Under the leadership of Prabhu Sadananda Dasa, the Hindu Chaplain at MIT, a grand Janmashtami festival was organized on Monday September 3, 2018. The festival made full use of the Media Lab’s wonderful Audio Video capabilities. The festival also featured Indian Classical music and dance by MIT students who showcased their immense talents.
Following the lighting of the lamp by the MIT Chaplain, the event began with a video by Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard who described the festival of Janmashtami and its significance. The great Indian Saint Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada is responsible for promoting Krishna Consciousness in world. The movement he built, ISKCON, has helped the personal form of God Lord Krishna to the western world.
The event was held for the first time in Media Lab. “It is a very important festival and I thought it was the right place for it” says Prabhu Sadananda Dasa. The devotees setup a wonderful temple using Pipe and Drape. The temple was setup to be able to Abhishekam.
MIT Swara, the MIT Classical music group presented a few wonderful carnatic classical compositions including Yenna Thavam Cheythanai and Alaipayude . This was followed by the presentation of Namazhwar compositions by other MIT students. A beautiful Odissi presentation describing the Pancha Bhootas, a Bharatanatyam Presentation and a Kuchipudi Presentation showcased the amazing talent of the MIT students. The grand finale was a Varnam by Madhu, the daughter of local dance teacher Sapna Krishnan.
Following the cultural presentations, Prabhu Sadananda Dasa performed the complete Shodashoupchar Pooja for Lord Krishna including the Abhishkam. At the conclusion of the Pooja, the Lord and Radha Rani were placed on a Jhula and rocked by the devotees.
It was a great pleasure to watch the Media Lab transformed into a temple for a day. The event ended with fabulous prasadam made by Prabhu Sadananda Dasa with the help of MIT students.
It was an honor to be at the event and we look forward to being there again next year.