Being a Hindu it is very important to me the traditions that my family has carried for many years and have passed down to me. I feel it makes me who I am and defines how I choose to live my life. Hindus around the world recently celebrated a famous and important religious holiday called”Diwali”. Diwali is known as the festival of lights in which rows of lights are seen throughout the house. It signifies good conquering evil, families share sweets and delicious foods with each other. It is one of the most important holidays that we celebrate. Despite the importance I feel that Hindus are overlooked when it comes to taking into consideration making our holiday national. In the American calendars we are given days off for many different religious holidays. But why is it that some holidays are made national holidays yet other religious holidays from different religions are not really acknowledged? This is not fair to the billion of different people that live in American because we don’t all share the same culture.
“Migrants may be living in New York, but, at the same time, they maintain strong involvements in their societies of origin,which, tellingly, they continue to call home.” (Foner, Nancy. From Ellis Island to JFK: New York’s Two Great Waves of Immigration. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2000.)
This is I feel a very strong yet accurate statement. Many of us have parents that are immigrants or 2nd generation immigrants. But as we grow up in a different culture and adapt new ways to blend into our new society many of us never forget our cultures. We may grow up living by the American culture but we are also taught the traditions that our parents brought with them from their homeland. Even though they call themselves Americans and reside in America their home country will always by back home for them. They blend their old traditions with the new traditions and make their own cultural blend.This way they can adapt and blend in with American society but they never forget where they come from. With all these efforts I think that America should be able to take into considerations that there are many other religions with more than a billion people living in America. So is they will make some religious holidays national they should make at least one important holiday from each religion national as well. It is not fair that we seemingly favor other cultures and religions over others. It may not very well be the case but this is how it seems.
Yet on October 28th many Hindus were cheerful and celebrated the fact that President Barack Obama along with the first lady and his adminstration leaders celebrated Diwali along side the Hindus in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building located next door to White House. This is a great first step in recognizing an this most important holiday for the Hindus. This could be a first step in bringing all of the religions together and actually treating cultures fair and let there be some sort of equality between religions. But as we continue on in our fight to live equally we will slowly but surely get there one day once we continue to make our words heard and minds remain open. Because once minds remain open doors and opportunities continue to open.