Diwali creeps up on me every year. This is probably because I am not technically Hindu, nor technically Padma Lakshmi, despite a not-so-secret desire to be both. You can keep your ScarJos and your Angelinas and your Halles. For me, Bravo’s Top Chef Host, Lakshmi, shuts it down in the most beautiful woman ever category. If I had to wake up as one of them tomorrow, it’s Padma, hands down . . . Hold on a sec, I forgot about Giselle. Crap. Tough decision.
Today, much of India celebrates another Lakshmi (the goddess, nay, the TV host), as part of the Diwali holiday. Known as the “festival of lights” and celebrated by Hindus, as well as Jains and Sihks around the world, for slightly different reasons, Diwali is often described as the equivalent of Christmas for Christians. It’s the holiday of all holidays. President Barack Obama does a nice job explaining and honoring it in the first presidential Diwali wish ever. Which begs the question: What took so long? One also has to give a nod of approval to Mr. President for his Sanskrit pronunciation.
So, Happy Diwali, everyone! Light some candles, spend time with your family, and feel blessed (or, maybe just, call your Mom). The Western world has certainly benefitted from India’s gift of yoga to us, so today is one opportunity to reciprocate the love by honoring yoga’s culture of origin on its biggest holiday. You don’t have to be Hindu to do this, just willing to send some of your light someone else’s way.