Hindu: Diwali and the purpose of myths

“Diwali is one of the brightest and most widely observed Hindu festivals within India and around the world.” Jains, Sikhs and some Buddhists also celebrate Diwali.“ Though the customs, rituals, and historical legends connected to Diwali vary from tradition to tradition, the essence of what the holiday represents — the symbolic victory of knowledge over ignorance, light over dark, and good over evil — is always the same, never failing to bring people together in a vibrant, positive, and unifying celebration.” https://www.hinduamerican.org/blog/5-things-to-know-about-diwali

Karl Jung, one of the founders of modern psychology believed that myths of every culture and tradition contain universal wisdom, and “express core ideas that are part of the human species as a whole.

In Jungian psychology myths may, but need not have historical or literal truth. Whatever term is used, there are such legends in every culture. They are true in the sense of what is revealed about human nature; they also attempt to explain the nature of how the Divine relates to humanity.

A young Blogger who calls herself, “The Curious Reader” writes about the universality of myths: “I used to be fascinated with myths and folklores of other countries, not knowing that a treasure trove of stories lay in my backyard (India). Percy Jackson’s similarities with our myths helped me recognise that there is magic in every culture, and that we should always read more of it to uncover the layers of morals it can teach us. Initially, I used to be sceptical of reading our ancient myths, as I thought them to be nothing but boring lectures on karma and goodwill, but now I understand that they contain valuable lessons that are relevant even today.”

Whatever we understand about the Indian Epics celebrated in Diwali, we can embrace and live the Diwali message that the light of goodness and knowledge will vanquish evil and ignorance.