Diwali New Year
The customs of wearing new garments and exchanging gifts and greetings have come to be associated with Diwali, probably because of this New Year celebrations. Accordingly most of the traditions of a New Year celebration are all present. The occasion sees the spring-cleaning and white-washing of houses; decorative designs or rangolis are painted on floors and walls to greet the new year.
Fresh flowers, exchanges of gifts, new clothes, meeting with friends and family, and feasting are part of the colorful festival. Each region of India celebrates Diwali in its own way, but the lighting of many small earthenware oil lamps is common throughout the country, setting homes and gardens aglow with twinkling lights. The lamps are symbolic of the victory of the light of goodness and knowledge over the darkness of evil and ignorance. The lighting of the lamps is also a way for people to show thanks for the good things in their lives.