The Bidens hosted Monday the biggest Diwali celebration ever held within the White Home, with some 200 visitors in attendance because the president lit a diya, a ceremonial lamp, and addressed the vacation’s significance.
“The continued story of America, a narrative that’s firmly stamped within the Indian American and South Asian American expertise, that’s why we’re right here immediately,” President Joe Biden stated in a speech.
The vacation, celebrated by Hindus, Buddhists, Jains and Sikhs the world over, is supposed to represent the triumph of excellent over evil and light-weight over darkness.
Earlier than he addressed the room filled with South Asians, Biden invited two younger children to hitch him on stage.
“That’s my impression of sunshine,” he stated.
Unbeknownst to Biden till later within the speech, it could end up that they have been the youngsters of Rep. Ro Khanna, a Democratic congressman from California Democratic congressman from California and one of many few Indian People within the Home of Representatives.
The president was joined on the ceremony by first woman Jill Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, who was greeted with loud cheers as she took the stage to speak about her personal relationship with Diwali.
“I’ve such fond recollections of celebrating Diwali as a baby,” Harris stated. “Like lots of you, we’d go to India about each different yr, avoiding monsoon season, and we’d go for Diwali … My mom would give us lit sparklers, and we’d go into the streets to rejoice this crucial event.”
She stated the vacation represents hope to her. “Diwali reminds us to see the sunshine in our world, in one another, and in ourselves.”
Biden reminisced on the Diwali occasion he hosted as vp in 2016, saying it was a light-weight within the darkness forged by former President Donald Trump’s marketing campaign.
“Immigrant households have been vilified and shamed as a prelude to what was to return,” he stated. “But that Diwali evening, we gathered collectively to forged the sunshine of hope and belonging and goal.”
He ended by addressing that racism and xenophobia levied in opposition to Asians over the previous couple of years, saying Diwali provides people the chance to work in opposition to these forces.
“I used to assume we will defeat hate, popping out of the civil rights motion,” he stated. “Nevertheless it solely hides. It hides beneath rocks till it’s given oxygen and it comes out, prejudiced folks talking… Diwali is a reminder that every of us has the ability to dispel darkness and convey gentle to the world.”