More then 200 devotees gathered at Arya Samaj of Chicago land in West Chicago on Sunday, March 8, to celebrate the auspicious festival of Holi.
The festivities began with the Havan which was led by Acharya Hari Prasadji and conducted on three Havan Kunds to accommodate the large number of congregants. Explaining the ancient Vedic roots of this celebration, Acharyaji familiarized the devotees with Vasanti Navsasyeshti, the original name of this day, which was observed to thank God and nature for bountiful crops and prosperity. Through the recitation of special mantras, Acharyaji offered blessings to the congregants for prosperity and good health. After the Havan, those assembled enjoyed Bhajans sung by Sulakshana Bhagwat, Anil Oroskar, Pratibha Jairath and Saroj Soni. A special feature of the day was the reading of the 10 Principles of Arya Samaj by Arush, Swasti, Veronica, Luv, Kush and Vani. Acharyaji also talked about the ways to prevent the spread of Corona virus though our traditional practices like namaskar, not eating from shared dishes or utensils, etc.
Then, the attendees moved downstairs to offer roasted Chanas into the ceremonial fire and played holi with flowers and chandan tikas before sitting down to a delicious lunch of traditional foods like kachodi and aaloo sabzi, gujjhia, etc. Arya Samaj of Chicago land holds weekly services every Sunday from 11 AM to 1 PM.