Laxmi Puja, or the worship of the goddess of prosperity and wealth, is the main event on Diwali in North and West India. It is believed that Goddess Laxmi visit everyone during Diwali and brings peace and prosperity to all.
It is s extremely important to keep the house spotlessly clean and pure on Diwali. Goddess Lakshmi likes cleanliness, and she will visit the cleanest house first. This is also the reason why the broom is worshipped on this day with offerings of haldi and kumkum (turmeric and vermilion). Lamps are lit in the evening to welcome the goddess. They are believed to light up her path.
Step by Step Diwali Pujan / Laxmi Puja / Lakshmi Pooja:
In Diwali pujan or Laxmi pooja mainly Lord Ganesha and Goddess Laxmi in her three forms are worshipped.
Lord Ganesha -is worshipped at the beginning of every auspicious act as Vighnaharta; Goddess Lakshmi - is worshipped in her three forms - Mahalakshmi (the goddess of wealth and money), Mahasaraswati (the goddess of books and learning), and Mahakali; Kuber (the treasurer of the gods) is also worshipped.
- On a raised platform spread a new cloth.
- Place a handful of grains in the centre and, on this, place a kalash, lotta (pitcher). Fill three-fourth of the kalash with water and place a betel nut, a flower, a coin, and some rice grains in it. Arrange five kinds of leaves or mango leaves in the kalash .
- Place a small dish on the kalash and fill it with rice grains. Draw a lotus with turmeric powder ( haldi ) over the rice grains and place the idol of goddess Lakshmi over it, along with coins.
- In front of the kalash , on the right (South-West direction), place the idol of Ganesha. Also place ink and books related to your business or occupation on the platform.
- Light a deepak (lamp) and the Agarbatti (incense sticks) begin the puja by offering haldi, kumkum , and flowers to the platform on which the kalash is placed.
- Sprinkle this water on all puja utensils to purify them.
- Make a Panchamitra with 5 ingredients of milk, curd, ghee(clarified butter), sugar & Honey.
- Start with Ganesh Pujan (Ganeshji are a must for Diwali pujan. Ganeshji should be worshipped in all pujas before any other god or goddess. He is the Lord of Wisdom and the remover of obstacles.) by reciting Ganesh Mantras and Ganesh aarti. Offer a garland to the god. Offer flowers and make an offering of sweets, coconut and fruits.
- Now invoke goddess Laxmi by reciting the Laxmi mantras.Then offer the flowers to the idol.
- Place the idol of Lakshmi in a plate and bathe it with water, panchamrit and then with water containing some gold ornament or a pearl. Wipe the idol clean and place it back on the kalash .
- Alternately, you can just sprinkle water and panchamrit on the idol with a flower. Offer sandal paste, haldi, kumkum, to the goddess. Offer a garland to the goddess. Offer flowers and make an offering of sweets, coconut and fruits.
- Then worship the ink and business books. Open the first page of each book and write '' Shubha Labh '' on it and draw a Swastika in the clockwise direction.
- Wash all your gold and silver coins with water, panchamrit and then with water.
- Make an offering of puffed rice and batasha to the Gods.
- Finally, perform the aarti for goddess Laxmi and the universal aarti of "Om Jai Jagdish Hare..". At the end distribute the prasad to all members present and the have some for yourself.
- Now light the lamps and candles all around the house. No corner of the house should be left in darkness. (Note : Donot light the diyas before puja.)