Asia Society at Home
Diwali, also known as the festival of lights, is a popular Indian holiday that takes place between October and November, though the specific dates depend on the Hindu calendar. Different regions of India have different stories and interpretations of the origin of Diwali, but the theme remains the same: that Diwali is the victory of light over darkness, or good over evil. This time of year is often celebrated with gifts, and families often come together to celebrate the holiday.
Learn about Diwali!
Join Jayati Sengupta in her own home as she explains different Diwali traditions and shares examples of items often seen and used during Diwali. Watch her demo to learn how to do a craft activity!
Watch a Dance Performance
Join Silambam Houston for an Indian classical dance telling the story of Krishna. Through the Storytime With Silambam project, Silambam Houston aims to bring to you this treasure trove of stories from Indian mythology and folk culture. Each tale is presented in a unique narrative style that incorporates facial and gestural storytelling through abhinaya, the hallmark of Indian classical dance tradition. We hope you enjoy learning about these stories and cultural traditions as much as we enjoy bringing them to you!
Naughty child, playful teen, dashing hero, or wise mentor? Krishna, known to be an avatar of the Hindu god Vishnu, is all of these things at once. Of the innumerable stories and anecdotes about this beloved Indian deity, this Storytime video describes the events that lead to Krishna’s slaying of the evil demon, Narakasura. The echoes of that victory are heard today, every year, when the world celebrates Deepavali, or Diwali — The Festival of Lights.
Make Homemade Candles and Eyeliner
Join Asia Society intern Pravdeep Banwait as she invites you into her home to experience some of her family traditions during Diwali. Prav demonstrates how to make a small homemade Diwali candle from dough, then uses the heat from the candle to create eyeliner.
Note: Activity requires adult supervision.
Create a Rangoli Craft
Rangoli is an art form originating from India, often created during celebrations such as birthdays, weddings, and festivals including Diwali. The purpose of rangoli is to welcome good luck, as it is thought of as a positive pool of energy that also resembles nature. When you enter a house with rangoli, it is said that a sense of calmness will be brought on to you and your family. Traditionally, these patterns are created on the floor with materials such as rice, dry flour, colored sand, and even flower petals! Using simple materials found at home, create your own rangoli.
Major support for Education & Outreach programs at Asia Society Texas Center comes from Nancy C. Allen, Chinhui Juhn and Eddie Allen, and Mary Lawrence Porter, as well as The Brown Foundation, Inc., and The Houston Endowment. Additional funding is also provided by the George and Mary Josephine Hamman Foundation, as well as through contributions from the Friends of Asia Society, a dedicated group of individuals committed to bringing exceptional programming and exhibitions to Asia Society Texas Center.
About Asia Society at Home
We are dedicated to continuing our mission of building cross-cultural understanding and uplifting human connectivity. Using digital tools, we bring you content for all ages and conversations that matter, in order to spark curiosity about Asia and to foster empathy.
About Asia Society Texas Center
With 13 locations throughout the world, Asia Society is the leading educational organization promoting mutual understanding and strengthening partnerships among the peoples, leaders, and institutions of Asia and the West. Asia Society Texas Center executes the global mission with a local focus, enriching and engaging the vast diversity of Houston through innovative, relevant programs in arts and culture, business and policy, education, and community outreach.