Dhanteras 2023: Know The Date, Puja Timings And Significance

Diwali is here again, and as India gears up for this celebration of lights, there’s a festive buzz in the air. This five-day Hindu festival is the celebration of good over evil and begins with the day of Dhanteras, which this year falls on Friday, 10 November. The word Dhanteras is Sanskrit and is made up of two parts, ‘Dhan’ meaning wealth and ‘Teras’ meaning thirteenth day. This is because the festival is celebrated on the thirteenth lunar day (Trayodashi) as per the Hindu calendar month of Ashvin or Kartika and is considered an auspicious day for rituals that revolve around a prosperous future. 

Mythology Of Dhanteras

On this day most devotees offer prayers to the Goddess Lakshmi and God Dhavantari asking for good fortune and luck. At night some also offer prayers to Lord Yamraj, the deity of death, to appease him and pray for the long lives of their family. 

Dhanteras is often linked to the sea-churning event known as Samudra Manthan, from which Goddess Lakshmi is believed to have emerged sitting on a lotus and bearing a pot of gold which symbolised good fortune. People often make rangoli patterns and leave diyas outside to guide the goddess to their homes after she makes this journey.

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According to Hindu mythology Dhanvantari, is the divine physician and carrier of the sacred Ayurveda texts. He emerged during the churning of the ocean, a grand event known as the Samudra Manthan. Dhanvantari held the Ayurveda scriptures in one hand and a kalash (pot) filled with Amrit, the elixir of life in the other.

Another tale goes that King Hima’s son was destined to die by a snake bite on the fourth day after his wedding and to counter his fate, his wife made sure he didn’t sleep, instead telling him stories all night to keep him awake. She also made a pile of all their gold and ornaments and lit several diyas near the entrance to their bed chamber, so when Lord Yamraj arrived disguised as a serpent, he was blinded by the dazzling pile all night before leaving quietly in the morning. 


In preparation for Diwali, Dhateras is the day that most people clean and purify their homes, and it’s also considered an auspicious time to make purchases or for monetary transactions. The evening of Dhanteras is considered the most auspicious time to offer prayer. After sunset, a special puja is conducted to honour the goddess. 

As part of this tradition, people recite the Dhanteras Katha, a sacred story that narrates the legends and significance of the day. Additionally, oil lamps are lit outside the house doors, except for areas like toilets. It is believed that the light from these lamps serves as a beacon, guiding Goddess Lakshmi to the homes of her devotees.

In Hindu culture, the Tulsi plant holds a sacred status and is also worshipped on this day. In the evening, a paste made from vermilion and rice flour is prepared to create the footprints of Goddess Lakshmi at the entrance of the home. This symbolic gesture is believed to bring prosperity and abundance to the household.

Special Food Made For Dhanteras

A lot of foods are also prepared to appease the Goddess. Things like Atte Ka Halwa, also known as lapsi, made from wheat flour or broken wheat along with ghee and jaggery is thought to be very auspicious. A prasad of coriander seeds and jaggery combination is also made to appease her. Rice kheer and boondi laddoos are also thought to be some of the goddess’ favourite sweet dishes and play a big role in the festivities of the day. 

Dates and Timings

  • Dhanteras Puja Muhurat - 05:47 PM to 07:43 PM
  • Pradosh Kaal - 05:30 PM to 08:08 PM
  • Vrishabha Kaal - 05:47 PM to 07:43 PM
  • Trayodashi Tithi Begins - 12:35 PM on Nov 10, 2023
  • Trayodashi Tithi Ends - 01:57 PM on Nov 11, 2023