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Diwali and Chanuukah joint celebration to hold in Chicago

CHICAGO, IL- Hindu and Jewish communities Nov. 18 will come together to hold a joint celebration of Diwali and Chanukah as the “Festival of Lights” throughout the city.

The November event promises to be a celebration of two ancient cultures, who are creating modern miracles, the release said.

It will feature Samson “Mathatma Moses” Koletar, the world’s only Indian American-Jewish standup comedian who will be performing to entertain the crowd. Lessons in both Indian and Israeli dance will be available, and attendees will dance in each other’s traditional dance steps as a symbol of brotherhood, mutual respect, empathy and harmony, it added.

The event will include comments by the consuls-general of both India and Israel, both of whom have agreed to attend the event, it said.

The Jewish celebration of Chanukah started when the second temple was destroyed by the Greeks, yet despite all odds Jews were able to light the candle and it was lit for eight nights. That started the Chanukah celebrations lighting the lamp of love and tolerance.

The Hindu festival of Diwali happens around the same time, celebrating Lord Rama’s return to Ayodhya. The festival signifying light over darkness, good over evil and knowledge over ignorance.

Both festivals have the same essence, of courage, love and tolerance, it said.

The event was conceived by Peggy Shapiro, Midwest executive director of StandWithUs, and Prasad Yalamanchi of Global Hindu Heritage Foundation, both of whom have cooperated on successful interfaith events in the past.

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