Lord Krishna's Appearance

Krishna the Supreme Personality of Godhead, appeared in Vrindavan, India, 5 000 years ago. His transcendental appearance day, celebrated every year in August or September, is Krishna Janmashtami. Krishna Janmashtami is the grandest of all Vaishnava festivals. The celebration begins before dawn, at 4.30 a.m withmangal-arati. The temple room is full of devotees anxious to have darshanof the Lord on this special day and kirtan is especially enthusiastic. The Deities are dressed in special new outfits; the altar and temple room elaborately decorated with fresh fragrant flowers and vibrant colourful furnishings to mark this special time.

All day, there are readings from the Krishna Book and bhajans in the temple room. In the kitchen, devotees prepare a big feast of at least 108 varieties of preparations to be offered to Krishna at midnight.

In Mauritius, each of our temples receives at least 20 000 guests for Krishna Janmashtami, so the preparations for receiving and offering them prasadam begins months before the festival. It requires a lot of organization, resources and funds.

Guests visit all day and night to have spectacular darshan (view) of the deities of Radha and Krishna in the shrine of the temple room at Phoenix and of Krishna and Balarama at Bon Accueil.

The main cultural programme begins at 7pm. A total of a hundred thousand square foot of tent is erected for this purpose. The main tent programme consists of kirtan, bhajan, drama, dance, lecture, abhishek and arati. A guest speaker is usually invited from overseas for the occasion. Smaller tents host booths explaining our philosophy, presenting local projects, and selling sweets, savouries, books, CDs and cassettes, and other devotional paraphernalia. We also have booths for children and a big prasadam tent, serving a free hot meal to all our guests.

For the inquisitive young visitors, at Phoenix, we offer a special tent hosted by the ISKCON Youth Forum. They offer transcendental fun like you’ve never tasted before: chanting Hare Krishna to modern beats, entertaining skits and much more.

The grand abhishek (bathing the Deity with auspicious substances) which is at 11.30 p.m and the midnight arati are highlights of the evening tent programme.
Fasting is until midnight. Devotees break their fast with ekadasi prasadam and get ready for the next day, which is Srila Prabhupada’s AppearanceDay Festival.

We are very grateful for any donation and/or help you can offer. Please contact the temple on how to engage in the Lord’s service for His birthday!