Canada Post’s new Diwali-themed stamp. (Photo: canadapost.ca/shop)

Canada Post’s new Diwali-themed stamp. (Photo: canadapost.ca/shop)

New Canada Post stamp celebrates Diwali, festival of lights

This year Diwali falls on Saturday, Nov. 14

Canada Post has produced a new commemorative stamp to mark Diwali, a festival celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains and others around the world.

This year Diwali falls on Saturday, Nov. 14, with festivities continuing for five days.

Of course, large gatherings are not encouraged during the COVID-19 pandemic, so festivities will be more subdued.

Diwali, also known as the Festival of Lights, usually falls in either October or November, as its date is based on the Hindu lunar calendar. It celebrates victory of good over evil, light over darkness.

Designed by Entro Communications, Canada Post’s new Diwali stamp features a diya and a geometric background evocative of a traditional rangoli. The domestic-rate stamp is available in a booklet of 10 stamps.

The stamps are sold online at canadapost.ca/shop.

This year some Diwali celebrations will shift to the digital world. Among them is the annual 5X Festival, which aims to replace in-person parties and events with virtual performances and other ways of engaging an audience during the pandemic.

The Surrey-based festival organizers will celebrate Diwali with a 5X MainStage event on the weekend of Nov. 14-15, online at 5xfest.com.

The festival, which aims to champion South Asian youth culture for those aged 16 to 35, has featured a flagship Surrey festival outdoors in recent years, including one in June 2019.

Diwali comes from the Sanskrit word dipavali, meaning rows of lights.

Diyas – small shallow receptacles made of clay that hold purified butter – are lit to ward off evil and to usher in goodness with light.

Followers of each religion go to their respective place of worship to pray and light the diyas on this holy night.

There are many different legends about how and why people celebrate Diwali.

For Sikhs, Diwali is particularly important because it celebrates the release from prison of the sixth guru, Guru Hargobind Ji, and 52 other princes with him, in 1619.

The Sikh tradition holds that Mogul Emperor Jahangir agreed to release Guru Hargobind Ji but said only those princes who could hold onto his cloak tail would be allowed to leave the prison as well.

In response, Guru Hargobind Ji had a cloak made with 52 pieces of string so each prince was able to hold onto one string and leave prison. Followers lit diyas to celebrate their guru’s homecoming.

Hindus follow the legend of Lord Rama and his wife Sita’s return home after 14 years in exile and also of Lord Rama’s epic battle with the demon King Rawan, whom he kills.

The people of Ayodha, home of Lord Rama, were so excited to hear that their beloved future king was coming home that they lit the way for him and his wife Sita with diyas.

Black Press Media

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A convoy of seven pickup trucks, six of which were hauling boats, makes its way around the Chilliwack Law Courts on Dec. 1, 2020. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
First court date for Fraser River anglers ticketed during demonstration fishery

Convoy of trucks circled the courthouse in downtown Chilliwack Tuesday honking their support

A full moon sinks behind the mountains as the sun rises on the first day of December in Chilliwack on Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
WEATHER: Chilliwack in for nearly a week of sunshine

Forecast calls for sun most of the week, temperatures reaching high of 10 C Friday

MLA Jennifer Whiteside is B.C.’s new minister of education. She is speaking out against Chilliwack school trustee Barry Neufeld and asking him to resign. (Black Press)
New education minister calls on Chilliwack trustee to resign

Whiteside echoes former minister’s promise to look at options to remove Barry Neufeld

A tongue-in-cheek message about wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 on a sign outside a church near Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection count climbs back up to 656

20 more people in hospital, active cases still rising

Mirandy Tracy, left, and Tara Kurtz are two Langley mothers who are organizing a "sick out" for Tuesday, Dec. 1 to protest COVID conditions in schools. They're calling for masks and smaller class sizes, among other things. (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance Times)
Politician, labour leader throw support behind student Sick Out day

Langley parents started the movement to keep kids home on Dec. 1 as a protest

A family emerged with a purchase at the Tannenbaum Tree Farm at 5398 252 St in Aldergrove on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020 (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)
Christmas tree season is off to an early start

People are ‘bored’ with staying home due to COVID-19 and want to decorate early, farm owner believes

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A heavy police presence was on scene on Dec. 28, 2017 following the shooting death on Bates Road in Abbotsford of Alexander Blanarou, 24, of Surrey. (Abbotsford News file photo)
Three men charged with Abbotsford shooting death of Surrey man

Alexander Blanarou, 24, was killed in a rural area on Dec. 28, 2017

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
B.C. researchers launch study to test kids, young adults for COVID-19 antibodies

Kids and youth can often be asymptomatic carriers of the novel coronavirus

A sign is seen this past summer outside the Yunesit’in Government office west of Williams Lake reminding visitors and members to stay safe amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (Rebecca Dyok photo)
B.C. First Nation leaders await privacy commissioner decision on COVID-19 information

Release of life-saving data cannot wait, says coalition of First Nations

Most Read