October 29, 2007

Happy Dasara!

Ravan (before the "dahan" i.e. burning)This year, I had the chance to attend the Ravan Dahan (or the burning of Ravan) for the first time outside India.

This day marks the victory of Lord Rama over the Demon King Ravana. It was also the day King Ravana was killed. In Hindu culture, this day symbolizes the victory of Good in the battle of "Good versus Evil" and also the returning home of Rama from exile. Dasara is almost immediately followed by Diwali - the festival of lights.

Organized as a part of Dasara (also known as Dassera or Navaratri) celebrations by the Reading Hindu Temple, the celebration includes burning effigies of King Ravana, Kumbhakarna and Meghanad. This was followed by some excellent fireworks. Needless to say, on a cold evening a good display of Fireworks was exactly what was needed to warm everyone's heart :)

I have taken some photos of the event. See the entire set here. So here's wishing my readers - Happy Dasara!! and Happy Diwali!!