What a beautiful, sunshine-y day to celebrate the birth of Lord Rama!
|Hindu devotees showering rice grains on the Rama-Sita deities.|
A holy festival spread over nine days, Rama Navami celebrates the birth of Lord Rama, considered to be the seventh avatar of the Supreme God Vishnu and the hero of the great Indian epic, The Ramayana.
A hundred or more Hindus joyously attended Sri Rama Kalyanam (ceremonial divine marriage ceremony of Lord Rama and Sita) performed by a priest who was brought to Carbondale all the way from The Hindu Temple of St. Louis.
The ritualistic ceremony included plenty of chanting in Sanskrit and some explanation in English, so everyone could follow what was going on. This was followed by devotional songs by community members and a sumptuous Indian lunch.
I think most of us went home and napped for a good long while after all that overeating and socializing, following the main ceremony!
|My husband and I dressed up in our Indian finery|
Its a chance to pretend we are still in India.
And for a short while, it almost seems like we are back home - the Sanskrit chanting, the clothes, the food, the atmosphere, the catching up with dear ones - all the things you grew up with and took so much for granted and now miss more than ever.
|Little Miss M. poses with her friend|
So we do our best to cherish and keep alive many of the traditions and festivals from our homeland, while assimilating with the country we live in now.