A Fruit of Wisdom

The karit (कारिट) fruit (Cucumis melo var. agrestis) plays a small but significant part in the Diwali festivities. After the traditional bath at dawn on the morning of Diwali, it is customary to stamp and split open the fruit by the heel of the foot and taste a little of the bitter juice before commencing feasting on the sweet and savoury goodies. The mythological significance of this ritual is the liberation of the oppressed masses from the demon Narakasura by Lord Krishna, who killed the demon by stamping him underneath the heel of his foot.

On this festive occasion today, let us recognise the metaphorical substance of this tradition and endeavour to cleanse our mind by destroying the evils of anger, greed, hate, pride and vanity that tend to fester within our self, and look at this world through a cleansed soul filled with benevolence, compassion, empathy, love, temperance and respect.

I wish you all, and your loved ones, a Happy Diwali!

– Narendra Nayak © 2019

17 thoughts on “A Fruit of Wisdom

    1. Thank you, R! I strongly believe that our traditions and rituals have, in their origins, a scientific meaning or a spiritual message. While quite a few of them may have a metaphorical value, the reasonings seem to be lost in literal translation down the ages.
      I hope you too are immersed in the festive spirit! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I’m surprised that I missed the beginning of Diwali this year. We have a large population in Houston that celebrates the festival, but since I don’t regularly read our local newspapers, any publicity about it passed me by. Any festival of lights appeals to me — as well as the wonderful rangoli designs that are so beautiful. So, thank you for this post, which added a bit more to my knowledge of Diwali traditions.

    On this auspicious festival of lights, may the glow of joy, prosperity and happiness Illuminate your life and your home!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Tanja! Yes, it was indeed a good Diwali – smiles around us surely light up our own little world. Let us, together, pray that we all end up making this planet a better place by spreading more peace, love and joy!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Neelanjana, for reading this impromptu post. I’ve not researched what other regions this custom is followed in, but it’s an integral part of the celebrations in Maharashtra, Goa and coastal Karnataka.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I very much appreciate your calm and beautifully written post, Narendra. I find the
    thinking behind Diwali most important for us all. I grew up in Sweden with different traditions but always found their meaning of importance.


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Miriam, for your kind words of appreciation! Yes, it is the metaphors and meanings behind all the customs and traditions that are truly worth understanding and imbibing in our everyday habits. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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