Karthikai Deepam is a festival of lights celebrated by TamilHindus on the full moon day of Karthikaimonth (November/December), which is observed in every home and in every temple. This occurs on the day when the moon is in conjunction with the constellation Karthigai (Pleiades) and purnima. This constellation appears as a group of six stars in the firmament in the shape of a pendant from the ear. Many legends and lyrical poetry have grown round this star. The six stars are considered in Indian mythology as the six celestial nymphs who reared the six babies inhahaha the saravana tank which later were joined together to form the six faced Muruga. He is therefore called Karthikeya, the one brought up by the Karthigai nymphs. Houses and streets are lit up with rows of oil lamps (Deepam) in the evening of the festival day.
Feel of Karthigai Deepam
Rows of agal vilakkus (oil lit lamps) in front of every house... this is the image that at once comes to mind when we think of Karthigai Deepam - the festival of lights that is celebrated throughout Tamil Nadu during the month of Karthigai (November-December). Not many of us are aware that it is one of the oldest festivals celebrated in the state, perhaps even before people began celebrating Deepavali and Navarathri. Also, unlike many other Hindu festivals, Karthigai is a festival of Tamilnadu and Kerala and is celebrated by all the Tamil and Malayalees diaspora throughout the globe.