Janmashtami Celebration in North America
August 24, 2008
The halls of BAPS Mandirs around North America were buzzing with excitement this weekend as thousands of followers gathered on Sunday, August 24, 2008 to celebrate the birth of Bhagwan Shri Krishna, one of the most venerated incarnations in Hindu Dharma.
This year the celebrations focused on how Bhagwan Shri Krishna’s wisdom can guide us through the trials of life. Pujya sadhus explained why he incarnated on earth? What does he say? And what should we do? These questions were answered based on Bhagwan Shri Krishna’s teachings in the Bhagavad Gita.
Accompanied by the rhythm of the tabla and the melodies of the harmonium, youths sang devotional songs extolling Bhagwan Krishna’s glory in the traditional Indian languages of Gujarati and Hindi. Devotees relished the festive atmosphere as BAPS youths performed Krishna Leela, a musical narration of Bhagwan Krishna’s life, beginning with his birth 5000 years ago in the small town of Mathura in Northern India.
The event also highlighted the Bhagavad Gita, an ancient Hindu scripture that serves as one of Bhagwan Krishna’s most valuable contributions to mankind. In the Bhagavad Gita, Bhagwan Krishna reveals the path to self-realization to his staunchest disciple, Arjuna. In addition to being one of the most important holy days of the year, the Janmashtami celebration was also a testament to the effort that BAPS makes in promoting the cultural and spiritual development of its youths.At the end of the program, the arti was performed followed by the kirtan, "Nand gher anand bhayo, Jai Kanaiyalal ki .. Hathi, ghoda, palkhi, jai Kanaiyalal ki …" as the child form of Bhagwan Shri Krishna was cradled in