“Dhanteras” is derived from two Hindi words “dhan” & “teras”. Dhan means wealth & Teras means Thirteenth. Dhanteras is being observed on the thirteenth day of the Kartik month.
Dhanteras is also referred as “Dhanvantari Trayodashi” or “Dhantrayodashi”.
Throughout India, Dhanteras is celebrated with great enthusiasm. On this day, Lord Kuber is also worshiped along with Goddess Lakshmi.
Legends Behind Dhanteras
Once a sixteen-year-old son of King Hima was doomed to die by a snake-bite on the fourth day of his marriage as per the astrological predictions. On that particular fourth day of his marriage, his young wife did not allow him to sleep. She laid all the ornaments and lots of gold and silver coins in a big heap at the entrance of her husband’s room and lighted innumerable lamps all over the place. Throughout the night she told stories and sang songs to her husband.
When Yama, the god of Death arrived there in the guise of a Snake his eyes got blinded by that dazzle of those brilliant lights and he could not enter the Kings chamber. So he climbed on top of the heap of the ornaments and coins and sat there whole night listening to the melodious songs. In the morning he quietly went away. Thus, the young wife saved her husband from the clutches of death. Since then the following day of Dhanteras i.e. 14th day of the Kartik month, came to be known as the day of “Yamadeepdaan” and an earthen lamp is kept burning throughout the night of Chaturdashi glorifying Yama, the God of Death. The Yama Deep is also lit up on the day of Dhanteras as well.
Another legend states that on this day after the Samudra Manthan was done by the gods and demons, Goddess Dhanvantari came out of the sea holding the pot of Amrit. This is the reason Dhanteras is also called Dhanvantari Jayanti. It is believed that God gives his blessings of good health & wealth on this day, 13 times of the capacity of the pot/utensil purchased.
Interesting Facts About Dhanteras
Buy silver or gold things on Dhanteras
It is considered the perfect time to purchase gold or silver things like Laxmi Ganesha Idol, Kalash, Diya, Utensils, jewelry, coins on this day as a sign of good luck and “Dhan” is entering our house.
Ideal time for New Ventures
Dhanteras festival is also an ideal time for setting up businesses, commencing new projects, celebrating housewarming, buying cars as well.
On this day, a Chaumukhi Diya ( a square Diya with four mouths) is being lit up at the main entrance door of the house. It is said that by lighting this Diya which is Yama Deep, sudden death can be avoided.
Puja of farm animals
In villages, cattle are adorned and worshiped by farmers as they form the main source of their income.
Gold & Silver selling on surge
Dhanteras in the current scenario marks the highest selling of Gold and Silver ornaments in India.