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

Just Posted

The Port McNeill Fire Hall. (Port McNeill Fire Rescue photo)
Port McNeill Fire Rescue gets big financial boost from government

Port McNeill mayor Gaby Wickstrom was thrilled by the funding announcement

The river behind the ball field. (Tyson Whitney - North Island Gazette)
Pulled by the flow: river stirs up childhood memories

Gazette editor makes trek through Port Hardy wilderness to swim in the river

FILE – Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, takes part in an event on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous Peoples Day must be a ‘call to action’, says Assembly of First Nations chief

Discovery of children at Kamloops residential school site must lead to change, Perry Bellegarde says

Black Press file photo
RCMP seek suspect in Vancouver Island-wide crime spree

Crimes stretched from Deep Bay to Qualicum, Ladysmith, Chemainus and Youbou

Alert Bay council has decided to cancel Canada Day celebrations. (Alertbay.ca photo)
Alert Bay council cancels Canada Day celebrations

The decision was made in wake of the mass graves being found at former residential schools

Nanaimo Fire Rescue crews on scene at a boat fire near the boat ramp at Long Lake on Sunday, June 20. (Greg Sakaki/News Bulletin)
Boat burns up on Nanaimo’s Long Lake, man and child unhurt

Jet skiers attempt to put out fire by circling around to spray water on burning boat

The Somass Sawmill sits idle in early May 2021. While the kilns have been in use occasionally, and the lot has been used to store woodchips this spring, the mill has been curtailed since July 27, 2017. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)
Port Alberni to expropriate Somass Sawmill from Western Forest Products

Sawmill has been ‘indefinitely’ curtailed since 2017

Robin Sanford and her fiance Simon Park were married in an impromptu ceremony at Abbotsford Regional Hospital on June 16. (Submitted photo)
Mom dies day after witnessing daughter’s hospital wedding in Abbotsford

Nurses help arrange impromptu ceremony in 3 hours for bride and groom

B.C. Finance Minister Selina Robinson with Premier John Horgan after the budget speech Tuesday, April 20, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. home owner grant won’t be altered, despite expert advice

Tax break for residences worth up to $1.6 million too popular

B.C. conservation officer Sgt. Todd Hunter said a black bear is believed to have killed local livestock. (THE NEWS/files)
Black bear believed to have killed miniature donkey in Maple Ridge

Trap set for predator that has been killing livestock

The Comox Valley campus of North Island College. (File photo)
North Island College launches first Indigenous Plan

The plan signifies NIC’s commitment to become more Indigenous serving

Penticton mayor John Vassilaki and Minister of Housing David Eby have been battling over the Victory Church shelter and BC Housing projects in the city. (File photos)
Penticton heads to court over homeless shelter as BC Housing audit begins

The city was not satisfied with the response from Minister David Eby regarding the ongoing situation

People enjoy the sun at Woodbine Beach on June 19, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Tijana Martin
BC Hydro assures customers it has ‘more than enough’ power to weather the heatwave

Despite an increase of pressure on the Western grid, blackouts are not expected like in some U.S. states

The number of skilled trades workers available is not enough to fill the current construction boom in Greater Victoria. (Black Press Media file photo)
Supply of skilled tradespeople can’t keep up to Vancouver Island construction boom

Thousands of positions will be needed by 2030, despite flow of Camosun trades students

Most Read