My warm welcome to all the teachers and students gathered here on this beautiful day. I think today is a cheerful to talk about a very cheerful of Hindu Gods, Lord Krishna. Lord Krishna is often the most beloved Gods in the Indian Pantheon.
The Krishna Janmashtami marks the birth of Lord Krishna, the beginning of a beautiful and divine journey and told I will be talking about this festival of Hinduism.
Lord Krishna, the 8th Avatar of Lord Vishnu is said to have born on the Ashtami day of the month of Shraavana of the Hindu lunar calendar. This generally falls in the months of August and September in the Georgian calendar. It is a very important festival for the Vaishnavities of Hinduism. The birth of Lord Krishna is bound in a tragedy where his father, Vasudeva, had to carry him across the river to Dwaraka to hand him over to Yashoda and Nanda who were his foster parents. He was prophesied to kill Kamsa, hi uncle, who had captured his parents to kill Krishna. Krishna later grew up to kill Kamsa and many other asuras who were wreaking havoc and chaos on earth.
The festivities of the day represent a huge celebration of the child in Lord Krishna. Bhajans and prayers are organised in his praise. Devotees visit Vishnu and Krishna temples to offer their prayers. They also make the foot prints of Krishna in their houses, inviting Lord Krishna to bless them. Rasa Lila, dance drama activities are organised to celebrate the birth of the Vishnu avatar. In Maharashtra, the ‘Dahi Handi’ is organised where teams of people climb on each other to get the earthen pot of yogurt that is hung at a height. This goes by the legend that Lord Krishna loved to eat yogurt from pots kept in the house.
The festival is also observed abroad by Hindus and Jains. Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Fiji, The USA and the Caribbean are some examples of places where a huge Hindu population observe this festival. The ISKON temple organises the celebrations worldwide.
I would like to end my speech by saying that this day is a celebration of the happiness of the childhood. Many toddlers are dressed up as Lord Krishna on this day. More than the religious symbols and connotations, I believe that this festival stands as a symbol of celebration of childhood and the child spirit in each one of us. This is something that we need to cherish and enjoy.