

Many trees are chopped to make wrapping paper that will be discarded ultimately. Do your bit to save trees by wrapping gifts with old newspapers. You can also paint them to give them a colorful and festive look. Anyway, it is the gift that really matters and not the wrapping.

Have a guilt-free Diwali this year by following these eco-friendly tips to celebrate the festival.


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