Dhanteras Also Known as DhanaTrayodashi
One of The Sacred and Religious Festivals in India Called Dhanteras
Dhanteras, also known as Dhanatrayodashi is a religious festival celebrated with great enthusiasm across India. It takes place right before the festival of Diwali, say, for example, on the thirteenth moon day of Krishna Paksha during Ashwini month, as per the Hindu calendar.
Which God Is Celebrated On Dhanteras And Why?
Dhanvantari, the divine being whose wisdom of Ayurveda delivered immense benefits to mankind is worshipped on Dhanteras. As someone who dispensed the knowledge of Ayurveda for the better wellbeing of mankind, Dhanvantari is commemorated on Dhanteras by the devotees, who offer him reverential regard for his invaluable contribution to helping people rid of the suffering of disease.
According to the Indian ministry of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy, the day of Dhanteras Festival in India will continue to be remembered as National Ayurveda Day.
Why Is Dhanteras Celebrated?
Being a religious festival signifying reverence of divine lord Dhanvantari, the divinity of Ayurveda, Dhanteras, therefore, is celebrated to commemorate the lord Dhanvantari with reverential regard paid to him, along with expressing gratitude for having contributed to the mankind the wealth of knowledge about Ayurveda.
Moreover, the divine lord of Dhanvantari is also an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. He is believed to have come from Samudra Manthan (churning of the ocean by the collective efforts of gods and monsters). He emerged from the ocean holding a pot of nectar in one hand, and holy texts in the other. Lord Dhanvantari was also the physician of gods, apart from being the father of Ayurveda and its teacher.
What Is The Tradition Being Followed On Dhanteras?
The custom followed on Dhanteras by people is related to buying precious metals like gold and silver, as they are said to give protection from ill-omens. People who can’t afford these expensive metals prefer utensils or any household items. The bottom line is, that there is a tradition among people to buy at least something on Dhanteras to commemorate the sanctity of the festival.
Legend Behind Dhanteras
There once ruled a king, Hima. He had a 16-year-old son. According to the horoscope of Hima’s son, the boy was ordained to be dead by snakebite on the fourth day of his wedding. When his newly-wedded wife came to know of this prediction, she forbade him from sleeping, laid out all her ornaments, and piled all her gold and silvery items at the entrance of the sleeping chamber. To ensure that it remains well-illuminated, she lit many lamps.
Meanwhile, the god of death, Yama, disguised as a serpentine, could not bite the prince, as his eyes were dazzled and blinded by the brilliance of the lamps and jewellery. So, instead of wasting his time in finding out an opportunity to bite the prince, he coiled on top of the heap of gold and jewellery items and kept on listening to the story narrated by the prince’s wife to keep him awake. On the following morning, the curse of snakebite automatically ended, as Yama couldn’t take the life of the prince as the deadline for it passed. Thus, Yama as a snake silently went away, sparing the life of the prince. Since then, the festival of Dhanteras, due to its association with ornaments and saving the life of a prince, has been celebrated with joy and reverence.
Dhanteras is one of the sacred and religious festivals in India. It is celebrated with great reverence by devotees, who offer reverential regard to Lord Dhanvantari, the father of Ayurveda, and physician of gods.
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