"Deepavali has to be observed as the day for getting rid of all
bad qualities in us, symbolised by the demon Narakasura. The 16,000
gopikas, who were freed by Krishna from the prison of Narakasura on
that day, represent the imprisoned good qualities in us. They should
be manifested effulgently. This is the inner significance of this festival.
As long as the demonic qualities remain in man, he will be immersed
in darkness. Bad qualities and thoughts have to be got rid of altogether.
This Amavasya day is the day of liberation for the gopikas. It is a moonless
day, when the night is utterly dark. The gopikas prayed that as on that
day they had got the light of freedom, it should be marked by illuminations
which would make everyone rejoice as on a full moon night. It is for this
reason that the day, which is a New Moon day, is illuminated by lamps
and fireworks and turned into a Full Moon night.
If you want to light a lamp, you need four things. First: a container,
second: oil, third: a wick, fourth: a matchbox. If any one of these
is lacking, you cannot light the lamp. This lamp however can only remove
the outer darkness. How is the darkness in the heart to be removed?
It can only be removed by the Light of Wisdom (Jnana Jyoti) and by nothing
else. How is this Light of Wisdom, this spiritual light, to be lit?
This also needs four elements. Vairaagya (detachment or renunciation)
is the container. Bhakti (Devotion) is the oil. Ekaagrataa
(one pointed concentration) is the wick. Knowledge of the Supreme
Truth is the matchstick. Without all the four, the Light of Spiritual
Wisdom cannot be got."