The Significance of Lighting Lamps

Lighting lamps is not a mere ritual. It is about bringing light into your life and spreading it around that you become a glowing being. Read on about the significance of lighting lamps.

Lighting lamp significance


It was dusk and the sky wore an orange spread over it. The pandit chanted the mantra and lit the lamp next to the Ganesha idol under the Peepal tree. Sitha and Vidhya waited with a little white lotus in each of their hands as an offering to Lord Ganesha. The pandit offered the flowers to the deity and performed the Arati. After the pooja, he retained the children for a little wisdom talk.

priest PANDIT: Do you know why we light lamps, rather the significance behind the hindu ritual of lighting lamps?

jaya VIDHYA: To remove darkness and light up the place.

sitha SITHA: And to generate positive vibrations, Mother says.

priestPANDIT: You are right! Lamps light up a place. You may also ask that the electric bulbs also light up a place. Yes, but lamps induce a certain positive feeling and create a joy in us when we light them. At homes, lamps are lit at dawn at the beginning of the day and at dusk towards the end of the day. It is to begin our activities in light and to withdraw them in light. Lamps are also lit at the beginning of auspicious events.

In temples we also see lamps lit to draw positive vibrations from its positive atmosphere. Lamps create an energy field when we light them. We absorb the quality and energy of the lamp when we light them.

As you said, lamps remove darkness, outer and inner darkness.

sitha SITHA and VIDHYA: Inner darkness? The two girls questioned simultaneously.

priest PANDIT: Yes, inner darkness. Inner darkness is the negative tendencies in us. It is because of our ego. The negative tendencies in us trigger negative qualities, which in turn produces negative actions.

Light is a symbol of knowledge and darkness, ignorance. God is all knowing, “Omniscient.” Since light symbolizes knowledge, and the Lord is all knowing, light is considered as the Lord Himself.

jaya VIDHYA: That is why we worship the lamp too as you chanted the mantra when you lit it.

priest PANDIT: Yes, you are right. There is more to it. The oil in the lamp stands for our negative tendencies and the wick the ego. As the lamp burns the oil gets drained slowly and the wick also in the course get burnt. Similarly, when we fill ourselves with the light of spiritual knowledge, which is God, the negatives tendencies in us gets exhausted and our ego also dies subsequently. This is how the inner darkness is removed. We then become wise people full of knowledge.

Do you want to be wise or foolish?

jaya SITHA and VIDHYA: Wise of course.

priest PANDIT: You will have to generate positive qualities in life without which no achievement is possible. Positive or good qualities are cultivated by right thinking and right living. Negative or bad qualities can only give you success that is short lived. It cannot go a long way. Good qualities fill you with peace and lasting prosperity. The flame of the lamp burns upwards. Similarly you should develop good qualities and spread light in the lives of others while you light up yours. I hope you understood the meaning behind the hindu ritual of lighting lamps.

Ok now hurry. Go home and play.

sitha SITHA and VIDHYA: Ok pandit-ji. Thank you.

Quote on Light

Faith is the bird that feels the light when the dawn is still dark

Rabindranath Tagore

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