The birth anniversary of Bhagwan Shri Krishna was celebrated in a traditional manner at BAPS Mandirs across North America. Devotees expressed their devotion on Janmashtami by observing a waterless fast and spending the day immersed in reading, reciting and singing about Shri Krishna's life and message.
The celebration on the weekend saw great excitement and devotion as devotees gathered for an evening of bhajans, inspirational discourses by swamis, skits and folk dances performed by children and youth. This year’s event reflected the theme “Tav Gunānāmīśa Pāraṁ Na Yāti” (the limit of your virtues will not be reached).
Attendees recalled divine incidents of Bhagwan Shri Krishna and messages from the Shrimad Bhagwad Gita as they were depicted through cultural dances, theatrical stage productions, and speeches performed by children and adults. True to the theme, the program highlighted numerous incidents which emphasized various virtues of Bhagwan Shri Krishna and teachings he aimed to instill in devotees, especially through his interaction with Arjuna. Bhagwan Swaminarayan often discussed some of these same teachings throughout the Vachanamrut. The spiritual discourses demonstrated methods of how each of us can imbibe these values and implement them in our lives.
At the end of the program, the arti was performed followed by the kirtan, "Nand gher anand bhayo, jai kanaiyalal ki" as the infant form of Bhagwan Shri Krishna was cradled in a beautifully decorated swing, charging the atmosphere with devotion and divinity.