The festival of Dhanteras falls in the month of Kartik (Oct-Nov) on the thirteenth day of the dark fortnight. This auspicious day is celebrated two days before the festival of lights, Diwali.
How to Celebrate Dhanteras:
On Dhanteras, Lakshmi – the Goddess of wealth – is worshipped to provide prosperity and well being. It is also the day for celebrating wealth, as the word ‘Dhan’ literally means wealth and ‘Tera’ comes from the date 13th.
In the evening, the lamp is lit and Dhan-Lakshmi is welcomed into the house. Alpana or Rangoli designs are drawn on pathways including the goddess’ footprints to mark the arrival of Lakshmi. Aartis or devotional hymns are sung eulogizing Goddess Lakshmi and sweets and fruits are offered to her.
Hindus also worship Lord Kuber as the treasurer of wealth and bestower of riches, along with Goddess Lakshmi on Dhanteras. This custom of worshiping Lakshmi and Kuber together is in the prospect of doubling the benefits of such prayers.
People flock to the jewellers and buy gold or silver jewellery or utensils to venerate the occasion of Dhanteras. Many wear new clothes and wear jewellery as they light the first lamp of Diwali while some engage in a game of gambling.