Updates News from Asia Video: The Ganga Aarti Every evening, as dusk descends, it's time for the Ganga Aarti to be performed in the holy city of Varanasi in India. An aarti is a devotional ritual that uses fire as an offering. It's usually made in the form of a lit lamp, and in the case of the Ganges River, a small diya with a candle and flowers that are floated down the river. The offering is made to the Goddess Ganga, also referred to as Mama Ganga, the goddess of the holiest river in India. The aarti is carried out facing the river. The lamps are lit and circled around by Hindu priests in a clockwise manner, accompanied by changing or songs in praise of Mama Ganga. Participants believe the lamps acquire the power of the Ganga. After the ritual is complete, devotees cup their hands over the flame and raise their palms to their forehead - an action they believe brings them purification and blessing. As Hindus believe the river Ganges is sacred, many take every opportunity to bathe in it and drink from it believing that Mama Ganga is able to purify them. The irony is that the Ganges is filthy - full of rubbish and ashes from the funeral pyres that litter the riverside. Pray for Hindus in Varanasi, that the Lord would reveal Himself to them and that many would come to saving faith through faith in Jesus Christ.