Dhanteras is a Hindu festival that is celebrated on the day before Diwali. Being a Hindu-majority country, people in India celebrate Diwali and Dhanteras with immense enthusiasm. Though Diwali is a well-known festival, people outside India have lesser knowledge about the significance of Dhanteras. The celebration of Diwali is incomplete without the celebration of Dhanteras in India. Not just in India, Dhanteras is also celebrated in Nepal before the “Tihar” festival.
The word “Dhanteras” is a blend of two Sanskrit words. The first word is “Dhan,” and it means wealth. The second word is “Teras,” which means thirteenth. Since the festival was celebrated on the thirteenth lunar day of Dark Fortnight (Krishna Paksha), it has been named “Dhanteras.” In the western world, thirteen has been regarded as an unlucky number. But, in India, there is no inauspiciousness associated with the number thirteen.
Knowing the Dhanteras story will help you better learn the day’s significance. In the following section, various stories that are associated with this auspicious day have been discussed.
Legends Associated with Dhanteras
The Tale of King Hima
Most of the Hindu festivals and rituals are linked with Hindu mythological anecdotes. The story of Dhanteras starts with King Hima. The sixteen-year-old king got married. Soon after his marriage, he came to know from an astrologer who told him he would die four days after his marriage.
Listening to this, the queen felt extremely sad and heartbroken. She kept all her dazzling ornaments in the sleeping chamber of King Hima. When King Hima was sleeping in that chamber, Yama came in disguise as a serpent to kill the king.
Due to shining jewelries, Yama could not see the king in the sleeping chamber. As a result, the king had a narrow escape from certain death. Since the jewelry saved the king’s life, people started buying expensive ornaments on this day. This is how the ritual of buying gold jewelry began on Dhanteras.
The Tale of Lord Indra and Goddess Laxmi
Once, Rishi Durvasa (a Hindu saint) cursed Lord Indra. Due to the curse of Durvasa, Laxmi (Goddess of Wealth) left Indra. Soon, King Indra was defeated by the demons and compelled to live in exile. Lord Indra went to Lord Vishnu to end his miseries, and Lord Vishnu suggested “Samudra Manthan” to procure Amrit to become invincible.
After “Samudra Manthan,” Laxmi appeared with Amrit in her hand. The day reappearance of Goddess Laxmi is celebrated as Dhanteras. Since Laxmi is the Goddess of Wealth, people invest in gold on this day to become wealthy.
Apart from these two popular tales, many people believe that Dhanteras is a day when the richest Hindu God, Kuver, feels generous. He gives away his wealth to people. So, the day is celebrated as Dhanteras.
Various Dhanteras Rituals
On the day of Dhanteras, people commonly worship Goddess Laxmi as Dhanteras puja vidhi. If she becomes happy with your worship, she will bless you with wealth. Some of the commonest rituals on the day of Dhanteras are:
- Purchasing Jewelry: Since glittering jewelry saved King Hima’s life, people commonly purchase jewelry on this day. Buying jewelry on this day is considered an auspicious ritual. The ritual will protect you and your family from the rage of the Lord of Death, Yama.
- Buying Gold Coins: People purchase gold coins to celebrate the day of wealth. Buying gold or silver on the day of Dhanteras brings wealth and happiness. You should purchase the gold coin from a reliable seller and check the gold’s authenticity before buying.
- Investment in Gold: Instead of buying gold jewelry or gold coins, many people invest in gold on the day of Dhanteras. Investment in gold is completely a strategic decision. However, people want to start their investments on an auspicious day. In India, many believe that gold investment in Dhanteras will fetch an excellent return on investment.
- Start an Investment: Many people have an interest in investing in various funds and stocks. You can start a new investment on this auspicious day, according to the Dhanteras muhurat. Check the muharat and invest accordingly to fetch a high return. Since it is faith-based, it does not assure a high return. But, investing in good faith makes the investor feel positive.
- Buying Metal Substances: In India, many people live with a mid and low-level income. Purchasing gold or silver may not be possible for everyone. Such people usually celebrate Dhanteras by purchasing metallic utensils and other substances for home.
- Lighting up Oil Lamps: On the day of Dhanteras, Hindus light up their houses with oil lamps in the evening. It is believed that Lord Kuver gives a portion of his wealth to the people today. To welcome Lord Kuver, people lit up their houses with oil lamps.
2022 Dhanteras Date and Time
So, when is Dhanteras this year? In 2022, Dhanteras will be on the 23rd of October, a Sunday. The Trayodashi Tithi starts on the 22nd of October at 06:03 PM. The tithi will remain till 06:04 PM on the next day. You need to arrange puja at home within the Trayodashi Tithi.
Dhanteras is an event to bring wealth and prosperity to the home. Worshipping Goddess Laxmi and buying gold ornaments will fetch you good fortune. So, make this year’s Dhanteras special for the well-being of your family by investing in Gold or something else which can bring a good return.