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Dhanteras and its Celebrations..

On Dhanteras Hindus consider it auspicious to purchase gold or silver articles or at least one or two new utensils. It is believed that new "Dhan" or some form of precious metal is a sign of good luck. "Lakshmi Puja" is performed in the evenings when tiny Diyas of clay are lit to drive away the shadows of evil spirits.

Dhanatrayodashi (or Dhanteras), first Day of Deepavali is celebrated in 3 different ways

Deity Dhanvantari is one of the twenty four Incarnations of Deity Vishnu. He has four hands like Deity Vishnu, which carry Sudarshan Chakra, Conch, Jalouka and pot of Amrut (Nectar). Deity Dhanvantari is the founder of Āyurvēda.

According to the Ayurveda, the birthday of the Deity Dhanvantari falls on this day. Āyurvēdic doctors (vaidyas) worship Him on this day. They give prāsad (Holy food item) of small pieces of neem leaves and sugar to the visitors. This has great significance because the neem fruit has originated from Divine Nectar (Amrut) and Dhanvantari is the Deity who bestows immortality. It is said that if one chews five to six neem leaves everyday then the likelihood of suffering from any disease is highly unlikely. One should pray to Deity Dhanvantari for the effectiveness of the medicine before taking medicines.

Preparing prasad of neem leaves

1. A few flowers of neem

2. 10-12 tenderleaves of neem

3. 4 spoons soaked chana daal or soaked chana

4. 1 spoon honey

5. 1 spoon jeera

6. Pinch of Asafoetida

Mix all the above ingredients in a bowl and add salt to taste. Then grind it till it becomes a soft paste. Then we offer it to God and pray with devotion that God partakes this Naivedya (food item offered to God). Once we have offered it to God we can distribute it to others.

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