Dhanteras : Start of Deepavali Celebration
Dhanteras is an important Hindu festival, considered as start of five days celebration of most celebrated Indian festival Deepavali. In Sindhi community this day is auspicious day for shopping specially Silver, Gold ornaments and Kitchen utensils. Word Dhanteras is actually derived from Dhanvantri, the creator of Ayurvedic Health Science, who is also worshiped on this day.
Dhanteras is celebrated two days ahead of Laxmi Pooja or Deepavali on the thirteenth day of Krishan Paksh of Hindu Moth Ashwin. In Sindhi community there is no tradition of having pooja at home or shop like one which is performed on Deepavali Day, though many Hindu on this day worship Lord Dhanvatri and ask for boon of good health. Many people also worship Kuber lord of wealth on this day. In south India there is tradition of preparing special food called Marundhu kept in earthen pots on eve of this day and offered during the worshiping of God. This is believed that this food will turned into healthy medicine so this is eaten on day of Naraka Chaturdasi before sunrise. Since 2016 Government of India is celebrating this day as National Ayurveda Day.
Purana Story associated with Dhanteras
According to some Puranas, there was a King Hima when God blessed the King with a son, astrologers predicted that this boy will die on the forth day of his marriage. The Girl whom this boy was married have done a trick on this particular night she had lighted many lamps within the bedroom and kept her all the ornaments with many silver and gold coins on the floor from the door of room to bed. She didn't wish to allow her husband to sleep so she kept on Singing and narrating various stories to him. When Yamraj came he saw the room filled with light and thought still end of day is away so he also sit on gold coins to listen songs and stories. This was only the dawn of next morning that Yamraj realised that death day of boy is over now so he returned back empty handed.
Importance for Sindhi community
As the Sindhi community is considered as business oriented community hence for Sindhi community Dhanteras, the worshiping day of Gods of good health and wealth holds immense important. House and Shops are already cleaned and white washed for Deepavali celebration, the lighting starts from this day. Many Sindhi families also gifts Silver and Gold ornaments to married daughters on this day.