Skip to main content

Lighting the lamp

There are certain rituals that I have grown up with and I would love to pass those on to my children. For as long as I can remember, ‘lighting the lamp’ has always been one daily ritual. I don’t even think about it much. My grandmother did it .My mom did it—and now I do it too.
As a child, my dad used to light the lamp in the mornings after his bath, just before breakfast and leaving for work. When I got married, I was pleasantly surprised to find out that it was the same in Satish’s home too, when he was growing up. Now, he lights the lamp in the mornings, in our home.(Lighting incense goes with lighting the lamp.'Lighting the lamp' automatically means you light the incense too)

A British friend of ours, was fascinated by the hanging lamp (yes, it is suspended from a hook and it hangs) in my house that I light, everyday. We would be having a conversation and at 6:30 p.m, I would excuse myself to ‘light the lamp’ and ‘say my prayers’.

He expressed a desire to see it. He was very moved by it. He said there was so much positive energy and it calmed him, just looking at the incense and the lamp. I could almost feel his awe.

This is a picture of our prayer room and the lit lamp .I began writing a post about what the significance of it all is. Then I found this article which explains it well. (click on the underlined words to read about it)

As a child I did not realize how much significance it has. Now I do—and I hope that my children realize it, someday.

It is indeed wonderful to be in touch with your traditions—be it religious or cultural.


  1. Lovely ritual, ps; reminds me of the votive candle that my mother used to light. I didn't read the article... I prefer my rituals minimally explained.

    I have one of my own - an unarticulated call of the heart that I will post about. Thanks for the inspiration.

  2. you are right. Soem traditions we do just coz we are in tune with them, but only after knowing the meaning behind the act, it feels all the more deserving and respectful.

    Same here :)

  3. Religious, cultural or even familar, going from generation to generation.
    Beautiful ritual, makes the world of good to have something like that which is symbolic and calming at the same time.

  4. I used to light the lamp out of a religious belief built in me by my parents and folks around you. However the article is indeed very enlightening and true in so many ways. Light does indeed extinguish the darkness and ignorance from your lives. Also it is the one time when you pray and thank the good lord for all the wonderful things we have received. It instils faith and also helps become stronger. I guess when you pray with concentration you are also doing a kind of meditation which would help releive the stress built up. But overall fantastic and educating even to me as an Indian.

  5. thats a tradition worth

  6. hey u have a cute pooja room :)

  7. Dat was wonderful.i was always one of those kids who put 'Whys' for everything....and today, i got all my answers.Thanks.

  8. Nice post. I am going to do a similar one of my experiences in my blog site

  9. Nice post. I am going to do a similar one of my experiences in my blog site

  10. We often light candles when we sit to eat as a provides a focus to our thoughts and the light sheds a cozy warm glow on our faces making meal times special. we often hear about the fragmentation of famly life..the mealtime together is something we need to encourage as we share our thoughts and feelings. We also burn insence very often!

  11. Satish: Yes--a very 'eye opening' kind of write up, dont you think?(even thought we knew it, this article explained it so well i felt)

  12. You're a star.


    And diyas look lovely.

  13. Joe: The article explains the significanc-and it is so deep.And an amazing concept.

    Rads:very true.

    Devil Mood:Yes, it is indeed.

    Jeya: Absolutely.

    Diya: Thanks.

    Akanksha:Glad you did.

    Revathi:will surely read.

    Niall: Incense does create a lot of postive vibes--dont you think?

  14. Though I have personally never been involved with this ritual... but I do understand and agree with the point that you r trying to make over here .. there are so many rituals that we have seen as kids.. so of them make you feel so so positive that you feel "good" inside...

    And I totally (again as always :) - we will soon have to find things to differ on.. we can't seem to have any debates amongst us) agree and hope that our kids also realize the value of these traditions and rituals (And we as parents will have a big role to play to make them see the logic) ..

  15. I was raised in a house that didn’t put a lot of focus on religion. There are times I wish I could have grown up a little differently. It’s wonderful that you are passing on your traditions to your children.

  16. I was raised by an alcoholic step-father and a mother who claimed to be an aetheist, yet she really liked 'that Jesus fellow'.

    My point: I never had any spiritual/religious traditions growing up. But, I always sensed a spiritual presence with me at all times and it felt good... it felt like true belonging and love.

    So, when I was just a kid, I created my own tradition of speaking to that presence; sharing my thoughts and feelings and dreams for the future. It may sound strange to some, but that presence always responded; not in audible words, but clear none-the-less.

    Was it God? My spirit guide? Or just my own subconscious? I dunno. My sense tells me that it was, in some form, God. (...which would include all of the above, I suppose.)

    After a time, I incorporated the lighting of a candle into this tradition, because it just felt right. You know, light begets light; and what light is more natural than a flickering flame.

    Anyhoo... just some rambling thoughts... :)

  17. I remember this very vividly from high school, there was this competition in school about science talk, and I was supposed to talk about light, I had this huge speech prepared with all charts, you know the usual stuff that happens at school. On the day I found out one of my good friends has chosen that topic as well. I finished a long speech with various theories about light etc and was very happy with what I had done, but then my friend started his speech, he started with "most of us begin the day, with lighting a lamp"..and I was floored..he spoke in so simple words that I knew he deserved to win..

    anyways its so true, I guess many of us do it and the few minutes of peace it gives us is a great takeaway from the stressful day ahead


Post a Comment

Thanks for stopping by. I really appreciate your leaving a comment! Okay--I appreciate your leaving a comment if you have something nice to say ;-)

Popular posts from this blog

Re-store : A delightful little shop in Whitefield, Bangalore.

All of us are guilty, at least to some extent  of hoarding stuff. We hold on to old things--be it clothes, books, utensils, footwear, knick-knacks or some such, that form the minutiae of our daily lives. Many a time these add to the the clutter too. Rare is the home which looks like the above pic.

I am a huge fan of Marie Kondo, and I highly recommend her book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up  which is more than just a book.

It is an entire philosophy, and a new approach. I read the book back to back, and immediately put into use the methods described in the book. I must tell you how wonderful I felt! I never thought that I could be that organised.

Clearing clutter, and the stuff that you no longer have use for, does release 'blocked energy.' There is no scientific or rational explanation for this. I only know that it works for me. Any Feng Shui practitioner and  loads of Eastern Schools of belief will confirm this.

I always make it a point to give away things I no longe…

Three powerful things every aspiring writer must do.

On Saturday, I got a message from my publisher.
'Check the Hindustan Times today; We're at No.5 and No.8,' he said.

I checked immediately, and my heart leapt up in joy.  TWO of my books were indeed among the highest selling fiction books in the country. My publisher also sent me this nice creative!

 I felt very happy, because it's not easy for a book to climb into the charts MONTHS after it's release. In the case of Life is What You Make It, it is TEN YEARS since  I wrote that book. Having the books there was validation that people find comfort and joy in my writing.

I have grown as a writer, with every book I have written. I do work very hard at my craft. I am constantly trying to write better. I write every single day---although everything is not for publication. I have a desk full of notebooks and diaries which I have filled over the years. I have my gratitude journal, my daily journal, my story ideas, my blog posts, my emails, my one minute writing exercises. …

The number one essential to be a succesful writer.

What is the most important thing, a writer must do, in order to be successful? I am often asked this.

Now 'being successful' itself can be defined in several ways. If you are an aspiring writer, I would consider the first step of success as completing a manuscript. If you have managed to sit down and have completed writing a book, you are successful, whether you have managed to find a publisher or not. You  have successfully crossed the first step.

The other question I am usually asked is about my art. One of the things I do, in between my writing is my art. I am asked questions like how it helps my writing, and whether a writer should have other forms of creative expression, other than writing.

I don't think a writer truly needs to have any other form of creative expression, if they are not inclined! If you are passionate about writing and you have no other creative pursuits, that is perfectly okay. To say that one must have other creative pursuits apart from writing…