Karthigai Deepam is also a festival of lights like deepavali. It is celebrated as Lord Karthik's Birthday. Lord Karthik also known as Lord Murugan-the youngest Son of God Shiva and Goddess Parvathi born in Karthik Nakshtra (Star) of Karthik month.
Today is the day of celebration in south. Today and tomorrow people light all the lamps in their house (metal as well as earthen) and place it in front of their house, near the windows etc.
It will be a nice sight to see those lamps in the dark night giving warmth to eyes and beautifying the sorroundings.
The main neivedhya is appam, pori and adai. Appam is a sweet ball shaped one fried in oil. Pori is puffed rice of different varieties mixed with melted jaggery separately and shaped into balls. Adai is a salty dish.
In the Shiva Temple at Thiruvannamalai (in Tamilnadu) this day is celebrated in grand manner. Early morning poojas are conducted and five lamps are lit signifying the five elements viz., air, water, fire, space and earth. In the evening the maha deepam (big lamp) is lit at the top of Thiruvannamalai after the Ardhanareeshwar's appearance. Huge wick made of cotton and so many litres of ghee is used to light it. This lamp stays for two to three days so that people from other parts come, visit the place to have the darshan of the maha deepam.