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When I was growing up in a Tamizh Nadu Vaishnava family, we celebrated Deepavali. During those formative years, I did not know the term "Diwali". The Diwali term was probably derived as a lazy way of saying Deepavali. Diwali has no meaning. As I understand Deepavali means line of lights; this makes more sense. I wish people would [use] the word Deepavali.
We believe the significance of Deepavali is the celebration of Lord Krishna vanquishing Asura Naraka, good over evil. 126.96.36.199 (talk) 22:58, 4 December 2013 (UTC)
There are lots of Indian languages; I'm sure they all say this a little differently. That said, It does look like Divali and Deepavali are common enough to deserve inclusion in the opening line, certainly above "Festival of Lights" (which is more often going to have referred to Hannukah in English in the past). — LlywelynII 08:04, 6 April 2014 (UTC)
When I came by the page, there was an entirely needless English pronunciation in the opening line. Don't restore it; kindly remove it if someone does.
In English, dih-wah-lee is a straight-forward pronunciation of something spelled "Diwali" and throwing IPA in people's faces is more unhelpful than not. Keep NAD in mind and just port that info over to Wiktionary. Now, if someone wants to add the pronunciation of various Indian dialects... well, I'd still say that belongs in the name/etym/etc. section and not the lead, but it's at least encyclopaedic and somewhat helpful. — LlywelynII 08:04, 6 April 2014 (UTC)
I'd disagree, The consonants are obvious, but not the vowels. The first and last "I" could be pronounced "i" like in "kit" or "eye" like in "kite" or "ee" like in "key", then the "a" could be pronounced "aye" like in "Kate" or "are" as in "cart" or "a" as in "cat", or any of them could be unstressed too, giving even more possibilities. In fact even the "w" could logically even be a kind of "u" sound.
Diwali is not the most obscure topic or word, but it's not the most well known either, it is a foreign word after all, and I don't think having the pronunciation in the lead is over kill or turning into a dictionary. Just because you and also I know how to pronounce it and find it easy doesn't mean everybody will. My OED has the pronunciation for approximately one in ten words, not every single word, but it has it for Diwali, and I used it for a reference. It's pretty standard for Wikipedia to have pronunciation of such words and put it in the lead too.
For example a huge number of very well known cities and nations, with fairly logical pronunciations include pronunciations. Check out Los AngelesLondonParisBerlinTokyoJapanFranceGermany and probably thousands more, in fact some of them go as far as having a sound file also in the lead to further aid letting the reader know the correct pronunciation. I feel I should add the pronunciation back, but I do not wish to edit war, and we should ask for the opinions of others if this becomes an issue to see what the wider consensus is. Carlwev 12:26, 10 October 2014 (UTC)
The pronunciation in the lead sentence is not necessary. Any interested reader can find it in the etymology and names section. It is, as Llywelyn notes, better ported to Wiktionary.
While I left the Divali and Deepavali in the lead sentence, do we need the alternate names there? After all, the lead infobox and section below already has it too. Abbey kershaw (talk) 13:09, 11 October 2014 (UTC)
Diwali dates back to ancient times in India, as a festival after the summer harvest in the Hindu calendar month of Kartika.
The festival is mentioned in the Padma Purana (c. 701–1200 CE) [...]
Given that the Vedas date to the 2nd millennium BCE, an origin around 700-1200 CE seems relatively recent. In the West, we'd probably call this era "medieval" rather than "ancient" times.
Is there history prior to 700 CE? If not, maybe "ancient times" is confusing here. I understand that "ancient" is pretty subjective, but absent other information I would have placed it much earlier. --ESP (talk) 17:48, 23 October 2014 (UTC)
I will fix this, and add Katha Upanishad from 1st millennium BC. Abbey kershaw (talk) 17:56, 10 November 2014 (UTC)
The article currently states that Diwali is celebrated in Autumn. Does Wikipedia have a policy about clarifying seasonal references? Diwali is being celebrated in Australia, for example, at the same time it is being celebrated in India, and it is definitely not Autumn in Australia. 188.8.131.52 (talk) 01:03, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
And how about a more specific date or dates, in any case? Fireworks going off tonight, near here, but is it Diwali or not? 184.108.40.206 (talk) 18:50, 25 October 2014 (UTC)