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That child within

Every festival serves as a sort of tonic to the human race. Aryan Vaid tells us about why Diwali is so important to him...

entertainment Updated: Oct 23, 2008 18:04 IST

Last week, I was shooting for a special dance show that depicted Diwali celebrations. A journalist asked me why Diwali was so important to us. Whilst answering him, I realised that it’s not just Diwali, but every festival is important to us.

I was surprised by my words — every festival serves as a sort of tonic to the human race. I think that’s what it is. Festivals are as old as mankind, arising from the innate desire to gather together and divert from the humdrum routine of life.

Vibrancy in the air
Around festival time, especially Diwali, there’s a strange kind of vibrancy in the air, whether it’s the fact that many people are shopping with the bonus they’ve received or the entire city is lit up with bright lights or the coming together of friends and family, there’s a reason to be happy.

Despite so many reasons to get irritated with the nuisance and pollution caused by fire crackers, we still look forward to Diwali. Because ultimately, all we remember is the time spent with our close family and friends. That makes our lives meaningful.

Happy faces
With so many happy faces around and a unique blend of positive feeling and excitement, it makes us happy from within to put aside our worries and live for those moments.

Besides, in some way, these festivals are an expression of truly significant teachings that we should imbibe in our lives. And I think, this time we truly need our festivities, what with the world witnessing a recession, like the great depression of 1929.

And with so many things going wrong in our lives, we need a spiritual lift. But then again, I wonder if one can fake happiness because it’s a festival. Why can’t life be one long festival? I wish I could answer that. Or why don’t we exist in a happy mode all the time.

I admit I’m a festival addict. And yes, although I’m broad-minded where my religious beliefs are concerned, festivals are another opportunity to be happy and to spend time with other happy people.

That’s the reason why my most memorable childhood memories include dancing in the famous Ganpati processions on the streets of Juhu, screaming myself hoarse with the chants and songs.

The child within me would still love to do that but I guess the adult in me would find that slightly unrefined.

Anyway, here’s wishing all my readers a Happy Diwali. Remember, happiness is a universal need. So can’t we treat festival as life? Every moment of life should be a joyous riot, limited not just to festivities.