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‘Tricolour’ theme for ISKCON Janmashtami celebrations

IANS | Mumbai |

For the first time, the ISKCON Temple in Chowpatty here will celebrate Janmashtami — Lord Krishna’s birthday — with a tricolor theme as it coincides with the Independence Day celebrations on August 15, an official here said on Saturday.

Besides, more than 750 other International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) temples worldwide are fully geared up for their own unique celebrations, said its spiritual leader Radhanath Swami Maharaj.

This year, the Chowpatty ISKCON Temple will glitter with lights and flowers in the Indian flag colours of saffron, white and green, the ‘prasad’ and other sweetmeats shall also be in the same shades when the festivities start on the midnight of August 14-15 along with the Independence Day celebrations.

A special radiant dress has been woven for the deities comprising a crochet with intricate designs originating in France, which has been designed by designer Rekha Mafatlal with an experience of 300 costumes for the deities in the past three decades.

“The crochet not only fills up the sparkling fabric on the deities but emits a radiant and attractive look when it shines brightly among the royal palate of turquoise, coral, pista and sky-blue shades,” explained a spokesperson Lucky Kulkarni.

Radhanath Swami added that ISKCON exemplifies Unity in the World with the attire of all devotees, their lifestyle, daily schedules, eating habits, and prayers are common in all the temples worldwide.

“All temples worldwide shall perform the Mangal Aarti followed by Tulsi Aarti, Guru Puja, Katha and Kirtans, Kalash Abhishek, Maha-Abhishek and Maha-Bhog performed by senior priests,” Radhanath Swami said.

Among the highlights around the world, he said the ISKCON Temple at Trinidad, West Indies has arranged a flowery dress for Lord Krishna besides a Boat Festival, Lagos in Nigeria will hold a musical competition of flute, Lord Krishna’s favourite instrument, besides a Radha-Krishna costume competition.

In London, the ISKCON Temple at Bhakti Vedanta Manor will have a spiritual Disneyland for the devotees and henna and face paintings besides a shadow show on Bhagwad Gita as an exploration of intersection of science-spirituality.

The New York ISKCON Temple at Bhakti Center has planned a Lotus Festival, the Dubai temple will organise a Bhagwat Katha (discourse) and Rajbhoga and Singapore will have a cultural show with Maha-Abhishek.

Similarly, the Toronto temple has planned a mega-bash for Lord Krishna’s birthday with an outfit made of flowers, Vancouver will have a Maha-Birthday cake for devotees besides a live theatre, a Radha-Krishna Palanquin rides.

The ISKCON temple in Moscow will have a grand holy ‘havan’ and Melbourne temple will organise a ‘havan’ with a midnight aarti and a feast for the devotees.