The family day long weekend will include an extended celebration for Hindus in Surrey. This is because the festival of ‘Mahashivratri’ falls on February 13th of the Gregorian calendar in 2018. This festival is marked by meditation, chanting and singing hymns through the night along with cultural and traditional customs of offering night long prayers to Lord Shiva. Based on the galactic alignment of the earth’s northern hemisphere, this period is considered uniquely auspicious to experience the universal spiritual energy and seek universal positivity which then leads to success and well-being in one’s material lives.
Hindu temples in Surrey such as the Laxmi Narayan Mandir and the Hanuman Temple welcome the local population to offer their prayers during this sacred festival. It is open to all members of the community seeking to experience the celebration. Priya from Queensborough goes every year to this festival celebration. She says “I look forward to see the depictions, imagery and portrayals of Shiva meditating in the icy cold Himalayan conditions”. Rumu migrated many years ago from Nepal and her perspective is more philosophical, “The collective meditation aligns universal energies with ourselves creating a uniquely powerful aura” she explains.
In cases of overcrowding people can also consider visiting the Hindu temple in Burnaby. Having just moved to its new location it offers a much larger venue to celebrate Mahashivratri, a festival promoting self-restraint, non-violence, peace and social harmony. These spiritual and cultural centres and celebrations also add to the diversity of the community. About 40,000 Hindus are estimated to be residing in Surrey BC based on census statistics.
More information: Isha Foundation